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How a University Can Set Up An Effective Google Ads Campaign

In this increasingly digital world, your university must leverage digital advertising platforms like Google Ads to reach students and stakeholders.

With Google Ads, your university can create targeted campaigns that increase visibility and drive traffic to your website and boost enrolments.

This is a step-by-step guide on how your university can set up an effective Google Ads campaign today.

 

1. Define Clear Campaign  Goals

The first step to setting up an effective Google Ads campaign for your university is to clearly define your campaign’s goals. And these could include:

– increasing applications for undergraduate or graduate programs

– boost attendance at informational webinars and open days

– promoting specific university programs or courses

– enhancing brand awareness

With a clear goal for your campaign, you are able to structure your campaign correctly with the right keywords and measuring tools.

 

2. Identify Target Audiences

Understanding the audiences you want to target in Google Ads is crucial. As a university, these are the audiences you will typically target:

– high school students

– graduates considering further education

– International students

– working professionals seeking continuing education

With Google Ads you are able to use detailed audience segmentation based on demographics, interests and online behavior. So, you can use these tools to tailor your ads to specific groups.

 

3. Conduct Keyword Research

To run an effective Google Ads campaign for your university, you’ll need to find the right keywords to bid on. So, a tool like the Google Keyword Planner tool will help you identify keywords and phrases that prospective students might use when searching for educational opportunities.

And some examples of long tail keywords that you can add include:

– top universities for computer science
– best MBA programs
– online masters degree in education

And you can use these or any relevant ones to carry out your keyword research. Also, you’ll need to include negative keywords to block out irrelevant traffic and improve ad performance.

 

4. Create Great Ad Copy

Your ad copy should be targeted and engaging to address the needs and interests of potential students for your university. Key elements you should include are:

– Strong headlines – Google Ads provides you with multiple headlines and they should all work to grab attention.

– Concise description – include phrases and statements that highlight unique selling points such as campus facilities, program strengths and employment outcomes.

– Clear call-to-action (CTA) – Give your visitors easy options to take desired actions on your website, including filling out a form or signing up for a newsletter.

 

6. Set a Budget and Bidding Strategy

You will need to determine the budget you want to set for your new campaign. And this should align with your bid strategy and the goals you want to achieve. Google Ads offers various bidding strategies such as:

– Maximize Conversions – Bid to get as many conversions as possible for your budget.

– Maximize Clicks – Bid to get as much click traffic as you can for your budget.

– Manual CPC – Set your bids manually at the keyword level to control how much you spend.

The budget you set will determine how much traffic you get. So, it’s important to conduct some keyword research to decide on a good budget to start with.

 

7. Implement Conversion Tracking

Before launching a Google Ads campaign for your university, you need to set up conversion tracking to measure its effectiveness. This involves tracking actions like:

– Form submissions

– Event registrations

– Phone calls

– Downloads of international brochures

With conversion tracking you get valuable data on which aspects of your campaign are working and which need improving.

 

8. Monitor and Optimize

After setting up your campaign, you’ll need to monitor and optimize it to achieve great results. So, you will analyze performance data and make adjustments to:

– Keywords – Add new keywords and update existing ones.

– Ad Copy – Test different headlines and descriptions to see what works best with your audiences.

– Bidding Strategy – Adjust bidding strategies or update bids in line with performance.

– Landing Pages – Improve your landing pages and content to enhance user experience and conversion rates.

 

9. Leverage Remarketing

Remarketing is a feature and campaign type that allows you to retarget people who have previously visited your website. So, for a university website, you can retarget potential students who have looked at courses or degrees that they’ve looked at.

This is particularly useful for universities, which can remind visitors of your offerings and encourage them to return and take action.

 

Conclusion

To set up an effective Google Ads campaign for a university, you need careful planning, precise targeting and ongoing optimization. By following the steps in this article, you can create impactful campaigns that attract and engage prospective students. And these should help to ultimately drive applications and enrollment.

With the right Google Ads approach, this can be a powerful tool for a university’s digital marketing arsenal.

I’m a Google Ads expert and I work with universities providing training and the set up and management of campaigns. Contact me to find out more.

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    Hi, Mike Ncube is a leading digital marketing consultant who blogs about the best and latest digital insights. He writes about topics such as Google Ads, digital strategy, LinkedIn Ads, Email, SEO, Google Analytics and more. Reach out to him if you have any questions and subscribe to his blog to start learning.

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Hi, Mike Ncube is a leading digital marketing consultant who blogs about the best and latest digital insights. He writes about topics such as Google Ads, digital strategy, LinkedIn Ads, Email, SEO, Google Analytics and more. Reach out to him if you have any questions and subscribe to his blog to start learning.

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