Sewickley Academy Increases Student Enrollment Using Inbound Marketing

Sewickley Academy wasn't attracting the right applicants with outbound marketing tactics. They were challenged by a failing economy, and didn't know how to optimize their website to attract prospective students.


increase in new student enrollment from last year


increase in applications (a four-year-high)


increase in web traffic

Sewickley Academy Team

About Sewickley Academy

Sewickley Academy is Pittsburgh's oldest co-educational, college preparatory, independent day school.


Sewickley Academy is Pittsburgh's oldest co-educational, college preparatory, independent day school. Prior to using HubSpot, Sewickley was challenged with a bad economy and declining numbers of inquiries, applications and visits -- all key drivers of admissions. They had experimented enough with expensive marketing tactics like Billboards without results. Director of Admission & Financial Aid Brendan Schneider knew he had to re-envision their marketing, “We had realized that it was a result of poor search engine optimization and weak conversion rates of the visitors we attracted.”

How HubSpot helped

It all began with Schneider reading the “Inbound Marketing” book written by HubSpot founders, Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah. That’s when he realized the potential of inbound marketing. HubSpot tools have helped Sewickley Academy tremendously with SEO, conversions, and analysis.

Schneider said “When you searched for Pittsburgh Private Schools, Sewickley wasn’t showing up on the first page, it wasn’t even on the second page. We knew that was the problem.” They used the HubSpot keyword tool to first optimize their own website around keywords like “Pittsburgh” and “Private school.”

After shifting all their advertising spend on online advertising like google ads and Facebook ads, it was crucial for Sewickley Academy to send the traffic to a landing page. HubSpot landing pages have helped them build simple yet elegant landing pages that help them collect information of prospective leads (students).

Using the information collected from the landing pages, Sewickley Academy qualifies leads as either “hot” or “cold.” If the lead is hot, they personally reach out to them. If the lead is cold, they use HubSpot Workflows for lead nurturing. Using Smart Lists, they create three separate lists for lower school, middle school and senior school leads to enable them to segment their emails. “Before the leads receive an informational packet, they have informational videos in their inbox.” said Schneider. Sending emails from the Director of Sewickley Academy or blog posts about a typical school day helps them stay on top of the lead’s mind. This in turn drives traffic to their blog which is hosted on the HubSpot platform.

Finally, the sources and the HubSpot dashboard helps them to quickly glance over the important metrics. “We are a small team and need to use our time efficiently. We are more than happy to save time by paying for HubSpot.” added Schneider.

What would you say to others considering HubSpot?

“Hubspot has helped me to analyze our efforts in a way that we were previously unable to do. The integration of the Hubspot tools in one dashboard and cohesive unit has really helped us see the forest through the trees in terms of our overall inbound marketing efforts.”

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