The Key Dates for Your Spring Marketing Calendar

The Key Dates for Your Spring Marketing Calendar

Learn the must-know spring dates you need in your education marketing calendar to make more sales this quarter.

Learn the must-know spring dates you need in your education marketing calendar to make more sales this quarter.

Kat Thompson
Kat Thompson
Published: 31st January 2022

When you’re planning your education marketing strategy for the year, it’s likely you’ll have noted down the major events you need to consider. The February Half Term, Easter Holidays, and state school budget releases are happening this season, and can impact education businesses in a big way.

But have you got plans in place for World Science Week? Produced your promotional material ready for The Bett Show? And know when World Book Day is?

If not, then it’s not too late to sculpt your strategies to fit all of these must-know dates in February, March, and April into your marketing calendar, and make more education sales this season.

The Big Four

February Half Term and Easter Holidays

(Monday 14th – Friday 18th February 2022, Monday 4th April – Monday 18th April 2022)

Historically, Half Terms were usually pretty quiet in the edu-marketing industry. With schools closed, few teachers checked their emails, and so there was a slight drop in response rates during school holidays.

But in the last few years, with the rise of smartphones giving staff the ability to check their emails away from their desks, open and click rates have been only a few percent lower than term-time results.

During the 2020 school closures, open rates skyrocketed not only above the usual rates during closures, but above term-time results, too, to result in some of our best-ever open rates. There are still some businesses that prefer to stick to the safety of term-time response rates, but this can work in your favour if you choose to send during school holidays. Teachers have fewer emails to check, meaning your email has a better chance of standing out and being read more carefully.

Of course, it’s important to consider whether your offering is right for a holiday send. If you’re promoting dates for a wellbeing workshop, emailing teachers in their downtime won’t go down well. But, if you’re sending an early-bird invitation for a discounted event, emailing free back-to-school resources, or taking bookings for post-holiday site surveys, it might be worth testing a half term or holiday send to get in before the Easter/summer term rush and secure some new leads.

*N.B. The actual dates for both the February Half Term and Easter Holidays will vary across local authorities and countries. The above dates, however, are the most common dates.

Sports Premium Release

(29th April, 3rd May, 4th May)

The Sports Premium initiative provides Primary Schools with a yearly share of funding set aside to improve the quality of PE and sports across their facility. This current figure stands at £320 million, with schools getting a share dependent on the number of pupils within the school.

The Sports Premium is released in two allocations per year – one in the spring, and the other in the autumn. The actual dates differ between school types, so we’ve listed all the spring dates you’ll need right now:

Maintained Schools and PRUs – Friday 29th April 2022 Academies and Free Schools – Tuesday 3rd May 2022 Non-Maintained Special Schools – Wednesday 4th May 2022

Schools must follow guidelines with their purchases, and publicly report how they’ve used the funding. But it goes without saying this provides a wealth of opportunities for any business offering products and services relating to sports, physical health, swimming, clubs, and more.

Schools will be preparing how to use this year’s budgets in advance of the funding allocation, so it’s important to start planning your marketing now to secure your share of that £320 million jackpot. Put together a multi-phase email strategy to make teachers aware of your product or service, offer site surveys from now onwards, and throw in a discount code closer to the allocation dates to help sweeten the deal. Or, opt for our managed strategy service and ask us to do it for you!

Pupil Premium Funding

Thursday 31st March 2022

Similarly to the Sports Premium, the Pupil Premium provides schools with extra funding on top of their standard budgets. The Pupil Premium provides schools with extra support to contribute to the attainment of pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds, looked-after children, and service children. In 2022, this breaks down into £310 per service child, £985-1385 (primary and secondary, respectively) per child eligible for free school meals, and £2410 per looked-after child.

Pupil Premium is paid to the local authority in four quarterly instalments, with the next allocation released on 31st March.

As per the Sports Premium, schools must follow certain rules, and document their spending to ensure it’s being used to support eligible pupils in the best possible way. This can include providing targeted support or professional development for staff, or tackling non-academic barriers to success in school, such as attendance, behaviour, and social and emotional support.

Right now, schools will begin thinking about what to spend their allocation on next year, so now’s a great time to spread the word about your product or service, particularly if it’s a more expensive purchase that they may be more receptive to with a bigger budget in their pockets.

State School Budget Allocations

Under the National Funding Formula, new school budgets are released for state schools in April – meaning they’re looking to spend the remainder of their budgets in January and February, as well as start planning their larger projects for the summer term. While April is the key time to secure the larger summer projects once they’re in possession of their 2022 funding, that budget surplus is not to be ignored!

Think about what teachers will need in the coming weeks that they can justify as a worthwhile yet urgent spend, such as spring term resources, or products and services schools need year-round, such as stationery or classroom furniture.

