Roman Kumar Vyas is the CEO and founder at Refocus, EdTech enthusiast, investor, mentor and marketing expert.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) plays a crucial role in the marketing of EdTech companies. When implemented correctly, CRM can help generate leads, increase revenue and maintain customer loyalty. Moreover, it can also humanize the company and make people want to become advocates for it.
In the competitive landscape of EdTech, it is essential to build and maintain strong relationships with your customers. At my own company, we’ve found that providing value to our customers is a critical aspect of successful CRM; it can not only increase the chances of engaging with potential customers but also show that your company cares about its customers’ needs and values their time.
To achieve this, one should carefully study clients and their reactions to the materials produced to understand their needs, preferences and behaviors. By providing helpful solutions and insights, you keep your customers engaged and also build trust and loyalty. Here’s how to build a system of improving your CRM materials, based on steps that have helped my company increase the share of CRM in our revenue.
1. Study the market carefully.
The first step for effective CRM in EdTech is to conduct a market analysis before launching any campaign. This may sound simple, but the importance of understanding your company’s target audience cannot be overstated. Moreover, it’s crucial to consult with other companies on various markets, exchange experience with them and accumulate best practices.
For example, among EdTech clients, there are usually upskillers and reskillers. In my experience, the latter ones consist of two distinct groups: positive and negative reskillers. Upskillers are already professionals in the area in which they’ve decided to enhance their knowledge; positive reskillers are individuals who already have a stable and fairly-paid job but want to switch to more prestigious field; and negative reskillers are those who feel compelled to reskill due to job loss or other unfavorable circumstances and are scared to fail. They all have different motivations and pain points that effective messaging strategies should reflect.
There are two approaches for dealing with these various clients:
• Alternating your content to ensure that you’re catering to different audience segments.
• Prioritizing content that is tailored to those who are most likely to buy from you based on your analysis of the conversion rate of leads from each group.
I recommend using a combination of both approaches, alternating your content while also focusing on those who have responded positively to your previous campaigns.
2. Make market analysis more alive.
One of the best ways to understand what people find interesting and valuable is by asking them directly. Surveys, feedback forms and qualitative interviews can be invaluable tools for gathering customer insights and understanding their needs and preferences, which can help you make the picture provided by the research more specific. Here are several factors to consider.
1. Channels: These are the channels in which users find it the most comfortable to read your messages. However, it’s essential to be cautious when interpreting such survey data; for example, when you send a message via email, you will naturally get answers from the clients who read email.
2. Color Preferences: For example, my company used to use bright neon colors that reflected our brand. However, the qualitative study showed us that a simpler design and more neutral colors were preferred.
3. Content Preferences: Ultimately, the goal of your content is to create personalized experiences. Why not just ask your clients what they find unclear and what they want to read about? In my experience, people are eager to share these details.
4. Language: Another important aspect of leveraging customer data is using the language that your customers use. If they have specific slang words or phrases when referring to your product or service, you should incorporate that language into your marketing messaging.
Moreover, incorporating English into your text in other languages might also be disliked by your customer; in our case, people were highly negative about it and even complained about it to the sales managers. It’s also essential to consider cultural aspects. For example, in the Philippines, people use “Po” to address someone politely, and when we saw our clients doing this even when writing in English, we started doing it, as well.
3. Test from general to specific.
As soon as you know who your clients are, the next step is to test different materials based on that data and try to improve your indicators. The process of testing hypotheses is ongoing and requires constant adjustment and optimization. What worked well in the past may not necessarily work in the future, so you should always have more ideas.
When testing, I recommend using a “from general to specific” approach. This involves taking general ideas derived from the research and testing different formulations and combinations to find the “leverages”—simple actions that increase the conversion rate.
A convenient way to organize a test is in weekly sprints, during which you test one hypothesis by analyzing click rates and conversion rates and running A/B tests on different visuals, messaging and offers to see what works best. For example, if you wish to increase the click rate in your email, gradually test what works best for the most converting audience. My team has found careful testing to be the most significant factor in helping us increase CR significantly.
After testing, you should know the best combination for each target group. For example, when we focus on positive reskillers who are the most likely to convert, we’ve learned that they prefer messenger communication with helpful content, light colors, images with real people, content about different lifehacks in analytics, simple but polite language, etc.
Studying the market carefully before launching any CRM campaign is important to success in the EdTech industry. By understanding your target audience, their needs and their pain points, you can create messaging that resonates with them, develop personalized experiences and drive engagement and sales.
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