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Liverpool John Moores University

Promoting brand awareness through TikTok

With transformation and innovation key values of Liverpool John Moores, the University likes to think creatively about new ways to do things. So, when working closely with the Marketing team in preparing for the 2020 Clearing Campaign, a key strand of Penna’s strategy was based around these themes. We actively sought out new ways to promote the brand itself, alongside the opportunities on offer at the University.


Having agreed to trial activity across new as well as proven channels, we quickly identified TikTok as a platform of interest, recognising that it had multiplied its audience exponentially in a matter of months and with a particular emphasis on 17-21 year olds.

With the potential to reach a wide audience and since it was to be part of an integrated campaign including intent-led channels such as Google, we chose to deploy TikTok purely for brand awareness advertising and to highlight the University’s creative side. There would be no specific call-to-action for viewers.

The University Marketing team created an authentic 30-second video showcasing current students and the unique experiences each had enjoyed whilst studying at Liverpool John Moores. The aim was both to increase awareness in the build up to A-level results day and then to maintain a strong brand presence throughout August.


As this channel was new to both Liverpool John Moores and Penna, we initially agreed a budget of just £1,000 for the first phase of TikTok activity. This would allow us to serve the video widely, whilst gaining further insight into audience behaviours and expenditure required to deliver return on investment (ROI) for our client.

By the end of August, the video had served 882,857 impressions resulting in 9,666 clicks to the University’s website – a higher than anticipated click-through-rate of 1.09% clearly demonstrating that this audience was really engaging with the Liverpool John Moores’ brand.

What’s more, despite this being a generic brand-building campaign without a direct call-to-action, TikTok generated specific acquisitions, with five viewers registering their interest in courses through Clearing.

With cost-per-impression comparatively low, TikTok has proven to be a very cost-effective route for the University to reach a vast audience. As a result, investment in this channel has been increased; we’re excited to see how the campaign progresses and what additional learnings we can take from it to apply in future campaigns for Liverpool John Moores University.