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Recruiting Students for Niche Programs Using Search Engine Marketing
 

Recruiting Students for Niche Programs Using Search Engine Marketing

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Presented at the League for Innovation in the Community College's Learning College Summit, June 8, 2010, Phoenix, AZ.

Presented at the League for Innovation in the Community College's Learning College Summit, June 8, 2010, Phoenix, AZ.

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  • 7800 students in Newtown, about 11,000 all together credit
  • LBC about 1800 students
  • UBC about 1,000, and online about 3,000. 70,000 con ed.

Recruiting Students for Niche Programs Using Search Engine Marketing Recruiting Students for Niche Programs Using Search Engine Marketing Presentation Transcript

  • Steve Bacher Director, e-Marketing, Bucks County Community College bachers@bucks.edu (215) 504-8543 League for Innovation in the Community College Learning College Summit, June 8, 2010 www.slideshare.net/SteveBache r
  • Overview 1. What is Search Engine Marketing (SEM)? 2. Why use SEM? 3. Steps to Create an SEM Campaign 4. Case Study: Bucks County Community College’s 1 st SEM Campaign
  • What is SEM? Users search for Keywords on Search Engines such as Google
  • Search for Bucks County Community College and www.bucks.edu comes out on top.
  • How do we help people interested in Dental Assistant training programs find ours? One answer is Search Engine Marketing (SEM). Google and other Search Engines sell Sponsored Links , which appear at the top of the Search Results List, above the normal (or “organic”) search results.
  • Here is an example of sponsored links above organic search results.
  • Sponsored Links are shown to users who search for related keywords and phrases… Keywords and phrases in this example include: dental assistant dental assistant career dental assistant certificate dental assistant college dental assistant jobs dental assistant programs dental assistant resume dental assistant school dental assistant schools dental assistant training dental college dental hygiene colleges
  • Sponsored links are only shown to users in targeted zip codes who search for related keywords. In the Bucks pilot SEM campaign, sponsored links were purchased for zip codes that had at least five enrolled students last semester.
  • What happens when a potential student clicks on a sponsored link?
  • Sponsored links connect to Landing Pages.
  • SEM combines the latest technology with old fashioned customer service: When a potential student submits an online form from the landing page, a designated person from the program receives an email instantly.
  • She responds – usually immediately -- in no more than two business days. The sooner the call, the more likely the enrollment, according to some studies. Program staff follow up in a couple of weeks with those who filled out the form but haven’t yet enrolled.
  • Why use SEM? * Measurable results * Highly targeted * Growing marketing channel
  • Why use SEM? * Measurable results * Highly targeted * Growing marketing channel
  • What is measurable? * Impressions * Click-throughs * Conversions (forms) * Enrollments * Revenue generated
  • Impressions
  • Click-throughs
  • Conversions
  • Enrollments & Revenue Match conversion forms with new student database Survey new students in targeted classes
  • Why use SEM? * Measurable results * Highly targeted * Growing marketing channel
  • Why use SEM? * Measurable results * Highly targeted * Growing marketing channel
  • Targeting SEM brings specific programs to the attention of people who are searching for the programs and don’t know that they are offered by your college.
  • Targeting Geographic: zip codes, city, county or state Keyword/phrase
  • Why use SEM? * Measurable results * Highly targeted * Growing marketing channel
  • Search is growing… The U.S. core search market grew 16 percent overall in 2009, driven by a 6-percent gain in unique searchers and a 10-percent gain in searches per searcher. —comScore 2009 Digital Year in Review
  • SEM is growing
    • In 2006, North American advertisers spent
    • $9.4 billion on search engine marketing ,
    • a 62% increase over the prior year and
    • a 750% increase over the 2002 year.
    • As of 2006, SEM was growing much faster than traditional advertising  and even other channels of online marketing. [2]
    • --Wikipedia
  • And growing…
    • Year-to-date Internet advertising revenues
    • through June 2008 totaled $11.5 billion
    • up 15.2 percent
    • from the $10 billion reported for the same six-month period in 2007.
    •  
    • Search revenue accounted for 44 percent of 2008 second-quarter [internet advertising] revenues, up from the 40 percent reported in 2007.
    • — David Silverman, Partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, 10/08
    • Source: Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) www.iab.net
    • “ Due to the unique efficiency and effectiveness of targeted and measurable campaigns,
    • internet advertising has shown strong growth in the first six months of 2008, compared to the same time period last year.
    • This growth has come in spite of an environment that has put significant pressure on the advertising industry in general.”
    • — David Silverman, Partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, 10/08
