A couple of years ago Leweston School in Dorset, undertook a major strategic review to support the school’s aim to provide local, competitively priced, high quality education. This included a potential move from single-sex to a co-educational provision. The school also wanted to identify how and where they could target their marketing effort to support planned growth and to understand their customers better.
We proposed using our Market and Catchment Intelligence analysis. Our unique platform is designed to identify local families who share a school’s values and would likely use an independent school. We were able to tell Leweston School WHERE to find the right families, HOW to reach them and WHAT was important to them. Giving them the market insights they needed to recruit the right families and inform their strategic plans.
Our complete Demand & Supply analysis detailed:
The location and size of their market
Their market share, along with that of their competitors
Projected changes in population/ planned construction
High achieving primary schools
A map of Catholic Baptisms by church to target catholic pupils
A map of KS2 data to identify feeder schools to target
Spheres of influence of Grammar Schools
The potential of a co-educational/ diamond model
We were able to highlight the school’s highest areas of potential for pupil recruitment, giving them insight into the types of families using their school, the lifestyles they live and what’s important to them in an independent school.
By utilising the information from the MACI, Leweston School were able to consider the market potential of both single-sex and coeducational offerings as well as gain a deep understanding of their current performance within a stated catchment area. The data supported the school’s decision to reposition with a co-educational diamond model and Leweston welcomed the first boys into the Senior School in September 2018 with boys’ boarding opening in September 2019.
The Marketing team at the school continue to the use the data to monitor performance, comparing enquiries against identified ‘hot spots’. It has also informed the school’s media schedule, two direct mail campaigns, driven outreach activities and changes to bus routes.
We asked MTM to conduct a postcode analysis in order for us to understand our regional marketplace better. This included an analysis of our current, former and prospective parents. MTM were able to analyse data from our different databases and overlay this with information gained from their own research into the independent sector and their own mosaic consumer database. Our data was then analysed according to the location of our competitor schools to understand how well we were penetrating our market. Whilst we had a ‘gut feel’ as to what to expect, the results confirmed our thoughts and gave us the detailed market research we needed to convince senior management and governors to invest in launching several targeted marketing campaigns. We were able to use direct mail and outdoor advertising (using the postcodes provided) to specifically target markets where we had potential to penetrate further and so far, the results are encouraging.