What Monash did to win in search engine marketing

Tertiary education provider shares its approach to search engine marketing in-house, the technologies helping improve its game and why voice search is the next big thing

Attracting prospects to your website should be a simple matter of buying the right search terms and waiting for the traffic to roll in.

But when your site carries more than 65,000 pages, your audiences includes groups that have both varying and overlapping needs, and your core target can take years to convert, a more sophisticated solution is needed.

This is the situation Monash University found itself in in 2017 when it decided to bring its search marketing in-house.

“With a university as big as Monash we have a variety of audiences we communicate with,” Monash director of marketing infrastructure, Amin Foda, told CMO. “The priority areas we focus on driving are around work, study, research and support. So our audiences are built off the back of that. The complexity of it is they are not necessarily wearing a single hat at any given time.”

For example, a post-student might also be an alumnus, while an industry partner might have also been a student.

“The main ones are the future students, but you have your influencers around them, such as the parents and the counsellors, the schools and their friends,” Foda explained.

Search represents an important channel for Monash, particularly from an acquisition perspective. “Both organic and paid are as important as each other,” Foda continued. “We need to try and rank as highly as possible and avoid paying against our search terms as much as possible.

“But we don’t just look at one channel on its own. It really depends on our audiences and where they are at. So we make sure we are available where our audiences are rather than the other way around.”

Monash SEO specialist, Shefali Joshi, said the university chose SEMrush to provide an all-in-one digital marketing tool to help improve its online branding and Web presence. This provided Monash with toolkits for SEO, competitive research, content marketing and site auditing.

“This has helped us improve our future student platforms and optimise them,” Joshi said.

Since using SEMrush, Monash has improved its future student traffic purely from searches by 144 per cent. “And we have been able with the help of their site audit tool to fix more than 100,000 issues,” Joshi said.

These have included completing a HTTPS implementation, as well as fixing numerous redirects, missing alt tags, and broken links and email address, and optimising metadata.

The key focus now for Monash is in voice search, where Joshi claimed Monash has already captured 30 per cent of the market.

“We’ve been able to capture the voice search market because we get SEMrush’s position tracking tool which shows us the featured snippet opportunities,” Joshi said. “The featured snippet is the only answer that is going to win you the Google voice search.

“Right now, voice recognition technologies are only 90 per cent accurate. As soon as it becomes 99 per cent accuracy, it will be a game changer and everyone is going to be talking to their devices.”

Read more of our case studies on Australian digital marketing and advertising success:

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+:google.com/+CmoAu  

 

 

 

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Blog Posts

5 things every business can do to drive brand loyalty

If you’re in any customer-centric role, you’ll likely be familiar with the Net Promoter Score (NPS) – one of the most popular tools for brands to measure their customer sentiment.

Catherine Anderson

Chief customer officer, Powershop Australia

What the modern gig economy is doing to customer experience

Most marketing theory was established in the context of stable employment relationships. From front-line staff to marketing strategists and brand managers, employees generally enjoyed job security with classic benefits such as superannuation plans, stable income streams, employment rights, training, sabbaticals and long-service leave.

Dr Chris Baumann

Associate professor, Macquarie University

The new data hierarchy

We are all digital lab rats spewing treasure troves of personal data wherever we go.

Gerry Murray

Research director, marketing and sales technology services, IDC

Thank you! That was useful to know.

Belia Adam

Why your best social marketing brand tool could be hiding in plain sight

Read more

Because you are missing the point of the term "disruption"

Sean

Uber for the truckies: How one Aussie startup is disrupting the freight industry

Read more

Absolutely agree with this ... Facebook doesn't care what adds they show. You report an add for fake news/scam and it just remains "open...

Quasi Carbon

Unilever CMO threatens Facebook, Google with digital advertising boycott

Read more

How to create Pinball game in 4 minshttps://youtu.be/S1bsp7del3M

Alex Atmavan

Rethinking gamification in marketing

Read more

True Local - one of the least credible review sites on the entire internet.

MyNameIsStomp

Former Virgin Mobile CMO and CEO joins oOh! as first customer chief

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in