Providing the digital tools for global recruitment

As the Business School at Oxford University, Saïd Business School attracts the world’s top graduates and executives. But finding and recruiting them in such a competitive field and standing out amongst the big budgets campaigns of Harvard and INSEAD can be tough.

That is why the School appointed us in 2009 to help them use digital in a more effective and targeted way. With their website not due for review until 2013 they needed their supporting digital comms to work smarter and harder.

Social media strategy
We created social objectives and principles that all departments can follow consistently, meaning that time is spent wisely and success can be properly validated. All social activity should either raise the School’s profile, support global recruitment or enhance course experience and each channel has a strategy for achieving these aims.

Digital workshops
We worked across departments to empower those individuals with digital responsibility and help them work in more effective and joined-up way. This included online tone of voice sessions, writing for email workshops, and seminars on social effectiveness.

Virtual open days
Virtual open days are critical in recruiting international students so we designed bold and friendly micro-sites to support the admissions process, inspired by the way users want to consume video. Our approach has lead to an average time on site of nearly 13 minutes and a significant rise in admissions enquires directly from these sites.

Email marketing
We created a flexible template system for the School’s numerous internal and external email newsletters. These provide a visually consistent but editorially flexible approach to reaching each audiences, as well as a cost-effective way to drive traffic to the website.

Banner campaigns
By using simple illustrated metaphors in ‘the language of business’ for the School’s banner campaigns, we not only set them apart from the traditional concepts of their competitors, but cut through the language barriers involved in recruiting internationally. The results were impressive (including our LinkedIn MBA banner achieving an open rate of 24% with a click through of 50%).

Digital reports and prospectuses
We have given the School’s online reports and prospectuses a genuinely distinctive voice in the marketplace through our animated infographics. We have also ensured they are integrated with the analytics Saïd need to track visitor behaviour – so they can refine their content each year based on insight.

“The Saïd Business School first worked with Positive in early 2009, initially asking them to produce a digital newsletter for our Executive Education market. Convinced by the results, which clearly showed their ability to combine creativity with functionality, we were happy to engage them to work on more elaborate projects, starting with an illustrative catalogue, a range of larger ‘glossy’ e-brochures to publicise our degree programmes, and a sharp online banner advertising campaign.

From the offset, Positive demonstrated a keen interest in the School and a determination to apply the understanding they quickly developed of the brand, our markets and the look and feel we desired across the range of material we asked them to produce.

Any ideas presented, be they from the perspective of either design or function, have consistently been well thought out and insightful. Additionally, we have felt as clients that our original specifications and any feedback we have given has been taken into consideration and sensibly incorporated. We have been delighted with all the stylish and effective pieces they have designed.

As well as producing high quality end results, Positive have strived to and succeeded in making the process as efficient, timely and collaborative as possible. Communication is always professional, friendly and cooperative and we look forward to working with them in the future.”

Liz Buckle, Marketing, Saïd Business School