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Blog_Header_Digital and Conversions (1)
The Glacier TeamSep 25, 2018 9:46:58 AM3 min read

How to Leverage Digital Ads to Increase Conversions

- 3 min read -

Blog_Header_Digital and Conversions (1)

Digital ads: The gateway to stronger conversions

We live in an increasingly digital age with Generation Z, in particular, living their lives and interacting with the world primarily through digital means. With so much of their time spent staring at screens – whether a tablet, smartphone, laptop, or, less frequently, desktop – the best way for higher education institutions to reach their eyeballs is by focusing on digital ad space.

Let’s explore how digital advertising can help increase conversions among high school students looking for a post-secondary institution.

Traditional methods prime your audience for digital ads

As essential as digital ads are for business success, they are by no means the sole way of grabbing your audience’s attention. One method to improve the effectiveness of your institution’s digital advertising is by priming potential applicants with more traditional media exposure, like an out-of-home (OOH) advertisement.

A recent UK study found that customers are 17% more likely to interact with a brand after they’re exposed to OOH ads like billboards, displays or posters. Even more importantly for digital marketers, OOH ads were shown to trigger a 38% increase in mobile engagements between consumers and brands. It’s therefore essential for educational institutions to develop a strategy that expands brand exposure beyond the digital sphere.

One increasingly popular means of achieving this is by placing banners and posters at high schools, building awareness among your receptive audience so that, when digital ads appear on students’ digital devices, they are more likely to click through to your website. Glacier offers such services, building awareness in our 1,000+ partner high schools across North America with massive vinyl ads placed in high traffic areas of schools.

 Make a strong call to action now!

Arguably the most important element of an effective digital ad is a strong call to action (CTA) that drives the conversion. On the ad itself, as well as on the landing page after clicking through on the ad, make it clear what your audience will receive.

Whether it’s an eBook or newsletter PDF providing relevant information, make sure you offer to reward your audience’s interest with a CTA button. It’s essential to design the button to stand out on the page. Make it big, make it a different colour than the background, make the copy simple and action-oriented (ex., “Get your free copy,” “Create your account”). If your button communicates directly to your audience, suggesting immediacy and the promise of something in return, you’ll turn your digital ad into a more powerful conversion tool.

 The marks of a successful digital ad campaign

As an example of how digital ads can yield higher conversion rates, let’s look at Bucks County Community College (BCCC). From March to August 2018, Glacier helped BCCC improve their advertising click-through rate (CTR) from 0.03% to 0.17%.

This effort was part of a digital ad campaign on the Pandora music app. Out of 235,200 impressions delivered, BCCC achieved 404 clicks for the aforementioned CTR of 0.17%, over five times more than the previous month. More impressively, this click-through rate represents a reach of 21,527.

Part of this campaign’s success can be attributed to narrowing down the demographic. Users were targeted in the 16-29 demographic in Bucks County and related ZIP codes, using banner ads that appear on mobile and tablet devices. In just the first leg of this Pandora campaign, Bucks County Community College’s CTR was 2.1 times higher than the industry standard of 0.08. On the strength of targeting mobile platforms and tightly focusing the demographics, this campaign yielded a stronger CTR performance.



Ultimately, digital ads represent a vital avenue to attract interested high school students to your higher education institution. But a strategy that includes demographic focus, out-of-home marketing, and strong CTAs will improve the conversion rate and make impressions count.

Reach out to Glacier today and discover how your educational institution’s website can increase conversion through digital ads.

P.S. Follow us on LinkedIn for tips, tricks, and industry updates.

We collected insights from 1,700 high school students on their media preferences for higher ed advertising. Access Report.