Education Marketing Management in Canada

Introduction

Two-thirds of the population growth from 2001 to 2006 has been due to immigration (Immigration, 2006 Census). Immigrants are from Asia, Caribbean Islands and Africa.

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57.3% of them were in the age group of 25-54 while only 42.3 % of the Canadian born were in this group. 4.1% were in the pre-retirement age group 55-64 while the Canadians were 10.7%.

223200 children under 14 were among the newcomers. The Canadian children in this group are similar in number. Youth are numbered at 167600 and a similar proportion of youth are Canadian born.

English for the Immigrants

In addition there are those who came as young adults fully qualified and professionally successful. These people interacted and reshaped environments to improve their English Learning process (Cervatiuc, 2008, p. 67). A study was conducted to understand the “brain gain” immigration wave to Canada. The policy of attracting young skilled immigrants from various professions has been to ensure economic growth. It was found that only 48% of the skilled workers secured a job as intended. One-fifth of recent immigrants are doing low salaried jobs.

The unemployment rate for immigrants has become 11.5%, more than double the rate for Canadian-born population. “High English proficiency has a positive effect on immigrant earnings and employment type in Canada” (Chiswick & Miller, 1988). Highly educated immigrants are driving taxis and selling pizzas because of their poor English proficiency. Even if they took the initiative to study English, they stop at an intermediate level and secure whatever jobs come along. Only some adults bother to ensure that they reach an excellent level in English. Exposure to the Second Language of English or the environment is conducive to becoming proficient. The environments could be natural or informal second and formal classrooms. In the natural or informal, the language is used for communication. Fluent speakers would be all around in the classroom. In the formal environment, it is used for teaching only and the teacher is fluent (Spolsky, 1989, p.171).

Communicative contexts are those where the learners use the second language for exchanging information. Learning contexts are fashioned with the help of the teacher. Naturalistic language learning is not an ideal process as native speakers avoid speaking to immigrants (Norton, 2000). Immigrants thereby become sensitive to rejection, introverted and take fewer language risks. Cervatiuc’s study found that the “instructed and naturalistic second language acquisition in everyday-life environments and workplaces” helped the immigrants acquire a proficiency in the English language. The immigrants were observant and interested in making occasions to speak English to the native speakers. Their creativity and cognitive awareness helped greatly in their ventures (Cervatiiuc, 2008, p. 83).

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The significance of the study

Half of the immigrants would want to study English as a second language in order to progress academically and in their careers. English language learners come from diverse cultures, languages and educational levels (Vanderwood, 2007, p. 409). The number of English Language learners has increased in Canada and the United States. The English language learner population increase is seen in the people with multiple native languages in Canada. The demand for classroom teachers has thereby increased with regard to a change in the manner of teaching. Another problem is that the academic and conversational languages may be different even in native English-speaking students. This may affect their written examinations. It is seen that English language learners secure better results than the native English-speaking students (Snow and Biancorosa, 2003). The key factor for these students to reach academic success is a good strong foundation in their younger years (Gonsalez and Garcia, 1995). Literacy interventions have been fairly well researched (Vaughn, 2006). Appropriate language instruction for EL learners has been found to be imparted best in a bilingual strategy when they are well versed in their first language but not so in the second (Garcia, 1991). Evidence points to the fact that instruction can be imparted in the second language effectively through efforts at increasing literacy (Cummins, 1984). The students use their native language to understand the second. The skills in the first language help the students to gain proficiency in the second (Vanderwood, 2007, p. 409). Students who speak English Language in the context of daily living as do some foreign students, do not acquire the proficiency of formal instruction. The latter can be reached only with formal schooling. This study is searching for a good marketing plan for meeting the requirement of a large immigrant community seeking to improve their lives and adapting to the new situation. The intention is to propose answers, solutions and provide major indicators for accelerating the speed of implementing change in education marketing management in Canada.

Purpose of the Study

All marketing plans need to look into the possibilities of a campaign losing ground before embarking on the actual marketing scheme. All loopholes need to be closed to avoid mistakes made by others. There is no dearth of people requiring the instruction which goes to say that competition would be high. Many institutions would be offering the instruction. Marketing plans are to be carefully thought out to include the facilities and methods which are acceptable to the immigrants who come for them. The following paragraphs are highlighting certain problems of marketing that ensure failure. Avoiding them helps the marketing process and sure success.

Research Questions

  1. What are the indicators or solutions of a marketing plan for accelerating the speed of implementing change in education marketing management in Canada for educating the immigrants.
  2. An egocentric, overbearing, overreaching marketing plan with no benchmark for measurement, void of ownership, forgotten once made, with an expanded budget and which has no monitoring is not the best marketing plan for education in the English Language.

