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Online Education Fairs Vs. University Fairs

Online Education Fairs Vs. University Fairs

Choosing what’s best for your university? Is it better to attend an online education fair or to attend an offline university fair?
Here we compare the pros and cons to help you make a better decision on where to invest your budget.

As an admission officer in charge of recruiting international students for your university, we know that sometimes the task of distributing the marketing budget is not an easy task. Well, surely you’re looking to choose those channels that really generate new admissions and that are cost effective for your institution.

One of the great unknowns that many people in your position face is whether to choose to stop attending face-to-face educational fairs and bet on educational online fairs, bet exclusively on face-to-face educational fairs or invest in both options.

To make your life a little easier, below we share with you from our professional point of view the pros and cons of both ways:

Online Education Fairs

Online educational fairs are those organized by independent companies that are in charge of organizing events through webinars or live streaming, in which several universities participate that reserve their place in this online fair in order to present themselves in front of an audience of students seeking to select a university for your chosen educational program.

Unlike face-to-face and traditional educational fairs, this type of event relies on technology. Offering comfort to both the participant and those who organize it.

In current times of COVID-19, this alternative is emerging as a favorite among admissions directors, allowing them to reach students in Asia, Europe, Latin America, Africa and Oceania, without the need to travel.

Anyways, below the ISN team, experts in the organization of online educational fairs, is sharing with you the pros and cons of online educational fairs:

     PROS 

  • You can recruit international students without leaving your home country. 
  • You can reach a larger audience. 
  • You can brand your university. 
  • It’s affordable and cheaper than offline university fairs. 
  • You can reuse the recording and share it afterwards through social media or mailing.
  • You can recruit students, calculate ROI and be more scientific with your data. 

     CONS 

  • Requires a technical expert. 
  • Requires good speakers. 
  • Requires a good webinar platform. 
  • You must have a good marketing strategy to get qualified leads. 
  • Some of the potential students might not join live due to the different time zones.

Offline University Fairs

In-person educational fairs have been a method that universities have been using for more than 40 years to make themselves known and to publicize their educational programs.

Educational fairs can host between 2,000 and 5,000 students. Being some more known than others. As the director of admissions, it is part of your job to have a presence in those in which students really have the purchasing power and the interest to be able to enroll. It is useless to travel to Colombia or India if in the end you have not chosen an educational fair well and you´ll be returning home without any enrollment. Try to do your research before making a big investment.

Anyway, here we share the pros and cons of this alternative. 

     PROS 

  • You can brand your university and compete with others by just being there.
  • You can meet and interact in person with the students. 
  • You can check what other universities are doing and saying. 
  • You can get a list of qualified contacts and also recruit students afterward. ROS

     CONS 

  • They are expensive. Reserving a space in these face-to-face educational fairs usually ranges from $2,000 to $10,000 dollars depending on the educational fair and the country. Plus the marketing material and the travelling costs involved. 
  • They required a lot of previous organization and marketing material.  
  • They require travelling and a team willing and motivated to do it. 
  • They require a lot of talking and follow up.

Have you already decided? 

So…Online Education Fairs Vs. University Fairs? Which one will you choose? From ISN, experts in online education fairs, we always recommend you to try both ways and choose the one that brings you the best results. Also, you can try various combinations. For example: 

Attend a large face-to-face educational fair once a year, participate in several online fairs, and at the same time, also organize your own series of webinars for each of your faculties. Never forget that to be successful in recruiting students sometimes you need to combine several tactics. 

If you´re looking to participate in an online education fair, have a look at our calendar of upcoming fairs and feel free to reserve a slot for your institution. View upcoming fairs here.

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FAQs

Absolutely. For both multi-webinar and solo-webinar, there is a 24-hour turnaround time for you to receive the complete and comprehensive student registration information and the list of students who attended the webinar. The information includes the students' full name, email, home address, contact number, gender, age, intended level of study (undergrad/ post grad/ ESL), program they are interested in, and when they plan to enroll (Fall 2020/ Spring 2021).

For multi-webinar, there will be 5 presenters from 5 different institutions. Each presenter will have a 5 minute presentation (25 minutes in total for all presenters).The remaining time will be used for Q&A session.

For solo-webinaryour institution is the ONLY one presenting to prospective students. The first 30 minutes will be spent for your presentation and the remaining 30 minute is for Q&A session. You may choose the topic/s to be presented.

Multi-webinar will have 5 presenters from 5 different institutions. Each institution can have 1 presenter.

Solo-webinar can have a minimum of 1 presenter and a maximum of 4 presenters.

ISN recommends that all presenters have wired internet connection to ensure a stable connection. Please refer to Zoom’s system and bandwidth requirements HERE for more details.

For both multi-webinar and solo-webinar, ISN will provide a dedicated host and technical support throughout the webinar. The host will introduce the presenters, create polls during the webinar, and read the questions asked by students out loud for the presenters.

For both multi-webinar and solo-webinar, ISN markets webinars through different digital marketing channels such as email marketing, social media marketing, paid ads, SEO, etc.

For multi-webinar, we target students who are interested in the specific webinar topic and we market the 5 institutions equally. For solo-webinar, we will focus on marketing your institution alone to ensure that all attendees are interested in your institution.

ISN accepts payment through credit card. ISN will send a secure payment link and payment should be settled 24 hours upon submitting your registration.

For both multi-webinar and solo-webinar, the attendance is 10-15% of those registered, based from the past webinars.

No. The webinars are 100% free for students and parents who are interested in attending both multi-webinar and solo-webinar.

ISN will provide the student database 24 hours after the webinar session. Please use your institutions’ CRM to follow up and send a message to these students right away; a thank you email is a good start in following up with these leads.

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