Education markets cover multiple facets, such as k-12 school marketing, high schools, colleges, boarding schools, libraries, adult education programs, special needs, and alternative settings. All those markets are changing rapidly. Funding, technology, current events, and environmental issues all impact what is learned, what is needed in educational settings, and how concepts and topics are taught. Traditional products and services may not be useful for much longer. Blackboards, for example, are being replaced by interactive whiteboards as fast as funding allows. Desks have to be redefined to support electronics, take up less space, and handle additional weight as obesity rises astronomically among students. Cafeterias are becoming privatized little by little throughout the country.
Discovering what products and services will be relevant in a year or two will require k-12 market research, as well as other areas of research. Data will have to be analyzed and reports will have to be disseminated for a business to know what products are worth developing, and which ones will be obsolete. An experienced company that specializes in educational markets can help businesses develop new products and service through research projects. It can also consult with businesses in several topic areas, and train sales staff regarding presentations.
Research projects can be designed, conducted, and analyzed by experts, research associates, and analysts. Primary research consists of in-depth interviews, focus groups, and a few types of surveys. Surveys can be done via telephone, online, or large-scale mailings. Efficacy, qualitative, and quantitative research is conducted as well. The secondary research includes data analysis to turn results into useful information. Summaries, reports, best practices, and white papers will provide businesses with the information required to redefine current products, reduce risks in developing new products, and identify gaps in order to create a niche.
Consulting is offered in areas of strategic planning, business planning, sales channel development, and marketing plans, among others. A business that currently provides school desks, for example, may want to consider making collaboration stations, based on a trend that focuses on group learning. The age group targeted, the size of an average classroom, and the type of projects conducted will dictate design elements of those new stations. Consultants can help work out those logistics.