Data is king, brand is queen and content is everything in between. What we learned at Educate Plus Queensland Chapter Conference
Last week some of the team from Look Education attended the biennial Queensland Educate Plus Conference – an independent industry event focused on delivering a good mix of education marketing seminars, networking and individual professional development.
Whilst there was something for everyone in admissions, marketing, alumni and fundraising, were also some overarching lessons for all to learn and apply:
Data is king
Without accurate and detailed information on your current enrolments (and their families), alumni, prospects and staff, AND your current marketing investment tracking, you really are just stabbing in the dark on your future school marketing strategies and implementation.
- We see a lot of schools who are not using research and data to inform their decision-making processes.
- Some schools have some systems in place but are not investing the time to fully understand what information they do have and what it is telling them, and acknowledge what they don’t have.
- For many it’s time to look at investing in a good CRM and spending more time on understanding where your prospects are likely to be and how to target them more effectively. This is the focus many medium-large corporate businesses have had for at least 10 years – hence they growth of business analysts.
- It’s also time to review your marketing channels and their ROI. To this end, digital marketing strategies can provide solid tracking evidence. What is your enrolment pipeline information telling you?
Brand strategy is queen
The main way to differentiate yourself against your competitor schools is through a carefully crafted brand strategy plan.
- However, in order to develop an effective brand strategy you need to first understand qualitative information on your community and why your school is different in their eyes. This is an area where schools can elevate and differentiate themselves in the market place.
- Deliver your brand strategy through an impactful website – it’s the first place people look!
Content marketing is your way of ‘educating’ your audience
It’s all about communicating stories about your brand and your ‘why’.
Key ways you can do this are through:
- Magazine style brochures
- Your own visuals – photography/video or ‘borrowed’ photography/video
- Social media
- Using Influencers to enhance and extend your content.
Our other top 5 take-away tips from the conference for all school marketers were all around building SEO, using Facebook effectively and the importance of Google and Facebook reviews.
Don’t invest in school directories – earn your own spot on Google with good SEO tactics and setting up your Google basics (Google business page) so you will be found.
- You need a Facebook Pixel installed on your website before you start advertising on Facebook – that way everything can be tracked.
- Target your audiences on Facebook through custom audience profiles and trial your advertising with your own community first so they like and share first.
- Reviews are important on Google and Facebook – ask for them and cultivate them.
- Ensure all your photographs and videos when uploaded to your website or social media are properly named and tagged so they can build SEO for your school.
If you or your school needs help with:
- Market research
- Brand strategies
- Digital marketing
- Content creation
Then give us a call. We’d love to help you transform your school for 2020.