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Sylvan Validates Market Presence Using Hanover Surveys

Sylvan Learning partnered with Hanover to maintain and promote them as a market leader positioning in the K-12 personal learning industry.

The Challenge: Research projects without the expensive operational overhead

In 2011, Sylvan partnered with Hanover Research to centralize the company’s research initiatives and eliminate the annual bidding process for recurring project needs. Amy Przywara, Vice President of Marketing, noted how Hanover meets a significant need for Sylvan by stating, “Sylvan is a huge company, but our headquarters operations are quite small – meaning we have to prioritize how to allocate our staff’s time efficiently. Having Hanover’s partnership gives us the best of both worlds, providing dedicated support that integrates research expertise with a comprehensive understanding of our business. This partnership gives us access to research experts without the overhead that often comes with external vendor contracts or maintaining our research department.”

“Sylvan is a huge company, but our headquarter operations are quite small.”
Amy Przywara
Vice President of Marketing

The Solution: A partnership with Hanover Research

Sylvan’s marketing group manages the Hanover partnership and oversees the company’s brand initiatives, creative operations, new product promotions, and content marketing. Amy and her team integrate Hanover’s findings as a “piece of the puzzle” when creating Sylvan’s messaging and when developing go-to-market strategies. Further, Hanover’s research is often presented to Sylvan’s Project Review Board – an executive forum influencing the company’s strategic direction.

Research executed includes

  • Annual market share studies
  • Brand perception surveys
  • New product concept testing

“Having Hanover’s partnership gives us dedicated support that integrates research expertise with a comprehensive understanding of our business.”
Amy Przywara
Vice President of Marketing

The Outcome: Research that lets Sylvan interpret the big picture

Franchising regulations require that Sylvan provide disclaimers to qualify all brand statements when marketing to sell additional franchise units. Hanover’s surveys of Sylvan customers and non-customers have armed the company with the data needed to support these claims and build the brand’s credibility with current and prospective customers. Amy illustrates the value of our partnership, “Sometimes we’re so focused on our internal needs that we lose sight of best practices and an element of objective industry perspective. Hanover is our solution to overcoming this issue. The partnership helps us to interpret the big picture of our market positioning through objective eyes.”

Research Goal: Understand Sylvan’s market share concerning all paid tutoring brands

  • Hanover Findings: Analysis showed that Sylvan holds the highest market share of paid brands, with 7% more of the market than its closest competitor. Results validated the company’s position as the market leader and the industry’s #1 tutoring brand.
  • Business Goal: Sylvan’s marketing team integrated these findings during a March 2013 website re-branding initiative to reinforce customer feedback regarding the value drivers of the company’s tutoring services.

Research Goal: Measure annual changes in brand perception and awareness

  • Hanover Findings: Respondents considered Sylvan the best-known educational brand, with 94% brand awareness and ratings 36% higher than the closest competitor brand.
  • Business Goal: Sylvan used this data to increase new business by promoting the company’s brand strength in franchising sales collateral.

Research Goals: Diversify product portfolio

  • Hanover Findings: Results allowed Sylvan to identify interest in new programs and the optimal price points associated with these services.
  • Business Goal: Hanover’s research equipped the company with customer insight when bringing the SylvanSync™ offering to the market. It helped inform the price point, packaging, and promotion plan of another product line currently in the adoption phase.

“The partnership helps us to interpret the big picture of our market positioning through objective eyes.”

Amy Przywara

Vice President of Marketing

The State of Market Research

Companies everywhere are using market research to increase sales, nurture customers, and grow their markets. Learn why.

The Client

Sylvan Learning Product Management & Marketing Division




Hunt Valley, MD

Five Critical Steps of a Successful Market Analysis

Discover the five steps that help companies gain a better understanding of their market and customers—and generate better ROI and increased revenues.

Working with Hanover, Sylvan conducted:

Annual market share studies

Brand perception survey

New product concept testing

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