A True 4HWW Case Study: Part 9 – Scholarship

Hey guys and gals! 

On the last update, I was getting ready to do some good ole outreach. I did run the campaign and it's been somewhat successful but not at all as good as I think it was going to be. Probably my list of prospects wasn't very good. 

This week, I created an scholarship and sent out emails to 700 universities in the UK, Canada and US to see if I can get some .edu links.

There's been a lot of debate about scholarship links not being good anymore and etc, but I'll take my chances

Let's get to this.

Week 8 Summary

    • Scholarship outreach - Check

Time input and Expenses for the week

Not a lot of work got done during this week in all honesty. I've been travelling lately and managed to get just enough time to sit and send emails to unis. So less than 2hours! And because i'm still on a time shortage, i'll be keeping this update short and sweet.

Scholarship: Elements needed

Alright so let's see real quick what is needed to conduct an scholarship outreach campaign to get .edu links

You'll need a mass emailing tool.  You know from previous updates that GMass is my choice.

Then a dedicated email address like scholarship@mynichesite.com or you can do with name@mynichesite.com if you don't want to pay for another GSuite account.

You need to create a dedicated page like yournichesite.com/scholarship and add there all the details about it. (We'll get to this in a minute)

You need a list of universities and their emails (whether they publically accept scholarships or not doesn't matter, they may list them somewhere else)

You need an email template and an image banner to include on the emails as an attachment and that's all.

Put all things together, send emails, get links.

Setting your scholarship the right way

Right so the most obvious thing is that it must look professional. Impeccable grammar (get someone native to edit it if necessary) and well structured so that whenever anyone reads it, it's clear what the requirements, deadline, topics etc etc are.

My advice would be do an essay-submission, merit-based scholarship and pick a topic that's quite complex inside your industry.  

Pick some basic kindergarten stuff and you'll get 70,000 applications that you're not going to read. 

Make it elegible only for college students, no postgraduates (same reasons).

Place a far-off deadline so you have room to send 2nd rounds of emails to some unis and that you don't have to fork the prize too soon.

Ideally, you want to get the links and then the juice that comes with them (and therefore, some ranking improvement and comissions) BEFORE it's time to give the money to the winner. 

Place a disclaimer saying that the scholarship will be declared void if there is no submission with enough quality or originality.

Place a link to your most valuable piece of money content on top of the page and use an exact match anchor text (so you can funnel whatever juice the page gets)

On the essay requirements, do it like the guys from TheHoth and ask candidates to publish the essay online, include 3 links to authoritative sources and also a link to your homepage. One extra link per application sounds good!

Reaching out

Load your spreadsheet with contact info into google drive, hook it up with GMass and you'll be ready to send emails. You'll need a good template that doesn't look like some s**t used for years by every marketer under the sun. Here's what I sent

Dear [Name]

I'm reaching out to you regarding our new scholarship programme.

I believe it would be of great interest for [University name] students. 

Students of [University name] that are currently enrolled in any major in [relevant field] can apply by submitting an essay on the topic of [chosen topic] to scholarship@mynichesite.com before [Deadline]

You can read the full details of this scholarship here (insert link on this line)

The award for the first edition of this programme will be of [$xxxx], which I hope will help cover part of the tuition costs for the student who submits the best essay on [topic of scholarship].  

I had the inmmense luck to recieve two scholarships during my academic years and it is the main reason I want to give back in this way.

I would be very happy if you share the contents of this email with your students.

If you have any questions, just ask away and I'll be happy to give you as much details as you need.

Have a great day!

[Name]

Founder,
mynichesite.com

Set up an automated follow-up email 5 days after the original is sent with a simple "Hi, just making sure you saw this opportunity for your students. Thanks" and set up "open" notifications on GMass too so you can manually follow-up with opens but no answers.

Try and keep record of which universities say yes/no/maybe/piss off on your spreadsheet for future uses

Next Steps

In the following weeks i'll be doing some analisys of the backlink profile of the main keywords I try to rank for and create a map of sorts to know exactly what links I should be building and how, before jumping into more active link building. I'll probably keep researching for KGR keywords and order another content pack from HPD before the end of the year. 

So the next update may take a few weeks, mostly because I don't think I'll have anything worth sharing, just more of the same. 

Once I've done those backlink analysis, built some links and seen some movements, I'll do the next update and I'll let you guys know how it's been working!

But as always, I'll be down in the comments to answer all of your questions 😀

Have a good one!

Daniel Stark