4 tips on higher education marketing in China

China is a huge market for higher education institutions, with approaching half a million students a year from China taking overseas courses. There are a multitude of ways in which marketers can connect with prospective students in the country, and in this blog post, we’ll take a look at four of the most effective methods via higher education marketing in China.

Create a Chinese website

Creating a Chinese version of an institution’s website could be crucial to the overall objectives of higher education marketers in China. It allows them to operate an online home to which traffic can be directed, on which information can be provided, interaction can be measured, and where enquiries can be funnelled. Partnering with a digital marketing agency able to offer translation services, as well as provide Baidu SEO and web analytics to track conversions through the site, can be very important to the success of a Chinese website, as is the accompanying marketing campaigns which serve to broaden awareness of the web address, and direct prospective students towards it.

Social media marketing in China

Figures (from the report ‘Finnode – Threats and Opportunities in Chinese Social Media’) show that some 61% of buying decisions within China are influenced by social media, underlining the medium’s importance to marketers in the country. Marketers may initially be a little perturbed by which channels are the most important to use when connecting to prospective students in China. This is a place where WeChat and Weibo rule the roost, as opposed to Facebook and Twitter. But with the help of specialists, the predominantly younger age group that use social media in China can be reached by higher education marketers.

Search engine marketing on Baidu

In a similar vein to social media, higher education marketers must not enter the Chinese market expecting the same type of search engines to be effective. Baidu is the search engine of choice, rather than Google, and a different set of marketing avenues must be mastered in order to reach prospective students. There are similarities between Baidu and Google, however. You can use an optimised list of keywords related to higher education, and choose between the SEO and PPC sides of Baidu. For marketers looking for an immediate impact, being able to place Baidu PPC ads can be a quicker process than battling to get on the first page of the search results section.

Go Mobile

According to figures from CNNIC Statistical Survey on Internet Development in China (December 2016), 695 million Chinese people use a mobile phone, that’s over 90% of the total number of internet users, making it a very important platform for higher education marketers. In-app targeting is certainly an option for reaching prospective students, and by partnering with a specialist who offers access to the right data, companies are able to hone their marketing according to particular demographics.


So there you have it, four ways in which you can get in touch with the student population through higher education marketing in China. In the digital era, the internet provides a perfect way to reach audiences from further away than ever before.