Student, recruit thyself

A website that started out as an undergrad recruitment campaign for the University of Manitoba has taken on a life of its own. Since mid-October, 16 U of M students and alumni have been sharing their experiences through individual blogs at itsmyfuture.ca, as part of a program designed to 'paint an honest picture' of life at one of Winnipeg's two universities. And while the OOH, transit, print and radio advertising driving traffic to the site wrapped at the end of November, the blogs will continue through the school year.

A website that started out as an undergrad recruitment campaign for the University of Manitoba has taken on a life of its own. Since mid-October, 16 U of M students and alumni have been sharing their experiences through individual blogs at itsmyfuture.ca, as part of a program designed to ‘paint an honest picture’ of life at one of Winnipeg’s two universities. And while the OOH, transit, print and radio advertising driving traffic to the site wrapped at the end of November, the blogs will continue through the school year.

The site attracted more than 60,000 page views by over 6,500 visitors in its first four weeks, with 37% staying for between two and five minutes and 24% staying longer, says Peter George, president/COO at McKim Cringan George, which handled both the creative and the media buy for the province-wide campaign.

Since the launch, several students nominated by their faculties have joined the original group, and George hopes to expand the program to include faculty and graduate student recruitment in the future. ‘It gives faculties that might want to participate a low-cost point of entry,’ he says. ‘And that’s allowed the campaign to increase its reach.’

George adds that while the fall campaign was timed to coincide with the start of the application planning process, he won’t have numbers on actual recruitment until registration starts next summer. A second wave of promotional support is expected later this year.