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Posted on 10 Jan '24

Why are In-Person Study Fairs Important for Postgraduate Recruitment?

When it comes to recruiting postgraduate students, there are plenty of levers to pull. In-person events will be an integral part of your strategy, and there are plenty of benefits to exhibiting at a study fair as well as holding your own open days.

We’ve explained how study fairs can complement your institution's in-person events and put together some tips on making the most of the day as an exhibitor!

If you’re keen to take advantage of these benefits, our winter study fairs are fast approaching! You can reserve your stand at Postgrad LIVE today.

Why exhibit at an in-person study fair?

We all know that open days are the bread and butter of student recruitment, but exhibiting at a study fair alongside your own events can provide some unique benefits.

Attending a study fair helps you attract students early in the recruitment cycle. A prospective student travelling to your open day will probably have already added your university to their shortlist or may have already chosen you. But attendees at a study fair are likely to be open to a larger number of options. They may not have narrowed down their institution choices yet – or even made a final decision on whether they want to study a postgraduate degree at all.

These are the people we deliver our study fairs for. By getting out in front of prospective students at this crucial stage in their journey, you can make an impression when it really counts.

It’s also useful to consider how far students are willing to travel for an open day. In our research, we found that around 56% of prospective PGT and 46% of PGR students will only travel up to an hour for an in-person event. By being, say, a southern university that exhibits at our Manchester fair, you’ll significantly widen your recruitment net!

Making the most of the day

There are plenty of ways you can maximise your number of potential leads when exhibiting at a study fair! Here are a few:

#1 Stand out from the crowd

You have free reign over decorating your stand, so make it count! Branded tablecloths and banners can make your stand unique, and freebies never go amiss (you’d be surprised how crazy people go for yo-yos!).

#2 Look approachable

Perhaps even more important than eye-catching merch or banners is a friendly face. Try not to have your table as a barrier and stand up so you’re at eye level so you can actively reach out to passers-by!

#3 Bring along a current student

Prospective students want to hear first-hand experiences. Bringing along a current student offers them the opportunity to ask questions about what it’s really like to study at your institution. They may also feel more comfortable asking exploratory questions to a student rather than an admissions member. Our stands have two spaces as standard, with the option of paying for a third.

#4 Go digital

Digital prospectuses are on the rise, and we’ve previously discussed reasons to make the switch, as well as some stand-out examples of universities doing just that.

Why not display a QR code linking to a digital prospectus at your stand? That way, students can explore your courses later at the click of button – no need to rifle through a complimentary tote bag bursting with paper catalogues (plus, you’ll save on courier fees too!).

#5 Let students know you’ll be exhibiting

Make sure to get the word out ahead of time with specially-designed assets that we’ll provide! Your assets will come ready for you to post on social media, so you won’t need to book in a job with your design team. To create even more buzz pre-event, you can purchase our exclusive social media booster, which provides two weeks of targeted promotion on Facebook and Instagram, highlighting your presence at Postgrad LIVE. Note that booking is limited to six exhibitors per fair, and will close three weeks before event day. Speak to your Account Manager to find out more!

#6 Capture leads with FAUScan

Adding our FAUScan app to your booking makes GDPR-compliant data collection simple so you don’t miss out on potential leads! With a quick scan of a student’s lanyard, their contact information will be saved for post-event follow up.

If you have any questions about our in-person study fairs, feel free to shoot us an email at [email protected]. Or head over to our events page to book your place at any of our 2024 fairs!

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