Institutional websites a marketing tool

In her article, The ‘Virtual Face’ of Institutions: Why Legislators and Other Outside View Higher Education as Aloof, Meyer (2008 ) found that outsiders (legislators and parents) have difficulties finding and accessing essential information, and thus presume higher education institutes are aloof and reserved with their information, sustaining their Ivory Tower image.

Upon studying the web-based information of 40 institutions, Meyer found the following took many mouse clicks to find information versus that about the president of the university: student and program assessment, faculty and faculty experience, and crime statistics. In short, it was revealed ” basic information remains either difficult to find or cannot be located at all”

Universities should take a page from the book of business marketing. Not implying that the universities should market themselves (though I think they should to increase funds and students), marketing strategies can help in learning how to promote, inform, and present the institution, program, polices and services. Informing better would alleviate much unneeded phone calls and frustrated inquirers, create better informed students, and improve relationships with the public.

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