Case Study: Elmhurst College

Elmhurst College is a private liberal arts college founded in 1871, consistently ranked among the top colleges in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report. The College offers more than 50 undergraduate majors, four accelerated majors for adults, 15 pre-professional programs, and 9 graduate programs.

Brief:

Facing intense competition from an ever-increasing host of traditional universities, for-profit educational companies and distance learning programs, Elmhurst College was losing the battle for new students.

Insight:

Elmhurst College has special attributes embedded within its DNA that many institutions of higher learning, especially upstarts in the for-profit and distance learning arena, could never hope to have. These primary advantages include the personal touch of a hands-on faculty, a vibrant multi-faceted student experience, and an academic institution that has been a foundation of the community for over 130 years.

Solution:

We extended this personal touch to all forms of media to distinguish the college from its competitors and provide a boost to enrollment numbers. Our solution included such direct and personal methods as door hangs, direct mail, e-mail & database marketing, and zip code targeted direct response inserts as well as supporting above-the-line methods such as outdoor, targeted print, and community college & high school postering campaigns.

Result:

We had a 45% increase in transfer student applications, a 24% increase in traditional student applications, and a 20% increase in graduate student applications over the course of one year.


...And We Quote...

"Mike Olander and his excellent team bring a high degree of professionalism, energy and imagination to their work for us. They understand at a deep level both our particular needs and the opportunities that the marketplace presents to us."

- Jim Winters, Vice President, Communications & Public Affairs - Elmhurst College