Integrated Communications to Drive Transfer Enrollment for Minnesota State Colleges and Universities
Minnesota State Colleges and Universities wanted to increase enrollment in its Transfer Pathways program. Leveraging both programmatic and communications strategies, Neuger helped Minnesota State dramatically increase its transfer program enrollment.
Minnesota State offers Transfer Pathways programs, or specific educational tracks through which students can start at a Minnesota State college and transfer to a Minnesota State university, saving themselves time and money on their way to earning a degree, with seamless transfer of credits toward the specific program.
To increase enrollment in Transfer Pathways programs, Minnesota State sought strategy, planning and execution of a multi-channel communications campaign.
The Communications Challenge
As we developed content and ads and executed media buys, we had to keep in mind there were multiple key audiences – the main demographic, prospective students and/or their parents, transfer students and potential adult students returning to school or choosing to enter a new field. Ensuring that messaging, creative and targeting parameters were aligned to serve these audiences was crucial, thus content strategy was at the forefront of our plan.
Communicating the value of the Transfer Pathways initiative for students and families had to be clear and succinct in order to effectively catch audiences through a 30-second radio spot, via a social media ad and more.
The campaign, which reached across Minnesota, plus areas of Wisconsin, Iowa, North Dakota, and South Dakota, took an integrated approach – spanning the digital sphere with ads on Spotify, Google, Facebook and Instagram, as well as traditional spaces, such as radio and printed materials for on-campus use. Further, the campaign’s messaging and reach were segmented in order to reach the two key audiences – prospect students and transfer students.
The main call-to-action in the ads led users to explore a Transfer Pathways landing page on the Minnesota State website where they could learn more.
Our marketing partnership was amplified by the work of college and university staff, who increased their emphasis on and outreach toward potential students. The increased promotion and integrated marketing efforts were key to ramping up awareness and reaching key audiences.
At the end of the comprehensive campaign, enrollment numbers for Minnesota State’s Transfer Pathways programs showed a dramatic increase over the previous year – over 275%!