Last week we attended a round table event with a number of school marketing executives on branding and marketing for schools. The discussion quickly focused on who, if any of them at the table, were still using print advertising and if they weren’t, what were they doing?

The demise of print advertising and School Directories

On the whole, the majority at the table confirmed that they had significantly cut their print budget if not removed it altogether. In addition, they also confirmed they’ve moved away from print directories. And rightly so.

If you still need to be convinced, take a look at these stats over the last year:

  • There are now 33 free to air TV channels in Australia, with 44% of people watching free to air TV, with 88% of people multi-tasking whilst they are doing so
  • 7.1 million Australians are using streaming (e.g. Netflix/Foxtel/Stan) with Netflix alone up 48% in subscriptions (that’s 1/3 of Australia streaming)
  • Channels 7/9/10 are investigating developing an App for users to view what they want, when they want
  • 2 of the top 10 biggest Apps in the world are music Apps
  • 2.9 million users per month use Spotify (and they’re not just teens or 20 somethings). Australia is leading the world as the fastest take up users of music and TV streaming
  • Magazines are closing e.g. Cleo, Cosmo and Famous becoming an online only publication. Some are still doing well – Women’s Weekly. News site Mammamia is booming.
  • The Courier Mail is down 9% on readership. Fairfax will soon stop printing weekday papers.
  • People in Brisbane on average are taking 4.6 car trips a day (with an average of 27 mins per trip – think radio/outdoor)
Source: Nielson

So what should schools be doing?

Our School Advertising Advice

Well the answer is actually quite straightforward and sequential:

  1. Confirm your marketing budget – and with some consideration your estimated media spend/budget.
  2. Develop your marketing calendar and priorities and determine when you want to promote your school e.g. brand campaigns, Open Day, enrolment cut-off etc.
  3. Determine your priority target audience and develop a brand profile around them e.g. Mums aged 25-45 with children aged 0-9 who live in these suburbs (postcodes)
  4. Set up a media schedule and media plan that promotes your activity, WHEN you want to do it and by WHAT channel. Weight it according to best value, reach and frequency against that target audience and focus on integration. Integration is capitalising on the lifestyle (audience profile) of your target audience.
  5. For example a good mix might be:
    a. Digital – SEO
    b. Digital – SEM – including remarketing with a strong mobile focus
    c. Social media content and paid strategy
    d. Digital marketing, with strong focus on social, out of home,
    e. Direct Marketing – especially to Alumni, community and more, and potentially in letterbox (not on the lawn).
    f. Out of home e.g. cinema, outdoor, radio
    g. Experiential – think outside the box where your target audience ‘lives, works and plays’.

School Advertising & Marketing Expertise

At Look Education, we work with clients on all of the above, helping them develop marketing plans, budgets and developing media schedules. Yes, we can negotiate with media suppliers and develop clever tailored opportunities for you. We also put together digital strategies that integrate SEO, Google adwords, remarketing, geo-targeting, display ads and social. The end result will be a marketing calendar and media schedule to guide you in your marketing at your school.

All of this is best coming after we have worked with you to define your unique educational offering and developed an engaging brand position for you to advertise.