    • Source: Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) www.iab.net
    • “ While the overall advertising market has continued to be impacted by current economic conditions,
    • marketers are allocating more of their dollars to digital media for its accountability
    • and because consumers are spending more of their leisure time online.”
    • — David Silverman, Partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, 10/09
    • Source: Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) www.iab.net
    • In the first half of 2009, compared with the same period in 2008:
    • Search advertising revenue went up
    • Digital video advertising revenue went up
    • All other sectors of internet advertising went down
    • Search was 47% of all internet advertising revenue
    • Digital video was 4% of all internet advertising revenue
    • PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, 10/09
    • Source: Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) www.iab.net
  • Internet Ad Revenues 1 st Half of ’09 ($ millions)
    • Source: Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB)/ PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, 10/09
  • Why focus on Google search?
  • What to Advertise with SEM * new programs * existing programs for which your college has many competitors * online programs available to students nationwide
  • Steps to Create Your SEM Campaign
    • Choose the program to advertise
    • Talk with your Provost or head of Continuing Education
    • about why your
    • program/major/certificate/course
    • is a likely candidate for SEM.
  • Steps to Create Your SEM Campaign
    • Choose the program to advertise
    • Ask yourself:
      • Does your program offer a good potential return on investment – does it have empty seats to fill?
      • Can prospects find it easily on Google without SEM?
  • Steps to Create Your SEM Campaign
    • Collaborate with Marketing
      • Do you have time to collaborate with marketing to develop landing pages?
          • Text
          • Photos
          • Video (optional)
  • Steps to Create Your SEM Campaign
    • Collaborate with Marketing
      • Do you have time to collaborate with marketing to develop ad headlines and copy?
            • Marketing may do it themselves and submit for your review.
            • Marketing may hire an agency to develop the ads and submit for your review.
  • Steps to Create Your SEM Campaign
    • Collaborate with Marketing
      • Marketing (or an agency they hire) will
      • develop keyword phrase lists for your review
      • Bid on the keyword phrases
      • Monitor which keywords and which ads are working and adjust which are used
  • Steps to Create Your SEM Campaign
    • Collaborate with Marketing & IT
        • Can IT set up a landing page with a form whose submission generates an email to you?
  • Steps to Create Your SEM Campaign
    • Collaborate with Admissions?
        • Who will make the follow up calls?
        • Faculty?
        • Admissions?
        • Administrators?
        • Administrative Assistants?
  • Steps to Create Your SEM Campaign
    • Collaborate with Marketing & Institutional Research
        • Are you willing to survey new students in class to learn how they heard about the program?
    • Bucks Marketing & IT Staff develop landing pages:
    • Work with program area to write copy
    • Design graphic look
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program
    • Goal:
    • To test the effectiveness of SEM to increase income and fill empty seats with a high return on investment.
    • Funding:
    • $9,000 grant from the Bucks County Community College Foundation.
    • Targeted Programs:
    • Medical Occupational Programs
    • in Business Studies and Continuing Education.
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program: Dental Assistant Program, and:
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program
    • Timeline:
    • Two months: 12/24/08 – 2/24/09.
    • Cost:
    • $4,500/month:
    • $3,600 ad spend, $900 agency fee .
  • Pay Per Click -- Not Per Impression
    • Impressions
    • (number of search results that showed a Bucks ad) 107,994
    • Clicks
    • (number of times a Bucks ad was clicked on) 1,835
    • Conversions
    • (number of landing page forms submitted) 129
    • Bucks SEM Campaign 12/24/08 – 3/3/09
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program
  • Enrollment Results
    • Conversions
    • (number of landing page forms submitted) 129
    • New Student Enrollments
    • from conversions 7
    • Bucks SEM Campaign 12/24/08 – 3/3/09
    • First Day of Class Survey:
    • Please check all that apply:
    • I didn’t use Google to search for a class like this.
    • I used Google but didn’t find Bucks.
      • If you remember which words you were searching for, please let us know: __________
    • I used Google, found Bucks, but didn’t click on the link.
    • I used Google, clicked on the sponsored link at the top of the page, viewed the page it linked me to, but didn’t fill out the form to request more information.
    • I used Google, clicked on the sponsored link at the top of the page, viewed the page it linked me to and filled out the form.
    • I used another search engine to search for a class like this (which one? ____________________)
    • First Day of Class Survey:
