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Editor’s note: This article is from the WeChat public account “Alter Chat IT” (ID: spnews), author Alter, 36 氪 released with permission.From cold winter to high summer, online education only takes one Spring Festival.Hundreds of millions of users and a greatly compressed growth cycle are engulfing online education towards a new inflection point in a turbulent environment.At the end of 2019, waiting for online education is still a variety of ills such as high customer acquisition costs, poor results conversion, low renewal rate, and other chain reactions such as financing difficulties, disguised layoffs, and vicious competition are continuing to ferment. At that time, some people asserted that 2020 was onlineThe education industry will stage a brutal knockout.However, the spread of the new coronavirus has changed the trajectory of the online education industry. When almost the entire Chinese economy was shrouded in haze, under the call of “suspending classes without stopping,” online education ushered in unexpected opportunities.Even players who have encountered a cold winter in 2019 have found a respite.However, behind the magical turn, there are still many unsolved questions left to the online education market: is it a jump after squatting, or is it an illusion that “the spring is here”?With the sudden Black Swan incident, will the evolution and remodeling of the business model end here?The answer is still floating in the gale.01 With the continuous fermentation of the online carnival epidemic, the online education industry has begun an unprecedented outbreak.An app called “Elephant News Client” downloaded more than WeChat, Douyin and other super apps in a single day in the App Store, which directly caused the client server to go down and failed to log in for a long time.The corresponding reason is that the Education Department of Henan Province issued the “Emergency Notice on Preparing for Synchronous Classroom Watching in Famous Schools” on February 8 to implement “online teaching” in the province. “Elephant News Client” is the local officialOne of the designated online live streaming platforms.Not only the “Elephant News Client”, but also Ali Ding, HKUST Xunfei, Haoshitong, Zoom Classroom, One Teacher One Excellent Class, etc., which have been included in the “Central Suspension” plan by the government, have also appeared in different degrees.Caton even “crashed”, and Dingguo also encountered the phenomenon that elementary school students collectively brushed one star in the app store for “praise”.Of course, the beneficiaries are not just the official “teaching” platform.During the epidemic, the small smart speakers that cut into the online education battlefield with “100 million free courses”. From the growth in educational skills since February 1, the number of user visits has increased by an average of 6 times. Some “star courses” have user visits.The amount of increase is up to 50 times; K12 education platforms such as Ape Counseling have claimed that there are more than 5 million simultaneous online users in a single day. Some online course promoters who had been paid more than 10,000 a month received a commission of more than 100,000 in February.Urgent self-rescue offline education institutions have also transformed online. New Oriental Online has opened all spring classes live broadcast courses to elementary and middle school students for free on January 26; Good Future Education launched the “Haven Haven Program”, which is free for national training institutions.Open live broadcast cloud online live broadcast system … The education and training industry’s continuous online and offline disputes for many years have seen dramatic changes around the epidemic, and education resources have been tilted further online.The same scene happened in the capital market.According to the data released by the enterprise check, 12,000 education companies will be shut down in 2019. Yu Minhong bluntly stated that “estimated that 80% of education companies will not survive”, and the cold winter of online education has become an indisputable fact.However, on the first A-share trading day on February 3, the online education sector’s gain was second only to pharmaceutical stocks. Popular online education stock Fangzhi Technology has a daily limit for six consecutive trading days. Netease, a Nasdaq-listed company, has a reasonable price.In two trading days, it has skyrocketed by 80% … whether it is an instant emergence of tens of millions of just-in-demand users, or the capital market spares no effort to promote it, it is an indisputable fact that online education stands at the forefront, but the tide will eventually fade.02 Retained War What did this sudden outbreak bring to the online education industry?Oriental Yubo CEO Zhu Yu’s statement is more pertinent: “It has saved nearly 100 billion yuan in promotion costs for Internet education institutions.” The emergence of the epidemic has forced millions of primary and secondary school students to have “temporary needs” for online learning, and thenCreated spectacular traffic peaks for online education platforms.But it has only temporarily solved the problems of high customer acquisition costs and non-rigid user needs. The crux of online education still exists.For example, in 2019, many online education platforms began to launch elevator ads in large quantities, so that bus ads, online car ads, and parking lot ads have become competing advertising resources, which are typical of burning money for users. The average of some online education institutionsThe cost of customer acquisition has reached 4,000 yuan, accounting for 45% of the cost structure, second only to the salary of teachers, and the conversion rate is still not ideal.The direct result is that those online education platforms that are immersed in money are desperately buying up, trying to start a card battle, and players with financing difficulties are