Fordham University had a unique challenge: influence the yield of its 2014 incoming class while undergoing a complete website redesign. Working with mStoner, Fordham University tackled that challenge in an innovative way with its social media campaign, #Fordham4Me.
"We wanted to reach a specific audience with limited resources, but we couldn't drive lots of traffic to the website since we were in the middle of a redesign project," said Donna Lehmann, Fordham's director of online communications. "Using social media for pure marketing reasons was a new idea to us. Most of our activity on social has been news-focused; not for students choosing Fordham."
#Fordham4Me targeted admitted undergraduate students ages 17-19 with the goal of leveraging their excitement of attending Fordham and tapping into their ability to serve as social influencers about the college decision process. The campaign centered on two popular platforms among the target audience: Instagram and Tumblr.
The coordination, organization, and clear demonstration of success of this campaign are uncommon in higher education.This campaign deserves to win because of its overall effectiveness.
Through its planning process, Fordham University outlined three specific objectives for the #Fordham4Me campaign:
• Reach 90 percent of all admitted students.
• Prompt 100 admitted students to generate content.
• Attract 150 new followers on Tumblr and Instagram.
In the end, the campaign achieved its objectives with strong results. It generated email open rates at 58 percent with a click-through rate of 3.2 percent. More than 1,100 people have visited Fordham's new Tumblr blog, netting more than 130 new followers among its target audience. Instagram featured nearly 300 posts with #Fordham4Me, garnering around 7,000 likes.
"#Fordham4Me allowed us to do something completely new in a space we weren't established in yet. We weren't even on Tumblr before this campaign," said Donna Lehmann, Fordham's director of online communications. "And while we had a specific purpose and audience, it wasn't just about the number of posts, but how people engaged with these posts."