Finding inspiration for your school’s marketing plan can be a challenge. Canvassing strategies used by successful businesses is enlightening. As we highlighted in a previous blog post, schools can learn a lot from corporate marketing activities. But, in some distinct ways, education marketing is very different to business marketing.
In this blog post, we investigate three of the major differences and discuss how you should use them to tailor your school marketing plan.
There’s Always a Demand for Your Services
Businesses see demand as a volatile concept that has a huge impact. For many, customers use their product or service periodically, meaning annual demand is unsteady. For others with a niche product, their customer base can never grow to create an insatiable demand.
But, for schools, demand is not an issue, and it never will be. For as long as children are legally required to be educated, your school will have a demand. So, how does this affect your school marketing strategies?
Well, it means you don’t need to advertise the idea of going to school to your audience. Rather than marketing the concept of education itself, you are marketing your school. This creates a competitive market, with schools vying to become the first choice in their area.
It is crucial that your school marketing plan emphasises the things that make your school different. This differs for each school, but try to focus on the unique features of your school.
If you are looking for school marketing ideas, we would love to help you, so contact Eduprise today.
You Can’t Compete on Price Point
Undercutting the competition is a business strategy used by many small companies as a route into the market. The aim is to attract people with low prices, establish a customer base, and use the capital gained to progress. Because state schools do not command fees, there is no basis for them to compete on price.
When it comes to marketing your school, you must highlight the quality of your offering. This is the basis for all education marketing and the only way to compete with other schools. That isn’t to say that there is a limited number of areas on which to focus. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Consider highlighting your school’s:
- Teaching Staff
- Extracurricular Provision
- Wraparound Care Offering
- Planned Visits, Trips, and Events
- Ofsted Rating and Report
- Sports Provision
With price not being an option, these topics are some of the areas your school can choose to compete on. By covering these topics, you can maintain variety in your school marketing without taking the focus off the quality of your offering.
Putting together a school marketing plan that demonstrates the quality of your provision takes time. If you want a head start, get in touch with Eduprise now, and we’ll send you a free school marketing plan template.
You’re Entering into a Long-term Relationship
The age of brand loyalty has passed. In 2016, Forbes reported the death of brand loyalty, citing a cultural shift as the prime suspect. Businesses are beginning to embrace the nature of impulsive transactions with one-off customers. While it may prove successful for businesses, this approach is not an option for schools.
Assuming a child joins your school in reception or year 7, they are likely to remain at the school for at least five years. For parents, this makes choosing a school a long-term investment. For your school’s marketing plan, it means making a great impression.
The last thing busy parents need is to have issues with their child’s school. That’s why they place such value on a school they can trust. One which is open to feedback; one which maintains high standards; one which communicates well.
Building up trust with parents should be one of your key school marketing strategies. Marketing your school as being a strong communicator helps to build that trust. Demonstrating through your school marketing how you include parents in their child’s learning is also valuable.
Knowing what parents want from your school will enhance the success of your school’s marketing. A great way to do this is to profile them. By thinking about their motivations, frustrations, and personalities, you can tailor your marketing.
Eduprise has created customer profiles for organisations in various sectors, including education. If you would like us to profile the parents in your area, contact us today.
Take Notes but Make Changes
Marketing has been a cornerstone of business for many years. Some have perfected the art, and learning from them can allow you to create a successful school marketing plan. But there are differences — more than just the three mentioned here. When you are developing your school marketing strategy and looking for examples, be sure to keep these differences in mind.
Education marketing is complex, and finding the right balance isn’t always easy. The Eduprise team have worked with many schools on their marketing plans. We get to know their audiences before devising successful strategies. If you want our experts to give your school’s marketing a boost, we’d love to help, so contact us now.