Although sales to the education market have remained strong during the pandemic, business-to-education (B2E) marketers have still faced many challenges over the last year and a half. In fact, a CB&A survey reveals that more than three out of four companies (77 percent) have had to adjust their education marketing tactics as a result of COVID-19.
Some respondents said they’ve pivoted to using online webinars instead of live presentations to customers. Others reported becoming more strategic or targeted in their approach to education marketing.
“We had to shift the positioning of our products to match what was happening in the market,” one respondent said, noting that the company has changed its messaging to focus on how its products could help solve emerging challenges such as social and emotional learning (SEL) and addressing learning loss.
A large majority of these changes are expected to become permanent, as the pandemic has forced companies to rethink and improve upon their existing practices. In fact, more than twice as many respondents said they have made “lasting” changes (53 percent) as those who said the changes would be temporary (24 percent).
“Our sales reps have learned how to be more effective on videoconference meetings, and we’ll never rely on face-to-face meetings as much as previously,” one respondent said. Another noted: “We’ve upped our communication game.”
While tactics such as email, social media, and content marketing have become more important during the pandemic, 61 percent of survey respondents said conferences have become less important to their strategy as these events have moved online.
Despite the availability of online conferences, our survey suggests that B2E marketers haven’t recognized as much value in these virtual options—and many said they’ve shifted their conference spending to other priorities over the last 18 months.
“No in-person gatherings has forced a complete pivot,” one respondent said.
However, this change isn’t likely to continue. As in-person events make a comeback, conferences are expected to play a prominent role in companies’ marketing plans once again.
In fact, 68 percent of B2E marketers said they plan to attend events in person this year if they’re able to. Only 12 percent said they plan to attend events virtually this year, while 20 percent said they don’t plan to attend conferences again until at least 2022.
For more survey findings, including an analysis of how the pandemic has affected education marketing, download the full report.
And, to learn how CB&A can help you develop and execute highly strategic B2E marketing campaigns, connect with our team today.