What is the most effective way of making a shared postal campaign get a high response rate?


Posted on 19th September 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

A shared postal campaign involves your leaflet or leaflets being sent to schools in a pack along with other firms’ materials. The items are sorted by the school administrator and then handed out to the relevant individual teachers.

In terms of getting the highest response rate possible, this is what you need to do.

1. Choose a shared postal mailing that comes with a free email campaign.

The next mailing with a free personal email campaign goes to 5000 secondary schools and takes place on 14 October. We need the printed leaflets no later than 7 October (but you can deliver earlier if you wish).

The free personal email campaign (which would normally cost over £200) can be to any of our secondary school or FE personal lists. These are emails that go directly to the teacher in question and not via the school administrator. Details of the lists available are shown here http://www.emails.gs/Secondarynamedlist.html

2. Choose a shared postal campaign that comes with a free entry onto the UK Education News rolling news programme.

In the 14 October mailing the text of your email advert will also appear free of charge on www.ukeducationnews.co.uk. If you have not used this service before do click on the link, and do call 01536 399 000 and we’ll talk it through. It is certainly worth focussing on this free element of the campaign because it can bring in a considerable number of sales.

3. Write your leaflet in a way that ensures the school administrator will pass your leaflet on.

All the normal rules about grabbing attention, etc, apply of course, but also there is one more facet of the postal shared mailing that must be considered. It is going to be looked at first by the school administrator.

Thus you must put, top right, a clear note (using something like 16 point Arial font) along the lines of “Attn: Head of English” so that the administrator knows whom to pass the leaflet to.

Next you should look at your advert not just from the teacher’s point of view (as noted above) but also the administrator’s.

If the advert seems at first glance to be a general one about something that the school already has (such as signs, noticeboards, paper, pens, CCTV, a website, staging for the hall, etc, etc) then there is every chance that the administrator might not pass this on.

So instead of showing pictures of school hall staging with an announcement that you are the best at supplying and installing school staging, you write a big headline that says, “What is the lowest cost way of installing, modifying and removing school staging?”
4. If your sell to two or more different departments, or you have two different products to sell, put in a second leaflet – at the heavily discounted rate.

The price for putting one leaflet in the postal shared mailing and obtaining the free email campaign and the free listing on UK Education News is £450, while the second leaflet takes the cost to £575. If you want to reach schools with sixth forms the prices are £360 for one leaflet and £435 for two.

I do hope you’ll give this mailing a try. For more information please call 01536 399 000 or have a look at www.shared.org.uk

Tony Attwood

For a complete overview of what Hamilton House does. Please visit www.hamilton-house.com

Reaching teachers who don’t read emails


Posted on 17th September 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

Emails will reach huge numbers of teachers. But what can one do to get to those who don’t read emails?

In some of my recent ramblings I’ve looked at the various ways of getting to teachers via emails, using generic, personal, subscription and your own “enquirers” list.

Now to round this off, I’d like to mention what one can do to reach teachers who simply don’t read emails. (It’s a shocking thought, I know, but there are some teachers like this.)

One approach is to use the post. Now postal direct mail has gained a reputation for being expensive, and it certainly is more expensive than email campaigns. But it also offers far higher response rates and a greater return on investment.

Indeed a successful postal campaign will invariably give a return that is far higher, per £1 spent, than that which can ever be achieved on an email campaign. In fact it is fair to say that the companies that are doing well in selling to schools are using the post.

However, none of us likes to risk lots of money trying to get a postal campaign right. So what is to be done – at a modest cost and without high risk?

The answer is that we do small scale random test mailings. In an example of such a project that we undertook last week for one of our clients, 200 schools were mailed. The cost was around £110. A small number of schools replied and took up the product that was on sale. The profit was around £600.

So our client now knows that a promotion of this type brings in a profit of £600, less the cost of mailing (£110). A good return. Being cautious our client quite reasonably has asked for a second test, which we are doing to a different random selection of schools. If the results are repeated the client will then mail 1000 schools, and so on.

Thus postal campaigns are one way of reaching teachers who don’t read emails. But there is a second approach: working via websites.

