edtech entrepreneurs hire buzzhoney to help launch ai teaching tool

Project Details

Date
April 2024
Client
WisdomEDU
Category
SaaS
Startup
Education
TAGS
Rapid Product Development, Artificial Intelligence,
MVP,
Brand Strategy,
Go-to-Market Strategy,
Website Design,
Thought Leadership Marketing
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highlights

Integrated OpenAI’s ChatGPT with WisdomEDU’s proprietary grading rubrics

Created a software that evaluates and scores essays, and provides personalized writing feedback to students

Helped client self-publish a book to burnish credentials

“If there is a better tool to teach writing, I haven’t seen it.”   Robin Shaffer, 35-year Educator and Department Chair

The Story

In the summer of 2023, Ed Tech software executive Mike Marchionda met with his former English teacher to catch up over coffee. Ruthie Robbins was more than just a favorite teacher from decades prior, she became his mentor when he started his own teaching career at his alma mater. Even after Mike rose to become a curriculum director at the school and eventually left to work in Educational Software, they remained friends even as they drifted apart over the years. 

Little did he know he would soon quit his corporate job and launch an AI-based software company. 

During this coffee meeting, Mike and Ruthie’s conversations covered a lot of ground, including how artificial intelligence would impact teaching and learning. 

For most colleagues, that chat would have been just that… catching up and sharing thoughts. But Mike and Ruthie were both energized by the talk of ChatGPT and kept the conversation going, sharing emails and articles over the next few weeks.

Within two weeks, Mike was experimenting with various prompts and uses of large language models like ChatGPT. He was hooked and there was no turning back. 

He started to share his experiences and ideas with his close friends, convinced that AI was going to impact teaching and learning. He and Ruthie started to build a small team and the company Wisdom EDU was born, along with a vision for its first product, WisdomK12.

If only they knew someone who could help them take this nascent concept and turn it into reality. 

They put the feelers out, asking friends and colleagues for recommendations. One such colleague, a Buzzhoney client, suggested they call Chris Bannon, the company’s founder. 

Now, under most circumstances, this call might have gone in a different direction. But Chris has four children still in school and immediately saw the value in what they were looking to bring to market. 

“I knew there was a need for this product. I could see the pain that it solved, right from the start. As a parent who stays close to his kids’ school work, I know the challenges of trying to help my kids become better students and better writers. I could see firsthand the pains that teachers face in providing timely and relevant feedback on writing assignments.”

“But I knew that good ideas are a dime a dozen, too. If this were going to succeed, not only would they need a simple, but powerful product they would need to stand out in an increasingly crowded AI marketplace.”

Step #1

Build an MVP version of their idea for quick validation

We helped the Wisdom team weave together ChatGPT’s API and their proprietary rubrics and scoring instructions, and design an easy-to-use interface to allow pilot school districts the chance to test this software. The immediate feedback from teachers and students was overwhelmingly positive.

Step #2

Formulate the Brand and Go-to-Market Strategies

With AI companies coming out of the woodwork, and with concern in schools over the use of ChatGPT by students, we knew we had our work cut out for us. Grabbing and holding the attention of busy school administrators and skeptical teachers would require an empathetic, yet visionary approach. We would position the brand as one “build  by teachers, for teachers,” not as another tech company looking to capitalize on the latest trends. 

Step #3

Position WisdomEDU executives as thought leaders to cut through the clutter

One way we could connect with curious and cautious educators is through an educational approach. In helping Mike Marchionda, WisdomEDU’s CEO author and publish his own book on how best to welcome and integrate AI into the classroom, we would position him as an important voice on the subject while connecting with fellow teachers on a personal and helpful level. Extending this approach by offering educational seminars and high-value content helps elevate the conversation above “tool talk.”

Step #4

Create the WisdomEDU Brand Ecosystem and Digital Touchpoints

As the product continues to evolve, we start to lay the foundation for communicating WisdomEDU’s value through social channels and websites dedicated to both the K12 and higher education markets. 

Client Testimonial

As the founder of WisdomEDU, I’ve had the privilege of working with Chris Bannon from the very inception of my entrepreneurial dream. Chris, with his exceptional team at BuzzHoney, have been instrumental in transforming my initial spark of an idea into a vibrant, thriving reality.

Chris’s keen insight into brand strategy and thought leadership played a pivotal role in shaping the WisdomEDU brand. His guidance was crucial in developing a strong marketing strategy that aligned seamlessly with our vision. His contributions extended into refining the concepts for my book, “From Chalkboards to ChatGPT – Harnessing the Power of AI in the Classroom,” which has become a cornerstone of our thought leadership in the educational technology space.

One of Chris’s most remarkable talents is his ability to take a vision and turn it into a tangible product swiftly. Under his guidance, WisdomEDU moved from a mere concept to a market-ready product in an impressively short time. His approach to product development is both innovative and pragmatic, ensuring that our offerings not only met market needs but also stayed true to our educational mission.

Working with Chris has been about more than just business strategy and product development; it has been a journey filled with genuine, good-guy advice, and a sense of humor that makes the challenging path of entrepreneurship enjoyable. His approach is akin to a member of the family, celebrating our successes and supporting us through challenges with a smile and wisdom that only a true expert in the field can provide.

Chris Bannon and BuzzHoney have been more than just advisors; they have been integral to the success and growth of WisdomEDU. For any entrepreneur looking to bring their vision to life, especially in the tech and educational fields, Chris’s expertise, strategic guidance, and all-around support are invaluable assets.

—Mike Marchionda, CEO, WisdomEDU

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