Marketing need not be confined to brochures and websites. Getting out there and talking to people, surrounded by your branding, can be extremely effective.
Case Study: Windsor Branch, Ascot Retirement Fair
In 2014 Windsor Branch took a stall at Ascot Retirement Fair. Branch Committee Member Malcolm Lock said: "We weren't quite sure what to expect but the pitch was only £20, so we took a chance and were pleasantly surprised! We had plenty of interest and gave out many of our brochures, as well as those of the Maidenhead and Wokingham and District Branches."
Around a dozen attendees subsequently contacted the branch and several went on to become regular students.
Case Study: Wokingham Branch Programme Launch
Every year in May, Wokingham Branch hold a social event to promote courses starting in September and later. Tutors are invited to give a short presentation on their courses, and students can 'put their name down' or fully enrol on the day. Watch the video at the bottom of the page to hear how it started and find out just how impactful this sort of promotional activity can be.
Other event marketing ideas
- Contact your local shopping centre. Many give local organisations the opportunity to have a stand periodically.
- Look for local job and skills fairs; they may make provision for lifelong learning providers.
- Local fairs, fetes and festivals.
- School open days could be a good way to reach parents or grandparents.
- Farmers' markets, car boot sales - anything where there will be good footfall.
- Visit older people's homes or sheltered accomodation; put up a stand, give a presentation - or even arrange to hold classes there.
Sponsor someone else's event!
By sponsoring or supporting an event such as a village fete, fundraising ball, music event, charity dinner, school production or sporting event, you should be able to negotiate some promotional opportunities, e.g.
- The WEA logo and/ or branch name on all associated promotional materials.
- Permission to distribute your brochure to all those attending whether through hand-to-hand delivery or on a display table.
- The opportunity to make a short presentation about the WEA at the event or function.