There are two main ways of doing this. The first involves placing an advert on UK Education News. This service is used avidly by many teachers – if you haven’t seen it do have a look. You’ll find that some of the headlines link to news stories and some to adverts.

Most stories on the site attract an average of around 700 readers – and remember these are readers who have clicked on the headline to find out more – so they are already interested when they get through.

You can advertise on UK Education News free of charge when you undertake a postal or email campaign with Hamilton House or you can book a slot on the service as part of our website advertising programme. Details are here.

Finally, we also recommend running a blog. In recent years we have set up blogs of all sorts that gain massive audiences and bring in lots of orders and enquiries ranging from direct marketing to the history of Arsenal FC. Our latest experiment (a blog on Bob Dylan) has been set up to market a book on the singer/songwriter – a venture we expect to be profitable since our blog is already picking up 150,000 visits a month – in a market where Google estimates there are over 5 million websites already in existence.

Blogs really are the most cost effective way of reaching people who don’t read emails, and I am very happy to explain how and why they work, and how much it costs to build one. (You’ll be surprised how little it costs.)

All of these projects (emailing, building your own list of enquirers, setting up and running a blog, postal experiments), can all be undertaken via our Velocity service which is described at www.velocity.ac

But if you don’t want to wade through any more of my writing, just call 01536 399 000 or email Tony@hamilton-house.com and either I or my colleagues can talk through the best approach for your company.

Tony Attwood

Subscription email lists are brilliant, but there’s something even better


Posted on 15th September 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

What is the single most effective email list for selling to teachers?

In my view there is far too much stress in the world, so I won’t keep you waiting for an answer to this question. I’ll give you the answer in just a few lines.

I’ve written about generic email lists, which if handled in the right way can produce interesting results.

Then I’ve covered the personal email lists of teachers, which go directly to their own in-box, rather than via the school office.

Finally my last article looked at subscription lists, which teachers have to apply to be on, and which generate the highest response rates of all three.

But still there is something even better. And that is the list of your own list of people who have expressed an interest in your product or service, or your line of work.

Now I’m going to beg you not to turn away at this point even if you have read previous comments of mine in which I go on and on about having your own list of potential and past customers – unless of course you already have a comprehensive list of this type and you are using it every week.

So please don’t turn away, because the majority of companies selling to schools don’t have their own list, or, if they do have one, they have only a very incomplete list, or they don’t use it properly.

And so in this article I’m going to set out how you can go about getting such a list – a list that will be worth its weight in some very heavy and valuable mineral. And I am going to do this under three simple headings.

1. If the list is that valuable how come many companies don’t have lists of their own customers and potential customers?

Quite simply because it is just a little difficult to get all the details and a bit time-consuming to keep it up-to-date and turn it into build a proper mailing list in a usable format. What you need is someone who is good at data research and good at data entry and updating.

2. “We’ve tried getting the email addresses of teachers who buy but all they do is give us the school’s office address.”

This is a common problem but not an insurmountable one. There are things you can write on your order form that will get more addresses of the actual teacher ordering, and there are tactics for getting teachers who don’t reveal their email address with the order to reveal it subsequently.

True, you don’t get everyone, but you can get most by using a stage by stage process. It takes a little while, and it is worth doing, because the resultant list is so powerful.

3. Teachers won’t like us emailing them regularly

This all depends what you write. Just send them a note each week about one of your products, perhaps with “10% discount!!!” written at the top, and yes, they’ll unsubscribe.

But if you write interesting, conversational articles, they will not only stay on your list but they will also read what you write. Quite shortly, you will become, in the teachers’ minds, the dominant supplier of your line of product – simply because you keep writing about things they want to know about.

* * * *

The simple fact is the email list of past customers and of teachers who have enquired is the most valuable marketing tool you can have. It will never be complete but even if it is only 50% complete it will still be invaluable.

Hamilton House has worked with a number of companies to develop their own email list of past customers and enquirers, invariably with significant success. And we also work with a number of companies to create and/or send out regular emails to these teachers.

