The Unstoppable Rise of MATs

The Unstoppable Rise of MATs

Learn how Multi-Academy Trusts now dominate much of the education purchasing landscape - and why their incredible growth is good news for your edu-sales...

Learn how Multi-Academy Trusts now dominate much of the education purchasing landscape - and why their incredible growth is good news for your edu-sales...

Kat Thompson
Kat Thompson
Published: 18th January 2021

Academy schools were established in the early 2000s, but it’s only in recent years that MATs have shaken up the landscape of education. In 2011, there were fewer than 400 MATs in England; this tripled to 1,121 in 2016.

At the last count, approximately 20% of all English Primary Schools and 26% of Secondary Schools belonged to an MAT. In 2017, the government estimated that most schools will convert to an Academy and join an MAT by 2022-2023.

It’s no question that these percentages will continue rising until MATs dominate the education sector. But that’s not to say they’re not incredibly powerful now. Despite watering down their favouritism, the government typically still see MATs as the ideal school model that State Schools should aim to follow – which could include spending habits, specific purchases, and project fulfillers.

With greater funding opportunities, less-restrictive buying choices, and the ability to pool Academy budgets for larger pots of money, MATs have incredible purchasing and decision-making power over their Academies.

Let’s see what all of this means for you…

MATs can make your marketing budget go further

If your marketing budget can only cover a limited send list size, or you’ve got a limited number of Campus credits left this month, emailing an MAT member of staff instead of, for instance, a State School member of staff expands the number of schools you could potentially get your product into.

That State School member of staff only has buying power for that one school. You’ll hope they network with other schools to spread your product or service by word of mouth, but it’s not a given. But targeting the MAT member of staff means you’ll be reaching someone with the buying power for all Academies in the Trust with a single sending credit.

Of course, you’ll still want to reach the sizeable percentage of schools who don’t belong to an MAT, and it can be harder to successfully win an MAT sale as there are more staff members involved with a say in the buying process. But with a bit of practice, you can move MATs through your sales pipeline as easily and successfully as any State School.

They also skyrocket your sales

As the name ‘Multi-Academy Trust’ implies, a Trust will operate a minimum of two Academies. Right now, the smallest Trust in the UK has three. There’s no set-in-stone limit of how many Academies a Trust can be responsible for, although it’s usually a maximum of around 30-40 depending on the Trust’s performance. Currently, the largest Trust in the UK is responsible for 45 Academies.

So, even if you’re only targeting a member of staff at the UK’s smallest Trusts, you’ll still triple the number of schools you could potentially get your product or service into per contact – providing your marketing proves its worth, of course. And if you aim high, getting the message right for just one person could send 45 schools straight into your sales pipeline. Magnificent!

The easiest way to sell to Multi-Academy Trusts

Winning the sale of a Multi-Academy Trust is the holy grail when it comes to selling to schools and growing your business and it’s vital every edu-marketer has the ability, tools, and expertise to reach them, wow them, and ultimately turn them into long-term multi-buyers.

So, we’ve made it easier than ever to get your name into some of England’s most influencing Trusts and their entire group of Academies!

For years, our database has always held the CEOs and Finance Directors for MATs, so our clients and Campus users have had the power to sell to MATs from the get-go. But throughout the winter, we’ve invested heavily in the expansion of our MAT staff database – and we can now give everyone access to the direct inboxes of over 40 different MAT decision-maker roles. You may already be familiar with the CEO and Trustee, but you can now target all manner of new roles, from Directors of Safeguarding, or Directors of Leadership, through to Employment and Development Managers – and many more!

If you’re a Campus user, you can log in right now and start selling to these job roles. If you’re not, you can get in touch with us on or 01684 297374 to arrange a walkthrough of Campus, the new job roles, and the trailblazing selling-to-schools tools on offer.

If you’d prefer us to take care of your marketing for you, that’s no problem. Contact us on the details above, and we’d be happy to discuss our managed strategies with you.

P.S. Want to learn more about the roles and responsibilities of every MAT decision-maker? Click here to download our free expert guide, and learn how to shape your education marketing around your most lucrative audience yet.

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