The ultimate goal of content marketing is to build relationships with your audiences. And, it becomes an integrated marketing program when people from every campus division are part of its planning and implementation. Seems simple enough in theory, but in practice, well … not so much. That’s why it’s vital to make sure your marketing program is integrated with every campus division. Include them in your planning and implementation. We’ve worked with many schools on exactly this challenge, and have formed some best practices in educational marketing and communications.
Here are some insights to consider.
The audience’s point of view is everything.
Base your decision on whether or not to invest in producing any content on the degree to which it will resonate with a specific targeted audience. If you don’t have personas for each segment of your prospective students and their influencers — and for alumni, donors, and the media you wish to engage — then stop everything and get the personas, and the respective buyer’s journey for each, established.
Instead of “selling” the school, craft a relevant story.
Think of each story as a way to activate a relationship — or enhance an existing one — with a specific audience at each stage of that persona’s journey. For instance, in recruitment marketing, the journey tracks along the major stages of the admissions path and is specific to each different audience sub-segment.
Imagine a partner who feels like part of your team.
Sure, you’re thinking, of course, a marketing consultant would say that! But seriously, our team has earned the trust of our clients because, together, we achieve results. Our clients know they can count on us to be responsive to whatever stage of the project they’re immersed in. We can help you adopt new practices and processes that maximize your capabilities while building in additional services to reinforce your efforts. And ultimately, your internal team is better equipped and better trained to take on more responsibility every year.
Connect through strategic content.
Spot your best stories and tell them with your own distinct personality.
Amplify your school’s unique voice.
Sustain the power of your brand and celebrate your strengths.
So much to think about. Where do I start?
Products. Apps. CRMs. Consultants. There’s a plethora of resources out there today, it’s true. The challenge is to select the ones that offer you a long-term return on the investment of time and money they require. People you enjoy working with. People who recognize your own talents and concerns. People who care about every challenge — and every penny — as if it were their own.
At Cognitive Marketing, we’ve worked with independent schools and colleges of all sizes, keeping our eye one the big picture as well as how each tactic fits into your team’s structure and budget.
Talk to us about we can custom-fit our services to wherever your institution may be in achieving its brand, recruitment, and advancement marketing goals.