Eleana Davidson

5 months ago

The flurry of snow brought about a great opportunity for universities to take to social media and showcase their grounds looking Insta-perfect. While the pandemic is still taking hold of campuses all around the country, institutions are working hard to maintain and foster a sense of community, even when students are locked down at home. And this month, Edurank has taken note of just that.

Photo competitions, such as the one from Bishop Grosseteste University (BGU), were popular on Facebook, where the institution celebrated their students’ photographs from the snowy season.

Climbing 61 places in the ranks, BGU reminded students of its spectacular campus, which will be waiting for them when normality resumes. Students use the page as a reminder of why they chose their university, to celebrate the beauty of the area, and to stay up to date with fun content to help them through lockdown. 

Instagram has also seen universities like Durham and Bristol shine with their photographs of the cities blanketed in snow, both skyrocketing 65 places in the ranks. As the majority of students had already moved home for the Christmas break, this gave them a sense of excitement about returning to university. For the first time in 2020, students could forget about the pandemic and revel in the beauty of the freshly-laid snow in the uni towns they were missing over the holidays.

Of course, the pandemic can’t be totally ignored, and we saw universities offering mental health support over the holidays. This continued into the new year, with Blue Monday featuring for the majority of Higher Education institutions, including again on BGU’s Facebook page. The variety of content at the institution has been supportive, while also offering some form of escapism for their students, meaning their posts have really resonated. 

But while BGU took to Facebook, other institutions found their place on YouTube. In particular, Bangor University now has almost 7,000 subscribers, with students finding their guided tour videos particularly useful, as well as short-form videos highlighting the virtual events that the university is hosting throughout 2021. We know, from the popularity of TikTok, that students love video. We also know that the shorter, the better, which is why Bangor’s videos have resonated so well with their students, offering them short, informative snippets of content to help them better understand and connect with the university, even on YouTube. 

Mary Immaculate College has also stolen the show for the category of user-generated content over on YouTube. From staff members, to lecturers and students, the college’s YouTube channel is gold dust for any prospective student. Covering courses like History, French and Theology, who better to share their experiences than the students themselves? Students can really picture themselves in the speakers’ shoes and begin to imagine their lives at the institution.

Leverage the power of social media by following these examples. Your students want you to answer their questions and support them through this uncertain time, in addition to providing some much-needed escapism. Sign up to our newsletter to make sure you stay up to date with our student insights and to find out what’s really hitting the mark on social.