The University of Manchester

Driving brand awareness and long-term engagement with Chinese academics and researchers

The University of Manchester’s Corporate Campaigns Team wanted to engage effectively with Chinese academics and researchers to raise awareness of their research among these key international audiences.

The Emerging Comms team created solid targeting, content and media strategies to ensure campaign success.

The Challenge

The University of Manchester needed clear messaging to engage effectively with Chinese researchers and academics, to promote their pioneering research and drive sign-ups to their international newsletter.

Our Strategy

To ensure campaign success, we set out to: 

  • Develop solid targeted content and media strategies,  and create carefully curated content to stand out from the crowd and effectively communicate with the target audience.  
  • Use complex metrics to enable precision targeting to reach the right audience via the right channels. 
  • Get the best possible ROI by deploying an agile media strategy. 

What We Delivered

  • Conducted a deep analysis of the target audience to understand their behaviour and preferred means of communication. 
  • Launched the campaign within two weeks, from account set-up and asset creation to going live. 
  • Produced and curated bespoke China campaign assets from start to finish to appeal to Chinese academics and researchers. 
  • Maximised engagement using video ads on Toutiao/Douyin and banner ads on WeChat to meet users’ preferences on different platforms. 
  • Executed niche geographic targeting and 100+ interest and behaviour labels with high relevance.
  • Conducted daily monitoring and optimisation based on real-time performance throughout the campaign live period. 

Our results


impressions (44% over KPI) 


sign-ups (31% over KPI) 

Ranked top 10%

for video performance in the education sector



Exceeded some ambitious KPIs

The team at Emerging Comms helped to deliver a really effective campaign targeted at one of our key international audience groups. The account management and communication from the team was great, their work met the brief, and we felt well supported from the initial briefing and all the way through the recommendation stages, signoffs and reporting during and after the campaign. They turned things around within a tight timeframe very calmly and efficiently, and their expertise and knowledge of the region contributed to the fantastic results the campaign delivered which exceeded some ambitious KPIs. 

Vicky Taylor-Plane

Corporate Campaigns Manager, The University of Manchester