Normally speaking this work goes through our Velocity programme with Hamilton House advising on how order forms, campaigns and websites should be developed to get all the email addresses in and then creating regular emails to send to these teachers. Details of Velocity are given at www.velocity.ac

As a result of this programme we can help you build a database of interested teachers which you own and which is constantly growing while at the same time building your own brand and stopping past purchasers wandering off to buy from anyone else.

Howeve,r the work doesn’t have to fit our format, and we can adjust totally to your requirements, picking up specific issues within the programme that you can’t handle in-house and working alongside your requirements at all times.

If you would like to discuss exactly how your company can develop the most powerful marketing tool possible, please call 01536 399 000.

Tony Attwood

Emails to teachers that are more responsive than the personal list


Posted on 12th September 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

Personal emails to teachers work better than generic emails. But what works better than either?


The answer to that question is simple. Email lists made up of teachers who have willingly subscribed of their own volition to receive the emails, work much better than both the personal and generic lists.

Now we need to be clear about such email addresses – for they are not email addresses gathered by phone calls to schools (which is what personal email address lists are) or through other research of this nature.

They are email addresses of teachers who have themselves gone onto a website and completed a form saying “please send me a copy of Education Management News each week.”

Education Management News is a service delivered by email and is only available where the teacher directly requests it. There are 12 separate editions published each week of each school term, each edition focussing on a separate segment of education.

Subscribers receive a news item each week relevant to the topic to which they have subscribed, and in a separate email a review of a product that may be of interest.

The 12 separate editions to which teachers can subscribe are:

Senior management, secondary schools
Senior management, primary schools
School marketing and PR
Careers and sixth form issues
School Administration and finance (for bursars, SBMs and administrators)
English, literacy and drama
School efficiency and savings
Motivation and behaviour management
Special needs
Sustainability, learning outside the classroom and the environment
Because of the nature of these email services, the reviews have to be written in a particular way to fit in with the general nature of the editorial commentaries that the teachers receive each week. More details, along with the total number of subscribers in each case, are given on http://www.emails.gs/emailteachersdirect.html

Response rates for reviews that appear in Education Management News tend to run at about double the rate for equivalent personal lists – and one can of course understand why given that the teachers receiving these emails have asked to receive them.

What’s more, reviews that appear on our subscription lists then also appear on UK Education News, the rolling news service, without any extra charge.

If you have never seen UK Education News I would certainly suggest you take just a moment to have a look at the site. It carries all the latest education news and is updated every five minutes 24 hours a day. On average a review that appears on UK Education News will be read by a further 700 teachers – and this of course means 700 teachers who have particularly picked this article to read.

If you would like to discuss the use of this service please do call 01536 399 000.

Previously in this series of articles I’ve considered generic emails and how their response rate can be greatly enhanced by ensuring that the school administrator passes them on, and personal emails

In the next email I shall look at a list that can get even higher response rates than emails sent via the Subscription list.

Tony Attwood

It is better when personal


Posted on 10th September 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

Personal emails to teachers generally work very well – and they don’t have to be expensive to send out.


The lowest cost way of getting a message to teachers is via generic emails – as I explained in my last article.

As I pointed out there, there is a way of writing generic emails which manages to get them through to the teacher in question. But sometimes even this doesn’t work – which is why we also have the personal email system.

Personal emails go directly to the teacher at school via an address such as BJSmith@stjohns.sch.gov.uk So no one gets to see it before the teacher does.

Such emails have the additional advantage that many teachers – it now appears to be a majority – access their personal email account not only at school but also on their mobile, tablet, laptop or home computer. Thus they can read your email at a time convenient to them.

Personal email lists are constantly being updated, because teachers change and school email systems change, so the lists are in an endless state of flux and need to be updated daily.

Nevertheless for most heads of department and senior managers in secondary schools we have email details for about 50% of the relevant teachers. The remaining half are in schools that either don’t have personal email services or won’t release the details.

Thus, while generic email lists get to almost every school but can suffer a high delete rate before reaching the relevant teacher (unless of course you are able to write the email in such a way that it encourages the administrator to pass the email on) personal email lists get to only half the teachers you want to reach – but do get directly to that individual.

However, despite getting the immediate delivery, there is still work to do in getting these teachers to read your email.

