How we achieved a 36% enrolment rate for Australian National University’s School of Cybernetics

In an era where the frontiers of technology are continuously shifting, 
Australian National University’s School of Cybernetics faces the daunting task of staying ahead of the curve while ensuring that the next generation of tech leaders are adequately prepared. This is where Student Garden stepped in.

We orchestrated an advertising campaign aimed at recruiting students for ANU’s 2024 Master of Applied Cybernetics intake. This was a multi-faceted strategy with a threefold objective.

The specific challenge at hand was a dearth of applications for this specialised program and a niche target audience. By marrying data-driven strategies with creative storytelling, we weren’t just filling seats; we were paving the way for the cybernetic leaders of tomorrow while collecting actionable insights to continuously refine 
our approach.

  • 4,178
  • landing page views
  • 8.35%
  • conversion rate
  • 36%
  • of total applications attributed to our campaign


The Team

Chamalee Karunanayake | Account Director

Sasa Atienza | Account Manager

Santiago Garcia | Campaign Manager

Nicholas Failla | Copywriter

Ryan Benniston | Senior Designer

Advertising a niche course to a niche audience

Our approach to this campaign was three-stepped.

First, we aimed to establish a consistent pipeline of prospects, enabling ANU to re-engage with potential students through targeted email campaigns. We know that engaging with and capitalising on your existing database is a great (and cost-effective) way of generating leads, after all.

Second, the campaign was primed to serve as a testing ground to gather valuable insights for ANU. This helps us to refine lead quality and offer strategic guidance for other marketing channels based on the performance of our creative assets — allowing ANU to create an ecosystem of information from all marketing fronts.

Finally, we set out to highlight the unique selling propositions of the Master of Applied Cybernetics, amplifying its appeal to a new pool of potential students. While the course is niche, we know the quality of education is premium, so it’s all about reaching the right audience at the right time.

Optimising the ecosystem

Navigating the digital landscape to find the perfect students for ANU’s Master of Applied Cybernetics program was all about targeting.

We leveraged an array of platforms to achieve the best targeting strategy. Google acted as our initial handshake, introducing us to the curious minds searching for educational opportunities. LinkedIn and Twitter helped extend our reach to professionals and academics interested in cybernetics.

Then, we used Meta ads to retarget these individuals, nurturing their interest to turn curiosity into action.

This multi-channel approach led to a whopping 4,178 visits to the website and generated 349 leads — all at a cost-per-lead of just $54.45.

Notably, Meta emerged as our acquisition MVP, delivering the most leads at the best price.

Optimisation was key to fine-tuning our campaign for maximum impact.

With the application deadline looming, we turned up the heat by revising our ad copies and visuals to emphasise urgency.

Scholarship opportunities were also spotlighted to sweeten the deal and draw even more leads. We introduced Google ad assets (formerly known as extensions) to give these existing search engagements a boost and make every click count.

The result? A targeted, effective, and agile campaign that didn’t just meet but exceeded expectations. By understanding each platform’s strengths and potential, we were able to move swiftly and strategically.

“Having been part of the campaign team before, this campaign is a perfect example of how our cross-channel strategy works wonders for our clients. By building insights using one platform, we were able to showcase the course on multiple platforms and get the best quality leads.”

— Sasa Atienza

Account Manager

"We are thrilled with our ongoing partnership with Student Garden on our student recruitment campaigns. The team spent the time to genuinely understand our unique proposition and campaign objectives — the results speak for themselves. To work with an agency that encompasses all aspects of paid campaign management from creative design, tactical strategies and clever copy writing is a joy."

— Sherice Kazzi
Engagement and Impact Lead, ANU School of Cybernetics

Results to write home about


visits to the website 
(from our campaign alone)


total leads generated


of total applications attributed to our campaign



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