Higher Education Workers Community

Kochubey Center at HSE University is a division of additional professional education at the Higher School of Economics, a qualification improvement center for higher education workers. The center conducts offline educational seminars, with the cost of a seminar starting from 27,000 rubles​.
Goals on VK and Facebook
To increase the number of followers – a target audience potentially interested in the seminars, including teachers, rectors, educational program managers, deans, and other university workers.
Before (December 2018):
followers on VK
subscribers to VK newsletters
followers on Facebook
page likes on Facebook
After (December 2019):
followers on VK
subscribers to VK newsletters
followers on Facebook
page likes on Facebook
What Was Done?
— altering the template for posts
— transforming longreads into articles
— adding widgets and products section
— uploading photos from seminars and reviews
— publishing articles and news useful for the target audience about higher education

When drawing up the content plan, the focus was on topics that refer to future seminars. For example, for the seminar “Modern approaches to graduate employment” we raised the employment topic.
Hackathons: do they help graduates get hired?
latform for employers and students
8 reasons why graduates can't find jobs
The following posts were prepared for the seminar “University Personnel Policy: Managing Employees’ Career Trajectories”:
7 ways to evaluate a job applicant’s soft skills
Sample student feedback form at the end of the course
Prospects for the internationalization of higher education
According to the reach and ER indicators, the most popular and exciting topic for this audience is digitalization in education. Consistently good engagement was shown by posts on the topic of online lectures, creating presentations, new technologies in universities, creating online courses, and the university of the future.
Free Promotion
During the first three months, there was no advertising budget, so we looked for groups with a similar target audience and negotiated free reposts of posts from the Kochubey Center group. Over three months, numerous free posts were published:
free posts in 40 Facebook groups
free posts in 25 VK groups
Some groups with a similar target audience where free posts were published:

News of education
Academic office
University Development
Pedagogical management
ANO "Digital Education"
Journal "Educational Issues"
Events about higher education
Information and educational environment
Laboratory of Additional Education
National Open Education Platform
Modern digital educational environment in the Russian Federation
Journal "University Management: Practice and Analysis"
Federal Institute for Educational Development RANEPA under the President of the Russian Federation
Results after three months
followers on VK
subscribers to VK newsletters
followers on Facebook
Targeted Advertising
followers on VK
subscribers to VK newsletters
followers on Facebook
Gained additional followers on VKontakte and Facebook. Four months into operation, in April 2019, an advertising budget was introduced: 5000 rubles per month for targeted advertising on VKontakte and Facebook. Over nine months, 30,000 rubles were spent on advertising on each platform. During the summer months, there was no advertising as the Kochubey Center was on vacation, so there were six advertising months in total.
The cost of acquiring a new subscriber was 27 rubles on VK and 19 rubles on Facebook. Considering the narrow segment of higher education workers, the necessary "university modesty" in creating ads, and the seminar cost of 20-35 thousand rubles, this subscriber price was very acceptable for the client.
Detailed Segments for VK Advertising
I will dwell in more detail on the audiences of advertisements on VK. 8 segments were tested, of which 5 showed good results.
1. University employees
First, I took 10 large universities in Russia and for each university, I created an advertisement with the name of the university written on the picture. The best result was shown by a picture of a serious minister looking at the text. The advertisement was shown to those who indicated the university in the “Place of work” column. The cost per click was from 4,3 rubles and 7 rubles on average.
At later stages, using the Target Hunter parser, I collected university communities throughout Russia, and then VK users who indicated their place of work as these university groups (that is, university employees). The result was about 10,000 users.
Later, I expanded this audience through “Similar Audiences” on VK to 50 thousand users, the result was unsatisfactory - the cost per click turned out to be above 40 rubles. The average cost per click for this segment was 10 rubles.
2. Interests: higher education
This segment did not include university groups, since they were mainly followed by students and their parents, as well as graduates. At the testing stage, the filter for age 35+ still did not give an acceptable result. Therefore, I chose such groups as “Education Today”, “National Platform of Open Education”, “Modern Digital Educational Environment”, “Ministry of Education”, “Vuzpromexpo” and others.
Later I added groups of Ministries and Departments of Education and Science of Russian regions and republics, and the cost per click increased to 18.4 rubles (anything less than 20 rubles per click was acceptable).
3. Interests: science (audience of scientists)
Groups associated with academic science have shown good results. Here I selected not scientific communities, but professional groups: “Scientific Conferences”, “Russian Union of Young Scientists”, “Russian Science Foundation”, “Young Scientists”, “Battles of Scientists”, “Academic Book” and others. The average cost per click is 8.7 rubles.
4. Look alike
After the community had 1000 members, I used VKontakte’s “Similar Audiences” and gathered an audience similar to the members of the Kochubey Center community. The cost per click is less than 8 rubles.
5. Technologies in Education
Another small but successful segment is members of communities about technology in education (EdTech), for example, the “EDCRUNCH | Center for Modern Education". I made separate announcements for this segment; the one that worked best was the one where the online course registration process takes place. The cost per click was less than 8 rubles.
Segments that performed poorly:
— Residents of Pushkin and St. Petersburg (made promotional publications with information about the seminar)
— Graduate students. Groups on the topic of postgraduate study: “Graduate students in the scientific network SciPeople”, “Community of graduate students, candidates and doctors of science”, and “We are graduate students!” did not show good results.
— Interests: training. The few communities of specialists in the field of learning and educational methodologies have not performed well. This is probably due to the fact that most of these specialists work in the field of preschool and school education, and this is a different target audience.
For all advertising segments, the conversion from transitions to joining was high - out of 10 transitions, 4-8 people joined the group. It is important for the client that it is employees of the higher education sector who enter, and not school teachers and pedagogues, and this task has been completed.
Client Review

«We have been cooperating with Diana for several years, and I can say that I am very satisfied. Diana always fulfills her tasks clearly and on time, although we have a specific information product and a specific target audience, which is difficult to find on social networks.

Most of all, I am satisfied with its autonomy: the quality of the work performed and the breadth of the SMM tools used by Diana allow me to set the technical task and "forget" about it, controlling only the flow of incoming leads to the event. Also, openness to dialogue and the adequacy of the response to, at times, abrupt changes in the planned work schedule are the property of this specialist.

I can recommend Diana for involvement in online projects that require SMM promotion on any scale».


Head of the Department for Development and Promotion education center for higher education workers

Diana Burt
Discuss a project, sign up for a consultation, ask a question, or suggest an idea:
Made on