Why don’t more advertising agencies offer to run adverts to teachers and only take payment based on sales?

I can still remember what it was like, some 30 years ago, to start a small company selling to schools, with very limited capital.

And I can still remember the frustration of buying (and paying for) adverts that brought in very little income.

Fortunately for me, despite some of my early adverts failing completely, I did make a success of Hamilton House.  But I have never forgotten those early days, and my thought at the time that a system in which companies only paid advertising fees if the advert worked would have been really helpful.

I know what it is like to spend money on developing one’s company, and then to have precious little left for adverts that may or may not work.  And that’s why, when I had the chance, I started Payment By Results.

Now there are around 100 companies that advertise to schools using Hamilton House, and which pay no advertising costs other than a commission on the sales they get.  If they make no sales they pay nothing at all.

Indeed so successful has the venture been that one company has earned around £250,000 worth of orders from schools, just using the Payment by Results system.  Of course there’s no guarantee that you will earn that much – but then, if you don’t, you won’t have lost anything on paying for advertising that didn’t work.

For each of our Payment by Results clients we send out the adverts via email to the relevant school managers and teachers, and also place the advertisements within the news items on UK Education News and on one of our regular blogs aimed at teachers.

The companies advertising with us keeps track of the orders that come in as a result of this advert (using a code on the advert or a similar device) and then at the end of each month they tell us how many items have been sold.

One month after that they pay us the commission due, at the agreed rate.  Nothing is paid up front for the advertising, and the advertiser has up to eight weeks from the launch of the advert to the moment when it has to pay the agreed commission rate.

There is of course a limit on the number of companies we can take onto our Payment by Results service, and at the moment we cannot take on any more companies on PbR which are selling to primary schools.

We are however able to work with some more companies selling to secondary schools, nursery schools, and overseas schools.

If you would like to explore whether this could help you sell your product or service, please do email my colleague Stephen@hamilton-house.com and send him the details of what you sell, the price, and if possible supply a link to your website where the product is listed.

Tony Attwood

What is the most cost effective way of reaching Bursars, SBMs, heads, and administrators in schools?

The answer is, I believe, through taking part in the first Schools’ Business, Management, and Admin Week.  The activities around this Week start next month, build up to the Week itself (which will take place between 19 and 23 September), and will continue through until next year.

This will be the first ever School Week which focusses on the management and administration of the school, and will be directed at headteachers, bursars, school business managers, and administrators in primary and secondary schools.  It is being run by Hamilton House in association with the School of Educational Administration and Management.

The Business, Management, and Administration Week follows on the successful launch of our series of specialist Weeks over the past year, with each Week being the equivalent of specialist trade show – except that it reaches many, many more people and lasts nine months.  Details of some of the Weeks we are running at the moment are shown below.

The activities of the Schools’ Business, Management, and Administration Week begin on 30 June with the launch of the website with emails to the various interested parties (heads, administrators, bursars, school business managers) in primary and secondary schools, and on UK Education News, the increasingly popular rolling news site.

Events will continue with a research programme into the ways in which schools are improving their efficiency (as the government requires), and the results will be announced in September and placed on the site.

Then a continuing series of promotions via emails, the UK Education News Service, and various websites will be directed at those who are involved in the business, administration, and management of running a school.

The website will be sponsored by a variety of companies – but none with competing products – with links to each sponsor’s website.  You can see the style and approach we adopt with the Special Needs Week website – although please note we are still adding articles to this site.

We will also promote the Week on our existing social media sites making reference to the work of our sponsors and this will be widely promoted from our various other websites.

Each sponsor involved in School Business, Management, and Admin week will have:

  • A page written by the sponsor which includes links to that company’s website.
  • A sponsor listing (with a link to their own website) on the home page.
  • A listing in four emails we send out to schools to promote the Week. The first promotion will be to Heads and administrators in primary and secondary schools and business managers and bursars in secondary schools.
  • Three subsequent promotions will also reach business managers and bursars in primary schools.
  • Each sponsor will also have two exclusive emails to schools written by yourselves and sent out by Hamilton House, which can advertise your product as well as mention your involvement in the Week.
  • There will be at least four headline stories in the main news listing on UK Education News, each linking to the site and listing the sponsors, and additionally full coverage on UK Education News of both of your individual news pieces that are being sent by email.
  • A full listing on the Exceptional Teaching website which is regularly promoted to schools by Hamilton House.

