Do These Advertising Trends Change Everything For School Marketers?

Where are you spending your advertising dollars?

Does you school buy ads in the local papers or magazines? Do you use billboards? Do you create digital ads? Facebook ads? Television spots? Mobile ads?

It seems like the opportunities are endless. And yet … times are changing.

When venture capital analyst Mary Meeker released her Internet Trends 2016 report, it included some surprising findings about how people are consuming media and where the majority of U.S. advertising spending is allocated.

And these trends could (should?!) have a major impact on your advertising strategy.

The following slide shows the percentage of time people spend in a media (so, reading print materials, listening to the radio, watching TV, you get it), versus the percentage of advertising spending in that category.
Mary Meeker Internet Trends - Advertising
Two things struck me, and Meeker of course, when looking at this information:

Print advertising FAR surpasses the amount of time people spend reading print.

Now I’m not saying print is dead. Not at all. Print is a fantastic medium for content marketing when done correctly and with the audience’s specific needs in mind.

But it is interesting that so many brands are still paying for advertising in printed publications (i.e., publications that they don’t necessarily own, like magazines or newspapers) when there is so much opportunity elsewhere.

What does this mean for school marketers?

Check your advertising. Are you still spending money on print ads in a handful of publications? Are you just doing it because you’ve always done it, or are you actually seeing returns on that advertising spend? If you’re running that same print ad year after year and you can’t prove that it’s working for you, consider moving those dollars elsewhere.

There’s a HUGE opportunity in mobile advertising.

Meeker identifies a $22 billion dollar opportunity for mobile ad spending in the U.S. Right now, it’s the only medium that people are spending time in that advertising spending does not surpass. And that’s crazy!

“Mobile is the future” has been beaten over our heads, I know. But if anything, this proves it. People are absorbed by their phones. Addicted to their phones. Chasing around fake Pokemon creatures on their phones, for crying out loud.

What does this mean for school marketers?

Pay more attention to mobile. Get in front of the trend. Get creative with your mobile content. Don’t just think about mobile advertising as traditional “ads” — think about how you can create compelling content that your audiences would enjoy on their mobile devices.

Most important: don’t just stick with “advertising as usual”. Review your strategies — and your metrics. Shift things around. Create better content. Familiarize yourself with the trends so that you not only see where we’re going, but also where we are RIGHT NOW. It matters.

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