Ephemeral Content In Education Marketing


As we’ve seen in our previous blog posts, 2018 is set to be an exciting year in digital marketing. Over the past few years, we have seen the rise of different video ad formats, such as Spotify Sponsored Sessions and Snapchat Ads. With that has brought new ways to advertise to people and more significantly, new ways to advertise to prospective students.


Moving with the curve of new technologies is key to any digital marketer, but it’s even more important to those in the education sector of digital marketing. As ever, the people who experiment and pick up on new trends and technologies before anyone else are young people. Therein lies the opportunity for education marketers and Education Institutions to make a big splash. A company like Instagram has over 800 million users and if you bear in mind that 61% of Instagram’s users are between the ages of 18-34 then that is quite simply an incredible amount of people who are all within the key demographic for Education Institutes.


One of the main ad formats that are enjoying a lot of attention at the moment is video content or ephemeral content. Ephemeral content by definition is content that lasts a maximum of 24 hours; after which it disappears. It’s mainly due to this factor that ephemeral content is so popular within teenagers; for example, if there is embarrassing footage on an Instagram or Snapchat story, or even on a Facebook live stream (examples of ephemeral content) then it’s nothing to worry about, as it will disappear within a day. Ephemeral is especially significant as Facebook users are currently spending 3X the amount of time watching a live video than pre-recorded videos. This can be easily used to advertise open days. If you were to employ a current student and get them to live stream an open day, then students who can’t make it still get to experience it through the eyes of a peer. Successfully appealing to students you would have previously lost.


Video content is the way to gain viewers attention; of those that are on Facebook, 45% of them watch an hour of Facebook videos a day, that is an astounding amount of time spent watching what are very short videos and it is no surprise that Smartphone video ad spend has enjoyed further investment, with advertisers spending an extra £476m in the past year. This reiterates that the use of user-generated content (Native Ads) through social media videos is one that will be of great importance to a University/College. The fact that these ads are often filmed with an iPhone or an android rather than a hugely professional and expensive camera lends a great deal of credibility as they match the content on the platforms. Through this format, you could film a short video wherein a current student says that you have clearing spaces available and to visit your website; and due to the number of people watching videos on social media, you can engage with a huge number of prospective students.


Digital marketing is all about getting yourself seen and influencing a large number of people. In this context, video content has no rival; Facebook gets 8 billion video views on a daily basis, and Snapchat has 10 billion daily video views as well. This isn’t just a staggering amount of people viewing videos day in, day out but rather a massive marketing opportunity.


But if these statistics themselves don’t convince you of the significance of video content and ephemeral content, then maybe the fact that social media giants Facebook are investing in ephemeral content will convince you; they are working on optimising Facebook stories and introducing a format called Facebook Premieres which is a different form of live streaming. Video is fast being recognised as the future, so much so that it is predicted that by 2020 82% of all consumer traffic on the Internet will be video based.


However it’s not just in your image-based social media that video content is becoming king, LinkedIn has begun to invest and integrate video advertising on their website and app. So this would help with the more professional market, so students looking to continue their studies and do postgraduate courses.


All that remains to say is investing in video content is indicative of a desire to evolve with the rest of the marketing world.