Using Key Information Sets seems sensible

The Key Information Set (KIS) will go live today via the all new Unistats comparison site.

The BBC sums it up best in its article Comparison website for university courses. Unistats is the official site that allows you to search for and compare data and information on university and college courses from across the UK. The site draws together comparable information on those areas that students have identified as important in making decisions about what and where to study. The items that students thought were most useful have been included in a Key Information Set.

There has been much criticism of this site from the sector with questions about confusing applicants and information overload – some of which is valid at this point and much a likely legacy of the time-scales imposed on Universities to get the data live. However, in the long term, transparency and comparability has to be welcomed.

Using the KIS exclusively to select a course is dangerous but this is not what the KIS is for. Using the KIS to validate any decision as part of a wider due diligence process is an eminently sensible thing to do.


Social media: when student engagement and marketing collide

Last week @EdinburghNapier we had week one and the plethora of events for freshers – both academic and social. From a digital perspective, the main difference between previous years and this year is that we’ve lifted our efforts to try and play this out more effectively on social media with live Tweeting from events and a pipeline of rich media capturing the buzz of the events.

The students themselves appear to be engaging – especially on Facebook – with considerable liking and a general uplift in fan base from our student community with significant spikes with reach and likes. What’s also nice is that the many student associations and communities are harnessing the Wall to promote what they have on. All in all a rich fusion of interesting content and engaged users. And, so far, the comments and engagement are positive and suggest appreciation – long may it continue.

And whilst this buzz around week one continues we are also starting next year’s recruitment campaign at undergraduate level – with the main focus being a Facebook app page that promotes the Open Day. What appears to be happening is a fusion (or you could say collision) between the engagement in Week one content with the build in our undergraduate campaign and the linkage between our marketing messages (about what we think we are and what we do) and the experience that is being played out across social media – all in all they are fairly consistent.

This openness and transparency is something we are trying to ensure is reflected in our marketing efforts so that our message and experience are aligned. And on this occasion social media is the tool that has framed this for us.