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Inbound Marketing for Your MBA Programs: How To Do it Smarter, Better and Faster

Ann Oleson presents Inbound Marketing for Your MBA Programs: How To Do it Smarter, Better and Faster along with Sylvia Haas, Executive Director of Executive MBA Admissions at UCLA Anderson School of Management.

Oleson and Haas share best practices and tips, utilizing their experiences with various MBA programs across the country, including University of Missouri, Tulane and UT Dallas. You’ll leave their session with a list of 10 new ideas to help you more effectively attract, convert and delight your prospective MBA students.

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Inbound Marketing for Your MBA Programs: How To Do it Smarter, Better and Faster

  1. 1. How to Do It Smarter, Better, Faster Inbound Marketing for Your MBA Programs AMA Symposium for the Marketing of Higher Ed 2016
  2. 2. Your Presenters 2 Ann Oleson, CEO & Founder Converge Consulting Sylvia Haas, Executive Director UCLA Anderson School of Management
  3. 3. 3
  4. 4. About Converge Converge Consulting is a full-service inbound/digital agency for higher education. We are distinct in our ability to develop sound strategy and translate it into recruitment campaigns that deliver ROI in a crowded marketplace. • We live and breath what’s new and next. • Our DNA is digital. • We know education. • We believe in relationships and results. • Our customer service is unparalleled. 4
  5. 5. About Sylvia 5
  6. 6. Overview 6 I. Our Story: UCLA + Converge II. Industry Benchmarks III. Strategies by Audience IV. Funnel Communications V. Key Takeaways
  7. 7. 7 Our Story: UCLA + Converge
  8. 8. Our Story 8 Sylvia had four primary goals: • Stay ahead of the increasing competition • Expand geographic reach • Recruit more women & maintain military presence • Increase number of Inquirers
  9. 9. Competition 9
  10. 10. Expand Reach 10
  11. 11. Recruit Women & Maintain Military Inquiries 11 Class of Women Military/Veterans Inquirers 2016 32% 16% 1041 2015 24% 14% 1028 2014 30% 20% 730 2013 28% 18% 770
  12. 12. Inbound Marketing CONVERT DELIGHT Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Inbound Content Offers Social Media Paid Advertising ATTRACT Calls-to-Action (CTAs) Landing Pages Forms Retargeting Amplification Content Strategy Ongoing Engagement User Experience (UX) Measurement STRANGERS VISITORS STUDENTS PROMOTERS 3
  13. 13. 13 Industry Benchmarks
  14. 14. 14 Inbound Funnel
  15. 15. Sample Monthly Plan Implement a digital advertising strategy to target users actively searching for MBA programs, users that fit into the target demographic and behavioral profile and users who have previously visited landing and program pages (remarketing). • Display Advertising • Contextual / Behavioral • Geofencing / IP Targeting • Specific websites • Social Media Advertising • Facebook / Instagram • LinkedIn • Twitter • Search Engine Advertising • Google AdWords • Bing Ads • Retargeting / List Targeting • Display ads • Social Media Platforms 15 Digital Advertising
  16. 16. Lead Generation Trends: MBA 16 Industry Data Conversion Rate Cost Per Lead Search 6.89% $386.44 Display 0.59% $533.31 Remarketing 4.21% $102.40 Facebook 1.12% $111.25 LinkedIn 5.35% $162.00 Gmail 0.10% $650.76
  17. 17. Sample Monthly Ad Spend 17 Digital Advertising Digital Advertising Strategy Lower Visibility Higher Visibility Display Advertising (10-15%) $500 $1,000 Social Media Advertising (25-35%) $2,500 $3,500 Search Engine Advertising (44-55%) $5,000 $15,000 Retargeting (10-15%) $1,000 $2,000 Total $9,000 $21,500
  18. 18. 18 Strategies by Audience
  19. 19. Who is your ideal student? 19 Persona: Women
  20. 20. Who is your ideal student? 20 Persona: Military/Veteran
  21. 21. Who is your ideal student? 21 Persona: Medicine
  22. 22. Who is your ideal student? 22 Persona: Energy Industry
  23. 23. Strategy: Social Media Advertising Channels: LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest UCLA Strategy: Reach your target audience on LinkedIn based on demographics such as job title, industry, seniority, educational background, and employer. Suggested monthly ad spend: 25-35% 23 Digital Advertising
  24. 24. Example Ads: Social Media Advertising 24 Digital Advertising Facebook Instagram LinkedIn (Sponsored Content) Twitter
  25. 25. Strategy: Search Engine Advertising Channels: Google AdWords, Bing Ads UCLA Strategy: Reach users on Bing who are specifically searching for non-branded and branded ‘executive mba’ keywords in the greater Los Angeles area.  Suggested monthly ad spend: 45-55% Digital Advertising Keyword and ad examples: 25