Cost and deadline

Members of our Velocity programme who sell products relevant to the managers and administrators we reach can be included free of charge.  For other companies the cost will be just £195 plus VAT including the listing on the site and all the email campaigns.

We will not accept any directly competing sponsors and thus bookings are very much on a first come basis.

To be included in the first emails that go to schools on 30 June, we will need you to have signed up and supplied full copy for the advert no later than 14 June.

School Business, Management, and Admin Week is owned and operated by Hamilton House Mailings Ltd in association with the School of Educational Administration and Management.  For all enquiries please do call 01536 399 000 and ask for Jenny Burrows.  Or you can email Jenny at Jenny@hamilton-house.com or fax us on  01536 399 012.

Tony Attwood

If you would like your marketing to schools to generate more sales, this is what you do.

Most firms approach the notion of getting more sales from schools by thinking “what else can we do?” or something along those lines.  But if instead you look at specific issues within your selling programme, it is possible to make a lot more progress, a lot faster.

First you need to understand what is stopping your sales rising.  This is complex because there are lots of possible reasons for sales not rising further or even for sales declining, and it does take a few moments to work out which one applies.

Now let me add that answering this question, “What is stopping sales rising?” is the prime thing we do in the Velocity programme.

And what I will do here is try to explain how we approach this question.

The first thing we do is look at the product – and I know that when I say this, I can get the response, “well we can’t change the product.”  That, of course, is true, but quite often one can change the way the product is perceived.  We ask “how do teachers think about this, and would it be helpful if they saw it in another way?”

The we look at the competition.  Again people say, “we can’t ask tell our rivals to change their advertising,” which again is true, but we can ensure our Velocity clients advertise in a different way from them, very subtly undermining their offer (and I mean very subtly) while getting teachers to appreciate  our offer.

The problem with these first two issues is that quite often companies that do consider them respond by heading straight into the third issue – cutting the price.  But price cutting is rarely successful in terms of profits, although raising prices while changing the style of the advertising can work!

Of course the problem might not be any of these things – it could be the way your catalogue or the web page is laid out, or indeed which web page you send interested readers to.

The problem here is rather similar to that of writing the email or sales letter, the approach that works best is generally not the most obvious “common sense” approach.

This is because the way you will look at your adverts is that of a person reading each word and studying the page in detail.  Potential customers glance quickly, and you have to transform them into buyers during that “glance”.

But sadly even when all this is sorted, there can still be a problem if you find that the teachers you want to sell to have an attitude or assumption that is not conducive to your making a sale.

It can be the oddest thing – the dislike of a piece of technology, an assumption, a belief… but once again this can be worked with if you know what that attitude issue is.  So next, we take this into account as we write the adverts.

In this way our Velocity programme works by working through each issue affecting the advertising of the product.  But still that is often not enough, for we often need to know exactly what the attitude of teachers is towards this product.

This can be a major issue, and indeed I have a couple of fine examples of this I can share with you – do call me if you want to know more.

Last, you might be failing to maximise your sales because you are getting little or no positive coverage in the news. Once again, we can look at that with you.

Of course we can’t guarantee a two page spread in the Times, but we can guarantee that information about what you sell will be available on the main news media service teachers use.

As you can imagine, working through all these different areas to find what you have to do to enhance your sales can be daunting when undertaken on its own.  Which, as I say, is why Velocity exists.

Velocity costs £495 a month, and for this you get all the analysis above and between three and five emails a month each sent to one of our email lists.

Indeed on our websites there is much more on Velocity, and on the various primary and secondary email lists we have. If you would like to see our rolling education news service which can run your stories if you are a Velocity customer it is here.  It updates every five minutes, with new stories appearing at the top.

To find out more please call 01536 399 000 and ask for one of the Velocity team, or email Jenny@hamilton-house.com

Tony Attwood

OTHER RECENT POSTS

●     How Special Interest Weeks are grabbing teachers’ interest and focussing awareness on their sponsors

●     What is the simplest way to ensure that teachers can find your product or service when they go searching?

