The Nanyang Technological University, Singapore’s School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences (SPMS) offers students the option of taking up double majors or a second subject major. This not only empowers students to blend two interests, develop multidisciplinary skills and hone their critical thinking skills, it also strengthens their marketability upon graduation. With the development of new double major programmes, the client needed to increase the visibility of these programmes and recruit more students.
To this end, the priority was to access new target audiences on the digital front beyond the standard publicity avenues to increase the number of applicants.
To shift the focus from products to service, we sought to better understand the goals of the students. A qualitative and quantitative interview was conducted with the view to understand students’ motivation, goals and pain points. We also want to know why they chose SPMS. At the same time, we synthesised the clients’ insights with our expertise to create the Persona maps.
We develop these deeper insights by working closely with the client and 20 students, mapping out their decision-making process that leads to them selecting SPMS using a customer journey mapping tool. A virtual workshop was conducted, and after process facilitation, we better understood the students’ thought processes at different stages of their journey. We distilled the factors influencing their decisionmaking and proceeded to co-create effective solutions with the client and stakeholders.
We approached the digital campaign by pairing a friendly and welcoming visual with an empowering message. The concept highlighted the benefits of taking a double major or second major in the science degree making it a win-win proposition for the student. The concept alludes to the perfect combination and the multidisciplinary mix with a good blend of practical and theoretical. The ‘equal’ sign (=) in the background of every post plays to the dual combination of subjects that matches students’ aspirations or passions. This design was adapted to all the digital assets and applied to the various social media channels.
In rethinking how best to engage potential students, a solution that shaped the digital marketing strategy was born. From the keywords used for developing Google Ad copy, to the content pillars drawn up, we tackled some of the doubts and addressed the pain points revealed. We also conducted A/B testing on the design and content for some of the posts.
Apart from busting the myth of a science degree being not versatile, the notion of double-subject majors equating to double work was also dispelled through student testimonials addressing these misconceptions. The ads we created resulted in high student engagement and more enquiries on their Telegram channels. In fact, the number of applicants for the double- and second-subject major programmes has since increased by xx%. Through this project, the client has not only achieved their goals, but have also gleaned a new understanding of the thought processes and behaviours their potential students exhibit in selecting their university course.