South Texas Independent School District (STISD) is the only all magnet school district in Texas, and enrolls over 20,000 students annually. STISD offers concentrated programs in health professions, computer science, engineering, and trade industries. STISD provides a unique opportunity to middle and high school-aged students looking to specialize in a field early and fast-track their education.
Prior to partnering with Black Propeller, STISD had primarily focused on social media advertising in an effort to increase enrollment numbers in some of the less populous schools in the district, but the results had been poor. As their Marketing Manager put it, “We got a lot of engagement through likes and shares, but no one signed up for tours!”
- Increase the number of scheduled tours at each of the 6 campuses
- Increase district-wide enrollment to greater than 90%
- Improve overall program awareness in the community
STISD’s website is very large, with over 100 pages, none of which promoted tour registrations clearly. The school locations and specific course offerings were not clearly listed on the homepage, and the bounce rate was high. While the school systems marketing department had attempted lead generation in the past, there was really no existing strategy or historical data in place when Black Propeller was brought on board. STISD needed a lead generation strategy developed from the ground up.
Given the challenging factors of STISD’s website, we opted to design a single, clearly focused landing page to send our PPC traffic to. This landing page featured information about core course offerings and highlighted the unique programs at each school in the district. Based on the client’s feedback that it’s often students, not parents, that do the initial research online, we also designed our landing page with a youth-minded focus and relied less on text and more on visuals to convey information.
STISD had focused all of their previous advertising efforts into social media campaigns, but Black Propeller opted to divert all social media spend into paid search to reach people actively looking for education options. We designed two campaigns: a core campaign for people looking for magnet schools, and a second prospecting campaign for people searching more general terms like “middle schools” and “high schools”. We choose to incorporate these more general terms into our strategy in an effort to scale beyond the limited search volume available for the core keywords.
With a strong landing page and a full-funnel approach to paid search, Black Propeller was able to generate qualified leads within the first week of launching our strategy. As we refined the campaigns and bid more aggressively on core keywords, our lead volume continued to increase. Our goal was to hit 90% enrollment by August 1st, less than 60 days after launch. Ultimately we were able to hit 100% enrollment by mid-July! We then shifted our focus to start generating interest for the next semester and beyond. With a proven lead generation strategy, STISD has been able to secure a larger marketing budget and is planning to grow its offerings and capacity to serve the community at an even higher level.