Our research shows that generally speaking straight text emails work better than highly designed graphic adverts which may not be visible to the recipient without the teacher clicking on “show images” in his/her email system.

But even so, a lot does depend on how the email is written and designed.

In this regard Hamilton House has done a lot of experimentation via our three retail companies, First and Best (the educational publishing house), the Dyscalculia Centre (which sells to special needs teachers) and the government sponsored School of Educational Administration and Management which runs courses for senior staff.

Through this work we’ve evolved completely new ways of selling to schools via personal emails which include the use of long headlines (in addition to the subject line) and the raising of educational issues in the first couple of paragraphs, before getting into the solution (ie, advertising the product).

We’ve also found that the use of conversational English and the absolute avoidance of any suggestion that we know how difficult the teacher’s life is always help our response rates.

An additional finding is that it can be highly beneficial to write regularly to the teacher concerned – as long as one changes the headline and opening paragraphs in each and every email.

Thus if one is advertising a particular GCSE course book one might lead in one email with the fact that students benefit from getting an overview of the course at the start – which is what this book does.

In the next advert one might stress that students can easily lose focus as to where they are in the course, which is why it is vital to have regular revision activities throughout the course, not just on the current topic but on all the topics covered so far.

A full list of all our secondary school email addresses is given here while there is a list of primary school addresses here.

You can, of course, buy these for individual use as you need them – just call 01536 399 000 or email Chris@hamilton-house.com. However, if you are going to use emails as part of a regular campaign there is an alternative approach.

The cost of sending out a personal email to secondary schools is 12p including transmission (with discounts available if you are not specific on the date or if you have not used our service before). But if you commit to doing three email campaigns a month, the price can come down to under half that price via the Velocity programme.

For example, if you wanted to email the Deputy Heads, Heads of English and Bursar in secondary schools each month, the cost would be the aforementioned 12p per email. But if you did this through the Velocity programme the price would be around 7p per school – and we’d write the emails for you at no extra charge.

Alternatively, if you wanted to write your own emails, you could do four emails a month, and the price would be around 5p per school.

There is no long term contract with Velocity – you can leave with one month’s notice. There are more details on www.velocity.ac – or please do call 01536 399 000.

If you missed my first piece on emailing schools, which covered generic emails, you’ll find it on www.blog.educationmarketing.org.uk Next time I’ll have a look at the subscription email lists. But in the meanwhile if you have any questions, please do give me or my colleagues a call.

Tony Attwood

Getting teachers to read your emails


Posted on 9th September 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

What is the most effective way of increasing the response rate of emails sent to the school’s generic email address?


The most widely known approach to emailing schools, and most certainly the cheapest, is through the use of generic school addresses.

Emails such as these are sent to the school office (with addresses such as office@ or admin@), and can then be directed to the teacher you wish to reach by placing the text “Attn: The Head of Music” – or whoever you wish to reach – on the subject line.

The benefit of this approach is that it is very low cost, But unless you plan your mailing carefully this low cost itself comes at a price.

First, you must recognise that although most school administrators will open these emails, the overwhelming majority of administrators then make a decision as to whether to forward the email to the relevant person.

So if you are emailing 5000 secondary schools and assuming you have an accurate and up-to-date list of email addresses, you could find that anything between 500 and 4500 of the teachers you are emailing actually get the message you sent.

Now research has shown that whether you actually get your message to 10% of the teachers you want to reach or 90% depends not on what you are selling but totally on how you set out your email.

As far as I know, Hamilton House is just about the only organisation that has conducted research in this sphere, and we’ve been aided of course by the fact that we own three companies that sell products and services to schools.

I won’t bore you with all the details of the research and its findings – I’m happy to discuss it on the phone if you’d like to give me a call – but the key point to remember is that it is not what you are selling that influences the administrator – but rather the way you are presenting the product or service.

So – that’s the first issue: getting the generic email to the teacher you want. But there is a second issue, and that involves your transmission system.

