Helping businesses benefit from the apprenticeship levy
This content-led campaign aimed to demystify this confusing topic and raise awareness of the new opportunities. It delivered the highest social media engagement of any executive education campaign.
To simplify a complex topic and help people understand that the apprenticeship levy is for training at all levels of a business.
The objective was to educate high-level executives and future leaders that the apprenticeship levy could be used for courses such as MSc and MBAs. We needed to drive enquiries and applications to the July 2019 cohort of the levy-funded MSc Management Practice course.
We reviewed research into attitudes to the apprenticeship levy since its launch in 2017 and found that business awareness had remained low and there was little understanding of how it could be used for executive-level training. There was still a widely held belief that apprenticeships are for school leavers.
Our strategy was to establish the level of understanding around the levy and promote the breadth of what it could be used for. We targeted both businesses and employees – recognising that ambitious people can drive demand for executive-level training with their bosses.
We created a content-led campaign to generate multi-media material that could be shared across owned, paid and earned platforms as well as traditional media. We used video and thought leadership content across social media platforms, the AMBS website and traditional editorial and advertorials.
We also commissioned independent research into attitudes and understanding of the levy among business leaders and employees. Findings were tailored to each of AMBS’ target markets and used to generate widespread targeted coverage in a traditional media relations campaign.
The content campaign generated more engagement than any previous AMBS executive education campaign.
Media relations campaign: significant coverage in all target sectors with over 30 stories on the research across each of our target markets; 50%+ of stories contained direct backlinks to the apprenticeships page on the AMBS website.
Social media: more engagement and responses than any previous campaign for the business school’s executive education arm; Click throughs and engagement rates for sponsored content more than double the LinkedIn benchmark for our target sectors.
Video content: viewed by almost 40,000 in the first three months of the campaign; more than 230,000 saw the branded apprenticeship content in their feed.
AMBS Website: alongside pay per click advertising, the campaign achieved over 3,000 visits to the specific Apprenticeship Levy landing page; generated over 550 leads with over 100 specific enquiries for the July 2019 open cohorts within the first three months of the campaign.
With such a short marketing and recruitment lead time, we needed the campaign to deliver quickly – and the results speak for themselves.
Working with the team at Intelligent Conversation has been a great experience. We’ve found them approachable and flexible and they’ve always delivered activity on time and with care.Joanne Blaine, sales and marketing manager executive education.