●     Four emails to schools plus full website, blog, and news coverage between now and September from £149

How Special Interest Weeks are grabbing teachers’ interest and focussing awareness on their sponsors

Imagine being at the heart of a dramatic news story that focuses on the educational area in which your company works.

A discovery so significant that everyone is talking about it. And your company name is associated with it.

That is certainly how it can be for companies that participate in one of our Special Interest Weeks.  For when we run a Special Interest Week we work hard to ensure that something new and dramatic is going to be revealed to teachers – and we work to ensure everyone realises who is sponsoring it.

By way of example, take Special Needs Week where we asked teachers if there were any areas of special needs that they were faced with but for which they felt they didn’t have the resources they needed.

It is a key question, and the results of the survey, in association with Special Needs Week, will undoubtedly grab the attention of special needs teachers across the country.

This year we’ve been involved in five Special Interest Weeks since our original trial programme, covering Dance, Special Needs, British Values, Learning Outside the Classroom, and Positive Play.

Some have been run for companies on our Velocity programme (for whom there is, of course, no charge as it is part of the whole package), while others are sponsored either by a single company or by various co-sponsors.

Every company that has joined with us gets four emails to the relevant head of department, involvement in new research, and inclusion in a range of news coverage, plus full inclusion on the website.

Along, of course, with full acknowledgement throughout as a sponsor of the Week.

Additionally each sponsor will have two exclusive emails to schools written by themselves and sent out by Hamilton House, which can advertise their product, as well as a mention of their involvement in the Week.

And there is still more, because there will be at least four headline stories in the main news listings on UK Education News, as well as the website which will remain active throughout the 2016/17 school year.

Among the Weeks we are currently looking at for the Autumn Term 2016 we have…

School Business and Administration Week with information aimed at School Business Managers, Site Managers, and Administrators, including suggestions relating to enhanced efficiency and time saving.

PSHE and Citizenship Week considering the key issues within the subjects, and the best resources available.

Healthy Eating Week.  What exactly can a school do to help pupils and students understand how the way they eat will affect them for years to come?

Money Week focussing on how students learn about finances, and how they can ensure that they don’t get into debt beyond their means to repay.

School Creativity Week, celebrating the importance of and latest developments in music, art, literature, poetry, drama, photography within schools.

School History Week, considering all aspects of teaching the subject in school.

School Buildings Week, focussing on what can make a school building work in a better way in order to enhance teaching and learning.

These, of course, are just a few ideas – if you would like to sponsor a Subject Week arranged around the products and services your organisation produces then please do call.  We’ll be happy to talk it through on the phone and then, if the idea seems viable to both sides, create an outline programme for you to consider.

As noted above, members of our Velocity programme can be included in a Week related to their work at no extra cost. Companies that wish to be co-sponsors are charged £195 plus VAT while sole sponsors pay £650 plus VAT.

If you have an interest in any of the Special Interest Weeks mentioned here, or would like to suggest a special week built around your area of interest, please do get in touch either with Jenny Burrows or myself on 01536 399 000 or email Jenny@hamilton-house.com

Tony Attwood

What is the simplest way to ensure that teachers can find your product or service when they go searching?

Some teachers read emails, some read news feeds, and some go searching on websites that list a variety of resources.

We’ve been particularly focussing in the last year on the latter group – and ensuring that we have available for all such teachers a website that lists a wide variety of resources covering virtually every aspect of the work within each subject and each age range.

And over the last year, because we work with so many companies that supply schools, we’ve been able to develop a significant list of resources and their providers, all in one place, and we regularly promote these resources to each relevant teacher via email.

If you are a member of our Velocity programme you will already be part of this promotion, but if not you can join in for just £49.95.

Each half term we email all the senior teachers working in each of the areas that we cover on the Exceptional Teaching programme, (from admin, art and assemblies through to safety, science, security, school supplies, and SEN) with details of resources that are available.

We also point them towards the Exceptional Teaching Website where all the companies that have joined in the programme are listed and are linked to their own individual websites.

And as a bonus our announcements are also carried on UK Education News and so get an even wider audience.

In May and June we are promoting to the following teachers, and on the following topics.  An example of what each email looks like is shown at the foot of this notice.