Literature Review

Marketing plans fail for eight reasons as indicated by McMurtry in her book (McMurtry, 2003, p. 4). They have been described here.

Egocentric marketer

Marketers are the people with the direct experience of dealing with a customer.

Their advertisements should be pleasing to the customers and catering to their needs. Immigrants must be spoken to and information on what instruction they expect and how it should be provided must be enquired into. They would be the right persons to let you know about their requirements and what they do not appreciate during their instruction course. Caution must be taken to rule out ego-centered marketing executives as such people are least bothered about the customers. They are probably ensuring their job security and hoping for a better evaluation of their job in the eyes of higher managers (McMurtry, 2003, p.4). These wrong influences are what determine a business failure due to the small chance of generating desired returns. The ego-centered marketer produces advertisements with preceding motives which can be called “ego ads”. These ads aim to please a small audience for a short term and can also be called “the board of director ads”. The impact on the bottom line is a failure. The business decisions of leaders would also fall flat if the marketing is a flaw. Good marketing must be done

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Overreaching

Trying to be everything to everyone is a concept that is useless in marketing. Consumer businesses are not commodities (McMurtry, 2003, p. 5).. Products usually appeal to certain groups of people. The course of instruction must tailor to the needs of the majority of the

immigrants. Customer segments must be identified and the courses and timings that they appreciate must be understood. Some marketers feel they may fail to meet success if they concentrate on a particular segment. Defining one’s market position and targeting a segment that shows promise of being lucrative, helps to achieve long-term stability. This niche marketing along with relevant marketing strategies is more likely to succeed than the “one size fits all approach” (McMurtry, 2003, p. 5).

Overbearing

Being realistic and creating a marketing plan for your budget is what is necessary. Making one that would have suited someone else is certainly impractical. A small business owner must have three objectives in the strategy and give himself the time to achieve them.

Creating a small customer database so as to record individual transactions, identifying key selling opportunities and sorting out customers is useful (McMurtry, 2003).

Nebulous

Marketing plans must be definite and specific if success is to be seen. Goals should not be ill-defined or general. Poor definitions of goals like becoming the “best breed or most desired” in the industry are not helping any positive actions. These come on only if specific goals are defined and actions to reach them are designed. Definite goals could be “providing 10% incentives for visitors” to register at a website in order to increase new leads. Achievable and measurable actions should be the aim. The company must have a benchmark for measurement or the achievement would be too nebulous.

Void of ownership

Marketing is a concept which never ends. It does not end when ads are sent or letters are mailed. Sales, customer service, operations, administrations, office support staff must all participate sincerely and also take credit or ownership for success (McMurtry, 2003, p. 9). It is their actions which have decided whether customers become resigned to going along with you all through life. Getting the consensus of sales and support personnel for all marketing boosts their morale and they put their thoughts into action when meeting customers. Marketing programs can fail if the sales and support personnel do not believe in your policies and do not take ownership of helping and your programs would surely fail. Outlining the actions each department has to take after appropriate discussions with them, customers’ experiences would be consistent and more satisfying than at a competitors’. Out of sight, out of mind.

Keeping the marketing plan close by and frequently skimming through it helps in reminding ourselves of our marketing strategy. Many businessmen commit themselves to a marketing policy but forget it the moment they put it down or file it. Other projects which appear more important because of tangible deadlines and production schedules push away the main strategy. Keeping it at hand-reachable distance should do for a start and not allow it to mingle with other files. It should be visible to the eye and look different from other files. Goals may be written in large print and may even be placed on the bulletin board. A time-bound action for each goal is commendable. Organization tools like Microsoft, personal digital assistants and the bulletin board is extremely useful as reminders (McMurtry, 2003, p. 7).

Budget oriented

The strategies employed in marketing must be completely trimmed for your business only (McMurtry, 2003, p. 10). Your kind of product, your aims and how much sales profit is expected all decide your marketing campaign. One cannot resort to a costly technique just because it is the in-thing but on reflection will make no change in your sales profits ever. Keeping track of customers, what influence has occurred, whether any small change in the product or presentation could enhance their affinity are all necessary factors. Simply spending money to make a show of wealth is not marketing. Media with proven exposure must be selected for advertising.

Immeasurable

Tracking the results is equally important as marketing. The principle is that if you cannot measure it to the individual level, it is better not to continue in it (McMurtry, 2003, p. 11). Marketing plans fail because they are meant for the business team and have made no considerations for the customer. Customers are more straightforward and go for simple things.

They would like to be recognized as individuals and addressed by name. The service at all levels of employees must be consistent and thoughtful. Diversity of products is required by customers.

They appreciate getting more than what they expected and are well informed and read all the labels. Customer’s needs must be the basis on which the marketing is done. Their feedback and your providing new information would help to sweep them off the ground and your business to soar.

