Christmas 2018 and the responsibility of Christmas dinner weighed heavy on my shoulders. I had made the decision already. I was ditching Delia, saying goodbye to her fail-safe methods for the year and experimenting. What could go wrong? Well, quite a lot in hindsight.
The eighteenth-century chestnut stuffing alternative had been an unmitigated disaster. Don’t even mention turkey to me; the memories are still raw a year on.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
When it comes to applying this sage piece of advice to life, there are times I’d agree and adhere. For me, Christmas dinner is now one of those occasions. It can be tempting to apply it when it comes to emailing schools too, sticking to the same approach time and again rather than taking a risk and trying something new.
However, this really is exactly the time when you should suppress those memories telling you otherwise, in my case festive, take that old proverb, and rip it right up!
Let me elaborate…
Don’t stagnate - times change, so should your emails to schools
It may have worked well in the past. Maybe it still does, so why change? Well, times change. The needs and requirements of schools, teachers, and students are changing all the time and so should your marketing.
Five years ago there were few Computing courses; coding and algorithms weren’t part of the standard schooling before 2014. Relationship and sex education is only just fighting its way into compulsory education, and there was little recognition of mental health when I was at school. I’m not sure my twelve-year-old self would even know what it meant.
It’s important to keep your approach to emailing schools fresh and relevant to these ever-changing needs.
Teachers aren’t all the same - neither should your emails be
Despite what some teenagers across the country might believe, teachers are all individuals with different views and different interests. What might interest some teachers won’t work for others, but you’re never going to know that unless you try.
Maybe they’re an avid reader and would appreciate your long-form, minimally designed email that explains the ins and outs of your product or service with additional value asset. Perhaps though, they’ve had their fill of reading that week - I’ve no doubt that marking hundreds of essays can do that to a keen reader - so maybe they’ll be more engaged by a short email, designed to pack a punch with an eye-catching headline, impactful copy, and an attention-grabbing CTA.
If you don’t change up your approach, you may just be appealing to the same audience time and again, missing out on others who would be interested if you spoke their language.
Keep building on an edu-marketing email campaign - there’s no silver bullet
Wouldn’t it be nice if there was simply one way to write, design, and send an email campaign to schools that guaranteed results? That would make life extremely easy. Too easy if you ask us! When creating an email campaign that will appeal to all those individuals on your send list, it’s a good idea to remember that each email should play its own unique part, whether that’s building awareness, trust, or educating the audience, rather than repeat itself over and over again.
The opening email of a campaign should plant a seed in the mind of your audience and start to build brand awareness. If the email didn’t get your audience ordering your product or service immediately, it doesn't mean that the email failed. They might remember your logo or send name - a good basis to build on.
Your next email might encourage a click through to your landing page, but you never know - the fire alarm might go off, a student in crisis might appear at the teacher’s classroom door, and your website is closed, but not forgotten.
The third email, which is personally written, speaking directly to the teacher on the other side of the screen and reminding them of your product or offer is now not an enigma to them but a useful reminder and prompt. Low and behold they register/contact/order.
So, while the old proverb may have some value, I can assure you that applying it to your edu-marketing is not the right approach.
Next week, we’ll dive into the details of a specific approach we took for an email designed to kick off a successful campaign that evolved and continued to grow.
See you then!
Marketing to Schools