Two government shutdowns later, what have we learned about the federal education budget for 2018? Not a great deal – this lingering uncertainty makes your job even more of a challenge.
Earlier this month, Congress and the White House agreed on a $400 billion budget deal that would increase domestic spending by $138 billion over the next two years. But it’s unclear how much – or even if – K-12 schools will benefit until lawmakers meet again to fill in the details.
President Trump’s FY19 budget would reduce Education Department funding by 5 percent. In the plan he sent to Congress, the president repeated calls to eliminate the $2 billion Title II program for teacher professional development and the $400 million Title IV program (Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants) that supports ed tech.
What It Means
Budget uncertainty appears to be the new normal for K-12 schools. Until Congress finishes the 2018 budget, schools are operating on 2017 funding levels.
In this unusual environment, educators may try to do more with less, slowing down the buying cycle. When that happens, here are five things you can do to close sales:
- Cultivate trust. Show customers and prospects they always can count on you, even as other conditions are less certain.
- Build flexibility into your offerings. If schools know they can easily add or remove services as their budgets change, they’re more likely to sign a contract.
- Quantify the cost of inaction. Demonstrate how delaying a purchase may actually cost more in the long run.
- Incentivize commitment. Highlight the savings available with long-term term contracts. Conversely, present reasonable options for upfront purchases with reduced costs in later years of the agreement.
- Offer alternatives. Provide grant funding information that will help customers find new additional funding sources.
We can help you craft success stories and marketing messages that build a powerful case for your services, even uncertain times. Contact us to learn how.
To read the previous Education Marketing Action Alert, click here.