Academica Group and Glacier surveyed 1,397 high school students in January 2020 exploring high school students’ usage of marketing and branding resources for postsecondary institutions. These students primarily came from Alberta, British Columbia, and Ontario. This study built off the findings of the 2019 survey into how today’s high school students interact with key media and postsecondary marketing initiatives.
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Traditional Media Channels are Waning
Access and proximity are the most important factors influencing recall of postsecondary ads. Given that nearly every Gen Z-er owns a smartphone or has access to the internet, it is not surprising that they are most likely to report seeing ads on social media (66% Grade 12, 59% Grade 10 and 11) or websites (44%, 40%).
Furthermore, with the amount of time they spend at school it is no surprise that more than half of students report seeing an ad or poster in their high school.
Ad Recall for Higher Education Institutions
Videos and Images are VITAL When it Comes to Getting Noticed
Overall, students primarily access social media, messaging and entertainment apps and websites that were image-, video-, or audio-based in their format. Text-heavy platforms were less popular by comparison.
Instagram (95%), YouTube (87%) and Snapchat (82%) are the most popular across the board, and students spend a significant amount of time on these platforms: More than half use them daily. TikTok (63%) and Spotify (63%) are also quite popular, with daily use being reported among 72% and 82% of students respectively.
Daily Social Media Habits
Similar to our findings from 2019, Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit usage is much more common among students in grade 12 than it is among those in grade 10. These more text-heavy platforms tended to be less popular among younger students.
Being able to communicate your message quickly is an important tactic for building connections. What many of these platforms have in common is that users primarily communicate using images and videos that can be swiftly and easily consumed. This highlights the importance of visual materials throughout institutional marketing efforts.
Social Media Usage by Platform and Grade
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