Why your school needs a blog
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Blogs for school websites bring a host of benefits, including helping you stand out ahead of other institutions – particularly important for private schools but something which will benefit all educational establishments – creating a sense of identity, opening up new communications channels with current students and their families, and increased website traffic and engagement.
Read on to learn more about why your school needs a blog.
Attract new students
One of the key things that a blog will do – and something for you to think about when wondering what to blog about – is answer questions that prospective students may have, which means that when they search online, your website pops up.
A blog will let you set out topics such as your educational model, the history of the school, your mission, your facilities and anything else that prospective students and their families may want to learn when they are getting to know you. You can outline your school’s niche, what makes you special and what expert guidance you can provide. Being able to convey all this clearly and engagingly can help you position yourself in front of your competition and show future students that your school is the right fit, leading to more enrolments.
You can maximise this by researching keywords, categories and topics which your prospective students and their parents are most likely to search for, or just thinking about the questions that your admissions teams get asked most often. Even without doing this, however, regular blogging will naturally help you to increase your reach. Every post is another opportunity to appear in a web search and thus to drive traffic to your website.
Secondly, regularly adding pages to your blog will send a message to search engines such as Google that your website is active and regularly being updated and that they should include it in their search results. Without a blog, it’s difficult to do this unless you’re constantly updating or adding to the rest of your website. Thirdly, if other people find your blog posts interesting and useful, they will share them, which will again help you to find a new audience.
Build better relationships with current students and their families
Writing a blog allows you to share far more of your school’s unique personality and culture – for example, showcasing your best facilities or your focus on social-emotional care – which provides a chance to show your students and their families who you are, not just what you do. Letting them understand your values can deepen your relationship, increase trust, and help retain students.
Parents also like to feel informed. By sharing your ethos and what you’re up to, you’re helping them to feel more involved in their children’s education, which in turn can increase parent involvement.
Create readymade content for your social media posts
It can be difficult continually to think of interesting, engaging content for your social media posts, but blog posts provide readymade content, and can be used several times using different captions and images. And, as mentioned above, if people like your blog, they will even share it themselves, thus increasing your reach.
And in addition to this, you will often find that because many of your blogs will be evergreen, you can share them in newsletters and on social media throughout the year, meaning that you have a solid library of content to fall back on.
Get the kids involved
Some of your blog posts could be written by current or even past students – for example, about their experiences and day-to-day life at school or their greatest takeaways from their time with you – creating a more collaborative, active and interesting learning experience that extends to outside the school environment.
Allowing students to blog, either individually or in groups or classes, can encourage peer learning and assessment and a sense of ownership, all of which are highly motivational. Additionally, blogging by students can hone skills such as reflection, analysis, drafting, editing, writing and collaboration, while helping them feel identified with their school and that they are part of a community.
Getting students involved is also highly valued by parents. Online technologies have an increasingly central role in the teaching and learning process, especially after living through the recent pandemic, when remote education became more prevalent, and many parents value their children learning and improving these skills.
Position yourself as an industry leader
Blog posts allow you to share more in depth information about your own school and its values and culture, as well as the education system generally, helping you to position your school as an expert in the field of education. Demonstrating your expertise in this way can help to establish yourself as an authority in the educational sector, enhancing your school’s image, which in turn will build trust that you have the necessary knowledge to deliver a thorough, rounded education.
Additionally, a regularly updated blog can help project the image of an up-to-date, cutting-edge institution with a strong interest in new technologies and the Internet.
All this for almost zero outlay – it’s win-win! If you’re wondering where to start, you could even ask current students what they’d like to hear more about: perhaps interviews with staff members or school athletes, a deep dive into school traditions, or a Q&A. It’ll get easier the more you do it (or you can always outsource) so take the leap and get stuck in – your school will thank you for it.