Subject Area List Date
Literacy Literacy Co-ord 16-05-16
Primary Playtimes Primary HT, Primary Dep Head 16-05-16
Media Media Studies 16-05-16
Nursery All Nursery lists 16-05-16
Business, Economics Business and Economics 16-05-16
SENCo – dyscalculia Senco, Maths, Numeracy Co. 23-05-16
School Supplies Primary and Sec SBMs, Bursars 23-05-16
RE RE 23-05-16
Art Art 23-05-16
Languages MFL 23-05-16
Science Science 30-05-16
PE PE 30-05-16
Primary Behaviour Primary Heads and Deputies 30-05-16
Sec Behaviour Sec Heads, Deputies, PSHE 30-05-16
Primary Music Music Coordinators 30-05-16
PSHE PSHE 06-06-16
Geography Geography 06-06-16
Careers Careers 06-06-16
Music Music 06-06-16
Numeracy Numeracy Coordinators 06-06-16

We do have many more subjects booked in for promotions to schools towards the end of June and on into July so if your subject is not shown above, please do get in touch, and we’ll be able to let you know when that promotion is taking place.

Below is the email that we recently sent out to secondary science teachers, by way of example.

If you wish to be involved simply email Samanthabates@hamilton-house.com and let Sam know which subject area you wish to reach.  We’ll then come back with a confirmation, after which you simply need to send us the information that we shall publish both on the web site and within the email.

The maximum number of words you can use (excluding the contact details is 100).

If you have any questions please do call 01536 399 000 and ask for a member of the Exceptional Teaching team or email SamanthaBates@hamilton-house.com

Here’s what your advert will look like.

Exceptional Banner - Bigger

Exceptional Science Teaching Resources

……………………………………………………………………………………………………

Behaviour Solutions

Amazing Brain Posters – We have produced four brain posters which will help pupils and students understand their brain, how to enhance their learning and help them begin to modify their own behaviour.

Email: dave@behaviourmatters.com

Telephone: 01626 366161

Postal address: Behaviour Solutions Limited, 15 St. Marys Close, Abbotskerswell, Newton Abbot, Devon, TQ12 5QF

…………………………………………………………………………………………………

SSS

Interactive Biology Software – 17 titles packed with hundreds of stunning curriculum 3D animations describing difficult to understand concepts for Biology. There are texts, voice-overs, quiz zones, drag and drops, multiple choice quizzes and more. Request your 14-day free trial of Biology Educational Software Solution.

Interactive Chemistry Software – 14 titles packed with hundreds of stunning curriculum 3D animations describing difficult to understand concepts for Chemistry. There are texts, voice-overs, quiz zones, drag and drops, multiple choice quizzes and more. Request your 14-day free trial of Chemistry Educational Software Solution.

Interactive Physics Software – 13 titles packed with hundreds of stunning curriculum 3D animations describing difficult to understand concepts for Physics. There are texts, voice-overs, quiz zones, drag and drops, multiple choice quizzes and more. Request your 14-day free trial of Physics Educational Software Solution.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………

UniTasterDays

Search Taster Day Events – helps Science teachers to discover an array of events to book students on to, such as university and college taster days, workshops, residentials, open days, outreach events and widening participation opportunities.

Email: info@unitasterdays.com

Telephone: +44(0)208 798 0982

……………………………………………………………………………………………………

ZigZag Education

Science Teaching Resources – From genetics to spectroscopy to thermal physics, you can help your pupils build and apply their knowledge, and check their progress too.

Email: sales@ZigZagEducation.com

Telephone: 0117 950 3199

Postal address: ZigZag Education, Unit 3, Greenway Business Centre, Doncaster Road, Bristol, BS10 5PY

……………………………………………………………………………………………………

Signpost Educational Ltd

Calculators – basic calculators, Casio scientific calculators, LK 183 scientific calculators, Sharp scientific calculators, Texet scientific calculators and Aurora scientific calculators.

Calculator Storage Boxes – Gratnell’s storage boxes (with transparent clip-on lids and foam inserts for 30 basic or scientific calculators) are a convenient way of storing your classroom calcs.  The slots in the foam mean that you can see at a glance if any calcs are missing as well as providing protection for your calcs.

