on in Education PR
You want to let teachers and school leaders know about your great new product, service or event so you’ve written a peach of an email and sent it on its way. But not only do you get scant response, most teachers don’t even open the email at all.
Why is that?
Teachers are just too busy.
They’re not just busy, they are insanely busy.
Even before the Covid-19 pandemic, teachers were working 9 million extra hours without pay every week according to the TUC.
On a typical day, a teacher will move from classroom to meeting to classroom, answering questions in the corridor as they go. There’s barely time for a cup of coffee. Even if they do get round to seeing your email, there will be a more urgent one from a worried parent or head of year that has to be answered first. By then it’s too late for your carefully crafted message to hit the mark.
And it doesn’t stop there.
Once a teacher gets home and the laptop’s back on, there’s barely a moment to skim through the inbox because it’s time to tackle that pile of essays or look through the agenda for tomorrow’s departmental meeting.
It’s hardly surprising teachers don’t get round to reading marketing emails.
Teachers look for advice from a trusted source
When a teacher eventually does find some quiet time to research resources for teaching maths to intervention groups, your email may not be what comes to mind.
Rather than clicking on your link and booking an online demo, a teacher might prefer to talk to other teachers at similar schools to see what they are using. A quick tweet or a visit to a Facebook group will give them the answer they’re looking for in seconds.
And it will be an answer they will trust.
A busy teacher wants quick and reliable recommendations before they make a buying decision, so they will turn to places where they can find expert advice. Articles in teaching magazines, posts on an education association forum or a product review in a blog or podcast.
…and what you can do about it
The good news is that there are ways to tell teachers about your product or service – and to encourage them to buy it – without wasting time and effort on emails that never get read.
You can reach those busy teachers and become one of the sources that they trust.
First, you need to define your business objectives. Be as specific as possible about what you want to achieve. If you are looking to change the opinions of teachers who have never considered your product, you need to define how many people you should aim to reach with your message to shift those opinions.
Think carefully about how your prospective customer looks for information and what kind of content they consume. If the teacher you’re targeting reads the TES, listens to the EdTech podcast and is active on LinkedIn, take a look at these channels yourself to see what your audience’s trusted sources are.
Speak to your target customers, do some research and find out what challenges they need to solve. Do they want to save time recording pupils’ marks, or inspire reluctant writers to tell stories? Then think about how your product or service will help a teacher solve these problems.
Use your knowledge of your audiences to decide what sort of content will hit home. Carry out some keyword research and see what terms teachers are searching for that could be relevant to the solutions you’re offering. This will help you develop your messaging and show teachers your brand understands their challenges and can help solve them.
Reach out to teachers using a combination of channels. Increase your coverage on social feeds and influencer sites to demonstrate you’re a source that teachers can trust. Write using the language teachers use in your blogs, and show teachers your creative lesson ideas in action by filming a series of short videos.
Keep track of your most successful channels. If you started with a campaign that focuses on social ads on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, but only Facebook is getting results, then you can shift your spend across to that channel to ensure you’re getting the best value from your outlay.
The days of reaching teachers by email alone are long gone.
But you can engage even the busiest teacher when they trust your brand to help them. And that’s when you’ll find teachers actively seeking you out for solutions.
To find out more about getting teachers to notice your brand, read our white paper, Influence Schools.
Let’s face it. Selling to schools is tough. And in the current climate, it’s tougher than ever. Teachers and school leaders are under too much pressure to open your emails or hear your marketing messages. So how can you overcome this and get your brand or message to the people in school that matter? This white paper will tell you all you need to know.