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What if I said there was no such thing as a USP? At first you may instinctively list off 5 or so things about your organisation, product or service you’ve determined to be unique in your market– but whatever those things are, think again; are they really one of a kind?

So ok, let’s say technically they are. Now are they relevant enough to sway a customer? Do these bullet points stand out as unique and put you head and shoulders above your competitors?

Education sales and marketing staff often tangle themselves up trying to find a USP when attempting to create their value proposition. When from the student’s perspective, apart from a few bells and whistles, the majority of your offering will look the same when listed beside the offering of your competitors.

To the customer they are not unique selling points, they’re just plain old selling points.

But don’t give up on uniqueness. Just because you can’t present a USP that truly matters it doesn’t mean you can’t present and promote what you do have in a unique and compelling way.

So assuming you have a quality product or service with quality selling points. Maybe it’s time to stop trying to figure out if you have “more recycling bins than any other campus!!” and start thinking about how you can uniquely differentiate the communication method of your value proposition.

With today’s technology and the ease of communication there are so many opportunities to deliver your message to customers in an innovative way. Innovation is a language, so when delivering your plain old selling points be as grandiloquent  as you can.

With the right approach you may just stand out from the crowd – or stand on a recycling bin, you’ve got enough of them.

Cheers,

J

 

Welcome!

September 24, 2012 — 1 Comment

Welcome to my blog and very first post!

My name is Jeffrey Williams, I am originally from Perth (Australia), however for the last 5 years have called London (UK) home. For the last decade or so I have worked and studied in and amongst Universities in Australia, UK & USA. The majority of this time has been spent in international student recruitment, and over the years I have held roles from student admissions to Head of International Marketing & Recruitment.

Research suggests that by 2020 5.8 million students will opt to study Higher Education (University) outside of their home country! This figure is up from 2.4 million that studied abroad in 2005, making international education one of the largest industries in the world!

I am not exactly sure what Higher Education will look like in 2020 and beyond, however am confident the norm of today will not be the norm of tomorrow. I once heard at a conference that “The Western World” will need to build a new University every week in order to keep up with demand. Obviously this is madness, and the forecaster is accounting for no change in the method in which education is delivered. A little bit like the mayor of London forecasting how many horses will be in London before the invention of the motor car, or Xerox forecasting the demand for fax machines before the invention of the internet. So does this mean an online future is inevitable? Just have a look at what Harvard, MIT etc. are doing right now – today (https://www.coursera.org/ & https://www.edx.org/.

If these questions excite you then you are in the right place!

Having been an international student myself, and now with professional education industry experience in over 40 countries, I have a lot to say about international study options, and hope I can impart some of this knowledge on anyone who needs it. Hopefully at one point or another I will cover every stage of the international student recruitment process for students and cover the latest trends for those in the industry.

Please note, I don’t take myself seriously, I love to rant and now I have a blog! So from here on out you can choose to read or ignore, either way, I would love to hear your feedback, including anything of the good, bad, constructive, perspective or experience variety. Therefore please feel free to leave comments, email, facebook, twitter or google+ me.

Cheers,

J