Every year over 300 universities and colleges of higher education in the UK provide higher education courses to over 500,000 students. Since the introduction of the maximum £9,000 a year fees the numbers have fallen slightly but they are still up on where they were in 2009.
Competition for places, particularly amongst the Russell Group of universities remains strong with many courses hugely oversubscribed. But, even outside of this elite group competition to attract the best student is high with universities and colleges spending significant amounts of money every year on Open Days, glossy prospectuses and an extensive range of website and social networking activities; it’s rare to find a college or university these days that is not active on Facebook and Twitter!
The need to run multi-level marketing campaigns on a widening range of communication channels is costly particularly when on-line campaigns need to be adapted for PC’s, smart phone and tablets. With the growing emphasis on digital delivery combined with increasing paper/print costs the long term viability of the supplying prospectuses is already being challenged.
Lots of universities have already started to hand out their prospectuses on USB memory sticks that have been printed of engraved with the university logo. These are also much easier to post out to prospective students and far less bulky for staff to take to student fairs, shows and events.
The branded USB sticks can also be pre-loaded with lots of other information for the prospective students including videos (clips of life on campus, the accommodation, interviews etc.), application forms, details of the students unions and other general information about life on and around campus. All of this information can be pre-loaded onto the USB sticks at the point of manufacture so the time of the university staff can be spent focusing on the important things rather than the tedium of pre-loading USB sticks (of course it does call for some planning and organization to have the data all ready at the time any order is placed).
For students picking up (or being sent) a nicely printed or engraved USB flash drive that can also be used for their own work/files when they start their life in higher education is a real bonus. Compared to a paper prospectus that will typically have a short lifespan USB sticks tend to be retained and used and as such the students build an association with the college or university brand printed on them.
The feedback from Bolton University is typical of the comments made by many: “The USB sticks have been a great success over the last few trips – I think they’ve already paid for themselves in saved shipping costs of prospectuses!”
If you are interested in using printed USB memory sticks as part of your next student recruitment initiative then give the team at USB2U a call or visit their website. They have been supplying schools and universities with USB flash drives for 10 years and are now the supplier of choice to many.