Social Media and Marketing of Higher Education: A Review of the Literature

April 30, 2012


The emergence of social media has revolutionized the practice of communication in two fundamental ways. First, social media have made it possible for one person to send an instant message to millions of others worldwide. Second and perhaps more important, social media make it possible to establish a two-way communication channel between the sender and receivers or simply between receivers or “followers” outside the control of the original sender. Social media, therefore, transcend the traditional bureaucracy when it comes to marketing or seeking information from an institution. We conducted a review of the literature to find out how institutions of higher education are leveraging social media for recruitment and admissions purposes, and whether prospective students use social media in their college search process. Our findings indicate that social media use by institutions of higher education is on the rise, yet it is unclear whether content on university social media pages influences prospects’ choice-making processes.

Journal of the Research Center for Educational Technology, Kent State University

Full Article