There are many companies that will allow you to send out bulk emails using their transmission system, but it is important to note that some of these will block certain emails sent to what they consider generic addresses. So you can find that all the emails sent to “office@” get through but the “admin@” get blocked, etc, etc. The only way to be safe with this is to get the company you want to use to give you a written statement to confirm that such addresses are acceptable to them.

Finally we have the issue of blocking. If a teacher in a local authority or academy group of schools complains to its IT department about your emails, your email address can be blocked.

This happens to everyone – but if you work through a recognised emailing company, such as Hamilton House, that company should be constantly monitoring its transmissions for any signs of difficulty and then opening discussions with the authority or academy chain in order to gett things rectified.

So if you are going to use a generic list this means that you need to understand the specifics about writing this type of email and be clear how you are sending it out and how you are going to ensure it arrives.

If you do want to go ahead and send it out yourself we are very happy to supply you with a mailing list of the generic email addresses of the vast majority of schools in the UK for £49.99.

Alternatively we can send the email out for you ourselves, thus ensuring that it does get to virtually everyone on our list. The price is £149 for the list rental and a mailing to secondary schools, £199 for primary schools or £299 for a mailing to all schools. There is more information here.

Finally, if you would like the Hamilton House team not only to send out the email for you, but also write the email, this can be done most cost effectively via our Velocity programme. The cost is £165 for each primary or secondary mailing, including the writing, and all you have to do is commit to three emails a month (using either the generic or the personal email lists). There are more details on www.velocity.ac

If you would like to know more about generic emailing to schools, including how it can be used to help you create your own list of potential customers, please call 01536 399 000 or email me: Tony@hamilton-house.com

Tony Attwood

What’s the best way to talk to teachers?


Posted on 5th September 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

Why telling teachers what they should be doing is not the best way to get attention and make a sale


If you ever take a look at my rambles on my direct marketing blog you might have noticed that this week I’ve written a couple of times about common sense marketing.

Or to be more precise I have written about why using common sense, as a way of deciding what to put in your advert, doesn’t always work.

I’m not going to repeat the arguments I have raised on that blog, but there is one point in relation to those pieces that I think is worth making specifically about advertising to teachers.

Now of course all generalisations need to be treated with caution, but the fact of the matter is that when we are advertising to any group of people (be they people who like river cruises or those who seeking to maximise the return on their pension) one has to make certain assumptions. Teachers are no different in this regard.

But with that caveat in mind, I would argue strongly against anything in your writing that suggests that you know what the teacher should be doing. Telling a teacher that this is the best way of teaching a particular subject or of solving a particular problem generally doesn’t work.

Which leads to the question: “if I can’t tell them that my product is good, what can I do?”

Here we come back to the avoidance of common sense marketing. The common sense approach tends to focus on the product, how good it is, this week’s special discount, and the like.

The alternative approach works from the premise that the teacher is the expert, and all you, the advertiser, are doing is saying to the teacher, “Of course you know best, but here’s something that might be of interest to you.”

Such an approach is very different from one that says, “50% Discount!!!” That sort of headline gives nothing to the teacher’s professionalism and sense of self-worth. Likewise a headline that says, “The best value notebooks on the market” leaves no space for the teacher’s vision of him/herself as a professional expert.

But, an approach which offers a possibility of debate is much more interesting to the reader. For example, if you start with a headline that says, “What is the most effective way of…” and then leads into a review of the question, and ultimately the answer, that does work.

Of course there is more to it than that – for the rest of the email or sales letter has to flow from the opening question, and it is important to avoid some of the other common errors that “common sense” marketing would deliver; but asking a question of that nature is a good start.

What it does is place you and the teacher side by side as people who recognise the same problem, and who work together to generate reasonable solutions to the problem. If you would like to see one result from this approach we’ve got one on our email web site.

Indeed it is because the whole issue of how you write to teachers in a way that gets results is so different from the common sense method that we developed the Velocity programme.

Velocity, which is used by a wide range of companies that sells into schools, is immensely flexible and can be used in a multiplicity of ways.

One common approach is for the company to agree to undertake three emailings a month using our personal email lists, and have the Hamilton House team write the emails, send them out, undertake an analysis of the results, and give as much guidance and advice as is required to make the campaign work.

