Converting prospects into purchasers of your eLearning platform services involves a well-defined buyer journey guided by you. Buyer journeys are very specific by industry and service provider. It’s essential to understand the steps that your prospects undertake to eventually convert. Powered by such knowledge, you can craft a working eLearning platform marketing strategy that will attract ideal customers and turn them into loyal clients.
That journey commences with top of the funnel (ToFu) marketing. This is the awareness stage- the one during which prospects get to know a new brand and everything it represents. Powerful communication is essential during this part of the journey to show potential clients why your offering is relevant and capable of addressing their pain points.
Crafting an eLearning marketing strategy aimed at increasing ToFu leads depends on creating valuable content, differentiating yourself from the competition, and focusing on awareness. Here are some of the best eLearning promotion approaches to help you achieve those goals.
1. Determine How Prospects Discover You
Top of the funnel interactions give you a good idea about the prospects you’re attracting right now. Use this information to find out which channels deliver the best results, what kind of people they’re attracting and what your buyer persona looks like at the time.
Coming up with a relevant and personalized buyer persona is probably the most important first step in your learning marketing strategy. Everything else depends on it – the content you create, the outreach channels you use, the future interactions you’ll craft as a part of your middle and bottom of the funnel plans.
Do begin your efforts by finding out about the people who interact with your brand right now. Even if you’re not carrying out an active campaign, you have a business website and probably some social media presence. Use these as a starting point for the creation of more effective ToFu marketing in the future.
2. Maximize Your Visibility as Much as Possible
The ToFu stage of marketing is often called the “see” stage. Your aim is to make your message as visible as possible. Luckily, inbound marketing makes it possible to maximize visibility while also attracting a targeted audience for your message.
Successful eLearning marketing during the ToFu stage should show as many potential clients as possible that your brand exists. Once you create this original awareness, you can move on to the next parts of the funnel that aim at engagement and eventual loyalty.
Increasing the visibility of your offering is possible through all of the following approaches:
- High quality content creation to build your reputation and establish your authority position
- Search engine optimization (SEO) to make your eLearning platform more visible
- Effective social media marketing (using each channel for its strengths – Facebook as a community builder, Twitter as a way to promote your website content, LinkedIn for B2B promotion, etc.)
- Display ads on Google and PPC campaigns to achieve faster results than organic SEO
- Webinars and free workshops to give ToFu leads a “sample” of what you have to offer
Obviously, these are just a few examples of popular promotional approaches that can generate the right kind of “buzz.” Depending on your marketing goal and buyer persona, you can opt for much more niche approaches, including offline promotion like publications in specialized eLearning magazines, for example.
3. The Power of Content in eLearning Platform Marketing for ToFu Lead Generation
We’ve already mentioned content a few times, and there’s an important reason why. It has easily become one of the most important outreach methods, especially when you’re trying to create awareness and get your brand seen.
As far as marketing strategies for the learning industry go, content should always be your first bet. Not only is it highly effective, many other inbound approaches are dependent on the creation of quality content that people would want to interact and engage with.
Just think about it, content marketing is three times more effective for lead generation than traditional outbound promotion. According to 86 percent of marketers, content creation is a key strategy for reaching out and connecting with the right prospects.
ToFu marketing doesn’t have to depend solely on blog posts and website content. Other kinds of content that can be used to deliver an impactful first message include:
- Videos and image slideshows (visual content is even more powerful than text today)
- Audio content like podcasts
- Case studies
- Email newsletters
- Free ecourses and other samples of learning materials
- Social media content
Using one type of content or another is dependent on the goals of your eLearning marketing strategy. Some can achieve more than one outcome – they can generate buzz, establish your expertise or instantly get your audience to convert.
4. Combine Both Push and Pull Marketing Strategies
ToFu promotion can benefit from both push (more aggressive, in your face promotion) and pull (people will come to you if you have something good to offer) approaches.
A few good examples of push techniques to use for ToFu lead generation in the field of eLearning include:
- PPC promotion
- Landing pages reachable via display ads
- Sponsored content
- Email marketing
- Video ads on YouTube
The aim of push techniques is to reach as many people as possible. You can still be discerning through the selection of the right demographic characteristics – most marketing platforms give you that opportunity.
Excellent top of the funnel pull techniques include:
- SEO and content marketing
- Organic social media outreach (for example – building a YouTube channel)
- A focus on word of mouth and customer reviews
- Media coverage and PR
- Discount campaigns
A good balance of both will be essential not just to meet your ToFu goals but also to move prospects to the next part of the funnel.
So, Now what?
Trying out a combination of these strategies and always measuring results on the go will help you understand what works best for your eLearning business. Don’t hesitate to mix and match approaches or discontinue the outreach endeavors that don’t seem to deliver well enough. People can enter your funnel in numerous ways and they can discover your brand as both a part of your ToFu and your MoFu efforts. Luckily, you have many tools that can be used to measure outcomes and yield optimal results along the way.