Success Story:

Southeastern Illinois College

Segmented Digital Campaign for Community College Yields Growth

The Challenge

Southeastern Illinois College (SIC) is a community college located in Harrisburg, Illinois, dedicated to providing an affordable and impactful education to nearly 5,000 students. The college ranks sixth in Illinois for degree and certificate completion and offers nearly 80 certificate and degree programs, as well as specialized training in a multitude of interest areas. SIC wanted to explore adding digital marketing to their recruitment toolkit, but needed a partner that would take measured steps along the way, focusing on return-on-investment and their specific audiences.

Our Solution

MediaCross used a two-pronged approach to solve SIC’s enrollment and perception challenges: program-specific marketing and general brand awareness campaigns. Since the start of our partnership, we’ve worked closely with their team, integrating and incorporating best practices in website retargeting, competitor campus geo-triggered retargeting, display advertising, video marketing, and more. Our digital strategies have effectively brought SIC into the digital space, increasing affinity and awareness and, ultimately, growing enrollment.

Targeted Advertising

Through contextual and geotargeted digital advertising, MediaCross ran a fully mobile campaign in the late summer of 2016 to grow fall enrollment amongst traditional and non-traditional students. With the objective of boosting enrollment at the end of the funnel, we concentrated our efforts by focusing on reaching students where they spend most of their time, on their mobile phones.

From this campaign, we grew and refined our approach for the next recruitment cycle by creating a program-specific digital strategy that combined pay-per-click, display advertising, social media and competitor campus geo-triggered retargeting with the goal to push students through the funnel. A series of program-specific ads and postcards were created to work together to recruit for some of SIC’s most popular programs.

Additionally, we supplemented our segmented approach with brand awareness and financial aid-focused ads to further convey why SIC is the right choice

Audio and Video Marketing

Spotify, the online music subscription service geared towards Millennials and Gen Z, boasts a highly engaged audience. To extend the reach of SIC’s digital presence, we launched Spotify ads targeting both traditional and non-traditional students, appending our program-focused strategy, that kept students engaged with fresh messaging across formats.

Additional video ads for YouTube were layered into our multi-channel approach within SIC’s budget by using their own video footage to include Why SIC, Student Life and Outcomes-focused ads. The video ads were also used as advertisements at SIC’s local theatre and on television, helping to extend brand recognition.

MediaCross collaborated with SIC to create postcards to send to individuals in surrounding counties with pertinent messaging about local services.

MediaCross deploys a variety of digital ads to “search” for potential students based on demographic data.

Recognizing the opportunity that lies within video, MediaCross implemented YouTube and video display advertising into the digital strategy within the 2019-2020 recruitment year.

The Results

Our segmented, targeted and multi-channel approach continues to support enrollment success at SIC.

Program Specific Campaigns

SIC experienced an 8% increase in applications for programs MediaCross marketed compared to those MediaCross did not market.

Modern Solutions

Through our trusted partnership, SIC has successfully implemented digital marketing into their annual plan and is able to continue to prove its value through measured results

Success with Spotify

Spotify campaign-related web page views and time-on-site saw a boost of nearly 50%.

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Angela Wilson
Executive Director of Marketing & Public Relations
Southeastern Illinois College
MediaCross has been a great partner in moving Southeastern Illinois College into the digital age. They take our raw information and turn it into concise marketing pieces. We are a small college with a small marketing department, and MediaCross helps us move beyond what we can do on our own to keep pace with larger institutions and competitors.

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