Should Digital Marketing Be Taught in High School?

Should Digital Marketing Be Taught in High School?

The curriculum needs to change and digital marketing should be taught in high school to give students more tools for their future.

Right now, many schools have computer classes that teach some basic functions of the Microsoft tools or an introduction to website design, but very few actually incorporate marketing into the mix. Why is that? Shouldn’t these students understand what it takes to stand out in a crowd?

Marketing isn’t a Dirty Word

It’s time to push the idea that marketing is only for businesses trying to sell you something to gain your money. High school students have something to sell so they can move on and grow toward the career they want to experience. They are selling themselves. Admission to colleges has become extremely competitive and when students don’t stand out with grades, athletics, or musical talents, they could truly use a bit of help.

Digital Marketing Helps Students Put Everything Together

What’s going to make a stronger impact on an admissions team at the college of choice? Do you think they will be more impressed by a simple email that introduces the student and requests a response or by an email that has links to the personal website, social media accounts, and blog posts that have been organized and assembled by the student? As you well know, the second scenario will be the one that makes the difference.

Shouldn’t This be Kept in the Computer Class?

When the thought of digital marketing being taught in high school comes up, most think it should be kept in the computer class. This raises the question of “why?” Does it make sense to only have this practice in one class that might only be taken during one semester of a four-year high school career?

Building a website can be a great way for students to turn in papers in the form of blog posts and social media accounts can be used to share the blogs and link to the website pages with information from any class. This could be an amazing way to expand the curriculum and allow students that are going to be a huge part of the digital world to have the skills necessary to do more than just use social media and online marketing but to create it.

Organize the Curriculum the Right Way

As with any other class in high school, it’s important to have an organized approach.

There are five important steps to teach digital marketing in high school:

1. Discuss the importance
2. Introduce the principles of marketing
3. Cover digital marketing strategies
4. Stay current
5. Compare digital to traditional marketing

Let’s take a look at each of these.

Discuss the Importance

You’ll want to inform students as to why this form of marketing is important and what they should expect to gain from it. Why do people use digital marketing, what does it do for businesses, how does it reach an audience, what makes it better than traditional marketing, and how does it go from an idea to reaching an individual. This could be a lengthy topic, but students will want to understand why this marketing is important.

Introduce the Principles of Marketing

From traditional to digital, the principles of marketing are the same. The goal is to reach an audience and encourage them to act based on the content of the marketing. This is one of the most important concepts to teaching digital marketing in high school. Students will want to know what makes marketing work and how they can use it to their benefit.

Cover Digital Marketing Strategies

While a high school class is probably not going to be long enough to go over every single type of strategy, you can hit on some of the bigger and more widely used strategies. Typically the best choices are Search Engine Optimization, Content Marketing, Social Media Marketing, and Email Marketing. These are all marketing types that high school students can use to promote themselves to colleges they want to attend.

Stay Current

Part of the class that will teach digital marketing in high school could involve discussing current topics in this industry. Several resources are offered and this topic is covered in depth across many publications and websites. Being current and updated regarding the processes, strategies, tools, and use of digital marketing can make a huge difference to these students. It’s not going to do a high school student any good for the curriculum to teach outdated methods.

Compare Digital to Traditional Marketing

This one of pretty easy, but there’s more to the differences than the fact that digital is online and traditional isn’t. The discussion needs to include the benefits of both types of marketing or businesses, the place they occur, and how they engage an audience. When covered, it will be easy to convince high school students that digital marketing is much more effective than traditional marketing methods.

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