3 Reasons to Use Twitter in Your Educational Marketing

twitterMost companies use Twitter the same way they use advertising – as a one-way communication blast. Although it is easy to set up and manage your Twitter account this way, it is limiting and off-putting to your target audience. They quickly see through your self-serving Tweets, and tune you out. Often, for good. If you think of your website as “information central” and your Twitter account as an “outpost,” gathering and sharing intelligence, then you’ve got the right idea.The three best ways to use Twitter in your marketing are:

 

  • Research
  • Building Awareness
  • Establishing Authority

You can think of research in this sense as keeping your ear to the ground. Educators are talking and sharing on Twitter. They share what’s happening in their classrooms and schools, what they think about education issues, and what they need help with. Twitter is a direct channel to the connected educator…the educator who is actively invested in learning how to be more effective by connecting with other educators across the country. Building a community of interest and awareness of your products is the goal on Twitter. It is not a direct sales channel. As you know, educators are particularly sensitive to marketing spiels. Once they determine you are more interested in selling your stuff than in helping them, they’re gone. They’ll pass right over you.

So, how do you build community and awareness without turning off educators?

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3 Ways to Optimize Your Investment of Time in Social Media

 

Time to go One of the biggest objections to launching a social media plan is concern about the investment of time and money.

Straightforward social media plans do not have to cost a lot of money. You can certainly spend a lot of money, but more expensive does not necessarily equate to more successful.

The largest component of any social media plan is time. Whether it’s your time, a team member’s time or a freelancer’s time, it takes time and lots of it.

There are a number of automation programs that can make social media more efficient: Hoot Suite, Hubspot, and Wildfire are three of the most popular. However, you don’t want to sacrifice engagement and building relationships for greater efficiency. Even the best automation plans require time spent on interaction with your community.

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Insights from ‘The Zen of Social Media Marketing’ Guru Shama Hyder Kabani-a Review

 

front cover of the zen of social media marketingRight at the outset in the book’s introduction, Kabani points out the primary difficulty marketers have with social media. Their challenge is that they’re trying to apply traditional marketing rules to what essentially is a platform outside their control.

Therein, lies the most important lesson for companies struggling to understand social media marketing. The balance of power has shifted to consumers. By the time you become aware of your prospect, your prospect has already acquired massive amounts of information about you. Through search, social media, and recommendations from friends and colleagues, the consumer researches you and your company before you get a chance to say the first word.

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The #1 Blogging Mistake and How to Fix It

It's easy to do. We're all so busy in "regular" times that when we hit "extraordinary" times, our too-full schedules quickly come unraveled.

I'm no different, which is why it's been since late May since my last blog post. I have perfectly good reasons. Most of us do. A family wedding, a funeral, a conference, travel, a summer cold and VOILA!! More than a month has passed without a blog post.

If I were one of my own clients, this is what I'd say:

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Three Basic Elements of Successful Customer Engagement

talking chairs individualityEarlier this week we talked about the difference between social media marketing and content marketing. What they share at their core is the idea of authentic customer engagement.

So what is the essence of successful customer engagement?

First you must to listen with genuine interest to your customer. You have to hear what their concerns, issues and goals are.

Second, you must understand how to help them solve their concerns with what you have to offer which is relevant to them.

Third, you must respond to them in an authentic and transparent way supporting their need for individual attention, additional information or the move to the next step of the process.

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Go to Where Your Customers Are and Engage Them There

Annie Galvin Teich-K-12 Publisher-The Teich GroupOne of the most important elements of successful marketing is customer engagement. In order to build relationships, you have to talk to your customers.

Some years ago, I worked for a company that believed that businesses could be effectively managed from behind spreadsheets, and it was all about the numbers. Consequently, not much effort went into building relationships with customers other than responding to minor customer service issues.

Then and now, the idea that you can build a successful business without customer engagement is nonsense.

Sometimes, the easiest thing to do is go meet your customers at conferences and trade shows. That’s where I’m headed today –to the Texas Computer Education Association annual conference or TCEA for short.

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What exactly IS an attraction strategy?

Now we know that the role of marketing has shifted from broadcast mode to networking mode. We can see this playing out all around us both in publishing and in other industries. 

The way we communicate with customers and prospects is now more interactive and multidimensional.

Marketing has shifted from interruption mode (broadcast) to invitational (attraction).

But what does this mean to K-12 marketers in a practical way?

ATTRACTION STRATEGY = INBOUND MARKETING = CONTENT MARKETING

No matter what we call it, this new way to market products and services is about providing value and earning customer loyalty.

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Interruption v Invitation Marketing for K-12 Publishers

The seismic shift that has occurred in marketing is that we have moved from an interruption model to an invitational model in marketing our company messages.

For years, the interruption model was effective in using broadcast and advertising media to inform prospects of a company's goods and services. Now, despite the channel, prospects are experts at dodging and ignoring broadcast and print ads.

The new effective method of marketing is through an invitation model where a company builds relationships with its community and freely shares content that is important to that community. Companies accomplish this through outbound communications such as newsletters, white papers, videos and social media while letting prospects know they are ready to serve when the prospect is ready to buy. This is called content marketing.

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