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Teachers' Toolkit for Apprenticeships

The Challenge

Like most education providers, BPP were uncertain about how to speak to 14-18 year olds persuasively. That’s why they asked us to help promote their apprenticeships in law, business, accountancy and finance.

With growing demand for this alternative career path, BPP needed to sell themselves in schools and develop a compelling message for young audiences. They needed to overcome a host of barriers: recognition of their brand among the target audience was low, and many held misconceptions about apprenticeships, believing they’re inferior to university, linked to traditional occupations and only suitable for less academic students.

Before they came to us, BPP were inundated with calls from teachers requesting visits from their staff. They simply didn’t have the capacity to visit every school – and they lacked a toolkit to help teachers sell apprenticeships to their students.

The Solution

By harnessing insights from behavioural science – the psychology of decision-making – we built BPP a marketing strategy tailored to the specific motivations of their young audience.

BPP’s existing schools presentation wasn’t as engaging as they needed it to be – so we created them a new one. We also planned a compelling toolkit that empowered teachers and BPP staff alike to inspire pupils by apprenticeships.

We drew on social proof – the concept, from behavioural science, that we are biased towards choices that our peers have made – to build BPP a new schools presentation. With real life apprentices 20-year-old Ryan and 19-year-old Abby featured throughout, their powerful testimonials allowed the audience to learn the benefits of apprenticeships from an authority they trusted.

Our target audience is ambitious, high achieving, and is considering a career in business, finance and law careers. That’s why we drew on salience, the cognitive bias we all have towards the most recent piece of information we receive, to target their motivations.

First, we drew attention to earning potential by repeating large figures. Then we emphasised employer logos, leveraging off prestigious brands. Our presentation ended with ‘Get experience. Get paid.’, cementing the most compelling reason for doing an apprenticeship in our audience’s minds.

Plus, we minimised the amount of mental energy the audience had to expend. We distilled the complexity of apprenticeship options into three levels, and presented persuasive evidence in simple steps. Written in conversational, authentic copy, we made it as easy as possible for our audience to perceive the benefits of apprenticeships.

Finally, we created BPP a streamlined journey for teachers. Taking initial leads from enquiry to registration and download of our toolkit, we made sure teachers could get the support they need. And because timing has a huge impact on decision-making, we structured a series of reminder emails to effectively convert teachers into confident promoters of apprenticeships.

BPP took our strategic thinking and worked it up in-house. Their team rolled it out, building the digital journey and presentation for schools based on our blueprint. We’re really excited to see results for the campaign and how apprenticeship applications have been uplifted this year.