Need for Video Marketing in Higher Education #InquiryImpact: A Case Study of University of Chicago


Video marketing is a new buzz in the digital market. In simple terms it means using video to promote or build a brand, giving an immersive experience to the audience. Videos give extremely rich, appealing and exhilarating exposure to an audience. With the advancement in telecommunication, internet, and improvement in video technology, people have started consuming and sharing the video content at a very large scale.

The most popular forms of online video content are entertainment, inspirational and news. Video uploaded on social media generates 1200% more shares than text and images combined (Livestream, 2018). 500+ million people watch Facebook videos every day. The majority of the group for Facebook Live are made up of users who are high school or college-aged. By  2019, video traffic will account for 80% of all internet traffic (CISCO 2018) 

Scope in Higher Education

Videos increase connect with the target audience by creating a memorable experience. Nowadays, it is more prominently being used in the Higher Education Sector. According to ASMA Research, top Institutes in India are using videos in form of live streaming, promotional video, chairman documentary, placement video, and other videos for both academic as well as marketing purposes. A video is a powerful tool because of its emotional and aspiration effect on the viewer as it provides richness, engagement, attention, and stimulating experience provided by a Video compared to texts.

But a question strikes the mind, what to include in video and where to upload those videos? Video can narrate stories about alumni, placements, a social cause supported by the institute, current topics, events highlights, chairman documentary on Institute legacy and leadership, and much more. These videos needs are uploaded & share on the right social media channel.

According to ASMA India Trends Study Report 2018, 90% of Institutes consider Facebook, 74% YouTube, and 57% Instagram as the most popular social media platform for Video Marketing.

5th ASMA India Trends Study 2018 

The live streaming feature of Facebook and Instagram make them most promising platforms for video marketing. In that scenario, adopting the new features of video marketing will make a huge impact on the overall perception of students about institute or university.

According to (Livestream, 2018), 82% of viewers prefer live video to social media posts, and 80% prefer live video to read a blog.

The next question is asked about the credibility and it is also important to know which social media platform is considered to be credible for video marketing. According to ASMA India Trends Study Report 2018, students find (87%) YouTube, and (71%) Facebook, the most credible social media platform


University of Chicago


The University of Chicago had been established in the year 1890, The university is composed of an undergraduate institute various graduate programs. Chicago is also well known for its professional schools, which is Business School, the School of Law and Social Administration schools. They are more into research and innovation and to keep it unique and continue. They needed alumni support in form of gifts and others. 

  • How to strengthen the alumni network of the University of Chicago?
  • How to build the alumni community for the stronger social and professional network for all Chicago graduates?
  • How to raise financial aids for research, faculty, student and other areas of the university?
Strategic Approach and Solutions

The approach of the university was clear and defined, they wanted to start a campaign to raise $5 billion and engage 125,000 alumni to support UChicago faculty and students as they influence future inquiries and its impact on lives worldwide. They want to support priorities in every division that will lead to global engagement, scientific discovery, urban research, and to support the practice, intellectual destination, innovation and develop a strong culture for the University of Chicago.

UChicago Campaign: Inquiry and Impact

Firstly, they have started with creative microsite for a campaign where all the traffic will be directed. That contains a brief overview of the campaign.

  • They have recorded a creative video featuring the difference one idea, one person and a university make in the world.
  • Another video on alumni association with title University of Chicago Harper Lectures: World Changing Ideas that Mix and Mingle.

Secondly, they have decided upon the division of priorities as to which areas need to be focused.

Thirdly, they have chosen social media platforms where they can post, share and engage with the audience. They have chosen Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter to start with the campaign. On Twitter, they have created a hashtag #InquiryImpact.


Fourthly, they have recognized and rewarded the donors under different society including Chicago society, Harper society etc. for their contribution. It gives a proud factor for a donor to be associated with such a great initiative. It gives a reason to give back what an institute has given him in terms of learnings and experiences.



The results were stunning, they were able to raise $ 4.56 billion and connected to 124,460 alumni till November 2018. The video got more than 97,000 views.

Best Practices

Compelling Video

Compelling content is the key motivator for online video consuming. Institute can tell a storyline on the unique domains or areas of it, which may be student’s creativity, chairman addressing on a social cause, current topics etc. One of the most popular videos of Western Sydney University: Deng Thiak Adut Unlimited, a storyline is created around a refugee who got abducted, trashed, escaped and got an opportunity to study to fight against racism.

Live to stream

The new live streaming features of Facebook and Instagram are the most trending and powerful in terms of engagement. Institute can leverage live streaming of their events, conferences, seminars, guest lectures, etc to reach and engage the audience.  According to Tubularinsights, the average time spent by the user on video via mobile is 2.8 minutes compared to 3.5 minutes on live streaming.

Encourage comments, subscriptions, ratings, embedding, and sharing

Engagement should be two-sided, institutes generally do not respond to the queries raised by the audience. It is very critical to converse and respond to the audience whenever necessary. Engagement is the key factor for the search engine rankings, it is important to put forward the right content to engage the audience.