In our recent blog ‘The Sales Funnel applied to L&D’, we explored how to create advocates of our learning indicatives by guiding them through the stages of Awareness, Engagement, Action and Advocacy. Focusing on the initial phase of the funnel, Discovery which we identified as Awareness in the L&D space, here are just a few ideas to consider, often used in marketing practice, to boost the creation of the all-important “buzz” around your launch and encourage engagement throughout the organisation.
Firstly, it’s a good idea to think about creating an identity for the learning initiatives, to make sure that the messaging is clear and to drive motivation and interest in the programmes. You may have heard of BAIDA before, which is Brand, Attention, Interest, Desire and Action, very similar in principle to the Conversion funnel. This involves building your brand, bringing it to the potential customer’s attention, generating interest, driving a desire to buy into the product or service and finally, taking action to become a customer. To find out more on BAIDA, check out our recent blog post which explored this marketing concept in more detail.
The identity of the eLearning programme is very much the brand in the BAIDA methodology. What is it we want employees to see and how do we want to present our initiatives as this will very much shape our campaigns? This could include having a particular image, message, name or logo associated with the programme. At this stage, aim for recognition and relatability so that people start to associate the visuals or name with the idea of the business as a “learning organisation”.
Next, it’s essential to secure and sustain top-down support of the initiatives, right from the beginning of our learning campaigns. Creating advocates in high-level staff and management, encouraging them to openly share the benefits and perks of the programmes, can be instrumental in boosting the awareness and visibility of the scheme. Central to the success of your learning initiatives throughout the organisation is targeting the all-important positive upwards spiral. Could you get your C Suite staff to put together a blog or maybe a short video to promote and endorse the content which you could share as part of your internal marketing? Nothing could be better at demonstrating the thriving learning culture and creating buzz than making the effect apparent at all levels, company-wide.
When you launch any new product, as a marketeer or as a Learning professional, it’s a good idea to set up and run a launch event, either in the office or virtually with regular pre- and post- advertisement to really stir up the buzz. Our Creative Director and Co-founder, Ali Soper, attended a client’s content launch event last year. The team did a fantastic job at promoting the event beforehand, with emails, social media, posters and word of mouth, and then at the event, they organised fun and memorable activities including live demos, pop-ups, balloons, freebies, cupcakes and even a competition to complete the most courses in a time period. The uptake of the resources internally has been incredibly successful, credited in large part to the real success of the launch event and the continued hard work of their L&D department to promote and endorse the learning initiatives.
Running a competition is another great idea to boost the “buzz” around initial launches. If this is something your organisation can offer, considering a reward or loyalty scheme can be a great incentive to drive interest and participation, particularly in those early days during roll out to get people used to and familiar with the content and platform. Perhaps the more CPD a learner collects, the more badges they gain which could equate to real life prizes, such as Amazon vouchers for the most content explored. This kind of incentivised reward scheme can significantly drive “pull factor” learning and praise exploration and discovery. Creating a sense of fun and motivation can be a really effective way of attracting initial interest and increasing awareness of the products available.
The “Buzz” around a launch is essential if you hope to successfully introduce and sustain a learning programme. It’s important to think about how you can effectively endorse and promote learning throughout the organisation. By generating interest and excitement about your offering, you’ll have the best chance of securing return on your investment, both in terms of usage levels and overall learner engagement.