What do teaching and marketing have in common?

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

The short answer is: a lot!

The long answer is that they have more in common that most would think. However while teaching is viewed as a mostly altruistic act, marketing has a bad name for being pushy and forcing products on people. The reality is that both teaching and marketing want to achieve the same result. A teacher wants the student to accept (learn) an idea or piece of fact while marketers want the customer to accept (buy) a product or service. Marketing is most often associated with spending money while teaching is considered an act to help the student acquire knowledge.

Teachers rarely (consciously) use marketing tactics to accommodate learning while many marketers have realized the power of providing information while also accommodate the selling of products. Infomercials are perfect examples of that.:

An infomercial is a form of television commercial that resembles regular TV programming[1] yet is intended to promote or sell a product, service or idea……Most often used as a form of direct response television (DRTV),……[4][5] Infomercials are also known as paid programming (or teleshopping[6] in Europe).….

While the term “infomercial” was originally applied only to television advertising, it is now sometimes used to refer to any presentation (often on video) which presents a significant amount of information in an actual, or perceived, attempt to promote a point of view. …” /From Wikipedia/

Photo by fauxels on Pexels.com

Teachers could also benefit from thinking more along the lines of marketing if they want to successfully convey knowledge. Some practises that could help are:

  • Relating to the usability of the knowledge/How this knowledge can be used later on.
  • Nice packaging (relatable text, nice graphics, gamification, etc.)
  • Give points and rewards.
  • Make it accessible for a wider audience.
  • Use thought leaders and role models.

These are just a few tips on how to think more as a marketer to achieve higher results.

#Review: book on productivity: The 80/20 Principle -Richard Koch

Cover is from Goodreads.com

I love everything that has to do with productivity so I was eager to dive into this rather unusual and strange concept but I quickly realized that the author takes this one little mindset shift to the extreme up to the point that he wants to apply it to everything and everywhere. It seems to lack an understanding of a wide range of customer and (human in general) behaviours and psychology. Yes, data is good but interpretation should be the focus.

My Goodreads review: “Interesting argument on productivity from a very data driven point of view. The problem is that it suggests extreme usage of this principle. It’s way too simplified to use in a variety of situations and it’s lacking real adaptability in the online business world. This book is more suitable for offline businesses and factories with physical products. All in all it’s an interesting book on a ‘principle’ that can change how we use our time and energy but it should not be used all the time everywhere to the extreme.

The gist: a new way of looking at business data and productivity.

The problem: the application of the principle is too extreme.

Conclusion: if you’re interested in productivity theories this book can give you a new way of looking at how you spend your time and energy but the principle should be applied with care and only in certain situations.

Share your thoughts! Do you like this book? Do you use this ‘principle’?

Ebook template: new item added to my Shop

Available soon!

The 5 types of Edubusinesses and how to market them..

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Edu- or Educational Businesses are as the name suggests businesses with a special focus on education, providing tools and know-how to teachers, schools, and students. In recent years with the emergence of online learning and especially since the pandemic, their contribution to education, in general, has been even more prevalent. The lines are blurred but these are the 5 main types of Edubusinesses:

  • employed teachers (by school or institution)
  • self-employed and freelance teachers and tutors
  • schools and institutions
  • software and platform companies (LMS, Edutech, apps)
  • coaches, bloggers, experts

It’s very important from a marketing viewpoint to take a look at the different strategies these businesses need to have in order to be successful. Teachers who are employed by schools (even online schools) usually don’t need to market themselves or their schools directly. Self-employed tutors and freelance teachers (usually private language tutors) however need to extensively market themselves to get new students and to keep them the same way as online schools need to do. LMS (Learning Management System) and app developers need marketing strategies similar to any other product development company. Coaches and experts need to market themselves the same way freelancers need to. /Non-profit and governmental educational institutions are disregarded here. Self-development, self-help, and spiritual coaching are special types of tutoring environments and I’ll write about them in a later post./

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

The differences are in customer behavior and finances. LMS and learning tools are often marketed to corporate buyers or schools whereas freelancers and online schools (especially in language tutoring) have private students who are often interested- would like to learn- but cannot afford to pay and the dropout rate is the highest here.

The most difficult is to market freelance services and private tutoring. Most freelancers make the mistake to rely solely on social media and word-of-mouth to market themselves. They don’t build a consistent brand image thinking it only applies to companies and they don’t think outside of the box when it comes to marketing. It’s easy to see then that they’re struggling the most to become successful and create a sustainable income. The problem is that the demand and the supply often times cannot find each other.

Freelance tutors have the knowledge, experience, flexibility, and lower prices; all are very marketable but most freelancers cannot capitalize on them because they don’t see themselves as businesses and don’t use appropriate marketing channels. Sofware and Edutech developers usually operate like any other production companies and the reliance on social media as the main/only form of marketing is still prevalent among them. Unlike freelancers, however, they’re more likely to be able to build sustainable businesses as long as their products are relevant and marketable because their income doesn’t depend solely on the buying behavior of individual customers/students.

/This is an introductory post, I’m going to write more extensively about different marketing strategies for Edubusinesses in later posts as well./