Theoretical framework

Direct marketing produces a direct response. When it is directed to a customer it is a one-to-one response. E-mail, telemarketing over the phone, door-to-door selling or party plan selling, behavioral marketing over the internet and using mobile phones are the techniques in direct marketing (What is direct marketing, 12 manage-The Executive Fast Track). It can be called database marketing when marketing is done using the databases or lists. When it involves a response, it is called direct-response marketing. Getting a list of immigrants and their locations, approaching school students and the college-going ones and establishments which are having immigrants would provide a start for direct marketing the English language education. The strategies, the communication for offer, feedback of response, satisfactory fulfillment of education and database maintenance are the steps in this direct marketing which had its origins in Europe in the Middle Ages along with the Renaissance. This method is cost-effective, allows direct contact with customers and the commercial messages would be directed almost individually (What is direct marketing, 12 manage-The Executive Fast Track). The marketing strategy forms the base for the plan for execution. Advertising, channel marketing, internet marketing, promotion and public relations are other means of marketing. Competitive advantage is possible in marketing the education for English with product differentiation. This could mean that the courses are tailored to the requirements of the prospective clients. The length of the courses, the timings, the standards to be reached (whether conversational proficiency only or writing proficiency too) and the methods used (whether the education is totally in class or continued at home or online) could influence the intake. Innovative strategies further improve the marketing strategy.

Research methods

A mixed-method approach is being adopted in this study. The qualitative and quantitative approaches are being used. The qualitative method of descriptive case study is being given priority over the quantitative method. Complete details are being sought from the immigrant

participants thereby opting for the qualitative method. The answers to the study questions are expected to be multiple in number and to evolve as the study progresses. Answers are expected to show subjective variation

Data collection

Multiple methods are being used for collection of data. Questionnaires, surveys, focus groups, informal interviews and participant observation are being employed to obtain as much relevant detail as possible.

Methodology

The setting for the study is New Brunswick, Canada. The existing and new immigrants from Korea, South Asia, South America and Africa are the participants from all age groups but focusing on the youth. Based on the time for participants and their availability, suitable methods would be selected. The descriptive case study method for the qualitative study is intended to extract plenty of information. The numbers of similar answers would then support the quantitative part of the study.

Summary

Thriving business caters to the individual needs and values offering choices for most of their wants. Knowing the demographical features of your clients, what they expect from your

service and the feedback on whether the earlier batches had achieved their desire of speaking, conversing and writing good English language in an easier and speedier technique without a persisting native accent would help in the future marketing. Whether essential changes are necessary or whether the present techniques have produced results and whether the shortfalls can be corrected are to be considered in the marketing campaign.

References

Cervatiuc, A. (2008). “Deconstructing the Environment: The Case of Adult Immigrants to Canada Learning English”. Journal of Identity and Migration Studies, Volume 2, number 2.

Chiswick, B., & Miller, P. “Earnings in Canada: The roles of immigrant generation, French ethnicity and language,” Research in Population Economics 6 (1988): 183-224.

Cummins, J. C. (1984). Bilingual and Special Education: Issues in Assessment and Pedagogy. Austin, TX: Pro-Ed.

Garcia, G. E. (1991). “Factors influencing the English reading test performance of Spanish speaking Hispanic children. Reading Research Quarterly, 26, 371–392.

Gonzalez, J. E. J. & Garcia, C. R. H. (1995). “Effects of word linguistic properties on phonological awareness in Spanish children. Journal of Educational Psychology, 87, 193–201.

Immigration in Canada: A Portrait of the Foreign-born Population, 2006 Census: Higher proportion of recent immigrant in the younger age groups”. Web. 

McMurtry, J.M. (2003). “Big business marketing for small business budgets”. Published by McGraw-Hill Professional, 2003

Norton, Bonnie. “Identity and language learning: Gender, ethnicity and educational change” Harlow, England: Longman/Pearson Education, 2000.

Snow, C. E. & Biancarosa, G. (2003). “Adolescent Literacy and the Achievement Gap: What Do We Know and Where Do We Go From Here? Washington, DC: Carnegie Corporation of New York.

Spolsky, Bernard. Conditions for Second Language Learning. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1989.

Vanderwood, M.L. and Nam, J.E. (2007). “Response to Intervention for English Language Learners: Current Development and Future Directions” Chapter 30 in Handbook of Response to Intervention, (Eds.) Shane R. Jimerson, Matthew K. Burns and Amanda M. VanDerHeyden

Vaughn, S., Linan-Thompson, S., Mathes, P. G., Cirino, P. T., Carlson, C. D., Pollard-Durodola, S. D., et al. (2006). Effectiveness of Spanish intervention for first grade English language learners at risk for reading difficulties. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 39, 56–73.

What is direct marketing, 2009. Web.

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