CASE STUDY: EDUCATION

Maryland 529

Helping Maryland Families Save for College

Overview


As college tuition and higher education costs rise, it can seem like more of a challenge than ever to save for college. Maryland 529 provides flexible and affordable 529 plans to help Maryland families save for future education expenses and reduce dependence on student loans later. The Hatcher Group, in partnership with Reingold and Entercom, is supporting Maryland 529’s marketing efforts across the state.

PROJECT SCOPE

Crisis Communications
Design & Creative
Digital Strategies
Event Planning & Execution
Media Relations
Messaging & Branding
Strategic Communications
Video Production
Website UX/UI

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Our Strategy


We developed a comprehensive marketing plan that included detailed audience personas, key performance indicators for each campaign, and messages to reach audiences throughout Maryland. Tactics included paid advertising — digital, TV, radio, billboards — and earned media public relations, as well as social media and influencer engagement, which grew MD529’s brand across Facebook and Twitter. Our digital ads targeted Marylanders based on interests, location, and previous website browsing history across Facebook, YouTube, and Google Search.

As part of a broader refresh of creative and advertising, we created a suite of new and updated materials, including: an enrollment kit, annual report and summary, infographics, photography, brochures, animated gifs, motion graphics, and campaign-themed collateral. We also provided website support, such as creating new pages and simplifying existing pages to streamline the user experience.

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Our Impact


Hatcher continues to evolve our support for Maryland 529 based on analytics, optimization, and regular reporting to ensure the most efficient use of the client’s resources.

  • In the initial months executing the plan, applications for a key program significantly increased over the previous year, a key performance indicator of campaign success
  • In Q1 2020, our digital ads received 5.7 million impressions, resulting in more than 340,000 website visits
  • Our videos were viewed 158,222 times, with a cost per view of just $0.05
  • We secured media coverage in the Baltimore Sun, Baltimore Patch, and Severna Park Voice
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