The Market

China accounts for 38% of the world’s international student market

547,578 Chinese students enrolled at Western Universities in 2015. The USA, the UK and Canada are the three leaders in Chinese international student recruitment.

Many Western universities are competing for a share of this high margin business. Competing not just with other universities in their own country, but with others right across the world.

With global competition increasing, the winners will be those who develop innovative Chinese student recruitment strategies, reaching beyond the usual network of education agents, fairs and local partnerships.

Faced with huge choice, Chinese students are becoming much more selective and informed. Like students everywhere, they do much of their research online. Which is why you need a strong online presence within the PRC.

The Marketing Challenge

To be successful in this market, you have to build brand preference directly with prospective students, using powerful local online marketing

Chinese students use agents for their application and visa services, but most prefer to trust themselves when it comes to researching a short-list. But how to reach them?

China is the world’s most populous country and therefore university visits and local alliances can only ever reach a tiny minority of prospective students.

Chinese student recruitment is becoming tougher as higher education marketers raise their game and prospective students become ever more demanding.

Success will come to those who invest in online marketing to reach and influence a mass audience directly.

But the names we are so familiar with in the West – Google, Facebook & Instagram – don’t exist in China.

Chinese search engines and social media – including Baidu, Wechat, Youku and Weibo – are entirely indigenous and highly sophisticated, requiring the specialised expertise of Chinese nationals.

Chinese Social Media