Revolutionising student recruitment for awareness and engagement.

Leveraging strategic mail targeting to enhance student recruitment and engagement for Cambridge Regional College.

There are many challenges to be faced when it comes to student recruitment, presenting a complex landscape for universities and other educational institutions. The difficulty in attracting students stems from a combination of factors, including increased global competition, shifting demographics, and evolving student preferences. These challenges have put pressure on institutions to adapt their recruitment strategies, enhance their presence, and provide unique offerings to stand out in an increasingly crowded market.

As the demand for further and higher education continues to rise, navigating the complexities of student recruitment in the UK requires a deep understanding of these obstacles and the implementation of innovative solutions to attract and retain a diverse and talented student body. Cambridge Regional College recognised the need to communicate with their ideal prospective students, using a channel that drives engagement, at the right time, to maximise levels of recruitment; whilst also raising awareness about the educational opportunities that they offer.


A geo-demographically targeted approach

In today’s digital age, where online marketing channels dominate the landscape, the power of direct mail as a marketing channel for a student recruitment campaign cannot be underestimated. While digital platforms offer instant access and widespread reach, direct mail possesses unique advantages that make it a valuable tool for connecting with prospective students. Research from JICMAIL indicates that 95% of mail is engaged with, and 46% is still live within the home after 28 days.

Direct mail allows for a more personal and tactile experience, being physically held and reviewed at the recipient’s convenience time and time again. This physicality enhances the overall impact and memorability of the campaign, increasing the likelihood of engagement. And just like digital, DM enables a targeted message, so content can be tailored to the specific interests and needs of potential students. By leveraging the power of direct mail, educational institutions can stand out from the digital noise, build stronger connections, and leave a lasting impression on their target audience, ultimately leading to a higher rate of student recruitment success.

To utilise this channel, on behalf of Cambridge Regional College, Precision delivered a series of campaigns to target households in a pre-defined area, constructed from the college’s 2 campus catchments plus selected hot spots, identified by analysing previous applicant data. By explicitly targeting households with children in the relevant age group, the campaign was able to capture the attention of parents and students who were actively exploring post-GCSE education options.


Increasing awareness

This approach ensured that the information reached parents and students directly through the letterbox, capturing their attention during the decision-making phase.  By also increasing footfall to open days and events through this activity, Cambridge Regional College maximised the chances of converting interested prospects into enrolled students. Precision ensured that the project was driven by the data from the start,  communications were sent to a highly relevant audience, reducing wastage and maximising the return on investment.