Clearing has become a competitive market for recruitment: approximately 60,000 UK students secured a spot at a university through the clearing process in 2017. That number was similar to 2016, which was already a record year. That’s why high education institutions need a strategic and creative marketing campaign to stand out from the noise.


Due to our previous experience in clearing campaigns, Kingston University London approached us looking to produce a film and social media campaign that would inform prospective students about clearing and all the options available to them, letting them know that can still have their dream career even though they didn’t get into a university right away. Here are the three secrets behind this successful university marketing campaign that delivered almost 300,000 views on YouTube:

Secret #01: Be unconventional

We consider different factors before creating any successful university marketing campaigns. One of these factors is audience perception. All in all, clearing is a pretty scary process: if you want to get into university, not getting into one isn’t going to be much of a fun experience. Our creative Ryan Goodge decided to be unconventional and change the audience perception. He approached the brief differently and turned these common anxieties into something to laugh about, telling future students exactly what they’re NOT going to do, essentially showing solidarity and telling them that everything will be alright through the medium of film.

Secret #02: Have a laugh

University advertising campaigns will never capture the attention of younger audience if they are dull, boring and not relatable. The script we wrote up followed the journey of a single student going through some of the usual processes and thought-patterns that are customary with clearing. We then paired this with a fun, humorous voiceover to take us through the entire process. We found Jack McKenna, an actor that was brilliant for the part, and our producer/director Clemence Bartram brought the project to life.

Secret #03: Create Snackable Videos for Social Media and Beyond

University marketing campaigns require you to be constantly one step ahead. Social media plays a massive role in students’ life. If there’s one approach that should be a top priority of every university marketing campaigns is social media. Since the platforms have become visually-based and fast-paced, we wanted to capture the attention first with 3 short social media posts and before presenting the full story. This approach helped Kingston University to cut through the noise and grab students attention.

And the results were…

Organic Views

Pre-Roll Ad Views


Of the Video Watched

Views in 3 Months

About the author

Kathy Bird

Kathy Bird

Higher Education Managing Director

Email: kathy@spectrecom.co.uk

Phone: 0203 896 2866 / 0771 590 5352

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