The best way to capture the attention, heart and mind of an educator is with relevant and valuable digital content specifically designed for educators. These kinds of resources 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. The K-12 education market in the United States is comprised of more than 5 million individuals doing a job that is getting progressively more complicated every year. When we dig deep to discover what educators think and feel as well as how they use resources, we can craft the kind of good content that educators will embrace.
What is good content in general?
Good content is:
- Informative and valuable
- Timely and relevant
- Helpful and useful
- Focused on your audience
- Lighthearted and fun
Good content is not:
- All about your company or your products and services
Here are some ideas for creating the kind of resources that teachers need and want:
1. Help educators solve a problem.
Teachers deal with dozens of small problems 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!
Try this: Give teachers ideas for how to get students’ attention throughout the day.
2. Write your ideas down in list form.
Everyone loves a good list—you’re enjoying one right now! Create a group of resources relating to a pertinent topic, include supporting links, and socialize it.
Try this: Think of an educator’s task that can be accomplished in many ways, like taking attendance or getting kids to line up.
3. Give educators free useful resources.
Teachers have always been generous with their students so giving teachers something useful or practical and fun, like lesson plans, or consumable worksheets, or posters, that they can use in their classrooms helps them and creates a positive, connected feeling about your brand. They’ll remember your generosity and come back for more.
Try this: If you keep your resources behind a paywall, find one of your resources that’s a good representation of the rest and give it away as a download for free. Once educators see how good it is, they may want to pay for the rest!
4. Tap education industry experts.
Educators not only have a passion for student learning, they are lifelong learners themselves. They want to hear about the latest research and methodology from respected education writers and experts. Enlist authors and teacher leaders to write articles or interview them for posts. Teachers flock to content from their favorite experts.
Try this: What’s one idea you want to promote or product you want to sell? Ask a teacher you work with to make a video of them using your idea or product or talking about how it’s used in the classroom.
5. Ask educators for their opinions.
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, or 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.
Try this: Invite and encourage educators to share their opinions and thoughts on your social media sites.
6. Post about a timely topic that affects teachers or schools.
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.
Check out this example: The Supreme Court Has Ended Affirmative Action. Here’s What Teachers and Students Are Saying.
7. Make educators 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 you to them.
Try this: Share stories about funny things that happen in the classroom, like the day a kindergartener brought her kitten to school in her backpack. Quotes from real teachers add authenticity.
Once you have more content on your site, share it widely and frequently.
Now that you have built this amazing repository of educator-centric material, don’t keep it on a shelf—distribute it! Share your content on 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. Don’t be afraid to recycle popular evergreen content. Partner with other companies and non-profits to expand your audience. Mix it up!
Encouraging educators through the marketing funnel 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.