Optimism returns at ELT marketing events thanks to travel rule changes
Our business events last week received a welcome bounce from the lifting of Covid travel restrictions. StudyWorld autumn enjoyed extra last minute-agent bookings and the largest-ever educator numbers for an online event, while the mood at the face to face ELT Marketing Conference was more positive than at an English UK event since the pandemic began.
"With the changes to the international travel system coming in October, the light at the end of a long dark tunnel seems to be burning a little brighter. The government announcement about simplifying travel, ending the amber list and cutting the red list, is good news at last," said English UK chief executive Jodie Gray.
"Educators had some really positive meetings with agents, and I was hearing the same at the ELT Marketing Conference. I think there's a renewed optimism in the air.
"We just need to keep reinforcing our message that the UK is a safe place to study and students are very welcome here. The English with Confidence campaign is a key part of this."
StudyWorld autumn was attended by 119 educators and 189 agents. "I was really impressed about the organisation and very interesting event," said Luz del Socorro Monje Fierro, of the Stanton School of English, Colombia.
English UK member centres attending StudyWorld were offered a free place at the annual marketing conference held in London the same week, with a programme designed to support resuming sales activity with innovation and insight at a time when resources are limited.
Jodie also announced opportunities for ELT providers to partner and bid for grant funds in British Council initiatives in Vietnam and Indonesia, as well as a second round of the capacity-building project, PRELIM, which supports development of ELT teachers around the world.
Other highlights of the day included a member-led discussion programme, Richard Bradford on ways to take the short cut to marketing glory, John Heffernan on digital marketing, Archie Pollock on email marketing, sales action, energy and motivation with Nicola Lutz and neuromarketing with Flavilla Fongang. There was also a session on English UK's English with Confidence campaign, which gathered ideas from English UK members.
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The 100+ delegates at the County Hall venue were delighted to meet up face to face once more. "I was hoping to reconnect with other schools having not seen them in person for so long, and also to share ideas and look forward to the future. I feel really inspired and that I'm going back to school with lots of different things to action, discuss and hopefully implement," said Katie Denton of IH Bristol.