Online Education: A Powerful Marketing Strategy for
                 Building and Construction Product Manufacturers
Profe...
•   Reach key individuals that are highly billable and hard to reach
    •   Reach individuals and markets without increas...
•   Branded and Co-Branded sites
    •   Student registration and database
    •   Course Delivery mechanism
    •   Alter...
•   Narrative Development
    •   Multi-Track Audio Recording
    •   Digital Video Editing
    •   3D Modeling
    •   Ad...
o   Press Releases
            o   Managed email campaigns
            o Sponsored www.redvector.com courses for specific ...
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2009.07.15 Whitepaper Online Education A Powerful

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This whitepaper outlines how online learning can become a powerful marketing tool.

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2009.07.15 Whitepaper Online Education A Powerful

  1. 1. Online Education: A Powerful Marketing Strategy for Building and Construction Product Manufacturers Professional Education and the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) Industry: In the United States, over 700,000 professionally licensed architects, engineers, contractors, land surveyors, landscape architects, and interior designers are annually required by local state, county and professional organization laws and rules to achieve 4-24 hours (15 hours on average, annually) of continuing professional education as a condition to maintain their license to work. These education requirements are highly variable from state to state, board to board, and even from organization to organization, and as a result, many professionals are often confused by what they specifically need to maintain their professional license, especially if they hold a license to practice in more than one state or profession. Savvy product manufacturers and suppliers to the AEC industry have recognized for years that educating these professionals about their products and services is a critical step in getting products and services specified in architectural plans, implemented in engineering solutions, or purchased directly by contractors and subcontractors. As a result, they have invested considerable time, effort, funding, marketing and sales support, to develop and deploy training programs that simultaneously meet industry mandated education requirements and give their sales teams opportunities to meet with these key influencers on a regular basis. While this “Lunch and Learn” strategy to get products & services specified has proven to be successful in many organizations, many manufacturers are finding it increasingly difficult to expand their reach and improve attendance at these live sessions due to a number of challenges including: • market conditions and trends • the ubiquity of information on the internet • the introduction of the Corporate University • new technologies • customer need for billable hours • cost reductions • skepticism surrounding “biased” education programs • improving sales reach and productivity • education program scalability • product and employee turnover • desire for just in time information • Increase in mandatory education requirements that cannot be served by product or technology training The explosion of the internet as a credible source of information represents building and construction product manufacturers’ best opportunity to enhance and mitigate the obvious shortcomings of traditional lunch and learn programs, and increase the reach and depth of their educational outreach programs. By delivering these courses via an online university a manufacturer will: • Create a reputation as a thought leader by providing informative, reliable, credible education, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year • Have a means to quickly educate its internal and external distribution chain, “just-in-time” • Identify individuals, departments or distributors that need additional sales support when they need it VectorLearning  4890 West Kennedy Boulevard  Suite 740  Tampa, FL 33626  Phone: (813) 207-0012
  2. 2. • Reach key individuals that are highly billable and hard to reach • Reach individuals and markets without increasing headcount and travel • Identify skills gaps • Establish learning benchmarks that can be linked to performance • Measure the efficacy of traditional Lunch & Learn Programs • Reach individuals and companies that pay for their own education • Reach individuals that prefer “free” education • Provide secure access to proprietary content, information and courses • Establish a contact database for future marketing campaigns • Maximize and track return on traditional marketing programs Today’s building and construction product manufacturers need to embrace the internet, and leverage it as a marketing resource. In 2009, over 10 million hours of mandated education will need to be completed for AEC professionals to legally sign off on plans and change orders to effectively do their jobs. Deploying a branded online university populated with courses that help these key decision makers keep their licenses (and give them a reason to return to your website), can only improve your reach and your credibility. In addition, hosting these courses on a scalable platform with the right partner is cost effective, easy to achieve and will deliver a measurable return on investment. About VectorLearning: VectorLearning is a provider of online education solutions to the construction, healthcare and manufacturing industries. Headquartered in Tampa, Florida, we have been in business since 1999 and employ a staff of over 90 fulltime, diverse employees. We provide over 1,500 technical and soft skills training courses to over 140,000 registered individuals via our consumer websites, www.redvector.com and www.care2learn.com. In addition, we leverage our core competencies to help organizations set their e-learning initiatives in motion. Through our enterprise services team, www.redvectorsolutions.com, we operate over 200 corporately sponsored online university programs. Companies, organizations & resellers including the Florida DOT, Learn.com, The University of Tennessee, Hanson Brick, the Michigan DOT, NJATC, Nexion, EduTrax, Stericycle, Jacobs Engineering and BASF routinely use our team to develop, deploy, measure, market and manage their in- house and externally facing education programs. Our course content is initially authored by an active network of over 100 independent subject matter experts, major publishers, and educational institutions. We then take their raw content resources and apply our technical writing, instructional design, multi-media and e-learning expertise to meet the mandated education & testing requirements of over 200 state boards and organizations. For building and construction product manufacturers interested in using education to reach out to licensed professionals to get their products and services specified in plans, included in engineered solutions, or purchased by contractors and subcontractors, we offer the following capabilities and services: Branded Online Universities We build online universities via the software as a service (SaaS) delivery model to help give you the infrastructure you need to deliver measurable online learning to a diverse audience without a costly investment in IT equipment and services. A standard online university includes: VectorLearning  4890 West Kennedy Boulevard  Suite 740  Tampa, FL 33626  Phone: (813) 207-0012