    • I used Google, clicked on the sponsored link at the top of the page, viewed the page it linked me to, but didn’t fill out the form to request more information.
    • First Day of Class Survey:
  • Enrollment Results: Spring ‘09 (1 st Semester)
    • Conversions
    • (number of landing page forms submitted) 129
    • New Student Enrollments
    • from conversions 7
    • New Student Enrollments 11
    • from students who viewed landing page and enrolled directly without submitting landing page form
    • Total SEM New Student Enrollments 18
    • Bucks SEM Campaign 12/24/08 – 3/3/09
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program: Results
    • 12/24 – 1/21 Registration for Spring Credit Courses:
    • Phlebotomy Certificate Program:
    • 2 students at 12 credits each Tuition & Fees income = $3,050
    • Required for completion:
    • Additional 4 credit externship
    • Additional income anticipated = $ 936
    • 1 student at 3 credits income = $ 350
    • Required for completion:
    • Additional 13 credits Additional income anticipated = $1,521
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program: Results
    • 12/24 – 3/3 Registration for Continuing Education Courses:
    • Dental Assisting Program
    • 7 @ $1,399
    • Pharmacy Technician Certificate Program
    • 3 @ $1,199
    • EKG Technician Certification
    • 2 @ 1,199
    • Nurse Aid Training
    • 1 @ $659
    • Medical Billing & Coding Course
    • 2 @ $1,699
    • Total Income Generated as of 3/3/09: $19,845
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program: Results
    • Income Summary Spring ‘09:
    • Continuing Education: $19,845
    • Credit Tuition & Tech. Fees: $ 3,159
    • Total: $23,004
    • Additional Tuition & Tech Fees Anticipated: $ 2,457
    • Conservative Anticipated Total Income: $25,461
  • Bucks SEM Pilot Program: Results
    • Possible Other Income:
    • Of the other 100+ conversions,
    • how many will enroll in fall ‘09?
  • Enrollment Results: Fall ‘09 (2nd Semester)
    • One prospect who completed the form went on to enroll in Fall ‘09.
    • However, based on the in-class survey, an additional 17 new students who viewed the pilot campaign enrolled in fall ’09.
  • Return on Investment
    • Investment: $9,000
    • Income: $23,600 as of 3/09
    • ROI = 164%
    • Income = $47,400 as of 10/09
    • ROI = 427%
    • Total New Students = 36
  • Enrollment Results: Spring ‘10 (3rd Semester)
    • One prospect who completed the form in February ’09 enrolled in Spring ‘10.
    • Based on the in-class survey, an additional 6 new students who viewed the pilot campaign enrolled in Spring ’10.
    • New students to date = 43
    • (Continuing Education surveys pending).
  • Who collected the data?
    • IT set up database to collect data from forms submitted
    • Administrative assistant in marketing compared database printout of those who submitted forms with student enrollment database
    • Faculty distributed & collected surveys
    • E-Marketing Director tabulated surveys
  • Return on Investment: Summer ‘09 Campaigns
    • New Applied Photography Credit Certificate
    • Investment: $5,000
    • Fall ‘09 Income = $4,500
    • New Students = 5
    • Total Income Fall ‘09 + Spring ‘10 = $6,800
    • Spring ‘10 New Students = 1
    • Returning Students = 3
    • ROI = 36%
  • Return on Investment: Summer ‘09 Campaigns
    • IT Academy Programs
    • Investment: $5,000
    • Fall ’09 Income = $5,655
    • New Students = 3
    • Total Income Fall ‘09 + Spring ‘10 = $7,655
    • New Students = 1
    • ROI = 53%
  • Return on Investment: Summer ‘09 Campaigns
    • Historic Preservation Online Programs (national campaign)
    • Investment: $5,000
    • Fall ’09 Income = $2,835
    • New Students = 3
    • Total Income Fall ‘09 + Spring ‘10 = $5,654
    • New Students = 1
    • Returning Students = 1
    • ROI = 13%
  • 15 conversions in May
  • 2 conversions in May
  • Questions? Steve Bacher Director, e-Marketing Bucks County Community College bachers@bucks.edu (215) 504-8543 www.slideshare.net/SteveBache r
  • Why use facebook ads? Social Networking Remains One of the Web’s Top Activities in 2009 Social networking continued to gain momentum in 2009 with nearly 4 out of 5 Internet users visiting a social networking site in December 2009. The activity now accounts for 11 percent of all time spent online in the U.S., making it one of the most engaging activities across the Web. —comScore 2009 Digital Year in Review
  • Why use facebook ads? Facebook surged to the #1 position among social networks for the first time in May and continued its strong growth trajectory throughout the year, finishing with 112 million visitors in December 2009, up 105 percent during the year. —comScore 2009 Digital Year in Review
  • Do it Yourself? Facebook vs. Google $50 each mini-campaigns, 2/9 – 3/9/10 promoting Historical Preservation nationally (no local targetting) Facebook: Targeting users over 18 who like Historic Preservation Results: 171 click-throughs, 320,00 impressions No enrollment data yet.
  • Do it Yourself? Facebook vs. Google $50 each mini-campaigns, 2/9 – 3/9/10 promoting Historical Preservation nationally (no local targetting) Google Adwords: Targeting searchers for one of 60 different keyword phrases generated by Google for me. Results: 60 click-throughs, 22,000 impressions No enrollment data yet.
  • Steve Bacher Director, e-Marketing Bucks County Community College bachers@bucks.edu (215) 504-8543 www.slideshare.net/SteveBache r