New York Tech


New York Tech (NYIT), is a private research university with two main campuses in New York.   The New York Technology Computer Graphics Lab is an important environment in the history of Computer graphics and animation, as founders of Pixar and Lucasfilm began their research there.

New York Tech enrolls 9,930 full-time students across its campuses worldwide.  As of 2020, two Turing Award winners have been affiliated with the university.  New York Tech enrolls 9,930 full-time students across its campuses worldwide.

Awards & Mentions

  • Promolicious
  • Site of the day


  • Advertisement
  • Photography
  • Strategy


The Ask

The goal of the branding campaign was to change NYIT’s historical reputation as a trade school to a new perception as an up-and-coming institute for academia. The campaign focused on individual professors, students and alumni that were pushing the boundaries in their respective fields.

The Challenge

In 2015, NYIT launched a memorable yet controversial creative campaign that many deemed as offensive, mocking and irreverent to blue-collar workers. As a result, sentiment about the university suffered and application/enrollment numbers followed suit.  The 2014-2016 campaign produced a period of decline in enrollment for first-year students. Students who were accepted also weren’t choosing to actually attend NYIT.   Coupled with a new creative theme, a fresh approach in  the  platform selection and sequence of messaging was needed to overcome brand resistance.

Why it Worked

The Approach

We placed ads in contexts that made prospective students feel seen, and made them feel like NYIT was a way for them to be part of creating the future. This included influencer integration within YouTube, contextual placement in relevant trade publications, and list targeting of feeder schools based on past enrollment data.

The Solution

By segmenting prospective students into areas of interest, we were able to sequentially tell a story of the long term return realized from an NYIT degree.  In  doing so we kept the campaign top-of-mind among prospects across multiple touch-points, localized the message, and incited action through timely CTA’s.


The Recap

As a result of the campaign New York Tech received a significant increase in site traffic, qualified applicants, and a reduction in transfers.  Additionally the university was recognized within the Top 50 regional schools in the North.  From what began as a reputation rebrand and recruitment-driven strategy, NYIT has proved to be the institute to watch and learn from with the help from ESM.


Percent increase in overall business


Products sold during the ad campaign


Raving reviews written since the launch