  3. 3. • Branded and Co-Branded sites • Student registration and database • Course Delivery mechanism • Alternate Learning Object Hosting • Enrollment and Completion Reports • Automatic Branded Completion Certificates • Automatic State/Profession specific exam scoring • Automatic Reporting to State Boards where applicable • State/Profession/Subject and Keyword Search Capable • Supports “free” and paid for education initiatives • Role Based Security • Flexible Testing/Assessment platform Online Universities can also be customized to meet other business requirements for an additional fee based upon an agreed upon scope of work. Online Course Development Services An online university is irrelevant without a variety of relevant, high quality, measurable content and courses that meet the accreditation requirements of AEC professionals and organizational leaders. VectorLearning has over 10 years of experience in developing and delivering interactive, online education courses that meet a variety of board needs, student levels and topics. We have relationships with over 200 state & federal boards and organizations including the American Institute of Architects, the US Green Building Council and the Construction Specification Institute. We interact with over 100 subject matter experts, publishers and universities. We have experience in developing over 1,500 online courses. Those relationships and experiences have honed our ability to rapidly deploy instructionally designed, interactive online learning quickly and cost effectively. In addition, we are constantly upgrading our courses with new technologies, multi-media objects and innovative learning techniques, keeping our courses fresh and interesting for our customers. Our standard online course development services include: • Instructional Design • Learning Objective Development • Storyboarding • Technical Writing • Interactive Learning Checkpoints • Branded Course Interface and Title pages (where accepted) • Bookmarking • Interactive Feedback • Flash development and other Multi-Media Objects • Standardized Interactive Gaming Elements • Test Question Development • Simple Audio and Video Clip insertion • State/Board Course Approvals (AIA, Engineering Boards, Etc.) For subjects requiring greater levels of interactivity or development, we also provide the following advanced capabilities: VectorLearning  4890 West Kennedy Boulevard  Suite 740  Tampa, FL 33626  Phone: (813) 207-0012
  4. 4. • Narrative Development • Multi-Track Audio Recording • Digital Video Editing • 3D Modeling • Advanced Mathematical Formulas • Branching • Keystroke Simulations • Section 508 Compliance Services • Advanced Test Question Development • Custom Feed Back • Instructor Led Training Material Development • Web Conference Training Development and Logistics • SCORM, AICC and other Course Publishing Options Targeted Marketing Services If a tree falls in the woods and no one is there to hear it. Does it make a noise? The same can be said for building online universities and marketing online learning courses. You can have the best online courses and content around, but manufacturers that take the Field of Dreams, “If you build it, they will come,” laissez-faire attitude to marketing their programs are bound for failure. VectorLearning has been successfully marketing and selling online courses to AEC professionals, firms, organizations and governments since 1999. We actively market courses available on www.redvector.com to over 700,000 licensed professionals annually using a number of techniques including, direct mail, email campaigns, newsletters, paycheck stuffers, promotions, paid search, viral marketing programs, SEO, direct B2B and B2C sales, channel sales and trade shows. These efforts resulted in over 125,000 courses purchased online in 2008! For building and construction product manufacturers, VectorLearning integrates our proven online education marketing techniques with your core marketing and sales strategies to help you improve your reach to these key decision makers and influencers. Our online university customers can enhance their programs by contracting with us to perform the following services: • Course Distribution o Placement on www.redvector.com to reach the “Paid” education market and our loyal customer base o Course Slotting with over 100 AEC firms with in house university and organizational development programs o Inclusion in reseller libraries o www.aecguru.com Pay Per Lead Free Education & Resource Site for the AEC industry (coming Fall, 2009) • Traffic/Lead Generation for Free Universities or Courses o Targeted Direct Mail to our prospect database o Paid Search o Search Engine Optimization o Social Media Campaigns o Viral Marketing Referral Campaigns o Completion Reminders/Order Receipts VectorLearning  4890 West Kennedy Boulevard  Suite 740  Tampa, FL 33626  Phone: (813) 207-0012
  5. 5. o Press Releases o Managed email campaigns o Sponsored www.redvector.com courses for specific requirements or related course topics o www.aecguru.com Pay Per Lead Free Education & Resource Site for the AEC industry (coming Fall, 2009) • Traffic/Lead Generation for “PAID” Universities or Courses o Sponsored email campaigns o Corporate Customer Promotions o Sponsored Direct Mail Campaigns o Inclusion in RedVector Newsletter and Press Releases o Direct Sales Campaigns o Links o Social Media Campaigns o Affiliate Marketing Programs • Analytics o Google Analytics available for online University sites o Course enrollments and completion data from all distribution points o Student contact information o End of Course Surveys o Course and Question Scoring Analytics Building and marketing an online university with VectorLearning simply makes sense. We help building and construction manufacturers leverage our core competencies and proven experience in developing, delivering, measuring, marketing and managing online learning programs to turn what would otherwise be a complicated, expensive, and resource intensive effort into a program that: • Is made up of high quality education • Rapid to Market • Trackable and Measurable • Cost Effective • Turn-Key • Generates Leads and Increases Revenues To learn more about how we can create a program that best fits your firm’s strategic marketing plans, give us a call today, at (813) 864-2663, or email us at vandall@vector-learning.com so we learn about your goals and set your online university in motion. And remember, building and construction products get specified, engineered and purchased every day, so the sooner your University is up and running, the faster you will be able to increase sales! VectorLearning  4890 West Kennedy Boulevard  Suite 740  Tampa, FL 33626  Phone: (813) 207-0012

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