Email marketing can be a powerful tool for the marketing and building of support for schools and education institutions. Understanding the best practices for email marketing and then integrating email marketing into a larger, integrated campaign should is the best way to drive results.
Not all education institutions have the same needs or goals, but recruitment, fundraising and other forms of community support are a few potential uses for email marketing for an education institution.
In addition, social email newsletters help to keep learners, teachers, parents and their associations informed and productive. This method of communication builds trust, loyalty and happiness within a community if it is relevant and useful.
A recent survey by Marketing Sherpa outlined the tactics that organizations (not just education organizations) use for email marketing.
The email inbox is a highly competitive environment, where possibly hundreds or thousands of messages are vying for attention of the owner. Creating and designing relevant messages is key to increasing the open rate and connecting to a user.
Emails should be tied to an online destination, school website or expanded story, where an email recipient can take further action. It is important to not overwhelm an email recipient within their inbox–the ability to click away is too tempting for many users.
A few email marketing tips for education organizations
- Provide an incentive for joining a mailing list
- Do not spam (ever) as this will only hurt your list growth and responsiveness
- Keep users informed, entertained and engaged – Ensure your content is interesting and easy to read, while making sure that it is helpful or useful for the email group
- Segment your email list – Do your best to keep messages relevant to the group you are emailing. If you burden users will not relevant messages, they will opt out or ignore future emails.
- Consider email/mobile integrations so your school can distribute SMS/Text alerts to parents from the web, quickly and easily
- Track email usage with an analytics application to improve subject lines, body messages and click through rates
- Consider A/B testing to improve and optimize emails — especially for fundraising
- Always provide or explain the value your cause or campaign provides. Do not assume that your users will “get it.” You don’t need to beat your users over the head with the importance of your campaign, but don’t let them miss the point either. For example, if your institution is in a fundraising kick to build a new classroom environment, explain the benefits to parents and the buying group.