Recruiting international students is like running a hamster wheel

For education institutions, recruiting international students is like running a hamster wheel.

The most common ways are:

  • Working with agents… only to find that only a few are credible, and out of that, a few are active agents sending students
  • Platforms… where students get suggested many schools, and there’s too many choices for students that they can’t focus on your institution. And often, they use SEO to advertise, means that education providers are waiting for students to come instead of actively trying to recruit them
  • Face-to-face direct recruitment… having to travel, and limited time to meet with the students means that it’s not possible to work at economies of scale. The number of international students you recruit is directly proportional to how much time and how many staff you have.

Some institutions are starting to recruit through social media. It’s good, but there’s no guarantee on how many leads and whether the leads satisfy your entry requirements.

After speaking to education providers, a tiny fraction of them are using a newer model of recruiting international students:

  • without travelling
  • without working with underperforming agents
  • without a big marketing team

All while saving on commission fees and increasing the quality of student leads.

This way is to recruit international students through digital advertising. 
However, there are definitely several differences between advertising for domestic and international students which can make or break your campaigns.

Vivien Tse

Vivien helps education providers grow their student numbers internationally. She is an expert at helping education providers get qualified student leads using online methods and making things super simple to understand.


If you’re interested in starting to recruit students or scaling up then definitely reach out and request a free strategy session today.