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Salem College Uses Cross-Media to Encourage Prospects to Visit



Salem College Uses Cross-Media to Encourage Prospects to Visit

Vertical Market:


Business Application:

Direct Marketing/Lead Generation

Business Objectives Salem College, located in North Carolina, is a small, private liberal arts college for women. The admissions department needed a way to increase interest in the college and future enrollment. Working with direct mail specialist Keiger Direct, they developed a solution that would:

Get prospective students to learn about Salem College and provide information about themselves for future marketing efforts

Encourage students to take part in the college’s Spring Visit program

Accommodate tight marketing budget restrictions

Results To keep within a 20% budget reduction the mailing quantity for this campaign was also reduced by 20% compared to the previous year (100,000 to 80,000). The power of this cross-media solution was so great that even with the reduced quantity the campaign delivered better results.

• • • • • •

Response rate of 4.4% (visited PURL). This represents a 303% increase in the response rate compared to the previous year Of those that visited the site, 47% completed the survey and provided additional information about their interests 717 students requested additional information about the Spring Visit program Spring Visit attendance increased by 46% (37 to 54 people) The solution saved Admissions staff labor – counselors no longer had to frantically input data to send out response pieces Increased the amount of data Salem College had on prospective students

Campaign Architecture Salem College needed a new way to connect with high school sophomores and juniors. It was felt that a cross-media campaign would have a much better appeal with this “Internet Generation” audience.

© 2010 PODi, the Digital Printing Initiative

3 The 2009 campaign addressed prospective students by using multiple media types including print, personalized URLs (PURLs), YouTube video, and email.

Invitation Mailer

Response Brochure

Š 2010 PODi, the Digital Printing Initiative


Salem College Uses Cross-Media to Encourage Prospects to Visit

2009 SALEM COLLEGE CAMPAIGN Mail: Campaign begins – 9” x 6” personalized invitation mailer sent to prospective students encouraging them to visit PURL Response follow-up (student visits PURL) Online: At her personalized landing page the student is asked to confirm her contact information and complete a short survey on her academic and extracurricular interests. Students are also

Non-response follow-up

asked whether they would like more information on the next

(If students respond they then

Spring Visit Day and are given the opportunity to view a 50

move to the Response follow-

second trailer on Salem College

up track)

Student action: Completes

Student action: Does not

Email: Two weeks after initial


complete survey

mailer an email including PURL is sent. Results showed largest activity on the site in a single day – 406 hits

Email: An email is sent to the

Mail: “Default” brochure

Mail: Four weeks into campaign

student with a link & password

personalized with the student’s

a static brochure (from previous

to an extended video. The email name is sent to respondent the

year’s inventory) is mailed to

is personalized with the name,

next day. (If student completes

students with a personalized

picture and contact information

the survey at a later date, she is

sticky note directing them to

for the student’s admissions

sent another brochure, updated

their PURL

counselor based on region

with the new information)

Video: Student has option to

If students complete survey at a

Email: Nine weeks into the

view exclusive 5-minute video

later date they move to the

campaign an email is sent to

on YouTube of Salem College

“Student action: Completes

non-responders. A considerable

and its students

survey” track. If students do not

bump in responses is evident,

complete survey they move to

from 3 hits the previous day to

the “Non-response follow-up”

88, 78, 38 and 25 hits the next


4 days.

Mail: The following day, a brochure is mailed. The brochure is customized (both text & images) based on answers to the survey questions, as well as by ethnicity. 562 variations were possible Mail: Handwritten thank-you note is sent from admissions counselor to student Mail: Postcard and email with information on Spring Visit Day is sent to those who requested it

© 2010 PODi, the Digital Printing Initiative

5 The personalized landing page was kept live for three months, with hits coming through to the very last day. Keiger Direct gave Salem a final data file stating who received what response pieces at the completion of the campaign. This information could then be entered into Salem’s database for future marketing efforts. The survey data from the campaign was also very helpful to the admissions staff. Salem now knows that Pre-Medicine and Music are high-up on the list of interests and can prepare those departments accordingly, as well as send out future targeted mailings.

Personalized landing page

Target Audience and Messaging The target audience for this campaign was sophomore and junior high school girls. Salem wanted to influence these students early in their college search process. The messages of the campaign, “How will you change tomorrow?” and “Shine” continued themes from Admissions campaigns from the 2008-2009 school year.

Offer Students who went to the PURL and completed the survey were given the opportunity to preview Salem’s new video.

List The list of female sophomores and juniors was purchased from the College Board and was selected based on SAT score, choice of major offered by Salem, and geographic region.

Creative The design for the invitation postcard, personalized landing page, emails and Spring Visit postcard was developed by a freelance designer and incorporated many images of Salem College and its students.

© 2010 PODi, the Digital Printing Initiative


Salem College Uses Cross-Media to Encourage Prospects to Visit

Reasons for Success Salem’s Admissions Office felt the campaign was a tremendous success. Kathy Barnes the Associate Dean of Admissions, said “I was very pleased with the seamlessness of the campaign – from postal to email to the connection to our video. The Salem “Shine” search campaign exceeded our expectations in many ways. The results were wonderful and the integration of the mixed-media campaign was impressive.” What is equally impressive about this campaign is that the freelance designer Carrie Leigh Dickey and the Keiger Direct team were on a very tight deadline and had approximately two weeks, inclusive of design, to get the entire campaign into production. Keiger Direct received a Xerox “Best-of-the-Best” award for this campaign. Best practices learned from this campaign are:

• •

Show your audience that you listen. The high degree of personalization in the response brochure showed students that Salem College appreciated their individualized interests. Use multiple touches to keep your audience engaged. The Salem campaign used several channels – mail, email, online video, landing pages – to connect with prospective students. The multiple follow-up communications to people who visited their PURLs plus reminders to non-responders helped drive the response of this campaign. Communicate in your audience’s preferred channel. High school students of the “Internet Generation” are accustomed to getting information online. Salem’s campaign used this channel effectively by directing recipients to a PURL and incorporating other electronic communications such as email and a YouTube video.

© 2010 PODi, the Digital Printing Initiative

7 Client

Salem College Salem is an intimate learning community of 1,100 women from all over the world and is one of the nation's most distinguished private liberal arts colleges. As the oldest educational institution for women in the United States, Salem boasts a proud history of fostering independence in women.

Print Service Provider

Keiger Direct Keiger Direct is the integrated marketing solutions division of Keiger Printing Company. Located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Keiger Direct creates and manages personalized marketing programs utilizing today's latest digital technology by communicating with the customer on a relevant level.


Carrie Leigh Dickey Artist and graphic designer


Xerox iGen4 with Creo RIP


Data processing: Microsoft Access, Primary Presort, SuperDup, MailManager, as well as custom programming Composition: XMPie uProduce PURLs: MindFireInc’s LookWho’sClicking Job Ticketing: PSI


Heidelberg Cutter, Morgana Creaser, MBO Folder

Target Audience

Sophomore and junior high school girls


Two initial drops totaling 80,000. Then daily follow-up mailers varying in quantity from 1 to 400 based on response.


February 2009 – April 2009

© 2010 PODi, the Digital Printing Initiative

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