Tuesday, 10 February 2015

User Targeted Content – The Initial Teacher Training Campaign

A few months ago, we created a new campaign area of the corporate website dedicated to the recruitment of students to our teacher training courses.This was done in response to the fact that teacher training courses are now a huge recruitment challenge, particularly for some key subjects areas, and the navigation of our website wasn't enabling us to highlight the key benefits of teacher training at Chester.

Content is King

Train To Teach Landing Page
What we now have is an area of the website that acts as a one-stop shop for recruiting ITE (Initial Teacher Education) students. From a content perspective this is significant, as having everything available in one place not only makes it easier for the end-user to navigate their way around this content, but it also ensures we are tailoring our content accordingly. It’s content that is planned and created to attract and retain the interests of the target market; a narration of what it means to teach and the values of the teacher training experience at Chester. It’s content that is, therefore, relevant to the prospect, delivering information that enables them to make a more informed choice.

As well as highlighting the strengths of training to teach with Chester, the content also mirrors the messaging of the DfE’s national ITE recruitment campaign. In complementing the national campaign, we promote teaching as a career where you can make a real difference, inspire the next generation, nurture young minds and gain great job satisfaction. This integrated approach through the reinforcement of key messages should mean our campaign is one that potential trainees can hopefully associate with.

The DfE also have a bank of fantastic marketing resources which has meant we have been able to bolster our written content with some great video content. Not only has this helped to make our web content a little more engaging, but it has also enabled us to reinforce the message, in the words of the teacher, that teaching is a great profession. Further to this, we've also included a selection of our latest student recruitment videos, including the recent ’Men into Teaching’ video that looks to promote this profession to a group currently under-represented in this occupation.

The Marketing Campaign

Of course, it’s all well and good having this great content in one place, but it’s pretty much worthless unless prospective students are able to find it. So, what steps have been taken to enable students to find this web content?

Website Homepage - Train To Teach Banner
Well, firstly we wanted to make it easy to find from our homepage, so we created a homepage banner to help give this content more prominence there. However, with this banner on a shared carousel with other profile-raising banners, that alone wasn't going to be enough, so it was important to ensure this content could also be found through the search tool-bar on the homepage. This tool-bar has been a function of the corporate website that has been somewhat temperamental in recent years, but following some recent web updates, this is now much improved. Further to this, links to the ITE landing pages were also included from our teaching course pages.

Train To Teach Search Results
With current undergraduate Level 6 students identified as a key target market, we then set about trying to raise the profile of teacher training with this group of prospects. Banner stands were produced and erected in areas across our campuses where there is a high volume of student traffic, and the University’s student portal pages were used to display a leader-board banner advert for a number of weeks. This was then followed up with a HTML email to our recent graduates, our final year undergraduates and our prospects database.

Train To Teach
PPC Campaign
 A Pay Per Click (PPC) campaign has also been launched across a number of platforms to drive traffic to these web pages. By carefully selecting our targeting criteria, this online campaign has not only helped us to generate a number of new leads, but also encouraged our current leads to further engage with us.

Train To Teach
PPC Campaign
The success of this campaign, across the various advertising platforms, will be measured based on the number of conversions from those who clicked onto our ads. A conversion, in this case, is somebody who has either expressed an interest online or booked onto an Open Evening. By looking at these conversion rates, we will be able to assess which platforms are working best for targeting prospective trainees.

Further Web Developments

Train To Teach Banner Stand
However, despite all this, there is still further work to do, not least through the development of the University’s corporate website. With the majority of our users now accessing the website through mobile devices, there is currently a lot of work being done behind the scenes to create a mobile responsive website. If you want to know more about this, contact our friendly Web Manager, Matt Jones, who’ll be able to explain how this is currently being developed and implemented across the whole site.

With a focus on creating web content that is valuable and relevant so that it can ‘attract and retain a clearly-defined audience’, we’ll also be looking to replicate the recent work completed on the ITE web pages across a number of other areas of the Faculty’s pages. This, of course, sounds like a very obvious and simple thing to do, but the layers of content that currently exist across the website means we have to think carefully about the navigation of our website and the content behind it. If we fail on either count, the likelihood is that the user will leave and look elsewhere.

Until the next communication,


No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for your comment it has just gone to the approval queue