When potential students have the chance to receive a free how-to guide, white paper or webinar, they aren't the only ones benefiting, even if your organization is giving the content away for "free."
Sure, a member of the staff or faculty had to spend time creating that content, but in the long run, it could help build relationships and encourage enrollment by those who otherwise would have passed your program by.
First, the content you create and give away helps position your institution as a leading authority, whether it be on learning a foreign language, writing a personal memoir or sewing a quilt.
Plus, someone scouring the web for information on digital photography tips might not know to look in YOUR brochure, so helping them to find you organically can prove to be very beneficial.
Second, when someone enters their information for the rights to download your content, you have information, like the person's name, email address, age and more, that is essential to creating a lasting relationship with that person via emarketing, social media or otherwise.
When considering what kinds of free content to create, consider what your potential students are looking for, or anything you can offer to help them fix a problem.
If you offer courses related to health, money management or other life-improvement topics, creating tip sheets or short and simple how-to guides can help you to reach more of your target audience
If you offer a course on journaling, for example, a white paper or infographic offering a month's worth of writing prompts to get the creative juices flowing helps people get excited about a course they didn't even know existed. And, even though the prompt guide will serve as evergreen content for your institution, make sure you update regularly any information on related course offerings.
Whatever content you do decide to create, be sure to promote it on your program's Facebook page, Twitter, LinkedIn or other social networking site. That tip sheet won't do you any good if no one sees it.
Has your program offered any free content? Have you found success in the practice?