Writing Higher Ed Web Content People Actually Want to Read

readingYou can allocate as high a percentage of your budget as you want to content marketing for your higher ed institution, but unless you’ve taken the appropriate measures to optimize that content, nobody’s going to read it. This process is as much about how you write as what you write about, and it’s really important. Let’s take a look at some things you can begin implementing today to start seeing improvement in your ROI.

Focus “Above the Fold” – Remember old-fashioned newspapers? Where did the editors put the most important headlines? On the front, above where the paper folded in half. This is known in the marketing world as the prime real estate “above the fold”. The same concept can be applied to the web, and for good reason. 80% of web users spend most of their time on this section, so put your most attention-grabbing headlines and other juicy tidbits above where readers will have to begin scrolling.

Make it Digestible – Whether you’re writing to attract new students or to engage alumni and faculty members, one thing remains constant. People are busy. If one look at your blog post or web content gives the impression that it’s going to take a lot of time to read, they’re going to move on. Combat this by breaking content into smaller paragraphs, or lists. This allows the reader to scan through the content quickly and glean what they need right away.

Provide Value – This refers to the old question, “what’s in it for me,” or WIIFM for short. Your audience isn’t going stick around long if they aren’t finding anything of value on your website or higher ed blog. The key is understanding who you are writing for and crafting content that speaks directly to their needs, desires and pain points. Be valuable enough and they’ll likely keep coming back for more.

Use Active Voice and CTA – Regardless of your specific goal with each piece of content you write, you should always try including a call to action and using what’s known as an “active voice”. These things tend to subconsciously elicit the reader to do something, whether it’s to sign up for a weekly newsletter or start the application process. Content written in an active voice is more direct and engaging.

The ultimate goal in higher ed content marketing isn’t necessarily to get people to read every word of your copy, but rather provide them with user-friendly, valuable content that they can scan through and feel compelled to take action.

All of this starts with a content management system that is specifically designed to support the unique needs of the higher education industry. Request a demo today to learn more and start delivering content that will bring your university to the next level.

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