  26. 26. Example: Mobile Search Ads Digital Advertising 26
  27. 27. Strategy: Retargeting / List Targeting Channels: Display Ads, Social Media Advertising (Facebook, Instagram, & Twitter) Target users who have visited your website or landing page but haven’t converted into a lead yet. Also, target prospects with admissions related messaging to encourage users to take the next step and apply. Suggested monthly ad spend: 10-15% 27 What else?
  28. 28. Strategy: Display Advertising Channels: The Trade Desk, Google Display Network, Gmail Sponsored Promotions Reach your target audience through contextual and behavioral targeting or target specific companies and schools via geofencing or IP targeting. Suggested monthly ad spend: 10-15% 28 What else? Targeting and ad examples: YOUR AD HERE YOUR AD HERE
  29. 29. Example: Gmail Sponsored Promotions 29 What else? Ad collapsed on mobile: Expanded ad: Targeting examples:
  30. 30. Example: Gmail Sponsored Promotions 30 What else? Example of results:
  31. 31. Landing Pages How do we increase conversions? Create landing pages specific to each specific program that showcase benefits, requirements, potential employment opportunities and career outcomes. Take a user-first approach with targeted and segmented messaging. Lead with user experience (UX) and generate landing pages that will help you turn strangers into visitors, visitors into leads and leads into promoters.
  32. 32. 32 Funnel Communications
  33. 33. 33 Communication Workflows Someone inquired. Now what? Develop a multi-touch point lead nurturing strategy for 30-60 days. Use a mix of email and phone calls that hit on competitive advantages, address common barriers to help convert more prospects to enrollments.
  34. 34. 34 Event Emails Best Practices • Optimized for mobile view, easy to skim • Compelling subject line • Engaging visuals (graphics and photos)
  35. 35. 35 Visit a Class Email
  36. 36. 36 Emails 4 Emails to Send After Inquiry: • Meet Your Person: Introduce an advisor to reach directly with questions. • Here’s How You Apply: A how-to, webinar or guide to walk them through the application process. • What’s Holding You Back: Messaging to address barriers and how your institution will help them move past them. • Alumni & Faculty Stories: Share testimonials, research and publications so they can see themselves as a part of your community.
  37. 37. 37 Google Analytics What is the ROI? • Recommendations for improvement to enhance reporting • Set up of Google Analytics for reporting on AdWords • Set up of goals on action-based forms for the program including: inquiry form, application form, campus visits, etc. • Set up of dashboard to report on inquiry generation program and digital advertising
  38. 38. 38 Data Reporting Examples of Insights: Dallas, 4 Irving, 3 Plano, 3Fort Worth, 2 New Jersey, 1 Texas 1 Garland, 1 Houston, 1 McKinney, 1 Rowlett, 1 San Antonio 1 Lavon 1 CITY
  39. 39. 39 New & Next Ideas
  40. 40. 40 New & Next Check out Ivy Exec. Invitation only business community with over 730K+ members, growing by 10 to 12,000 new professionals per month. 90% of members are interested in professional development and learning about education potions to advance their careers. Community consists of: • 18% C-Suite Executives • 25% VP/EVP/SCP Level • 25% Director Level • 22% Associate Director/Senior Manager/Manager Level IvyExec offers digital solutions including hosting/promoting online events, targeted email campaigns, newsletter placements, display ads, content promotion and dedicated landing pages.
  41. 41. 41 New & Next Host strategic webinars. Professional development is a key interest of the MBA target audiences. We suggest hosting and promoting webinars that hit on high interest professional development topics as a way to initially draw interest from your target audience.
  42. 42. 42 New & Next Amplify your content. Promoting content, rather than your program specifically, can be a great way to initially engage your target audience. Sharing alumni success stories or thought leadership pieces on professional development can generate engagement.
  43. 43. 43 New & Next Get an external perspective. • Does the agency have certifications, partnerships or awards? • Can the agency provide case studies and references? • Does the agency have experience in your vertical? • How often is the agency reviewing and optimizing campaigns? Download it here: oosing-a-ppc-partner
  44. 44. 44 Thank You!