A local charter school company operating 20+ charter schools wants to increase enrollments and eliminate their paid advertising costs. They want to do this sooner than later, as they are opening two new schools in the fall and have aggressive expansion plans into two other states in the next two years.
The charter school operates one central website and brand for all their charter schools. Each school has their own page, and benefits from a centralized marketing effort.
Traditionally, the charter schools have spent a lot of advertising dollars on Google ads and Facebook ads to increase enrollments. Now, with rising ad costs and less brand recognition in new markets, the charter school is facing high costs per lead and the pressure of meeting enrollment goals by school opening dates.
How do you help charter schools market themselves in a low-cost, efficient way online?
The challenge in marketing these charter schools was around timeline and locality.
For example, if there are two schools within a two mile radius of each other in a city, how do you market them both without competing against each other?
The timelines of school openings also presented a challenge. If we were to achieve our goal of hitting 400 student enrollments within 9 months, then we’d need to target keywords that would drive substantial search volume.
With these two challenges in mind, we sought a solution that drive targeted traffic with a high likelihood of converting to a tour of one of the charter schools.
Fortunately, there was a healthy amount of paid Google ads data to analyze for the charter schools.
By analyzing the Google ads data, we could identify:
- Top converting keywords
- Best performing ad copy
- Most expensive keywords
By identifying the top converting keywords (and, the most expensive keywords), we could develop content that would target these keywords (and eventually replace the need for paid advertising). In addition, we could analyze the best performing ad copy to alter our meta descriptions in order to increase click through rates.
Once we were on-boarded with the right foundational knowledge, we set out to create content that would rank for key terms. This content was primarily:
- Blog posts answering parent FAQs about charter schools
- “Top” landing pages featuring a list of schools in a local area
By creating localized content that leaned on PPC insight, we believed we could increase leads while reducing paid ad costs.
What were the results of our content focused, charter school marketing campaign?
- 10x increase in organic search traffic within 9 months (150 visits per month to 1,500 visits)
- 3x reduction in paid advertising campaign
- #1 or first page search results for terms like “charter schools in glendale az” “stem schools near me” “middle schools in tucson”
Here’s a graph that captures the growth of organic search traffic and the growth of organic search keywords in the campaign:
Paid ad costs were able to be significantly reduced as the value of organic traffic increased. Here’s a graph that shows the increase in the value of organic search traffic:
At the end of the SEO campaign, the charter school was able to develop a sustainable way to attract students for years to come.
“The SEO work from Markitors helped us reduce our paid advertising budget and put more money back into our charter schools.”
– VP of Marketing, Charter School company