Stats, stats, stats

Our Clearing 2012 website section
Phew! It's been a hectic few weeks at the University - especially for my team, who have been heavily involved in Clearing. This year, we were expecting students to take a more measured approach to choosing their places, and although it has been a slightly slower process, things have been very steady. After the launch of our Clearing site section on 16th August we were poised for a lot of visits but had no idea quite how busy our site would become.

Digital Marketing is definitely not a sector where you set up the campaign and sit back to see how it runs - it involves constant monitoring and refining... and that's what we've been doing!

We've also been involved in a number of other marketing avenues during this time, including some of the following (which you may have come across):
    An example of some of the daily
    statistics provided by SiD
  • Google AdWords
  • Facebook campaigns
  • Telephone monitoring
  • Daily YouTube videos
  • Audio adverts
  • Online chat
  • Progress reports for the Clearing room
  • Website MPU, skyscraper and leaderboard adverts
What has proved particularly useful for us is constant benchmarking on which campaigns have been driving the most traffic. This year, we've enlisted the help of SiD (Statistics into Decisions) to help us, and they've done a truly fantastic job of collating all of our data and turning it into something meaningful where we can see what is working for us, our prospective student's overall journey, and exactly where, why and how an application to us took place.

So what exactly were our findings? Well, firstly, Google AdWords is a very powerful tool indeed, and drove massive amounts of traffic to our site. I'd recommend any serious Digital marketeer who has not already done so to take part in Google's Certification programme to find out how to fully make use of it. Also, Facebook has proved itself to be invaluable (especially the targeted advertising). We've seen a massive rise in our Twitter interactions this year too which has started to highlight to others at the University the importance of a fast, friendly and accurate response to queries.

Like I said, it's been a longer process this year, but a very rewarding and successful one. Courses have been filling up fast and we are now down to just having a few places still available. We're looking forward to using our findings on this campaign to inform what we do next year so we can continue to market ourselves to the right people. The power of social media is becoming increasingly evident, along with the amount of website visits being made from mobile devices but what really matters is the content people arrive at at their journey's end.
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