I have recently read Steve Chazin’s eBook, Marketing Apple.
In recent years Steve (bio) played a key role in the Apple marketing team, the same team that made the iMac, iBook, iPod and iPhone an amazing marketing success.
In his ebook Steve describes the top five secrets behind those marketing success stories.
I spent some time wondering whether we at Goizueta can learn from those methods and improve our marketing offering to potential students and potential employers.
The following is my take on using the secrets of Apple Marketing for a business school, in an effort to turn Goizueta into the next iPhone:
Product\ Service: Full Time MBA program in Goizueta Business School Future Customers: Prospective students
Product\ Service: Students in Goizueta Business School Future Customers: Companies
Secret #1: Don’t Sell Products (People buy what other people have)
In more details: Focus on what people do with the product; Help people feel they are getting into a special group.
Most of the schools and Goizueta among them is doing it: Business schools have videos with alumni and current students, they share stories in their web sites and brochures.
I thought about a blog that tell the story of students, but this was already done. We didn’t update it frequently enough.
Another option may be a better exposure of the faculty’s work. Goizueta already publishes Knowledge @Emory in which faculty discuss hot topics.
Maybe we need to utilize this secret in a different way.
Secret #2: Never be First to Market (Make something good greater)
More details: Try to occupy shelf space that already exists in the prospect’s mind; Focus on the one thing you do better – than make that mater to people
We are a great school for leadership. The Goizueta Advanced Leadership Academy is a leading initiative that brings together students who are leaders and make them better leaders.
My classmates are leading great initiatives – Board Fellows Program, National Black Month, Management Leadership for Tomorrow to name a few.
However, Goizueta is not among the first 20 search results for “business school leadership” or “leadership academy” on Google. Maybe an SEO campaign will work.
I think we have a great product offering in both Leadership and Community and we focus on it. Now we should make them matter to our customers.
The iPod makes Apple fans, writes Steve. Leadership should make Goizueta fans.
Secret #3: Empower Early Adopters (Help your customers help you)
More details: Early adopters are eager to help you win – they’ve already chosen you; Make your product stand out by including something users can display for you; Leverage Web 2.0 – help build social networks around your product. Build easy-to-use pragmatic products for later adopters
Who are early adopters? There are two different groups of early adopters: the alumni and the companies that recruit students and alumni. All of the groups above will help us spread the word if we only help them.
Alumni – The school is doing a lot of work in cooperating with its alumnus and there is an open connection between the school, the students and the alumni.
However, this is not a real Web 2.0 connection. Too often it is a career-related connection, instead of a sharing of content and knowledge.
Companies – The Career Management Center is constantly maintaining the relationship with the companies. Companies that recruit Goizueta students are coming back to recruit again since they really stand out.
This too may leverage Web 2.0
Recently I took part in a discussion aimed to leverage those early adopters to promote school and its students. A couple of the ideas in the discussion were:
1. Inviting alumni to lecture in school, probably as part of current courses. Our new Dean tried it in his class and I think it was a cool experience – real life example with people who were just a few years ago in the students’ seats.
2. Build a wiki site for discussion. This will allow alumni, students, and faculty share their thoughts and their experience and learn from each other. The problem: how may such a site grow and how may it assist in attracting crowd of prospective students.
Secret #4: Make Your Message Memorable (Boil the story down to its syrupy goodness)
More details: The message should be easily repeated by prospects; Think bite size not entire mea
I have thought about a memorable message and opened a Hebrew blog in which I write about my experience. It resulted in great attention and some new prospective students who first heard of the school due to the blog. No new Israeli students though.
“A startup atmosphere that builds leaders” – This is the real message I personally experience in Goizueta. We have a great small community, as in a small startup, and all of its members aiming to the same target – a shared success.
We build this startup-like-school step by step with some amazing events.
This is a memorable message. We need to make it a meme.
Secret #5: Go One Step Further
More details: Make first timers remember; surprise & delight customers
I think this is the easiest.
We do go (more than) one step further – every prospective student that visits Goizueta is impressed by the personal interactions we have, by the quality of classes, by the students.
Companies that recruit our students are impressed by their achievement.
In this secret I currently do not have any idea. Perhaps using the previous secrets will make this secret more powerful.