10 tips to stand out from the crowd when selling to schools

When selling to schools the key is to engage directly with the right prospects. Teachers and administrators are hounded daily by pushy sales reps so their natural response will be to turn you away.

Selling to Schools

Here are 10 tips to get you noticed:

1.         Match your audience to your product – target prospects who have a genuine need for your solution but also the ability to make a decision and have access to funds to make a purchase

2.         Only send quality communications – don’t go out half baked. Quality materials may be printed or digital. For example, send personalised email campaigns with high quality graphics and links to quality web sites

3.         Understand purchasing rules. For example, government schools in NSW purchasing products under $5000 can choose whether or not to purchase under the state government contract if indeed one exists

4.         Create site references, i.e. schools you have supplied to previously

5.         Know when schools are buying and when they are planning and present your communications accordingly

6.         Make sure you buy a list of schools from a reputable supplier with a delivery guarantee. For example A-ZGovBIZ has a 98% quality guarantee. Also ask for a list that contains first and last names, position, names, address etc  as follow up is important and you will need to match up enquiries to the list when they come in

7.         Vary your offers by using a variety of methods of communications including snail mail, fax, email and postcards

8.         Have a reputable web site. It is expected that anyone and everyone will have a website nowadays, and a facebook page and a twitter account. In fact, some people will visit a company’s website for evidence that the company is genuine, is active and for background information. So do make sure your site is up to date and that as much information as a customer may need is available

9.         Manage enquiries effectively after you’ve sent out a campaign. You would be amazed at the number of suppliers who do not follow up sales leads after going to all the trouble and expense of sending out a campaign

10.     Try, try and try again. Do not expect instant results and expect to invest significant time into building a client base. If it was easy everyone would be doing it so remember the 3 P’s – be persistent, patient and professional

For more information, please read our marketing to education page.

Michael Bleakley is a journalist, communicator and marketing professional of 25 years. His career began in his early 20’s publishing tech magazines for education. Michael’s career then moved into online and book publishing for a global business publisher, then finally into database publishing and marketing at A-ZGovBIZ.

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