Content is Key to Building a Community of Educators

We all know how important social media has become. It is a part of daily life. It sells products and lifestyles. It shapes public opinion. Those savvy folks who are crushing it on social media have become the new type of celebrity – influencers. Social media is in a word, a star-maker. That’s all well and good for the Kardashians, but how about corporate social media strategies? As our customers often ask, what is the secret to getting educators to engage with a brand?

The good news is the biggest secret is really no secret at all. The best way to capture the attention, heart and mind of an educator is with quality content. Creating and sharing relevant, valuable information with educators will keep them coming back for more.

As education marketers, we naturally look at our field in the aggregate – as “the market.” While this high-level thinking is important from a strategic standpoint, engagement on social media requires us to get much more personal. Consider this: the US K-12 education market is made up of more than 4 million individuals doing a job that is getting progressively more complicated every year. When we think of teachers as people, and lead with empathy, we can craft the kind of good content that educators will embrace.

So, what constitutes good content?

Good content IS

  • Informative and valuable
  • Timely/relevant
  • Helpful and useful
  • Problem-solving
  • Focused on them
  • Lighthearted and fun

Good Content is NOT

  • Advertising
  • Patronizing
  • All about YOU

Here are some ideas for creating diverse content that teachers will love.

1. Help solve a problem.

Teachers deal with dozens of small problems (and no, I’m not talking about kids—well, maybe a little) every day. Select an educator challenge that you can help solve, build content (think lessons, use cases, blogs, interviews, photos/captions, videos – be creative), and post!

2. List it.

Everyone loves a good list – you’re enjoying one now! Create a group of resources relating to a pertinent topic, include supporting links, and socialize it.

3. Give them a gift.

Teachers have always been generous with their students. But these days, more teachers often have to use their own money to properly outfit their classrooms for learning.  Here’s where you can help them. Provide something free – like a lesson plans, or consumable worksheets, or posters – that they can use in their classrooms. They’ll remember your generosity and come back for more.

4. Tap industry experts.

Educators not only have a passion for student learning – they are lifelong learners. They want to hear about the latest research and methodology from respected industry authorities. Enlist your own authors and corporate leaders to write articles or interview them for posts. Teachers flock to content from their favorite experts.

5. Ask educators for their expertise.

Educators are passionate and mission driven. Tap into their collaborative nature. Ask them about what inspires them, what their best advice for new teachers is, how they got through to a student who was struggling. Teachers are inspired and moved by other teachers’ experiences. They respond positively to a brand that respects their professionalism. You may also craft your requests to elicit valuable user-generated content (UGC) that you can promote in different channels.

6. Post about a timely topic.

Educators appreciate other educated opinions on the issues that affect them.  Collect relevant articles for your audience and contribute your own learnings for a unique spin on the subject.  

7. Make them laugh.

Teaching is stressful! Every year, the atmosphere becomes more complex. If anyone could use a good laugh, it’s a teacher. Help them blow off some steam. Sharing clever, funny, or just silly content that is relevant to an educator’s job or life will endear them to you.

Okay, you’ve got the content – now what?

Now that you have built this amazing repository of educator-centric material, don’t keep it on a shelf. Distribute it! Share your content in as many channels as possible – on your website and your social pages (learn more about how teachers use social media and what they think about Instagram), but also via more traditional marketing channels like email and web advertising. Create videos. Blog. Recycle popular evergreen content within new posts. Partner with other companies and non-profits to expand your audience. Mix it up!

Building a community around your brand is not a one-and-done proposition. It requires a commitment to creating and repurposing relevant material and sharing it regularly with your audience.

Want more tips for creating your own content library? Download our Best of Content Marketing Report to see what content campaigns got educators’ attention. Or reach out to our digital marketing team at mdrinfo@dnb.com or 800-333-8802.

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