For the third year running, C. Blohm & Associates and Winter
Group teamed up to conduct two in-depth focus groups with
educators attending the annual ISTE conference. As in the
previous years, we explored purchasing preferences, media
and information habits, panelists’ engagement in social and
other marketing media, and their perceptions about new trends
and new challenges on the horizon. As always the conversation
was earnest, intense, and enlightening.
Here are a few highlights…
Creating conversations between publishers and the media is the primary
activity at C. Blohm & Associates, Inc. (CB&A). We guide companies in
the education and special needs industries by clarifying and delivering
their communications—whether speaking to media, chatting with industry
colleagues or responding to customers and prospects. We help our clients
build strategic communications plans that significantly boost their visibility,
which in turn has a substantial impact on their bottom line. Each client’s plan
is customized to focus on their key audiences—teachers, administrators,
therapists, state and national policy makers, and parents. We execute and
analyze media and public relations plans, create and deploy corporate
visibility campaigns, and recommend and utilize PR and content marketing
techniques to support Web optimization strategies.
Operating with a full-time staff of 16 designers, production/programming
artists, copywriters, account managers, media specialists, researchers
and support staff, Winter Group serves a diverse group of clients in
the education, publishing and nonprofit sectors. Our clients include
ABC-CLIO, Autodesk, Britannica Digital Learning, College Board, Epson/
Epson Canada, PBS Educational Media, National History Day, Network
for Teaching Entrepreneurship, WNET, Measured Progress, Jonti-Craft,
Rainbow Creative Services, LMC Magazine, Scholastic and several other
innovative organizations serving the education and library markets. Today,
our services include a spectrum of digital and multimedia communications,
direct marketing, advertising in multiple venues including online, mobile,
social and print environments, lead and demand generation, market research,
strategic planning, exhibit/environmental design, event management and the
development of comprehensive branding programs.
To learn more, contact Charlene Blohm at
firstname.lastname@example.org, or 608-216-7300, x17.
To learn more, contact Linda Winter at
email@example.com, or 303-778-0866, x12.
C. BLOHM &
Taking the Pulse.
WHAT are they buying?
Educators Speak Up
and Speak Out...
Where are they getting information
and how much influence does
marketing really have?
Educators do the homework
DEVICES, DEVICES, DEVICES.
Storage Area Networks
Charging stations and
Solutions to accomplish
New language lab solutions
• Common Core State Standards
• Common Assessments
• A pressing need to integrate
technology smarter, faster, better
• Hybrid instructional models
• Teacher requests for more and better
• Strategies to “show” engagement
• Technology is “driving” students
and teachers alike to “rise above”
• Growing needs for intervention and
SPED solutions, using technology to
serve a growing student popluation
On their minds…
online assessments, professional
development and digital content
is looming large....
“We are definitely changing professional
development around the Common Core.”
“We need better digital textbooks. They’re
cumbersome. And they don’t always integrate
with our gradebooks.”
“The challenge is going online for testing.”
“Four week testing sessions are a nightmare.
You lose all that instructional time.”
“We’re building two new high schools.
It’s a five-year project. What is going to
be available five years out? You need
someone to interpret the future to buy
“I need consulting around integration.”
”There are larger issues than just apps for
Industry publications in print and online
are still “informational anchors”
Blogs and social media are gaining
influence and importance
If it’s a good ad, article, or thought
leadership piece...it gets shared!
Bloggers are on educators’ radar
PLCs are the “inside” source of information
LinkedIn? More often.
Pinterest, YouTube, TeacherTube? Gaining.
• More interest and use of Pinterest,
PIXLR, Google+, Edmodo, EduClipper
• They’re following bloggers
• They’re watching TED Talks
• They want your email…but they want
the facts not the fluff
• They Google…first!
• They want you to SHOW UP
• They want current information on your
• They want clear, credible information…
• They want customization options
• They have a growing interest in gaming
• They want opportunities to interact with
vendors in more casual settings
• They are buying throughout the year
“I need to look at big data,
the next big challenge. I want to find
companies to adapt a new platform that
takes student data and uses it to help
students know what they need to learn
and how they need to learn it. I’m looking
for more cross-curricular solutions to drive
“We need to bring it (technology) down and do a few
things well. It’s like the Common Core. We need to
stop doing it so wide and shallow and do it more
deep and narrow.”
“I see a huge gap in our district. We have been
flooded in technology. We have the initial staff
development, but it’s the ‘after that’ training. We only
have a selective few people in the district who are
doing the work worth doing on the devices.”