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Case Study: Optimized D2C Platform

University of Wisconsin-Whitewater

Driving High-Quality Leads Through an Integrated Marketing Engine

Case Studies / University of Wisconsin-Whitewater


Over 20 years ago, UW-Whitewater launched one of the first fully online Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs in the nation, a program that is now ranked #25 in the US and #1 in Wisconsin (among single-institution programs). On the heels of this success — and at a time when educators and students are assessing the benefits of distance learning — the University of Whitewater recently launched UW-Whitewater Online, an arm of the university providing remote students the opportunity to advance their education through fully digital programs.

After a rigorous interview process with three other agencies, Shine was tasked with creating a "do-everything" campaign seeking to elevate perceptions, attract applicants and drive enrollment. The campaign is part of a broader vision for the university as it ultimately seeks to take most of the university academic portfolio online

Simply put, our campaign was predicated on empowerment.


Our work began with a deep-dive discovery across university stakeholders and quantitative research with both prospective and current students — leading to recommendations on technology platform integration, marketing investment approach, media planning/buying and a refined brand position.

Simply put, our campaign was predicated on empowerment — inspiring prospective students with a visceral, engaging understanding of the very real, very proven benefits of breaking through their career plateaus with UW-Whitewater, a proven market leader with two decades of online education experience. The new brand was brought to life at every contact point with prospective students — with ongoing optimization at every point of the consumer journey.

Out of the gate the campaign achieved immediate success with the first recruitment cohort resulting in school record applications and enrollments for that term.

“Shine has helped us radically upgrade every aspect of how we market our online degree programs — including initial planning, research and target definition, technical system integration, breakthrough creative and an integrated marketing investment and optimization plan. They have been a true partner from start to finish. I highly recommend them for anyone looking to elevate their outreach to prospective buyers.”

— John Chenoweth, Dean of the College of Business and Economics

01 / Website

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02 / Video
03 / Radio Advertising

Radio Ad 1 - Brilliant, Online

Radio Ad 3 - Homework, Online

04 / Out-of-Home Advertising
05 / Digital Advertising
06 / Paid Social