Skip to content

Propelling Higher Visibility Higher Ed

SC Johnson at Cornell University

The Challenge:

Like nearly every higher education organization, the SC Johnson College of Business at Cornell University — among the largest and most notable B schools in the world — has experienced reduced enrollment application growth rates during the past few years. Master’s degrees, in particular, have been harder hit than most other programs and much of the school’s offerings are in MBAs and executive education, featuring 11 different masters-level programs. Rebel’s challenge was two-fold: build awareness for the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business recruitment profile overall and its multiple master’s programs.

The Insight:

For the college, targeting was key, including specifically defining each persona and their enrollment journey; crafting messaging and content that met them at every stage in that journey; and the development of 11 distinctly different media plans within an overarching plan.

The Solution:

Our sweeping media plan included planning, buying, and placement; copywriting to improve messaging to their target audience; refreshing creative to compel prospective students to choose SC Johnson over the competition (for example, eschewing typical stock student imagery in favor of bespoke photos with school colors and apparel and optimizing the pairing of imagery and copy to better tell the story); additional creative and production work; in-depth analytics and reporting performance; and website and creative optimization services.

The Results:

The comprehensive media plan offered across-the-board results.


Increase in LinkedIn leads for the two-year MBA based on campaign and lead-gen optimizations


Decrease in Google ad cost per conversion


Increase in programmatic tech program-focused campaigns