The cost of such a monthly campaign is £495 – which is about half the cost of just doing the e-mailings (without any writing input) on a non-contract basis. And since the contract’s only requirement is that you give one month’s notice, you are not tied into any long term arrangement.

What’s more, the whole programme remains under your control. Nothing goes out without your approval, and you of course choose what you want promoted (although if you have a big catalogue of products we can make some suggestions as to what we think would work).

There is more in relation to Velocity on our web site. Or if you would like to talk things through we are on 01536 399 000. You can also email my colleague Laura, who is the head of Velocity, at Laura@hamilton-house.com

Tony Attwood

Why not every proposed free school is opening this term


Posted on 3rd September 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

Why some free schools are running into difficulty – and what it means in terms of marketing to schools

78 free schools are opening this term bringing the total number of free schools in England to 249. Additionally we have 12 new studio schools (making 40 all told) and 13 new University Technical Colleges (making 33 in total).

Just to pause for a moment, here are the definitions. Free schools are schools set up by interested local people with the aim of offering a different type of education in the area. Studio schools include teaching through enterprise projects and work experience. UTCs are backed by 500 big employers and focus on offering world class facilities and links with employers.

Added together that gives us 320 schools in these three categories – about 6.5% of the total number of secondary schools in the UK.

So they represent a small percentage but still an interesting group of schools because they are new, are following a new set of rules and, to some degree, new ideologies.

It’s been quite a struggle for my colleagues to get the list of Free Schools updated this year, not least because quite a few of those that have supposedly been about to open, haven’t.

Indeed along the way a number of free schools have gained Parliamentary approval but have then been abandoned, including the military-inspired Phoenix Free School. Others have run into problems with premises – some opening in temporary accommodation, with others still on hold while they keep looking for somewhere to go.

Indeed the press releases of some of the Free Schools which have gained approval make sad, but repetitive reading. As the Gateway Academy says in its notice, “It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that we have to announce…” and then it goes on to repeat the message of so many other projects: no premises, no school.

Quite often there is a certain amount of secrecy concerning what is going on, as with the plans to open a new free school on the site of a former Bradford community centre. As the local paper says, “the reason for the delay has not yet been made public”.

Other projects that have been approved are abandoned for the simple reason that there turns out to be “insufficient demand for secondary school places”. That was the case with Oasis Community Learning in Walthamstow.

Sometimes the government has a change of heart as with the withdrawal of approval of the aforementioned Phoenix School which openly said it was being set up because of the “poor quality” of neighbouring schools. The government has said that the project failed to meet “rigorous criteria”.

The Inspirar Academy in Spalding, Lincs, which had the fascinating notion of teaching in both Spanish and English has given up the struggle (at least for now) because of lack of demand.

I could go on with details like this for page after page – but if you want to know something about a particular school by all means email me (Tony@hamilton-house.com) and I’ll let you know if I have any news.

But the key point is that although many Free Schools do go through the process without any bother, there is a bit of hit-and-miss about the whole affair. Premises don’t have to be obtained first, no one has to do any proper market surveying, and there’s no test of rigour until the project is in its later stages. Most of us wouldn’t run a business this way.

However, for those that are open, we’ve got the data, and you can contact the schools via email or the post. Free schools, university technical colleges and studio schools can all be selected from our database by type, or included in selections according to age range and/or geographic location.

For more information please do call 01536 399 000.

Tony Attwood

As easy as 1-2-3


Posted on 1st September 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

How to cut the cost of personal emails to teachers in half

If you’ve ever looked at the home page of the Hamilton House website you may have seen our slogan, “Be different, be continuous”.

In essence it highlights the need to be different from your competitors in how you write and to keep advertising when others stop.

I’m glad to say that quite a few clients of ours have seen the wisdom of this simple point and have seen their market share grow considerably as a result of applying it.

So we are giving everyone who follows our advice a bonus. If you use Hamilton House to send out four or more emails a month to any of our secondary school personal email lists or either of our generic email lists, we will charge you just £123.00 plus VAT per mailing. We’re calling it 1-2-3. Clever, eh?

