Why Educational Marketing is Different: Focus on Target Audiences

Companies recognize that properly marketing products has a tremendous effect on the amount of success the business sees. Many of them go about this process in a very uniform manner. Professionals will assess the needs of the target audience and create products that are suitable for them. Not only are the products and services right for the target audience members, but so are the marketing efforts. Yet when it comes to conducting education market research, the process is a little bit different. The members of the target audience are not so cut and dry. In fact, the target audience actually includes multiple levels.

Educational materials generally consist of books, activities for the computer and so forth. School administrators are often the ones who purchase these items. The teachers use the instructional guides and other tools. The students absorb information that is taught through using these materials. As a result, k-12 school marketing needs to involve all of these groups. Administrators need to see marketing efforts that line up with the needs of their schools. Some schools are faith-based programs; therefore, administrators want to incorporate at least some instructional tools that match with that faith. Other schools have strict state standards to meet, and the administrators must purchase items that will help students to meet those standards.

Yet the buyers also must consider the needs of the teachers. Depending upon the school, grade level and other factors, teachers may have a say in what books are purchased for the school. Even if they don’t, administrators still need to make sure they select materials that make sense for the teachers and their instructional methods. On top of that, not only do the teachers need to find the books accessible and reasonable to implement in the classroom, but the students must find the material engaging and interesting.


If students are completely bored by the material, then the learning process is threatened. Clearly, marketers need to pay attention to various elements when they are putting together advertising material for the educational world since it is a field that has very specific and unique needs.

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