Summer Social Media Ideas for Higher Education Institutions

With students being away for the summer and the campus looking empty, higher education social media managers often struggle to come up with content ideas to keep their accounts active. Though the overall online engagement drops in the summer, there are still ways of curating lively feeds and encouraging student and alumni engagement.

If you find yourself short on inspiration, here are our summer social media ideas for higher ed marketers:

1. Student or Alumni Features

Whether it’s photos from eye-catching vacations, study-abroad experiences, internships, jobs, or alumni meet-ups (with bonus points if people are wearing your school’s colors), featuring familiar faces on your social media channels can make your community feel more connected during the summer break.

2. Campus Highlights

The students might be gone, but the natural beauty of your campus is most likely just as vibrant. With lush green trees and flowers in bloom, summer is the perfect time to show off the unique natural features of your campus, reminding your online audience of how welcoming it is.

3. Get the Students Involved

Students want to have a say in what their campus life is going to look like in the new academic year. By creating polls or contests surrounding event planning or artistic programming, you can encourage audience participation and engagement in a manner that’s fun for students and insightful for you as a higher ed marketer. This approach will help you identify ahead of time which programs or events the students are most excited about, giving you plenty of time to come up with the best promotional strategy.

4. Use the People Around You

Though most campuses look rather empty in the summer months, some schools still offer summer classes and host volunteer groups and sports teams. Use this time to create “behind the scenes” content featuring student athletes, tips on staying involved on campus between semesters, and staff highlights (important people for incoming and transfer students to know, such as academic advisors, and international student and student activities coordinators, among others).

5. Viral Trends

Though school life slows down in the summer, the internet does not. Trends will continue to emerge and cycle throughout the summer months, and you should be able to stay on top of the ones that align with the type of content your school usually publishes. With limited resources, summer trends are a good test of creativity for marketers and social media managers.

6. Facilitate Back-To-School Excitement

This idea is better suited for later summer months, when you can start creating content that generates anticipation for the upcoming semester. Create a hashtag new students can use to share their acceptance letters, and feature some of them on the school’s social media accounts. As the students prepare to return to campus, this is also a great time to show off how the staff gets the school ready for the Fall. Highlighting what students can look forward to in the new academic year is a great way of cultivating excitement and school spirit.

The summer months can also be used to evaluate your school’s social media presence, looking into statistics and taking note of what type of content performs best. Learning from those findings and taking inspiration from the ideas above can result in a summer full of engagement!

At 5 Horizons, we are experts in higher education marketing. Contact us today for extra social media insights or advertising assistance.