Case study

RCU analysis informs sixth form college growth and increase in market share.

Matt Grant - Principle at Priestley College

Matthew Grant
Priestley College

The problem

Priestley College has been utilising RCU’s Vector for a number of years and finds the tool invaluable for strategic planning, marketing and curriculum planning. Using the Vector tool, the college identified a number of A Level subjects, including Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics which were not attracting as many learners as they could. In recent years their market share of A Level learners enrolled in these subject areas had fallen below the overall college average signalling a problem which they were keen to address quickly.

The solution

Using the Vector mapping tool, the college identified key geographies with large level 3 cohorts participating in Science and Maths subject areas, and therefore offered the greatest opportunity for growth. They were also able to highlight specific bus routes to target based on the travel patterns in the key areas.

As a result of the Vector findings and to encourage an increase in the conversion rate of applicants for the core A Level subjects, the College designed and implemented a new targeted marketing campaign focusing on Science and Maths.

This campaign included new promotional brochures for target applicants, sponsored bus routes and a wraparound bus poster raising the profile of Science and Maths and promoting the College in target recruitment areas.

The outcome

Following the targeted promotions and recruitment campaign Priestley College has started to see positive results with a 10 percentage point increase in market share within the local recruitment area. The college immediately experienced an increased in applications which resulting in an additional 120 16-18 year old learners from just three local wards.

By providing the ability to identify and target individual areas offering the greatest opportunity for growth, this meant the college were able to carry out all the new activity without increasing the marketing budget which is now being spent in a more efficient way.

College Governors also rate the tool highly as it helps answer specific questions they have around the college’s performance, market share within the community and local trends.

"The information RCU provided us has proved invaluable in supporting our marketing strategy. Working closely with the team at RCU has led to a number of efficiency savings and we have been able to achieve a great deal more from our ever tightening budget."