Marketing and branding Finnish education in China

Report
Marketing and branding for Finnish
education export to China
CEREC Lecture Series
Seppo Hölttä
Yuzhuo Cai
Chinese Education Research & Exchange Centre
University of Tampere
Branding, marketing and exporting
 Branding < marketing < exporting
 Marketing is an essential step for
Finnish education export
 Branding is a foundational piece in
marketing communication
2
Main topics
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Strategies in marketing
Challenges in marketing
What is the Chinese market
Key approaches/tactics to the Chinese market
An example of Higher Education Group (HEG)
Experiences from other countires
3
Strategic thinking in marketing &
exporting education I
 We need a systematic and long term commitment, while avoiding
one-time deals
 We need to develop packages of modules
 We need to develop synergy between education export and
industry export instead of each section operating alone
 We need long term academic capacity building among Finnish HEIs
and with top Chinese universities
 We need to invest in the planning and development of the
programmes
 No failure allowed
 Importance of Quality Assurance
 We need a localisation approach rather than standardisation
 Importance of partnership with Chinese universities
4
Strategic thinking in marketing &
exporting education II
 We need to first strategically build one overarching brand of “Finnish
education”, not many brands of institutions and programmes
 Even together we are a small player in the Chinese markets
 Need to clarify the roles of Finnish actors (HEIs, companies, Ministries, Finpro/FLF)
 We need to identify the main Chinese stakeholders and clarify how to
operate with them
 Chinese administration system
 Chinese culture
 Benefiting from the successful Finnish brand, individual educational
providers can position their niche market and do marketing
 Need for focused marketing materials and channels
 Coordination needed
5
Objectives of a good branding
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Delivers the message clearly
Confirms your credibility
Connects your target prospects emotionally
Motivates the buyer
Concretes user loyalty
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Toward branding
 understand the needs of your customers
 integrate your brand strategies at every point of
public contact
 important to invest time in researching, defining, and
building your brand
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Challenges in marketing I
 Not prepared
 Do not even think about offering to China a programme which
have been prepared for a Finnish student/audience
 Lacking resources
 Investment
 Experiences
 Experts
 Not even realise that marketing is necessary and it requires
resources
 We need to understand that we are now living in a global market
economy
 Little commitment to capacity building
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 Importance of research and partnership
with Chinese universities
Challenges in marketing II
 Few concrete products to market
 Risks with products which are not ready for the market place
 Little knowledge about targeting market
 Why just Shanghai and Beijing?
 Importance to identify growing regions/cities and the natures
of them
 Too optimistic to the reality than it is
 Due to the lack of knowledge and understanding
 Lack of a brand
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Chinese market and targeting groups
 A huge market indeed
 Chinese young students for degree studies abroad
 Chinese officials and professionals for training abroad
 Those particularly interested in Finnish education
 But hard to catch the business
 Australian acknowledgement: “the opportunities are there,
but the entry costs will be high (Adams, 2007, p. 414).
 Dutch observation: “Institutional cooperation (in China) is not
established overnight …it requires a substantial amount of
planning, exchange and commitment” (NESO, 2010, p. 37).
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Strategies for Different Programmes and Target Groups
Degree programmes
Professional programmes
Taught
in
Finland
Main stakeholders: Students and
Parents.
Potential Partners: Finnish and
European Universities (e.g.
Erasmus Mundus), top Chinese
Universities.
Focus in Marketing: Quality of the
Finnish Education system,
employability, Safe environment, etc.
Main stakeholders: Chinese
governmental organisations,
universities, professional organisations,
commercial training agencies.
Potential Partners: Top Chinese
Universities and training Institutes,
Finnish education institutions, Finnish
industry
Focus in Marketing: High Technology,
Quality of Finnish
public services, education system, etc.
Taught
in China
Main stakeholders: Chinese
educational authorities, Chinese
education institutions, Students and
parents.
Potential partners: Finnish and Chinese
Education institutions
Focus in marketing: Quality of Finnish
education, employability, etc.
Main stakeholders: Chinese educational
authorities, Chinese education
institutions, Finnish industry
Potential partners: Top Chinese
Universities and training Institutes,
Finnish education institutions, Finnish
industry.
Focus in Marketing: High Technology,
Quality of Finnish public services,
education system, etc.
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Strategies for Different Programmes and Target Groups
Taught
in
Finland
Degree programmes
Professional programmes
Main stakeholders: Students
and Parents.
Potential Partners: Finnish
and European Universities
(e.g.
Erasmus Mundus), top
Chinese
Universities.
Focus in Marketing: Quality of
the Finnish Education system,
employability, Safe
environment, etc.
Main stakeholders: Chinese
governmental organisations,
universities, professional
organisations, commercial
training agencies.
Potential Partners: Top Chinese
Universities and training
Institutes, Finnish education
institutions, Finnish industry
Focus in Marketing: High
Technology, Quality of Finnish
public services, education
system, etc.
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Strategies for Different Programmes and Target Groups
Taught
in China
Degree programmes
Professional programmes
Main stakeholders: Chinese
educational authorities,
Chinese education institutions,
Students and parents.
Potential partners: Finnish
and Chinese Education
institutions
Focus in marketing: Quality of
Finnish education,
employability, etc.
