Merchiston Castle School

Strengthening reputation through digital marketing and PR

The challenge:

As one of Scotland’s only independent all-boys boarding and day schools, Merchiston Castle School is in a unique position in the education sector.

However, following the aftermath of the pandemic, coupled with a gradual trend away from single-sex education, and a new admissions/marketing team, Merchiston sought out a digital marketing agency to collaboratively promote the advantages of all-boys education and the boarding school offering to local and international families.

Merchiston sought a more personal, content-rich approach as opposed to relying simply on SEO and PPC which they felt didn’t reflect the school’s personal and tailored approach to admissions and education.

Represent was appointed to position the school as a desirable education option for boys and build Merchiston’s reputation as a top boarding school for students in the UK and further afield. 

The solution:

Represent carefully devised and executed an integrated comms plan, encompassing social media, digital marketing, PR, SEO content and paid advertising to establish Merchiston’s presence in Scotland’s educational landscape and generate enquiries through the website.

Tactics used:

  • Carried out extensive keyword research to create a keyword strategy that would inform digital content
  • Established a monthly content calendar speaking to stakeholder needs, questions and concerns
  • Produced optimised blog content to improve search engine ranking and increase online visibility
  • Researched relevant titles covering the education sector, national press and local media
  • Pitched targeted press with thought leadership and opinion pieces
  • Distributed press releases on school news, teacher appointments and Forest school opening
  • Developed a comprehensive social media strategy to promote Merchiston’s USPs and convey a strong sense of school community 
  • Commissioned creative photography and videography to promote Merchiston’s open-day events
  • Planned and implemented creative campaigns to drive sign-ups to open days and events.
  • Worked closely with the in-house marketing team to obtain excellent visual and written content

The impact (10-month period):

  • 33 pieces of coverage secured in top-tier publications such as The Times, The Telegraph and The Scotsman 
  • 54% increase in YoY social media traffic
  • 21% increase in YoY organic website traffic
  • 220 Prospectus requests, a 60% increase compared with the same period the previous year.
  • 162 Admissions enquiries submitted through the website
  • Represent appointed to support the launch of the new Forest School at Merchiston.

To find out how Represent can elevate your business’ profile and drive new leads, get in touch with us here.

Represent has played an instrumental role in elevating Merchiston’s profile and communicating the school’s values to the wider community. The team has gone above and beyond to deliver outstanding results, exhibiting strategic thinking, creativity and professionalism throughout our partnership. Consequently, Merchiston has witnessed an uplift in enrolment applications, increased community engagement and an overall boost to our brand awareness. Our collaborative relationship with Represent means they genuinely feel like an extension of the Merchiston marketing team.

Gemma Gray, Comms Consultant, Merchiston Castle School
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