And if your products and services do fall into the ‘large project’ category – playgrounds and facility maintenance, for example – it’s time to kickstart your education marketing efforts to get your name into schools before the big April showstopper email campaigns.

The Unmissable Classics

World Book Day

Friday 4th March 2022

More than a chance to don your best bookish costume, World Book Day is a huge opportunity for schools to raise the profile of literacy within their establishments, promote a strong reading culture, and celebrate the magic of fiction.

Between the stripy t-shirts, the pointy hats, and even the faux dragon tails, there’s a huge opportunity for education businesses working in the literacy, drama, and media industries. Join in the celebrations with some free World Book Day resources, share tips for families to make recycled costumes, or promote your new workshop and the limited World Book Day slots a few months in advance.

British Science Week

Friday 11th March – Sunday 20th March 2022

British Science Week is a bumper ten-day celebration of all things STEM. As schools up the profile of STEM, and increase their efforts to provide more equal opportunities to all pupils, British Science Week is becoming more prominent on the school calendar.

The beauty of Science Week is there are no rules to get involved. While the official website provides plenty of free school resources and articles, schools are always on the lookout for easy ways to make the week bigger and better than the previous year.

If your business is involved in the STEM industry, make sure you get your free resources, activities, interviews, visits, and more into schools well ahead of science week, to give staff plenty of time to work them into their schedules. For those businesses, British Science Week should be one of your key selling points across the whole year - don’t miss out on this golden opportunity!

The Bett Show

Wednesday 23rd – Friday 25th March

Launching in 1985, The Bett Show is an annual trade exhibition held in London – the most popular across the UK. Once purely a technology show, all education suppliers and providers are now invited to showcase their products to teachers and school staff from all over the country (and, in recent years, across the globe, with satellite events broadcasting in Dubai, Kuala Lumpur, and Sao Paulo). Usually held in January, the ongoing pandemic has pushed this year’s event into March, giving education businesses more time to prepare their stand and marketing material.

The Bett Show is a crucial event on your calendars, and education businesses should strive to attend if possible. The London location plays to the higher proportion of schools located in the South East, but many schools further afield do what they can to send a few members of the SMT. It’s almost guaranteed that representatives from the UK’s biggest Multi-Academy Trusts will be there, giving you the potential to sell to their whole group of academies. Get this one on your calendars!

The Rising Stars

Safer Internet Day

Tuesday 8th February 2022

Celebrated in approximately 170 countries, Safer Internet Day is celebrated yearly in February in an effort to make the internet a safe place for children and young pupils.

With the rise of social media, young children having access to smartphones and tablets, and online learning, Safer Internet Day – and everything it stands for – is becoming more important within schools. In previous years, a one-lesson resource and a free poster would have satisfied schools. Now, workshops, events, and training are the norm – on top of the high-quality free resources, videos, and interactive activities they’ve already become accustomed to.

The fast-paced, ever-changing nature of the digital world means new (or at least adapted) resources are needed each year, giving education businesses a regular, yearly selling slot.

And with technology finding its way into most industries, almost every education business can get involved! Whether you’re developing a new staff training event especially for digital safety, an interactive play to help pupils stay safe online, or a set of free PSHE lesson packs, teachers will be grateful for your support – free or paid-for!

Children’s Mental Health Week

Monday 7th – Sunday 13th February 2022

Back in 2021, teachers told us in our annual State of Selling to Schools survey that staff and student wellbeing was their number-one priority for the year ahead. In 2022, this is still the case, and schools are looking for all the support they can access.

Children’s Mental Health Week is the perfect opportunity for all education businesses to get involved. Offering free activities or videos exploring mental health through literature, art, sports, or a variety of other subjects are an easy offering you can certainly get involved with. But to cut through the crowd, consider if you can offer training events and workshops to really help you not only stand out from your competitors, but show schools you’re dedicated to caring for their health and wellbeing.

Earth Day

Friday 22nd April

With a growing focus on sustainability and environmentalism, it’s no wonder more and more schools are signing up for Earth Day activities and free resources. As with some of the other ‘rising star’ dates, Earth Day isn’t a particularly oversaturated market, and there’s certainly room for you to step in and position yourselves as a pioneer in Earth Day offerings. There’s no excuse for any business to avoid stepping up and doing more for the planet, and what better way to show schools you care about our planet than running some special Earth Day offerings? Be it sustainability workshops, a STEM workshop, or even a plant-based meals competition, it’s easy to give schools easy and fun ways to get involved.

Want to keep up-to-date with all the dates on the school calendar – from the important holiday dates to the one-off national days hiding untapped potential? All of our Campus users get 24/7 access to our curated, always-updated education calendar, so you’ll never miss an important date again!

And if you’d prefer to take the hassle out of choosing the best date possible for your marketing emails, ask our education experts to do it for you as part of our managed strategies.

To arrange your free demo of Campus, or learn more about our managed strategies, email, or call us on 01684 297374.

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