Creating Motivating Content

Finding the right message to stand out in a crowded marketplace

The US Census estimates that 35 million Americans between the ages of 25 and 65 have some college credits, but no 2- or 4-year degree. Just over one-half of that 35 million population are in the prime earning years of 25 to 44.[1] For this group of 18 million Americans, completing their college education could increase their average weekly income by more than 50%.[2]  

Strayer and Capella Universities knew their industry-leading online secondary education programs could help these consumers reach their life goals.  But with so many competitors saying similar messages to the same audience, what was the best way for Strayer and Capella to stand out?   And how could we target different audiences with the most motivating content?

We partnered with Strayer, their agencies Hill Holliday and Trilia, and the content development team at CNBC.  Together, we conducted an online quantitative attitude & benefits study with 1,200 adults who had some college credits but no degree.  We helped the team:

  1. Identify consumer segments based on people's commitment to continue their education
  2. Develop unique content - an ROI calculator - to help prospective students weigh the future wage benefits against the current cost of continuing their education
  3. Prioritize media platforms and formats to best reach target consumers


[1]US Census, American Community Survey, 2017, Table B15001

[2]US Bureau of Labor Statistics, Measuring the Value of Education,