Student Packs for Lessons and Exams – designed to provide your students with the equipment they need for most of their lessons and exams. Consists of a clear plastic, “exam friendly” zip up wallet containing: Three quality ballpens  (black ink), two HB pencils, 15 cm ruler, metal sharpener, eraser.

Telephone: 020-7515-1797

Postal address: SIGNPOST EDUCATIONAL LTD, PO Box 999, London, E14 6SH, UK

……………………………………………………………………………………………………

First and Best in Education

Investigating Chemistry Worksheets for KS3 – a collection of worksheets, all tried and tested in the school environment, covering all of the requirements for Key Stage 3 Chemistry – plus some extension work.

Plastics in our Environment – a guide to the science of plastics and the environmental issues concerned with their use for Key Stage 4.

Science Crosswords and Short Answer Tasks – a volume of over 40 crosswords and games focussing on GCSE topics in general through to pages on specific topics.

Email: sales@firstandbest.co.uk

Telephone: 01536 399007

Postal address: Hamilton House Mailings Ltd, Earlstrees Ct, Earlstrees Rd, Corby, Northants, NN17 4HH

…………………………………………………………………………………………………

You can find more Exceptional Teaching resources at exceptionalteaching.org.uk.

 

 

Four emails to schools plus full website, blog, and news coverage between now and September from £149

To ensure that schools continue to be responsive to the messages we send out on behalf of our clients, we limit the number of emails sent to schools each month – and as a result we’ve now stopped taking orders for July for all except our Velocity customers.

However we do have a few spaces left for May and June, and so to help out, in case you have not got your marketing schedule fully resolved for this summer, we have a marketing plan that runs through May, June, August, and September.

Better still it is available at just £149 if you are reaching secondary schools and £195 if you are reaching primary schools. The service includes four adverts distributed by email, our on-line news services, plus websites and blogs.

Now the first question you might have is – what is the point of emailing in August?  In fact August has become an increasingly fruitful time for promoting as most senior staff come back to work in August.

Indeed for everyone from those involved in careers and sixth form work through to those new to a school and those dealing with admissions, August is the time for looking on to the new year.  Plus, of course, Scottish schools do start teaching again in August.

Overall in this four month programme what you will get is:

  • One email to schools in each month (May, June, August, and September) using any of our email lists.
  • One story placed in UK Education News each month (this can either be your advert or a completely different piece).
  • Coverage of the UK Education News story/advert on the Schools’ Blog.
  • A full listing on the appropriate subject section of the Exceptional Teaching website.
  • An entry each month on our Facebook and Twitter services, “Savings for Schools”.

If you wish to run two emails in each monthly period you can simply buy two packages at either £149 or £195 each.

All emails will go out during the working week. The exact date in each four week period will be selected by Hamilton House with, at the very least, a two week gap between each mailing.

You will receive, at the end of each month, a report on the number of people who have seen the advert as an email, on UK Education News, and the blogs.

Then, in the unlikely event that you receive either a poor number of click throughs to your website or a good number of click throughs with a limited number of sales, we won’t just leave you in the lurch.

In these circumstances, we’ll offer a free consultation by phone or email in which we analyse what has happened and suggest exactly why, giving you pointers as to how matters could be improved very quickly at no additional cost.

These adverts will all be written and prepared by yourselves and can be supplied as text or HTML files.  Adverts for us on our news services must be supplied as Word documents.  A picture can be added, depending on the format.

if you are interested you can call 01536 399 000 and ask to speak to one of us about “May to September Marketing Programme”.  Or if you have a specific question, please do email Jenny@hamilton-house.com.

Tony Attwood

RECENT POSTS

■        A new range of personal email and named postal lists to senior staff in educational establishments.

■        Most firms selling to schools promote through just one medium. But using 3 media will cost exactly the same!

■        What is the simplest way of creating ever higher levels of interest from teachers in your products and services?

Something for nothing is not always a clever idea – especially when attached to the slogan “no win no fee”.

Around two years ago I was involved in a very minor car accident.  A huge truck moved out of its lane and was about to crush my much smaller car, I pulled away from it, and consequently scraped the side of the car in the next lane.

We were all doing about 15 mph.  The damage to my car was a very tiny scratch; to the other car, nothing.

