Education Video Marketing Trends for 2021 | Colleges and Universities

What education video marketing trends will affect FE and HE marketers in the next 12 months? If you’re planning your content or video strategy for 2021, these are the three things to take into account.

We spend a billion hours a day watching YouTube videos. A few years ago, our team at Clearhead regularly met marketers from colleges and universities that didn’t have any professional promotional video yet. Now, that’s almost unheard of.

So, what’s next for the top HE and FE marketers? How will your college or university’s video content stand out in a market where all your competitors are also producing video?

As the New Year approaches, these are the four things that we believe will make the difference in education video marketing in 2010:

2021 Education Video Marketing Trend #1: Content quality will surge

What’s the differentiator when everyone is producing video content? Quality.

Higher quality videos hook more viewers in, engage those viewers for longer and drive conversions more effectively.

Attracting and retaining interest means those videos perform better in search results over time, and because they are higher quality, they age better, too.

Quality also impacts on brand perception. You wouldn’t print your prospectus on awful paper, or publish a blog post riddled with errors. So what does low quality video suggest about your college or university’s brand? And, given the endless sea of high quality content out there, who wants to watch low quality video anyway?

Instead of investing minimum resources into maximum output, prioritise high quality, engaging and beautifully executed video if you want to stand out in 2021.

2021 Education Video Marketing Trend #2: Video will become your main content tool

“At least 50% or more of your marketing content next year should be in video format, either hosted natively on social or created with social distribution in mind.”

That’s according to Brian Halligan, CEO of Hubspot, the inbound marketing software.

Prospective students increasingly expect to watch video content throughout their decision-making process. This means that an introductory promotional video is a great start, but not enough. Curriculum-level videos, facility videos, case study videos and course-specific videos all need to be part of your content mix.

This demand, combined with the higher quality of content in Trend #1, means that video will start to take up a much bigger piece of the budgetary pie year on year. Using animation as well.

That’s why 60-70%* of marketers plan to increase their video budget in 2021.

*The exact percentage varies between surveys.

2021 Education Video Marketing Trend #3: Videos will accommodate silent views

85% of videos are watched without sound, according to Digiday. Your viewers are watching your videos on public transport, while standing in queues and when they’re bored in class.

That means your audio needs to be a nice extra, not a core component of your videos. Consider whether you could tell the same story with visuals alone, otherwise use captions and motion graphics to ensure understanding. In fact, videos with captions have a 12% longer watch time, on average, according to Facebook.

Also consider how you can add context and meaning in the descriptive text that accompanies your video. Not only will this support both silent and audio-on views, it will provide an alternative format for you to communicate your message and convince people to watch your video in the first place.

2021 Education Video Marketing Trend #4: Video retargeting ads will surge

Over 80% of website visitors never return, on average. Retargeting ads show your content to people who have previously visited your website, giving you an opportunity to bring them back and convert them.

Comparison studies show that video is more effective than images or text, so video retargeting ads combine the most compelling content format with precise targeting. These ads can be used by HE and FE marketers in 2021 to re-ignite interest and increase conversions from prospective students who have visited their college or university’s website.

Video content isn’t just one element of online marketing. Increasingly, video is the internet. We used to read all day, now we mostly watch videos.

It’s time for colleges and universities to up their video marketing game, prepare for the four trends above, and leverage video’s potential to attract, engage and convert prospective students in 2021.

Get your free education video marketing guide

For a ton more tips, suggestions and inspiration, request a free copy of Clearhead’s Little Purple Book of Video Marketing for HE and FE Marketers now. Simply email stating whether you’d prefer a digital or hard copy version.