3 Tips for Using Athletics to Attract Prospective Students

Lauren Cunningham |May 12, 2022

Read Time: 3 minutes

Have you ever heard of the Flutie Effect? This is the phenomenon in which a very successful season in a revenue sport (football or men’s basketball) leads to a dramatic increase in applications for a college or university. This shows just how important it is to use athletic successes to your advantage in admissions marketing efforts.

Now that football season is culminating and basketball season is underway, it’s a great time to think about how to leverage your teams to pique prospective student interest.

Highlight Bowl Game or Playoff Appearances

Your team had a great season, and now you’re in the playoffs or a bowl game! Nothing is quite like the sense of community in the student section of an important game, so be sure to capture some photos and videos to use in your content later. You can also let your applicants and interested students know when your team is playing and how to watch, so that they can tune in and cheer the team on.

Start Building Excitement for Next Season

Your football season may be over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start getting ready for next season. It’s important to highlight a wide variety of student experiences in your video content, and this includes the perspectives of student-athletes. Signing days are a great time to showcase incoming players on social media, or perhaps you have a new football coach starting that you can interview for a video.

No Football? Time for Basketball!

Basketball also provides a great opportunity to use athletics in your enrollment marketing, particularly if your institution does not have a football team. With so many basketball games in a season, consider hosting an admissions event on the same day as a home game so that prospective students can experience the game day atmosphere. It is also exciting for prospective students to see athletics facilities for any sport, and some great places to show them off are interactive virtual maps and self-guided tour apps.

Athletics are integral to a well-rounded college experience, even for non-athletes. The unity they foster among the student body is a perfect vehicle for bringing out the community values and school spirit on your campus.

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