EY Graduate Programme

EY Ireland is known for its award-winning graduate programmes. With graduate recruitment season approaching, EY tasked THINKHOUSE with increasing its social media and online presence in the graduate market, making EY stand out amongst the competition.

Having launched a new campaign: “Building a better working world. Starting with yours” in 2021, THINKHOUSE was tasked with providing a strategy and media plan to shape the 2022 campaign so it resonated with third-level students and recent graduates.

We began by unearthing an audience insight: new graduates want to start their careers with intention by joining an organisation that values and supports them, especially at the start of their careers. Our vision was to highlight EY as the employer that has the best graduate programme from which to launch a successful career.

We focused on the benefits to graduates like good work-life balance, competitive salaries and career development opportunities in a global organisation. We also highlighted EY’s values as an employer with D&I and sustainability in focus, actively engaged in improving the working world.

As a key part of the recruitment drive, THINKHOUSE was assigned the job of creating a stand at the GradIreland Fair, which invited attendees to engage with EY in a meaningful way and ultimately drive conversion. With one of the biggest footprints in the RDS, this was a key opportunity for conversion in the Grad Campaign so it was important to make an impact.

With sustainability in mind, we wanted to convey a welcoming atmosphere, giving potential applicants a glimpse into life at EY. With a live wall and much of the structure clad with recycled wood, a smoothie and a chill-out zone upstairs, we demonstrated the balance EY offers grads and what sets us apart from other companies. And, we made a carbon saving of 2742 kg on materials used when measured against the same volume of traditional stand materials—walking the walk when it comes to ‘building a better world’.

Our social and digital assets had a youthful, energetic aesthetic designed to cut through with grads. We used copy to focus on the needs of graduates, highlighting a programme endorsed by peers—their positive experiences and the benefits they availed of. The social strategy followed a tried and tested three-stage approach: awareness, context and conversion.

The awareness and context assets were live across Meta Platforms and Snapchat with Meta Platforms used for the conversion phase. This phase is all about driving people to the application process. These ads were optimised for engagements and received the highest engagement rate. The CTR was very strong at 0.77% and the CPC was below the industry average at only €0.97 for every link click.

We also ran a search campaign, split across eight separate campaign ad buys that encompassed the common search areas. The results offered a strong return on investment with an average CPC of €0.49.

As part of our original strategy development, it was clear that areas such as Diversity & Inclusion matter to our graduate audience when choosing a prospective employer. We bought against related terms as part of our search strategy, and a high amount of those searching for the terms did click through to the info offered by EY. On social, there were assets designed specifically around the D&I offering. The high engagement rate these garnered shows they resonated with our audience.

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