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eLearning Marketing Strategies: Boosting Student Engagement

Digital Marketing
Email marketing
April 2, 2024
5 mins

In today's fast-paced setting, where it feels like everyone's attention span is getting shorter, keeping students interested and involved in their online learning activities seems steadily more challenging. Despite the growing popularity of eLearning (reportedly 63% of students in the US daily engage in some kind of online education form) it takes a lot of marketing effort to make students choose you over your competitor. This article aims to help you find your perfect marketing strategy for eLearning that will attract and engage your perfect students.

Top 6 eLearning Marketing Strategies

1. Gamification 

Incorporating gamification into eLearning can boost student motivation by as much as 80%.

Unfortunately, many people associate the word “studying” with boredom and excess of mental effort. Gamification turns learning into a fun quest. For example, by adding points, levels, and badges to lessons, students feel like they're playing a video game, which encourages them to keep going. This method also helps students remember what they learn because they're more involved in the process. For e-learning businesses, using gamification means students are more likely to finish courses and come back for more, helping the business grow.

Here are some examples of gamification in eLearning:

  • Leaderboards;
  • Points system;
  • Badges and achievements;
  • Leveling up;
  • Virtual currency (can be spent on bonus content or profile customization) 
  • Story-based learning 
  • Challenges and quests
  • Instant feedback through progress bars
  • Interactive scenarios
  • Timed quizzes and activities
  • Role-playing
  • Social learning(possibility to compete with other people or share achievements)
  • Customizable avatars
  • Daily or weekly challenges

A great example of gamification is language sprint from Lingoda:

Marketing strategies for eLearning

Lingoda offers a 50% cashback for the students who attended all of the classes during a 2-month language sprint. On their website they report quiet high student engagement.

Use gamification both in the teaching process and in marketing. You can gamify email-campaigns, social media and your website (read more about gamification in marketing here). If your online school or platform offers a fun and interactive experience even before someone becomes a student, it signals that purchasing a course will also be an enjoyable and engaging journey.

2. Focus on Mobile 

marketing strategies for eLearning

Adopting a mobile-first approach in e-learning can significantly enhance student attraction and engagement by catering to the modern learner's lifestyle. Flexibility allows students to access educational content anytime and anywhere, fitting learning into their busy schedules when they wait in line or doom scroll on their couch after work. Mobile learning supports bite-sized, easily digestible content, making it easier for students to absorb information in short bursts. 

Mobile platforms often include interactive elements and notifications that keep students engaged and motivated, and ensure a higher rate of course completion and satisfaction. 

Finally, it just feels easier psychologically to take a few steps towards completing a course on a mobile phone or tablet than sitting by the desk in front of the computer. 

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3. Social Media Marketing

Consider investing in a strong social media presence. It provides a direct channel to communicate and build relationships with potential and current students. Social media platforms offer an ideal space for sharing educational content, engaging students with quizzes or challenges, creating social proof with encouraging user-generated content and start conversations. Social media also helps gather feedback, understand student needs, and respond in real-time.

Let’s take a look at some post examples from eLearning companies:

  1. Khan Academy strives to make their content interactive, thought-provoking and educational at the same time. 
Marketing strategies for elearning

2. Skillshare uses reels for maximum outreach. They create inspiring videos and sometimes start challenges to motivate their students to showcase the skills they learned on courses.

  1. Preply either posts relatable memes or reels that validate their followers' feeling about the challenges of learning a language, or they encourage students to practice their skills with interactive posts like the one we showed, or videos with fun listening tasks. 

Marketing strategies for elearning

Monitor social media of successful online education businesses to get inspiration for developing your own unique communication style.

4. Influencer Marketing 

Think about teaming up with influencers. Building trust with potential students online is important, but it can take a long time before it will start to bring results. Instead, partnering up with influencers from different areas is a smart shortcut. They've already got the trust and attention of their audiences, so when they share their learning experiences, people listen. 

We follow influencers because they motivate us to keep chasing our best lives. If a student learned about you from a blogger, they will subconsciously think that completing their studies is a stepping stone towards the life of their dreams. Such initial motivation will keep them engaged and focused.

Many travel bloggers promote language courses, and digital nomads advertise courses where people can learn remote professions. Consider which types of influencers could naturally advertise your school or course.

5. Referral Programs

Start a referral program. It’s a good way to attract new students through word-of-mouth. But what’s more important, when a student brings a friend along, they are much more likely to stick to the course. Having someone to motivate them to share their learning experiences with is priceless, and receiving a referral reward is a nice bonus. 

6. Email Marketing

Emails are the most efficient way of checking on your students and making sure they're staying on track. It’s a way to give them a nudge if they haven't logged in for a while, and make them feel part of a bigger learning community. It's all about keeping the conversation going outside of the virtual classroom, ensuring students feel supported and motivated to dive back into their courses.

Online learning marketing strategies

Here are a few ideas for the types of emails you could send:

  • Welcome emails to greet new students and get them excited.
  • Progress update emails to celebrate their achievements and show how far they've come.
  • Tips and resources emails to help them get the most out of their studies.
  • Reminder emails for when they've been away too long or to nudge them about upcoming deadlines.
  • Special offers or referral program details to encourage them to spread the word.

Email marketing is incredibly effective for online education businesses, with 64% of businesses incorporating it into their strategy. Our email marketing team at Promodo can create engaging emails to bring back students, even those who might have given up, so don’t hesitate to reach out.

How Promodo Can Help You

Having a good online learning marketing strategy is key to bringing in new students. By using the tips in this article, you can reach more people and ensure they have a smooth journey through the marketing funnel. At Promodo, we're passionate about education and self-improvement, and we're eager to use our expertise to help you connect with your future students.

Let's reach your business goals in the education sphere!
Contact Promodo experts today for
a free consultation.
Written by
Anastasia Marchyshak

Content Marketing Manager at Promodo

Immersing myself fully in any topic I explore and my appreciation for simplicity are the driving forces behind my work.

April 2, 2024
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