Client Success: Securing Brand Position for Experience-Based University
Wichita State University combines its talents of offering quality degrees and the ability to provide real-world experience to its students in Wichita, Kansas. Its learning platform allows students to “test drive” their career options while in school to help build a resume that is competitive in the local and national marketplace. The university believes that this experience-based learning is one of the best ways to help students achieve success upon graduating.
The message, “Do More, Be More” leads the University’s marketing mix as it reinforces its brand strategy to promote experience-based learning opportunities both locally and nationally through cable, radio, broadcast, online and outdoor advertising.
The challenge for Wichita State was to create a line of captivating commercials to showcase its experience-based learning opportunities and degree options, while driving traffic back to its website for further engagement. For this campaign, the university would need to target parents of college-bound high school students, as well as traditional and returning adult students. The effort would need to be supported by a mixture of branding, awareness and driving results.
Wichita State chose to partner with Cox Media for its cable and online advertising options. The “Do More, Be More” campaign came to life through interview-style commercials that were seen across major cable networks including AMC, Comedy Central, TNT and Discovery.
Online ads placed on Cox.com were able to target a local audience across Kansas with display ads that included the “Do More, Be More” call to action. Individuals who clicked on the ad were directed to the University’s website to view additional success stories and information.
Wichita State deemed the campaign successful after reviewing results from focus groups conducted in late 2012. The focus group results showed nearly half of parents of college-bound high school students in Wichita recalled the “Do More, Be More” campaign from TV/cable and outdoor media. In addition, a telephone survey conducted in the beginning of 2013 in the Wichita-Metro area found that 66 percent of respondents recalled the campaign. Of those who recalled the campaign, 87 percent said they saw it on cable.
“We feel the campaign helped us to launch a branding effort around our market position of being Kansas’ premier center for experience-based learning,” said Barth Hague, Associate Vice President for University Relations and Chief Marketing Officer at Wichita State University.
Another success factor was the increase of website traffic to the “Do More, Be More” stories on the University’s website. According to Wichita State’s analytics, web traffic to the campaign’s landing pages jumped from 60 views per day to an average of 520 views per day. Since the beginning of the campaign in early-fall 2012, the University has received 37,000 visits to its website.
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