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6 min

Education B2B market research: An introductory guide

An introductory guide to Education B2B market research

Nov 5, 2022
B2B market research


The education b2b market research, made up of companies that sell to educational institutions, is a huge industry. It has many different segments that cater to various types of institutions and students. Education b2b market research can take many forms.

For instance, consider a company that wants to gather sentiment from institutions about their curriculum practices. This company wants to know what processes the institution has in place for students. In this case, they can conduct b2b market research. On the other hand, if those companies are looking to hear from students, they can conduct b2c market research. For example, there are several ways for students to pay for their education at different levels. From grants and scholarships to loans, there are multiple options. These payment options can vary depending on whether the student is in college or beyond and when they received their degrees (undergraduate vs graduate). To know which payment options are the most popular, the company can run a b2c survey. 

In this article, we'll dive into all these topics plus some tips on how you can use this information in your own research.

Education market research requires a very deep understanding of what the buyer persona looks like

When you're thinking about who your buyer personas are and what they want, it's important to understand their motivations. The first step is making sure that your company has a clear understanding of what the buyer persona looks like.

The basic terminology of a buyer persona includes:

  • Demographics: A set of demographic descriptors that are used to describe an individual (e.g., age, gender, location)
  • Psychographics: Characteristics of someone based on their interests and preferences (e.g., hobbies)
  • Behavioural data: Information about past purchases or behaviour patterns

In the education B2B and B2C market, a buyer persona is necessary as schools can tailor information to their students. Creating a buyer persona is also necessary for B2B institutions that are looking to hear from their target audiences. For instance, mapping a student's journey of deciding to go to a certain college will help the company know what to ask in their survey. For more on buyer persons in education, check out this article here.

What kind of surveys in the B2B education market are conducted

A number of education industry surveys have been conducted over the years, by companies specialising in Education b2b market research. In this guide, we will give two examples of surveys:

  • 1-on-1 interviews with more than 500 executives from companies in the education sector (including universities) across all disciplines. The survey was conducted by Education Technology Insights and took place between October 2018 and January 2019.
  • EY Parthenon conducted research earlier this year, interviewing over 50 university presidents to gather sentiment on how the higher education sector is evolving. The report took into account four different types of university capital assets: human, reputation, financial, and physical capital. The report found that human capital is the biggest challenge and the biggest opportunity for higher education institutions. Institutional perspectives also indicate that there are major challenges across all these states. Read more about the study here

How to start gathering data from education B2B market research

To begin with, you need to ask yourself some questions. How do you know what your target audience wants? And how can you address their needs and make them happy? You may have the best product in the world but if it doesn't match up with what people want then there's no point in launching it to market. In order for your business to succeed and grow, it's important that everything is aligned correctly. Additionally, you've got your marketing plan down pat and know who will buy from you.

So how do we get started? For one thing by using a survey research specialist, the process of conducting b2b education market research. A survey research specialist can prepare unlimited questionnaires and sample data so you can better understand their target audience before creating any campaigns based on these insights.

Your client is interested in launching a new product or service in education - what would you advise them to do next

Your client is interested in launching a new product or service. What would you advise them to do next? First, consider asking the client to describe the problem they are trying to solve. For example, they might say that they want their customers to be able to find information about their products more easily online and on mobile devices. Next, ask them to describe their target audience. For example: “Our target audience is people who work at small companies that use our services frequently". Next, ask them what kind of product or service they are looking for. This could be something like "We want something that gives our clients easy access to information about us on any device." Finally, ask them how much money has been allocated towards this project (e.g., $500). 

After you've worked out these steps, you can then plan to conduct market research to find out detailed information.

You would want to know what's going on in the education industry right now

You would want to know what's going on in the market right now. In addition, you would want to know what are the trends in education b2b market research. What are the hot topics in education b2b market research? Consider also looking into the issues that companies in the education industry are facing today. What are the challenges that companies in the education industry are facing right now? Answering these questions will help you decide the best way to conduct market research.

If you decide to do your own research, here are four steps to success:

1. Define the problem

Before you can do anything, it's important to know what you're trying to solve. The first step is defining your research question in a way that will help you collect the right data and answer it effectively. For example, if your goal is to understand how parents view the importance of STEM education in their children's schooling, then this might be considered an exploratory research question. This is because it helps you determine whether or not there are any gaps between what parents believe about STEM education and how they actually feel about it. On the other hand, if instead, your goal was simply answering "Do parents think that STEM is important?", then this would instead be considered a descriptive research question. This is because its purpose is just to describe how people currently feel about something rather than determining whether or not something should change.

2. Collecting Data

Once you have a clear idea of where your research needs to go (and why), then it's time for collecting data from relevant sources who can provide information about these questions based on their own experiences or observations (or both). If possible try looking at multiple sources so that any discrepancies between them won't throw off results from being skewed too much one way or another (e.,g., one source might say 50% while another says 90%). Keeping track of where each piece comes from will also help with transparency when presenting findings as well as making sure everything adds up correctly overall when compiling data into reports after analysis has been completed. Do some digging before making decisions based solely based on judgment.

The second step in your data collection process is to decide what you will collect. In order to do this, you need to have a research plan. This means that you need to determine the goals of your research project and then develop a plan for achieving those goals. Once you have your research plan, it’s time to gather your data! To do this, there are several sources available:

  • Primary Research (asking people directly)
  • Secondary Research (getting information from already published resources)
  • Interviews/Surveys/Focus groups

3. Analyse the data and answer the question

Once you've collected and analysed the data, it's time to answer the question. What did you find? Is there a clear winner? Are there other players that are worth paying attention to? How can your company take advantage of these results in order to improve its own products or services?

What's more, what might this mean for other players in the field that aren't currently on your radar? Could they be potential partners or new competitors? How can their role in the marketplace change as well-known brands like yours continue to innovate and grow over time? Questions depend on the nature of the b2b market research project.

4. Convert insights into recommendations, and then make decisions

At this stage, you need to make sure that you have the right data and can interpret it effectively. You also need to convert your insights into recommendations, which will help you make decisions.

Why should you do education B2B market research?

The benefits of doing education b2b market research are many. You can use it to make better decisions, get an idea of what your target audience is interested in, and identify new opportunities. In addition, you can measure the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns. The more data you have about your competitors' strategies and tactics (and how they're performing), the easier it'll be for you to adapt or change course as needed when something isn't working well. And while the information won't tell you exactly what's going on with each person and the buying habits, it will give you a pretty good idea.


Education b2b market research is a great way to learn more about the education industry. By understanding what companies in this field are buying, you can better tailor your products and services toward their needs. We hope these tips will help you get started with your own education b2b market research!