In the dot-com arena, the competition is perhaps most fierce in the online recruiting space. With millions of visitors (and dollars) at stake, competitors are turning to more effective and innovative measures to get the attention of employers and job seekers. A key audience for online recruiters is college students, based on the concept that helping a student get his or her first job out of college will build brand loyalty for a lifetime of career changes.
PLANNING, RESEARCH, & OBJECTIVES
The main objectives of the campaign were to raise brand awareness among college students, resulting in greater traffic to the CareerBuilder site, to generate “mycareerbuilder” registrations from students, to develop relationships with campus Career Centers and Counselors, and to create a local buzz by inviting media to each university stop on the College Bus Tour.
Research supporting the Bus Tour program -
According to a report by Jupiter in 1999
- 90% of 15 million college students use the Internet – more than any other demographic
- College students are active Internet users: 66% of college students online made a purchase during the first six months of 1999
- According to CareerBuilder:
- More than half of CareerBuilder’s audience is in the undergraduate and graduate student age bracket
- 45% of employers are looking for entry-level professionals, especially those with college degrees
- Only 25% of college students use their university career centers to find a job
CareerBuilder and Fleishman-Hillard (FH) began by identifying a vehicle that would grab attention, speak to the Web site’s quality, store thousands of giveaways, transport tour staffers, serve as a billboard and at the same time be “cutting edge”. The choice: a massive custom-built coach bus with the CareerBuilder logo wrapped around the exterior. FH contracted with the top custom coach company and redesigned a 40 foot long private bus into a unique cyber café/mobile lounge.
Previous CareerBuilder tours had been concentrated in the western and southwestern parts of the United States. This tour looked to new territory in the Midwest and the East Coast, in close coordination with the sales force. Beginning in Michigan and ending in Florida, FH and CareerBuilder developed a schedule targeting 34 schools, with undergraduate enrollments averaging more than 14,000 students. Nearly three months of planning went into identifying high-profile locations, optimizing the mobile technology, and creating a funky but quality experience for students.
- 854,400 – estimated impressions generated by visits of the CareerBuilder bus to 34 colleges and universities, including 7 NCAA football games
- 4,500 – new students signed up for a CareerBuilder PSA
- 792,000 – estimated audience of the media coverage generated by visits to the bus by television, newspapers, and radio
- 130,000 – CareerBuilder branded premiums given away throughout the tour
62% – increase in traffic to the “onCampus” section of CareerBuilder’s site.