Marketing Strategies of B2C Education Technology and Finance: With Case Studies

VIP Kid, Genius Teacher, and Knack are three B2C education technology companies. VIP Kid, with the help of a marketing agency, has used broadcast television and a mix of YouTube ads, display videos, and display banners for its research-based and data-driven marketing strategy. They have identified VIP Kids targeted personas and directed the banner ads to these personas. VIP Kid also used a popular actress with a good-mother image as its image speaker. Genius Teacher and Knack, on the other hand, use press releases and partnerships with different educational institutions or technology firms.

1. VIP Kid

  • VIP Kid is a leading online English-teaching platform that is based in China. The platform connects students who want to learn English with the English teachers in America.
  • VIP Kid outsourced a marketing agency, Just Global, to develop its marketing strategies. Just Global allowed research to guide their marketing strategies as they have seen how research indicates that audience interest and behaviors are more effective indicators as compared to demographic factors. They also avoided the pitfalls of overly-generalized targeting that’s why they “devised an entirely data-driven, audience-first approach that dictated where media was bought.”
  • Their media spend was then distributed to “highly targeted broadcast television through Connected TV (with channels such as HGTV, Discovery, Travel, and TLC), with a digital mix creating impact and results across YouTube, native, display videos, and display banners – most of which was run through JUST’s in-house platforms.”
  • They also used banner ads for targeted personas. They “developed three highly-detailed audience personas: stay-at-home parents, part-time workers, and teachers (retired and active)” and they researched each persona’s geographic locations, type of messaging they respond to, and media consumption habits.
  • The marketing agency delivered increased site traffic, tens of millions of impressions, increased branded keyword searches, tens of thousands of video views, and drove a 25% improvement in website engagements.
  • According to Jeremy Cook, senior brand manager of VIP Kid, “We are still relatively new to the U.S. market, so being able to stand out in front of the right people was important to us. We have a unique target audience, in that we are looking to recruit teachers to our platform, not sell them something. By using insightful data and specific channels, we were able to get in front of the right people and we hit all our goals for the year.”
  • Aside from that, VIP Kid also chose Liu Tao, a popular actress who has a good-mother image, to be its image speaker. The company chose a good mother figure as they sought to connect with the mothers who are seen to be the primary nurturers when it comes to children’s education.

2. Genius Teacher

  • Genius Teacher is a B2C ed-tech startup that is touted to be the Netflix of education. It is an AI-enabled quiz-based learning platform that provides more than “5,000 quizzes and 10,000 interest-based personalized videos for children.” The start-up was launched by Advitiya Sharma who is also the founder of
  • The personalized interest-based content of Genius Teacher has been engaging to its users. Also, it makes use of students’ strong interests such as movies, food, nature, and sports among others in order to make student’s self-paced learning interesting. Genius Teacher’s use of AI (artificial intelligence) has also provided adaptive learning and its curriculum-specific content has been beneficial to the students.
  • In October 2020, Sharma was able to raise $2 million of investments from top chief executes for Genius Teacher in an angel funding round. Sharma said, “Genius Teacher is all about transforming boring education to a learning adventure. We have a big vision to be the best quiz-based learning platform loved by millions of children in K-12. Our big innovation of interest-based learning teaches children like never before. We are excited to have the strong support of 50-plus rockstar angel investors across the globe. We will utilize our $2 million funds raised to create products for teachers and grow fast to million-plus students in the next twelve months.”
  • Aside from the press release for its fundraising efforts, another marketing strategy that Genius Teacher uses is to partner with different educational institutions and technology firms. It supports more than ten curriculums and it also provides scholarships from and internships with WhatsApp, Singapore University, Mahindra & Mahindra, and IIT(M) among others.
  • According to Whatsapp’s Bose, “Learning content has failed to spark children’s curiosity, the average time spent on even the most popular educational app in India today is only seventy-one minutes, on the contrary, Genius Teacher clocks an average of 180 minutes! This fact is a testament to how engaging Genius Teacher is for students. I’ve enjoyed seeing Genius grow so quickly. The founders are passionate and were ahead of the curve on using tech to revolutionize learning outcomes for students, especially in these times.”
  • According to Gaurav Gupta, vice president of Farfetch, “Education may be a basic human right, but the quality of education is far from ideal today. Genius promises to empower students and teachers with the world’s most engaging content platform that is personally curated to their curriculum, strengths, and interests. It stands a chance to revolutionize the exceptionally large and nascent edtech market in India and globally. I am super excited to support Advitya, Shashank, and the incredibly talented Genius team in their journey.”

3. Knack

  • Knack is a Tampa educational technology company that seeks to connect students who need tutors with tutors who are also students. Knack was launched as a company that uses a direct-to-consumer model as it offered a mobile app that allows students to find a tutor.
  • The company’s marketing strategy is now focused on growing its partnerships with campuses and universities. In July 2020, Knack expanded its agreement with the University of Florida to provide free tutoring for university students who are struggling with the transition to remote learning amid the global pandemic.
  • According to Samyr Qureshi, Knack’s CEO and co-founder, “Given the lack of physical engagement and disruption of physical tutoring services, UF has signed a large-scale engagement with us to provide free tutoring for students in the most difficult courses, their traditional high-fail course, as well as an additional bank of hours for free tutoring for students with demonstrated financial need.” The free tutoring service is under the $540,000 agreement with the university.

4. Coinbase

  • In October 2020, Coinbase announced the opening of a waitlist for U.S. consumers who are interested in getting its new Coinbase Card. This Coinbase card is a “Visa debit card that enables users to use their Bitcoin or other crypto holdings to shop online and in stores, in addition to converting their cryptocurrencies to cash at the ATM.”
  • Coinbase is a digital currency exchange platform and it claims to be “the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, with over 25 million users across 32 countries worldwide.” Coinbase allows users to securely store, buy, and sell cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Bitcoin Cash among others.
  • According to Coinbase, “The introduction of Coinbase Card was a significant milestone in our efforts to create mainstream adoption of crypto as a genuine utility. Today’s announcement is another step forward in the real-world applications of cryptocurrency as it enables more options for Coinbase customers in the US to utilize their holdings. We will continue to build upon our offerings to create the most seamless and useful ways to manage crypto investing and spending for our customers.”
  • “The good news is that the new Coinbase Card handles all the conversions itself, exchanging whatever cryptocurrency that users have in their accounts to U.S. dollars before completing purchases or ATM withdrawals,” Coinbase added. Aside from that, Coinbase Card also provides crypto rewards which can be a 4% back in Stellar Lumens (XLM) or 1% back in Bitcoin (BTC). This rewards program is limited for now as it’s initially available only to the U.S.
  • This new debit card can be applied for through the Coinbase website or app.
  • Also, last August 2020, Coinbase announced that it will offer bitcoin-backed cash loans to selected customers in 17 US states. Selected customers have been invited to be on the waitlist for loaning up to 30% of their bitcoin holdings. The highest amount of loans that can be applied for is $20,000 at 8% for one year and this has no credit check.
  • According to Thorsten Jaeckel, Coinbase’s product manager, “We want to give our customers even more control over their crypto investments, while offering secure access to cash at the same time.”
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