During this project, Catalyst worked to shape and implement a communications strategy for one of the fastest-growing educational technology startups in the world.
Over the last decade, academic institutions from local community colleges to the Ivy Leagues have struggled to keep pace with the need for advanced IT professionals. In that vacuum, learners and organizations have leaned into third-party certification mills to fill in the gaps. While many drive enrollment with promises of high-paying tech jobs, learners completion rates fall well below industry benchmarks and do little to ensure practical experience.
SkillUp Online's 'smart learning' platform combines responsive human and machine-based pedagogies to drive four-fold improvements in benchmark completion rates for those skilling into or across the technology space.
As an online learning platform, SkillUp Online entered an already competitive category, often defined by a race to the bottom. To get in front of it, the company's communications strategy needed to differentiate SkillUp Online from adjacent brands. To do it, it focused on higher completion rates, practical experience, and placement opportunities. Developing a toe hold as the category leader meant building trust, with real results for learners as well as the organizations looking to hire them.
Our approach focused on owned and shared media to develop the brands footprint. Our three-part solution, combined full-stack capabilities, service expertise, and collaborative framework to get there.
Our first step was assembling a team of strategic, creative, and operational subject matter experts. They included brand and content strategists, graphic/vidual design, copywriters, inbound specialist and community manager. They worked together under the direction of an integrated marketing project manager who organized the team around the company's objectives and created a workflow for reaching them.
Over five years, we worked with the company to establish and mature its brand. Early in the relationship we built its starter assets into a style guide. As the company grew, we fleshed out a full set of brand standards, including the brand profile, visual style, and editorial guidelines used to ensure consistency across teams.
Our content strategy was designed to establish the company's subject matter expertise with learners exploring the technology ecosystem. It included ongoing blogs, info/motion graphics, and informational video. Our process included both the strategy as well as the operational workflows needed to bring content to market.
We provided a wide array of digital marketing support. Services included website design and development, search engine optimization, and marketing automation. They also included strategic consulting around services implementation and management.
Our team helped the company reach potential learners through social media and email. Work included It including scheduling, distribution, and mangement of owned and earned media, as well as engaging with fans in real time about its products across various platforms.
Catalyst worked with SkillUp Online throughout the course of its organizational journey, from startup to emerging global brand. Along the way, we've acted as both a managed and tactical services partner, embedding with the company's internal teams to drive growth. Our work has allowed leaders to focus on mission-critical tasks that drive the quality and impact of it's learning tools, creating more value for buyers and amplifying its marketing dollar.
SkillUp Online has grown into a global competitor in the education technology educations space, forging partnerships with IBM, Microsoft, Google, and others, as well as millions of monthly active users.
Unique online communications helping to shape the brand
Increase in growth of the company's shared media channels
Engagements with the company's content marketing collateral
"The Catalyst Marketing team have been great business partners. They've embedded particularly well into our team and helped us build a strong marketing strategy without having to divert focus. As a startup business, this has been incredibly valuable and allowed us to compete at a whole other level."
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