I did my duty – stopped and gave my details to the other driver, told my insurance company, cursed my luck and drove on.  I didn’t even bother to get the scratch repaired.

Imagine my surprise then when I discovered that the driver of the other vehicle was claiming that she had suffered whiplash, had had to have her car off the road for repairs, had needed physiotherapy, and had to buy a new child’s seat and pram for her baby while driving the car she’d been forced to hire in the interim.

I won’t bore you with the full story (see below if you want to know more), but last week we had our day in court. And it really was a full six hour shift complete with barristers and judge.

What had happened was that the driver of the other car had received a phone call which opened with the telling line, “I understand you have been in an accident that wasn’t your fault…”

I was outraged when I heard of the whiplash allegation, and told my insurance company I wanted to fight the case.  And thus last week, two years on from the event, the judge not only ruled in my favour, but also ruled that the lady bringing the case should pay the full costs.  Something that amounted to a little over £5000.

Worse (for her), I found out later that because the judge ruled that she had deliberately sought to mislead the court with her whiplash claim, the “no win no fee” company would not be picking up the tab. She would have to pay.

No win no fee, in this case, turned into a £5000 bill.

I thought of all this as I came this morning to write an advert for our “Payment By Results” service. It is, after all a service in which if you don’t get any sales you don’t pay us any money.

However, given that there is no court involved, no barristers, and no judge there really is no chance that you will be caught out. You send us your advert, we send it out from time to time, you get the orders, and then at the end of each month you tell us how many sales you’ve made. We send you an invoice for our commission at the agreed rate.

At the moment we have space to accept a small number of new clients with products that sell into nursery schools and secondary schools (but not primary schools).

If you would like to explore whether this could help you sell your product or service, please do email Stephen@hamilton-house.com and send him the details of what you sell, the price, and if possible a link to your website where the product is listed.

If by any chance you have been approached by a no win no fee company and want to know more about my big day in court, you can ring me on 01536 399 013, and as long as I am not  talking to a customer, I’ll be happy to have a natter.  It was a most revelatory day.

Tony Attwood

OTHER RECENT POSTS (click to see the article)

●     Most firms selling to schools promote through just one medium. But using 3 media will cost exactly the same!

●     What is the simplest way of creating ever higher levels of interest from teachers in your products and services?

●     Is it really possible to be in two emails to the teacher of your choice and listed on a leading website for just £49.95?

A new range of personal email and named postal lists to senior staff in educational establishments.

The email and postal lists below are all named, with personal email addresses.

  • Head Librarians at FE Colleges – 261
  • Head Librarians at Universities – 187
  • Directors of Education in local authorities – 216
  • Special Needs Advisers in Local Authorities – 198

In addition we have a new list of chief executives of academy trusts most of which are named and for which we have personal email addresses – 442

In each case Hamilton House will undertake the email campaign or postal campaign on your behalf, with the email appearing to come from your company name.

Further, with each email sent out, we will also then include your message as a news item on UK Education News and place it on one of our education blogs where it will remain for six months.

Design, writing and technical points

If you wish to send a text only file then we can take that as a Word file. If you wish to supply an HTML file please see the information on formats supplied here.

We have also spent a lot of time looking at how different ways of writing emails affect response rates.  Our report on this is here.

Prices for email campaigns

Please note that companies that are part of our Velocity programme may use these addresses without any further payment. For other companies the prices are…

  • Use any one email list: £35.00
  • Use any two email lists with the same message: £45.00
  • Use any three email lists with the same message: £55.00
  • Use any list along with one of our primary school or secondary school email lists: £10.00 in addition to the cost of the selected list.

Prices for postal campaigns

Approx 55p per item including envelopes, labels and postage (prices depend on the envelope, weight, etc).

All prices are subject to VAT. If you have any enquiries please call Stephen on 01536 399 000 or to make a booking please email Chris@hamilton-house.com

Most firms selling to schools promote through just one medium. But using 3 media will cost exactly the same!

If you keep an eye on the marketing press and blogs you’ll know that there has been a lot of commentary about the way that various media have declined in terms of the number of sales they can deliver.

Ad blocking on websites and email blocking have been blamed, and it is clear that many commentators still don’t understand exactly how one can get around this.

