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The background

Charles Darwin University is consistently lauded as one of the best universities in the world, which is a remarkable achievement for a dual-sector institution under half a century old. Involve Digital were proud to stand with them in their quest to ensure the brightest minds of this generation thrive at their university. By studying their campaigns before Involve Digital came along, it was evident they deserved much better. It was time to get to work. This wasn't about getting clicks. This was about getting students through their doors. Each of their 17 faculties required a unique approach.

We learned what they were all about before optimizing every aspect of their digital marketing. The previous agency was serving law ads on an Alice in Wonderland app, so we had to fix up all of this for them. Including delivering 4.4X more applications than the prior agency to reach their goals. It was a mess, and they were behind on student applications for the semester, so Charles Darwin's brief reflected that. They were desperate to get an agency working hard for them in a transparent way instead of an agency bundling huge margins into their CPM rates, only to serve ads to Alice and Wonderland fans.


Before Involve Digital took over all of the digital marketing for Charles Darwin University, their previous agency promised them student applications for a $50 cost per acquisition. Well, their prior agency delivered applications at $220 per application—4.4X fewer applications than promised, an absolute fail. So this promise from the preceding agency formed the basis for the key metrics Involve Digital needed to work towards. It also framed the objective: student applications for an average cost per acquisition of $50. 

The creative

Being a University, every faculty has its own budget and creative. All of which needed to be A/B tested with various messaging and images. A large and complex task. But a job that Involve Digital was able to handle with great ease. "The team were very proactive and always on-hand to offer suggestions and advice regarding creative". 

The approach

Like every campaign Involve Digital takes part in, it starts with a thorough assessment of the target audience. The target audience is then segmented into micro audiences. This dictates the underlying structure of the campaign build. From there, Involve Digital moved on to building out the messaging for each audience. The messaging was informed by Charles Darwins University's objectives and the unique needs of each faculty and audience segment. Involve Digital ensured that every message was designed to resonate with its intended recipient. Once the messaging was finalized, Involve Digital moved on to designing the creative assets that were used in the campaign. This included banner ads, social media posts and search ads. Involve Digital ensured that all of the assets were on-brand and reflected the overall tone of the campaign. Finally, Involve Digital launched the campaign and tracked its performance closely. Involve Digital are experts in using data to optimize the campaigns along the way to ensure that the KPIs and goals are met.

The optimization

The budget optimization could only occur across the various digital marketing platforms: Google Search Ads, Display, Facebook, Instagram and Remarketing. However, cross-faculty budget optimization was not possible as every faculty had their own budget and were protective of it. This gave the campaign some constraints, and Involve Digital had to work hard to ensure the performance was exceptional across all faculties. 

The results

Over 23M Impressions served in the Semester

7.24% conversion rate

Over 126,000 clicks 

9,187 Student applications at an average lifetime value of $10,000 

Average CPC $1.55 

$27.08 CPA vs $220 from the previous agency 

812% Improvement