Does your institution put its advertising money where prospective students are?

June 21st, 2007 Karine Joly 4 Comments

If most of your advertising budget is spent on newspaper and magazine ads, probably not. That is if JupiterResearch, an independent firm providing research to the online industry, is right.

According to one of its recent reports, published last week, “Media Consumption Patterns: Online Vies with TV As Primary Medium,” online users spend as much time online as they spend watching TV, while users under the age of 35 spend more time online than on TV.

The press release also points out a mind-boggling fact about advertising spendings:

Despite this trend, however, advertisers continue to spend disproportionately on print, with newspapers garnering nearly three times the expenditure of online. Money spent on television advertising remains the clear leader among the marketing mix with advertisers spending four times as much on TV advertising as all online advertising.

For JupiterResearch Analysts, the medium of the future for advertisers could be social networking websites. That is if used properly.

So while online social networks might seem like the ideal mix of media and communications, advertisers must use them appropriately. Brand advertisers should rely on sponsorships, widgets, or branded microsites within the networks.

“Sponsoring personal-page themes and widgets that entertain or offer exclusive access to content also makes sense for reaching potential brand advocates,” said Emily Riley, Analyst at JupiterResearch. “But it takes a light touch. Marketing can’t be so intrusive that it risks creating negative brand associations.”

Obviously, the report is targeted to companies (and not higher ed institutions), but it definitely confirms the need to rethink some marketing and advertising tactics and start spending more time and money online.

What do you think? Is it just wishful thinking? Anybody spending more money online than offline when it comes to marketing to prospective students? Post a comment!

4 Responses

  1. Carol Harbers says:

    I think most marketers still want to maintain a good mix. You can still get very good returns from print if it is planned strategically. And if you want any return from broadcast at all, you have to sink significant cash into it (which some still are willing to do).

  2. Dennis Miller says:

    About 10 years ago I took 80% of my print budget and moved it over to radio and TV. The number of inquiries skyrocketed. We advertise in a couple of magazines but only if they have websites because that’s where the high school students — and parents, I suspect –go. We’re doing some online advertising but not a lot as yet.

  3. I feel like I am dragging most of my college clients into the world of electronic communication…..and they are kicking and screaming all the way. I don’t understand why so many are so adamant about hanging on to every last letter, brochure, flyer, and poster. I am not saying that print is dead….am only encouraging them to use more than one mode of communication; to add electronic to the mix. But, there is very strong resistance to try new things. So, the battle wares on…..

  4. Jeff Kraus says:

    Our grandparents were readers (books, magazines, newspapers) and listeners (radio).

    Our parents were listerners (radio) and viewers (TV).

    These students we are are talking about now are browsers (Internet) and listeners (Ipods, MP3 players).

    I think it is often hard for a generation to wrap their minds around the different practices of those who are coming behind them. What I’ve described hear is a gross simplification of the ways those generations obtain information, but the trend nature is hard to argue.

    Understanding it takes time, especially when those who control the purse strings in an institution are so different in their media habits than those they hope to attract.

Got a question or comment?