What’s more, if you want to email during the school holidays during the course or after a 1-2-3 campaign we will send out an email for you for free.

To give an example of how this would work, if you were emailing the head of careers it would normally cost you £230. With 1-2-3 it costs you £123.

An email to the head of drama would cost £255.96. With 1-2-3 it is, well, £123. A mailing to the head of English would cost £272, and once again with 1-2-3 it is of course £123.

So your four emails in a month can be selected from any secondary personal list, and no matter what the list the price per email will be £123.

If by any chance you want to email one of our smaller lists, such as the head of classics, you can opt to pay the list price (which in this case is £53.76). But of course for the overwhelming majority of lists you are getting a discount of around 50%. Plus the free holiday emails.

And just to be clear, you don’t have to email the same list over and over. You could email the Bursar for the first promotion, the headteacher for the second, the school business manager for the third, and so on.

To take part and get the huge discount you just place your first order and say that you want it as part of 1-2-3. You just have to agree to take four qualifying emails in the month following the despatch of the first email. So if the first email is to go out on 15 September, you must book in to send out three more by 14 October.

You can use the service for emails to any of our secondary school lists described on http://www.emails.gs/Secondarynamedlist.html and on our generic email lists (the ones that go to the school office for forwarding).

If your period of undertaking 1-2-3 includes a school holiday period, you can have a free email during the holiday and extend your month for the paid-for emails by one week. All we need at the start of the month is the list of the four emails that you want to send out and the dates you want them to be despatched. In each case we will need your copy one week before despatch date.

If you have any enquiries about this, or wishe to make a booking, please call 01536 399 000 or email Chris@hamilton-house.com. There’s a simple contract to sign and then you can get going.

Tony Attwood

The most active term ever?


Posted on 29th August 2014 by Tony Attwood in Uncategorized

What on earth has happened to the education market, and what can I do about it?


It is difficult to remember any school year that has incorporated so much change in one moment – and it is quite possible this is the biggest re-arrangement of education in the UK since the 1944 Education Act (although, I hasten to add, that was before my time!)

We’ve got the introduction of compulsory education or training to the age of 18, the massive expansion of primary and nursery education due to the rise in the number of children, a new National Curriculum in England, and the occasionally chaotic arrival of yet more free schools.

The Free Schools do represent an interesting scenario as each school is being equipped from scratch. But we’ve got an even greater level of uncertainty than normal with some schools that were planning to open failing to do so because of problems with their premises, and so parents having to fall back on the LA schools they were trying to get away from. I’ll be providing details of the exact numbers of schools opening in a few days’ time.

Plus, it seems, the GCSE results caused a lot of concerns for some schools, and quite a bit of rethinking is going on.

And all this in addition to the normal start of the school year activity. Local Authority schools now have all their money in the bank and are spending, while Academies, which get their funding directly for the start of this term, are, as usual, ready to spend at once.

In my next article I’ll go into the issue of how companies that sell into education can start to deal with such a situation, but for now, here’s a brief reminder of where immediate action can be taken.

Email campaigns: we can supply email lists very quickly and are normally able to turn around requests to send out emails in a fairly short time – providing, of course, that we are not fully booked (we do limit the number of emails each teacher on a personal list receives).

Free marketing programmes (including the “Payment by Results” service) do have some places available, but these can take longer to set up. There are details on http://www.hamilton-house.com/PBR.html

Postal campaigns normally take about a week to prepare and send out.

Shared postal mailings. Below are the dates for our forthcoming shared postal mailings with leaflets required one week ahead in each case. The first date for each of these mailings is one in which we also offer a free email campaign at the same time (ie 3rd, 4th, and 12th September).

September 2014
Primary – 3rd, 9th 23rd
Secondary – 4th, 16th, 30th
Nursery – 12th

However, all of these mailings have a size limitation, so please do call 01536 399 000 as soon as possible to make a booking. There are more details on www.shared.org.uk including details of the free email campaign offers that go with these mailings.

I do hope you’ll find something of interest for your forthcoming campaign – but if you have any enquiries about our services please do call 01536 399 000 or email Chris@hamilton-house.com

Tony Attwood