Educational Marketing: Educate Your (Potential) Customers

… so when they are ready to buy, they will contact you.

You may have excellent products and services, but people are tired of promotional messages. How can you still let the world know about your exceptional offering?

Educational Marketing is one of the most effective ways to reach this tough audience.

The idea behind Educational Marketing is quite simple: say something useful (i.e. informative) to your listener and she will open up and start paying attention to what you have to offer. Educate prospects so they buy from you when they are ready and inform others.

With Educational Marketing, you publish education-based materials (in all forms of media you use to communicate with your prospects) rather than focusing solely on publicity or ‘buy my product’ messages. For example, when you go to a trade show, your approach would be: ‘Okay, you have this problem and you can solve it this way. And by the way, my product does XYZ.’

Apply this tactic to your business!

As a partner in a law firm, you could publish articles in which you present cases you have handled, what happened and why, and also what could have happened had the parties acted differently. This is interesting and educational for your audience, while you are seen as an expert in your field and the person to go to when people need legal advice. (And of course, this strategy reminds people that it’s better to use the services of a lawyer than to do things on the fly and end up in a disaster.)

You might even raise awareness in your community about a front-page social problem and get involved pro bono in solving it. Constantly running social responsibility programs along this line would not only give everybody in the community a positive feeling about your brand, but also make your employees feel good about themselves and their firm. Alternatively,

Educational Marketing also enables you to inform your customers in a way that bolsters your brand and the perception of its quality. For example, if you run a restaurant, you could incorporate educational content in your menu. Stun your guests with the premium ingredients you use in your salad, the special qualities of the sesame oil in your seafood or the fascinating history of your finest wine. Once impressed, your guests are more likely to happily pay the price for more expensive products.

Education-based messages:

– increase the power of your brand in the eyes of your customers, potential customers, or people who can recommend your offering;

– build top-of-mind awareness (when people want to buy what you offer, they will immediately think of you / your company);

– help you and your business become an authority in your field – so you become the preferred choice without people ever questioning why;

– attract more clients, as well as enthused fans (who buy from you and recommend you to others).

Use any communication channel you can, such as mailings, newsletters, regular client surveys, public relations (PR), trade shows, awards ceremonies, industry seminars for the benefit of your clients, trade associations and internet.

Write down in comments which educational marketing strategies you use and get inspired by others’ ideas! Also, test your marketing using Marketing Lens Diagnosis and use our ideas in your business!