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How Education Publishers Start their Digital Journey

The success of your digital product will have far-reaching consequences.

Get digital right and you’ll introduce a new, viable and sustainable revenue stream that secures your business as a market leader…

Get it wrong, and you risk losing revenue, wasting resources and disappointing clients

Adaptemy has helped education publishers across the globe begin, and cement, their adaptive learning journeys. We’ve learnt that to be successful here it’s important to consider three critical components right at the start. These are the sales, customer support and authoring processes.

The Sales Process – It’s Going To Change

Historically, publishing houses have followed a product-oriented sales model based on long-term relationships. But selling a textbook is substantially different to selling a digital solution.

Whereas previously your sales team may have left a textbook with a school for consideration, leaving a digital product, in the same manner, will not clinch a sale.

Teachers need to understand:

  • How the technology supports and enhances their roles.
  • The benefits for students in terms of educational experiences and outcomes.
  • That a digital product calls for multi-year contracts for content, licensed software, or hosted systems.
  • The cost-savings and competitive edge such tools can deliver to schools.
  • The altered workload, available analysis and accountability that digital solutions provide.

Sales teams once motivated by product-based selling must now shift their focus towards distinct customer segments and a solution-based sales model.

Frequent interaction and ongoing dialogue with academic institutions, teachers and students is imperative to understand educational objectives, interpret data, and provide support.

Implementing this strategy requires different capabilities. In many cases, it will necessitate a shift in how schools, teachers, and students view publishers. Delivering outcomes, rather than selling textbooks, implies a very different sales model and a very different way of bringing resources to the forefront.

Is your sales team ready for this shift?

Learn more:
Folens, Ireland’s largest educational publishing company, is more than familiar with the digital territory. Find out how Folens successfully monetised a digital product and created a sustainable business and sales model.

The Customer Support Process – It’s More Involved

Following this consultative sell is long-term customer support. In a world of paper-based solutions, a misprint was probably the most disastrous product fail a teacher might encounter. The solution? Collaborate with colleagues to find the answer.

With technology, with its hidden codes and complicated reputation, failures cause panic, frustration and ultimately rejection of the solution. And critically, a teacher does not want the solution to take main stage. The solution should be a platform for better teaching, better experiences and better outcomes. Customer support helps publishers ensure this.

Firstly, it’s important to choose a robust and well-tested solution. Secondly, your customer support team should train teachers to use the solution skillfully and with confidence. And finally, the team should be on hand, with product knowledge at the ready, to serve those in need.

How large and diverse your customer support team and process is, depends largely on the type and scale of your digital solution. But it must be considered now, at the beginning of your transformation, because it is a critical component of its success.

The Authoring Process – It’s Not As Complicated As You Think

The prospect of translating traditional textbook content into a digital format might feel overwhelming. Engaging with people who understand digital content eases this burden: a true collaboration with technical experts helps publishers thrive here.

A technology partner that understands learning design, curriculum design and content authoring will guide your processes, people and skills, empowering your business with relevant approaches to master digital content creation.

Learning experts are also required to ensure the content is culturally relevant, engaging and country-specific. These skills are often found in-house. The right technology partner will ensure their skills are harnessed in the right way to see your digital solution succeed

At Adaptemy, we have built tools that make it easy for a publisher to build a product. These combine curriculum design, authoring and configuration tools. Publishers undertake a short training session which builds on their existing skill set and enjoy simple workflows that make building an adaptive learning product effortless.

Combined with a proof-of-concept approach to deployment, this ensures buy-in while exploring the reality of taking the solution curriculum-wide.

Real-world evidence:

Slovakian publisher Raabe recognised that differentiation was key. Reinvigorating the existing business model was essential for survival. It was Adaptemy’s unique authoring tools and consultative process that facilitated a swift move to market. Find out how Raabe used adaptive learning to differentiate and become a key market player.

Publishing companies are leaving behind a predictable and traditional business model and the market will reward those that grasp this ascendancy in the academic sphere. Starting the journey is the most intimidating and important part of the process. Clear insight into what the journey looks like, how your organisation must adapt, and what skills and resources you’ll need to acquire to succeed helps secure buy-in from stakeholders and speed up your inevitable digital triumph.