Title: Using social networks as a catalyst for change in global higher education marketing and recruiting

Authors: Joanne M. Kuzma; Warren Wright

Addresses: University of Worcester, Henwick Grove, Worcester, WR2 6AJ, UK ' University of Worcester, Henwick Grove, Worcester, WR2 6AJ, UK

Abstract: Higher education institutes (HEIs) throughout the world are recognising the potential of using social networking as an outreach method for their marketing and recruiting campaigns and can serve as a catalyst for strategic change within the education sector. This study researched 90 universities in Asia, Africa and Europe to their use of social networking for educational recruiting and marketing. Results showed that HEIs in certain geographic areas do use it, but results are inconsistent among the globe. The innovative functionality provided by social networking has challenged HEI officials who may be inexperienced at utilising the full potential of these sites to better serve the school and its stakeholders. However, it is important that HEIs integrate the use of social media into their marketing programmes in order to better reach their intended audiences and provide for a more successful education experience for students.

Keywords: virtual communities; web based communities; online communities; e-communities; electronic communities; universities; higher education; social networking services; Facebook; social networking sites; SNS; YouTube; online videos; video-sharing; video aggregation; Twitter; microblogging; tweets; blogs; blogging; bloggers; Myspace; MySpace; LinkedIn; professional occupations; professionals; HEIs; higher education institutions; universities; change catalysts; global higher education; higher education marketing; globalisation; recruitment; higher education recruiting; outreach methods; marketing campaigns; recruiting campaigns; strategic change; Asia; Europe; educational recruiting; educational marketing; innovative functionality; stakeholders; marketing programmes; intended audiences; education experiences; Kenya; South Africa; Nigeria; India; Philippines; Indonesia; UK; United Kingdom; Ireland; Austria; social media; internet; world wide web; networks.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCEELL.2013.051766

International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning, 2013 Vol.23 No.1, pp.53 - 66

Published online: 30 Dec 2013 *

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