Education sector is one of the most valuable sectors as it shapes the lives of people, and contributes to their earning capacity and knowledge. As you create an email marketing campaign for education sector in Lebanon and the Middle East to approach your target audience this aspect should be given utmost importance.
At the outset ,email marketing for education sector looks simple but, it’s rather challenging as you proceed because, the audience is quite heterogeneous.
1. Do you know your target audience?
Understand your target audience and their needs. Apart from students there are others who wish to know about your institution. Like parents are concerned about where their child would get the best exposure and knowledge?
People restarting education have major expenses, so they are concerned about the cost of pursuing a course and time they need to spare. Students interested in professional courses are looking at enhancing their skills to grow in their career. You also have alumni and staff who want to connect and collaborate with you. When you answer their queries, you’ve won half the battle.
You cannot expect a working individual responding to an email that focuses on the concerns of students passed out of college. Without defining your target audience you cannot nail your campaign.
2. Getting to know your target audience better:
The education sector is a bit tricky. When you study the target audience you will realize it is a bit complex as each one of them has peculiar interests. Some such categories could be – school students, students passing out of college, university students, working professionals, parents, foreign students, alumni and staff, etc. Each audience has a unique approach, language and attitude. With these hue of audiences the primary question you need to ask is who out of these are you targeting?
- Prospective students need a bit of a push, so share with them information that interests them
- Cost of living
- Places of accommodation
- Application process
- Introducing topics he or she is studying
- Tourist maps/ guides and places to visit.
Let students develop familiarity, excitement and comfort about your institution through emails that share experiences they will gain while studying at your institution, environment in the campus and city. Create a community for alumni and staff because, they may enroll to some of the courses in future. Engage them so that they constantly communicate with you. Arrange reunions, knowledge sharing activities and engage them as mentors or future employers.
3. How to share informative content?
Your target audience is eager to enhance knowledge and step ahead towards a better life. They are anxious and anticipate information that answers their questions. Know what these questions are and build your campaign around it.
You can send emails that give in-depth information like an eBook on the courses, share a PDF file that enumerates the enrollment process. You can host a webinar with the faculty who introduces the course.
While building an email marketing campaign ensure that you connect it to your institution’s blog because, it is a platform for discussion where valuable content can be shared.
4. Plug in the social media:
Students are finding your institution to know more through social media. Youngsters love going through Twitter, Facebook, Instgram and Snapchat, so power your emails by adding social media handles. Merely having an account there isn’t enough; reciprocate to their interests, satiate their curiosity and build your audience. Parents and older students are active on LinkedIn. Define your audience and reach them where they are.
Through social media share with your followers various aspects about campus life, courses and how great it would be to join the course. Share pictures about festivals, events, videos of lectures and information about student living. Majority of your posts should be information driven and educational, the balance should be self promoting.
5. Analyze and realize:
Most educational institutes miss keeping track of how their email campaigns have performed, through analytics. Know how many people visited your social media page and blog via email? How many actually opened the email, responded or took action in any form? Observe audience behaviour and the pattern. For example find out if there are more clicks when you send an email in the latter part of the day as opposed to early morning?
Use these analytics to send the right content at the right time (when your audiences are most active). Study what posts they respond to, their comments or retweets, interests, concerns, choices, etc. Realize that email marketing for education sector depends quite a lot on analytics as it transforms your approach to jumpstart the marketing campaign.
At MEWS when we started creating email marketing campaigns for education sector in Lebanon and the Middle East we thought it would be pretty monotonous. But, as our team sat down to nail the strategy we had so many aspects to consider. We are sure that you have something more to add. We would be glad to hear from you, so share your views on our blog.