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Friday, 15 March 2013 10:04

Direct marketing messages to students must be expertly timed, claims UCAS head

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Direct marketing firms wishing to advertise their products and services to British students must consider what their targets are going to be doing at the time of deployment.

This is according to Keith Parkman, head of sales at UCAS Media, who claims that although nearly all students are susceptible to mobile marketing messages due to their ownership of a smartphone, they have little time to read each update through.

It's for this reason that SMS or email marketing pros might want to consider Mr Parkman's recommendation of sending a message when their targets are commuting to campus or enjoying a night out. This as opposed to sending one early in the morning when, if stereotypes are to be observed, they're likely to be sleeping off all their hard work.

Mr Parkman said all content must be optimised for mobile as young people are connected to a device throughout the day. This came after a study from UCAS media revealed that 82 per cent of students owned a smartphone before starting their education - a 122 per cent increase since 2010, according to tmcnet.com.

He also hinted that marketing content must be concise enough for the user to gather a brief picture what's being said in a short space of time.

"Marketing professionals should picture students looking at text and images while travelling on the bus, rushing to a lecture, or out socialising.

"They don't have much time to spend looking at adverts and the impact has to be immediate," he told thedrum.co.uk.

In his parting words, Mr Parkman urged marketers to assess how they can get the right message to potential customers in a small window of opportunity.