Main stakeholders: Chinese
educational authorities,
Chinese education institutions,
Finnish industry
Potential partners: Top Chinese
Universities and training
Institutes, Finnish education
institutions, Finnish industry.
Focus in Marketing: High
Technology, Quality of Finnish
public services, education
system, etc.
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Chinese customers’ thinking
 Hierarchical thinking
 Admire prestige
 Key influencing factors when choosing the
destination for studying abroad
 Reputation—Ranking
 Employability development
 Word of mouth
 Important role of parents
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Marketing approaches at the
national level I
 One Finnish brand
 National coordination
 National marketing agent
 Identify the “selling” points or attractiveness of Finnish
education
 Identify key stakeholders and partners in China
 Provide basic infrastructure for Finnish institutions’ marketing
 Website/Social media
 Agents
 Network
 Allocate some marketing budget for both national level and
institutional level marketing
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Marketing approaches at the
national level II
 Provide incentives for cooperation between
exporters
 Conduct or support research on understanding the
target region
 Find the fit between Finnish objectives and Chinese
needs in internationalisation of education
 Build a flagship of Finnish education export to China
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Tactics in marketing to China for
individual exporters
 Understand the targeting regions and the needs in the
market
 Find your products and promote only your best ones
 Start with the best products with international reputation
 Rely on all possible partners
 Alumni
 Academic community
 Consulting companies
 Do marketing and exporting with others
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Tactics in working with Chinese for
individual exporters
 Be fast and concrete in negotiation
 Be prepared for disorganised and contingent
scheduling
 Be patient, not in haste with the final deal
 Respect Chinese clients and partners
 Show your commitment
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Solution to the disadvantaged
ranking positions (Hed)
 Partner with prominent Chinese partner institutions
 Highlight the programmes with international
reputation
 Rely on Finnish industry’s reputation in China
 Promote advantaged rankings related to higher
education/education
 PISA
 Innovation
 Competitiveness
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Stories of Higher Education Group
(HEG)
 First Erasmus Mundus programme (Marihe) with
Chinese degree granting partner (Beijing Normal
University)
 Two times of training for Chinese educational
administrators contracted by Chinese MOE
 Projects with top Chinese universities
 Support from Chinese stakeholders, including MOE
and Embassy
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“Recipe” of success
 Capacity building
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Training expert
Academic cooperation
Research
Networking: Sino-Finland Forum in higher education
 Investment + entrepreneurial skills
 Financial investment (academic exchange + research)
 Training of doctoral students
 Time beyond work plan
 Expecting long term return
 Started targeting China in 2006
 Harvesting now but still in the early stage
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Branding of HEG
 by partnership with top university
 Peking University
 Beijing Normal University
 Beijing University of Technology
 by successful stories/ references
 training programmes for Chinese MOE
 Erasmus Mundus programme partnering with Beijing Normal
 by creating CEREC as an interface of Finnish education (not
only HEG) to China
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the first Chinese education centre in Europe
appreciated by Chinese government and education institutions
a window for Chinese stakeholders to understand Finnish education
a gateway to Finnish education
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What we can learn from our others?
Germany as a case
 Export activities and policies
 The German University of Cairo , 2003
 Export Education in Practice, 2005
 “Strategy of the Federal Government for the Internationalization of
Science and Research”, MOE 2008
 9.4 billion euros in 2009
 Agency
 DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service)
 iMOVE at the Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training
 Key instruments:
 Financial support
 Governmental service (training, seminars, coordination, market
studies, information system, public database, etc.)
 Capacity building (training potential talents, academic cooperation)
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Financial support in Germany
 DAAD, 4 million project in 2009
 Eligible applicants: universities planning to launch a collaborative
arrangement, branch campus or off-shore institution in China
 The programmes undergo a thorough process from feasibility to
business planning and funding
 To receive financial aid, the program has to have proof of success in
Germany and show enough potential to achieve further innovation
in cooperation with a Chinese university
 It is also advised for academic and administrative staff to be familiar
with societal and educational aspects of the Chinese culture
 Initial funding is provided for a period of the first cycle of the
program – usually 4 years – where the program has to show its selfsustaining character as projected by the business plan.
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Challenges in Germany
 Ignorance of differences in society and culture
 Unrealistically high expectations of what to achieve within
a set time frame
 Sending academic staff with insufficient China experience
on a mission often result in conflicts and eventually fatigue
on both sides
 Difficulties for academics to teach aboard when having
overloaded regular schedule
 Project operated by individual professors fizzle out when
the main driving individuals retire
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CEREC’s role
 Provide knowledge and information
 Conduct research in the filed
 Build common image of Finnish education/ marketing
interface
 Networking/coordination
 Provide business opportunities (connecting Chinese
customers to Finnish providers)
 Facilitate business
 Consultant or advisor
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Don’t export to China, if
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you don’t have your products yet
you just want one-time business
you are not ready for investing
you don’t know Chinese society and culture or have
someone with the knowledge to help
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Concluding words
 Based commercial based training/education on
academic cooperation and cultural programme
 Do not appear to be too commercial like when
exporting education to China
 We need to build successful stories for marketing
 Doing business in China=hard work + patience
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