However there are ways forward – not least by using several different media.  Especially when the extra media are made available free of charge.

This is the case with shared postal mailings with Hamilton House. Thus for the postal shared mailing on 8 June to 5000 secondary schools we are additionally offering a free email campaign and free PR coverage on UK Education News.

Such a combination of the post, email, and one of the dominant websites in the education market means that the chance of each relevant teacher seeing the promotion is two or three times as high as that when just one medium is used.

The postal shared mailing consists of a pack of leaflets which are sent together to the school – with the leaflets distributed to the required teacher by the school administrator.

To help you get the best level of sales from this part of the campaign we have now put on line a sample advert in Word form that we have tried and tested, and which you can download and use. You’ll also find a commentary on that sample advert, explaining why each element of the advert is as it is.

Then you will get, free of charge, an email campaign to any one of our secondary school lists of managers and heads of departments, plus a text version of your advert on UK Education News and one of our specialist blogs.

The price of sending one leaflet to each of the 5000 secondary schools in the postal shared mailing on 8 June is £480 – under 10p per school. Two leaflets (which don’t have to be directed to the same teacher) will cost £720. Just over 7p per teacher.

These prices apply to leaflet/s with a total weight of 15gms. Above that there will be a small weight surcharge.

You might also find our article on How to get the highest response rates in a postal shared mailing of interest. There is once more a link to that article and information on shared mailings in general on www.shared.org.uk

To check on availability, to talk about leaflet design, and indeed to discuss any points of detail relating to our postal shared mailing, please call 01536 399000. Or to book into a mailing please email Chris@hamilton-house.com

Tony Attwood

What is the simplest way of creating ever higher levels of interest from teachers in your products and services?

I have often argued that at the heart of all companies that sell successfully to schools there is the combination of flexibility and variety.

Most particularly, flexibility and variety in the way one writes adverts and responds to the sales figures will enhance sales.

Now, if you ever take a peek at my pieces on the Hamilton House blog you might have seen my commentaries on how certain ideas take hold in marketing and then everyone goes charging along with these ideas.

At present the BIG IDEA is to write emails that start with a variation of “I am just following up on my email last week” to give the (false) impression that the writer has been in regular touch with the recipient in the past.

Nothing that I know suggests that the idea works – but that doesn’t mean one shouldn’t try it out once.  But then if it fails one should move on.

The same is true with the media. A particular style of email might work for you, and if so that’s great, but you still need to try different styles and indeed other media (such as the news service UK Education News, online directories, blogs that teachers refer to, social media etc.)

Now this can look like an enormous amount of work – especially when combined with the notion of tracking all the adverts, seeing which ones work, and then making improvements to any areas that need it.

Which is why we have Velocity – a programme that now includes no less than nine major activities that are available to companies that use Velocity.

Of course, most companies don’t take up all of Velocity – and certainly not all the time, because there is so much there – but all the elements of Velocity are there when needed.

For example, if you have been writing your own adverts you might find it useful to have a break and let the Velocity team work on the ads.  A change of style and approach can, by itself, make quite a difference.

And then there is the issue of click throughs to sales.  An advert might be run, lots of people might then click onto your website, but few sales happen. This is normally because there is a problem with the way the page that you take the teachers to is written.  A few changes can unlock that problem.

If you’ve never used social media or never appeared as a story on the UK Education News rolling news service, this could be a valuable addition, as you will be reaching some teachers who read the news but don’t read their emails.

If you are selling some high value products, then it could be helpful to link in with organisations that offer grants for particular projects within schools (and it is easy to underestimate the amount of sales that can come in this way).

And so on and on … writing and despatching emails is just part of what Velocity can do for you, and if you are seriously looking to unlock the door to higher response rates, this can be programme that will take you along that route.

There is a lot more about Velocity as a route to developing your selling to schools  on our website – or if you prefer please call 01536 399 000 and ask for a member of our Velocity team.  Alternatively you can email Jenny@hamilton-house.com

If you would, however, like to discuss alternative methods of reaching schools that could be relevant to your business and products, please do call me. We offer discounted short time projects, such as the Three Month Programme, Payment by Results advertising, and a number of other alternatives.

Tony Attwood

Tony@hamilton-house.com