The competition for international students has spurred higher education institutions (HEIs) to craft marketing campaigns to appeal to potential students, with social media providing an increasingly prominent platform for such interactions. We analyse the social media data trails (Facebook posts) of two Israeli HEIs to reveal how they portray themselves and craft appeals to international students. We reveal two distinct portrayals, closely linked to representations/brands of the nation and identify divergent approaches (personal and institutional) which convey these portrayals. We argue that these portrayals and approaches build the expectations of international students for a particular academic experience, while also constructing the image of the desired international student, communicating inclusion/exclusion. Thus, this study provides important insights for understanding the nexus of international student marketing and recruitment and the datafication of HE.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2020, © 2020 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
- International students
- higher education
- marketing and recruitment
- nation branding
- social media