Finishing working in a primary school on a Friday, knowing that I will be marketing to them come Monday is a scary challenge – but one I was more than ready to accept.
Getting marketing exposure at a school can seem an almost impossible task sometimes – teachers rarely have the time to check their emails or social media and when they do, they will not have the time to digest the 20+ marketing emails they have received that morning alone!
Marketing to education is completely different to marketing to other types of businesses. There is a completely different decision-making process, time limitations – not to mention term dates! Schools are a unique environment to market to however, there are a set of simple key rules I work towards when planning a social media campaign to schools.
There is never a good time of the year to get a school to give you some of their budget, but learning when their budget setting happens and getting your product in around those times can be paramount to your success!
Factoring in term time can also help dramatically. Trying to sell a school something in July, when they are about to close up for 6 weeks is almost never going to work to plan. Targeting them in September, when they have a full academic year to use your product = PERFECT!
Who do schools listen to most? Other schools! Once you have managed to get your product into the hands of one school, word will soon spread. Everyone likes a bit of healthy competition, especially schools (and teachers). Once you have managed to get the communication barriers down in one school, it will not be long until word has spread and their neighbouring schools want in on the action!
It isn’t just a way to keep in touch with your friends anymore! It is one of the most powerful networks a company can have when it comes to marketing. Almost all education environments will have a social media platform of some kind – use it to your best ability! Getting to know the #’s that schools are using will help you put your message into their direct sight. Do not be afraid to test new things on social media, their insights are there for a reason! Test, test and test again, and then go back and see what has and has not worked! Then watch your social media presence grow from what you have learnt!
Do not forget just how engaging print media can be. A school will get tons of flyers from companies delivered to them on a weekly basis, but it only takes 1 to catch their eye! Remember to make it eye-catching – when it comes to schools, a picture really does say 1000 words. How many teachers will have the time to sit down a read the story you have written on a A5 flyer? Probably none. How many will be able to see your image, digest it, and want to know further? Probably more than you can imagine!