14 Aug 2020
Choose which products to make or invest in
It’s important to decide how much time, money and resources you wish to invest in your educational venture. There are hundreds of wholesales who will provide a fantastic array of educational craft products that you can stock online or in-store. However, if you can see a specific gap in the market, or a problem that is yet to be solved when it comes to children’s education, then it may be worth launching your own patented product. Creating a children’s craft kid is a fantastic way to introduce young people to a new hobby, such as knitting, crochet, papercraft and more. By using your experience of reputable brands and handy products, you can create an ultimate pack for individual kids or a group in a classroom. Making cost-effective decisions about individual products and packaging can also help make this more financially viable.
Prepare yourself with stats and feedback
As you start to establish your craft products in the education sector, it’s vitally important to collect evidence of why schools, parents and after-school clubs should invest in your products. Examples such as statistics that support the notion that crafting is good for children’s social skills, mental health and problem-solving skills will help you to promote your products. Create your own media pack or hire a designer to create one for you using colours and layouts that suit your brand. That way you can present potential clients with a comprehensive collection of information and testimonies – it’s best to let your product do the talking.
Research your competitors
There’s so much that can be learnt from keeping a close eye on your closest competitors. Establish who they are by comparing social media following, the number of educational products they provide in store and online and the type of services they offer. Make a note of what they do well and what they don’t. If they have a fantastic social media schedule then see how you can incorporate a more consistent routine with engaging posts on your own channels. If they have some great video content then brush up on your own filming and editing skills.
Branding is crucial
Not everyone will initially see the benefits of crafting for children, and why this can be seen as a critical part of education. Therefore, it’s important to make sure that the branding of your product range has a sophisticated tone. Your products aren’t just another game or a toy, they’re an essential part of children’s development. You are marketing your brand to adults and not children, therefore it’s best to shy away from infantile website and packaging designs.
Dedicate a section of your store/website to education
If you’re still planning on selling general craft products alongside educational crafts, then it’s a good idea to provide an entire section of your bricks and mortar store and website to children’s products. This will avoid confusion from your regular customers and will allow those who are interested to instantly find the type of products they are looking for. It’s also a great chance to showcase how your business is evolving and expanding to customers.
Build your credentials
If you haven’t got a lot of experience working with children, or you want to do some market research, then why not consider offering online or in-store crafting events for kids? Live craft-alongs on social media, or personalised video chats with parents and children could be a great feature to add to your online repertoire. Provided you can do so at a safe distance, you could also organise crafting demonstrations in store and take-home activities for kids in your bricks and mortar store. The more you can demonstrate that you and your brand has a positive influence on children and their development, the more likely parents and teachers are to trust you and your opinions on what products that should be buying.
Give out samples to teachers, schools and extracurricular groups
One of the best ways to create an impression on schools that you wish to work with is to send free samples of your educational craft products out to them for free, or in return for a review. Be sure to ask plenty of questions about how the children reacted to your product and how the teacher found the process of introducing it to the children and working through a lesson with it. This is likely to be a welcomed scheme as it will provide an instant activity for teachers and the children will be able to test and react to the products that you have given out. You could also try approaching clubs outside of schools such as the Brownies or Scouts who may be more flexible when it comes to creative activities. This kind of hands-on interaction with your brand and products is an invaluable way to establish yourself as a market leader in educational crafts.
There are plenty of teacher and education influencers on social media platforms including Instagram and Facebook. If you’re willing to pay them for advertising on their page, or send your products as a gift to some of these figures in return for an online review or recommendation then this could become a very powerful marketing tool. Influencers have worked to build a loyal following that listens and interacts with their posts, so it’s important to agree on total transparency to highlight promotional content.
Stay ahead of the curve by learning about upcoming kids’ trends
Is there a particular children’s TV show that’s taking the world by storm? Or a particular animal/theme that the age group you are focusing on loves right now? Pinterest is a great resource to research trends for children, or why not get in touch with some parents to see what their children are into? If you can tap into the minds of children by tailoring your crafts to what is seen as “cool” at that moment, you are much more likely to create a positive engagement with your products.
Connect with online platforms that communicate with teachers
Do your research and find opportunities in online websites, forums, social media groups and more than teachers frequently use. Plazoom is a great example that provides teaching resources and a space for people to share their difficulties and ask questions. This is a great chance to do some market research and to provide crafting solutions to teaching issues, but if you have the budget to advertise on these sites then you’re much more likely to reach a large number of your intended audience.