The Power of Peer Mentors in Higher Ed Marketing

At Vygo, we understand the importance of leveraging peer mentors in Higher Ed for the many benefits they bring. For mentors this includes skills building, networking and experiences that increase their employability. For mentees it can mean feeling settled quicker, a stronger sense of community and access to social or academic support.

Something that is often overlooked is the role of Peer Mentors in marketing. Not just attracting prospective new students to apply, but marketing opportunities and events to existing students. These influential individuals can play a pivotal role in shaping the reputation and attracting prospective students to get involved in your University initiatives. In this article, we will delve into the significant impact of peer mentors on Higher Ed marketing and why they are crucial for achieving success in the digital age.

What are Peer Mentors?

Peer mentors are usually enthusiastic and knowledgeable students who serve as guides and role models for their peers at educational institutions. Just like Student Ambassadors, these mentors are often selected from the current student body, as they possess an authentic understanding of campus life, academics, and the overall student experience. They serve as a valuable resource, providing support and advice to new students and helping them navigate the challenges of college life.

Building Trust and Credibility

One of the most powerful aspects of using peer mentors in Higher Ed marketing is the trust and credibility they bring to the table. Prospective students are more likely to believe and relate to the experiences shared by their peers rather than marketing materials crafted by the institution itself. Peer mentors provide genuine insights, showcasing the real-life aspects of campus life, academics, and extracurricular activities.

Enhanced Digital Presence

In the digital age, a strong online presence is vital for any educational institution. Peer mentors play a crucial role in boosting an institution's digital visibility. They actively engage with the institution's social media channels, create captivating content, and share their experiences on various online platforms. This organic and authentic content can significantly improve search engine rankings and attract more traffic to the institution's website. Recently, Vygo has been working with mentors on how to expand their network on LinkedIn activities like posting an article they’ve written about a university experience, or even a graduation photo can increase the University’s visibility to prospective students.

Personalised Engagement

Peer mentors are trained to deliver personalised engagement strategies. They can directly interact with students, answering their questions, addressing concerns, and providing valuable advice. This personalised approach fosters a sense of belonging and community, making prospective students more likely to feel settled sooner, setting the foundations to achieve their potential at University. The unique perspective of peer mentors helps bridge the gap between the institution and its students.

Word-of-Mouth Marketing

Word-of-mouth marketing remains a powerful tool in Higher Ed marketing. Positive word-of-mouth from peer mentors can create a ripple effect, reaching a broader audience than traditional marketing efforts alone. Students tend to trust recommendations from their peers, leading to increased applications and enrolment rates.

Harnessing Social Media and Influencer Marketing

In today's digital landscape, social media and influencer marketing have become indispensable tools for reaching wider audiences. Peer mentors, as influencers in their own right, can leverage their personal social media accounts to promote the institution authentically. This can significantly amplify the institution's reach and impact.

Research Example: Peer Mentoring to increase Sense of Belonging and Contribution

Recent end of year survey data has shown that peer mentoring can significantly enhance students' sense of belonging in Higher Ed institutions.The percentage of students who stated they “feel like they completely belong” at the university increased from 23% to 36% after participating in the programme. 

When assessing if students felt they had made a contribution to their community, scores increased by nearly 40% before and after participating in the programme. The support and guidance provided by peer mentors not only helps students feel connected and supported, it leads to a stronger sense of belonging and the feeling of having contributed to the community.


In conclusion, peer mentors play a pivotal role in Higher Ed marketing by building trust, enhancing digital presence, fostering personalised engagement, and promoting a sense of belonging among new students. Leveraging the power of peer mentors can lead to higher search engine rankings, increased website traffic, and improved enrolment rates. As a result, educational institutions that effectively utilise peer mentors can gain a competitive edge in the digital landscape and attract a diverse and motivated student body. Embrace the influence of peer mentors and unlock the potential for success in the world of Higher Ed marketing.

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