Liberty University leveraged mobile to drive direct responses at lower cost-per-conversion

Monday, December 5, 2011 | 10:03 AM


Liberty University Online has long been able to reach and engage prospective students as they searched for education options from their desktop computers.  However, with the growth of mobile search activity, Liberty recognized a new opportunity to reach the people on a new platform. Liberty noticed rapid growth in mobile traffic to their own website, which closely mirrored industry-wide trends in mobile usage growth. According to Google internal data, education-related search volume is increasing rapidly and is projected to grow to over 17% by the end of 2011.  

Liberty started advertising their online programs on both desktop and mobile. After seeing initial success, Liberty broke out mobile campaigns for their branded traffic, and continued to monitor and optimize the performance specifically for mobile. Executive Director of Admissions Steve Peterson was surprised at the immediate results from mobile.  

“Sometimes when you’re trying new things, your tolerance is a little higher for what you’re willing to accept,” Steve said.  “The thing that was surprising was how well it performed in a short period of time compared to stuff we’ve been doing for years.  So when you have that out of the gate, we just want to keep scaling until we see some kind of diminishing returns.”

Liberty hasn’t seen diminishing returns yet. In the first six months of mobile-only campaigns, Liberty saw effectiveness and efficiency improve for conversion volume and cost-per-conversion:
  • 49% increase in number of conversions
  • 50% decrease in cost-per-conversion
Now, Liberty plans to break out mobile traffic from all their campaigns and is pursuing a full-fledged mobile landing page strategy.  Mobile represents both an immediate and long-term opportunity for Liberty.

Full case study can be downloaded here.

Posted by Kevin Otsuka, Associate Product Marketing Manager, Mobile Ads