gradually squeezed out of the table and staged a song of ice and fire.As for what the online education carnival in the epidemic will change, you can learn from the perspective of the founder Chen Xiangdong: “When more and more parents and students choose online education, in a sense, traffic will become cheaper.But I also don’t think that the marketing costs of online education institutions will drop significantly because competition still exists. “But it cannot be denied that the epidemic will benefit the online education industry in the long run.Ali Dingguo, HKUST Xunfei, and Elephant News Client are not typical online education players, but have participated in “online classes” with the role of tool products or government actions, and have also cultivated students and parents through onlineUser habits for learning.After the epidemic is over, these users will gradually overflow into the online education market, and the worst result is that online education players purchase high-quality traffic from these platforms.In other words, the match point of online education after the epidemic is over will focus on user retention.How to improve users who are attracted by free courses to make a second payment, how to concentrate users across multiple platforms on their own platforms, and how to attract users to spread word-of-mouth and pay for a long time.In fact, “retention” is not a new issue, and there have been many innovative solutions.For example, the popular one-to-one teaching model in the previous two years has met the needs of middle-class families for the quality of teaching. When more and more players take root one-on-one, it directly intensifies the competition for teacher resources and student students, pushing upThe cost of teaching and customer acquisition, however, are far less profitable than expected; for example, some platforms have begun to study so-called teaching tips in order to achieve immediate teaching results and stimulate parents’ impulse consumption, which has finally proved to be infeasible.Perhaps you have to find the answer from the “path”.03 Path The revolutionary education and training market has a typical path dependence.Traditional offline training institutions rely on teacher resources, and famous teachers have always been the golden signboards of offline institutions.A typical example is the teacher Luo Yonghao of New Oriental who carried the girders of hammer technology with his own strength. Many “hammer powder” originated from Luo Yonghao’s “quotations from Luo” during the teaching period of New Oriental.When education moves online, traffic becomes a new path.It’s just that compared to such deterministic chips as teacher resources, the online path seems to be full of uncertainty.There are online education platforms that look for excellent teacher resources offline and try to replicate the growth model of offline institutions; there are also platforms that use free trial listening, community promotion, etc. as diversion paths, and inevitably fall into the mire of traffic war.In fact, the shortcomings of “online” education are not obvious. Most online education players lack their own “traffic pool”. The acquisition of new traffic is heavily dependent on advertising, which is equivalent to putting the lifeline in the hands of others, so that there are always newcomers to chooseGet involved in online education, such as the gogokid and B stations launched today by Toutiao.At the same time there are players who open up new paths.At the end of 2018, the article “This screen changed destiny” swipes the screen. When discussing the topic of imbalanced educational resources, it also gave a demonstration lesson to online education: online education occupying users and a great way to operate a traffic pool, Maybe it’s the user’s screen.Players such as smart TVs, smart speakers, etc. have started to layout. At least from the transcripts submitted at least, this model is not unsuccessful: in the four days when Baidu launched 100 million free courses, there were more than 100,000 usersReceived free education courses, meanwhile, in terms of user conversion and payment, the average user duration of educational content reached 40 minutes, the income of education-related skills increased 8 times, and the income of “star courses” increased 31 times year-on-year.From the statistical data disclosed by market research agency Canalys, the global smart speaker shipments in the third quarter of 2019 have reached 28.6 million units. Baidu, Ali, and Xiaomi have achieved 11 million unit shipments, of which BaiduSales of smart speakers with screens have exceeded 2.3 million units.It is not excluded that under the leadership and demonstration of Xiaodu, Ali, Xiaomi, etc. can further cultivate the possibility of online education.When smart speakers gradually become the standard for hundreds of millions of families, the ecology of the living room scene will inevitably be reshaped. Especially under the dual role of voice interaction and rich content, the attention of parents and children is gradually tilting towards screen smart speakers.Getting involved in the online education market is just a natural extension of the family ’s occupation of the family scene.This growth path seems familiar to the Internet.In the PC era, the traffic entrance is occupied by browsers and head websites. However, in the mobile Internet era, traffic distribution rights have diverged: Super APPs represented by WeChat account for more than 70% of Internet traffic.Smart phone manufacturers have firmly grasped the hardware entrance, and then occupied a place in the distribution of applications, content, and services.Back to the online education industry itself, there is almost no possibility of growing into the next super APP in the current Internet landscape. Occupying hardware can be said to be one of the few feasible routes to build its own traffic pool.Cutting into the scene from the hardware, the rise of the industry in the scene layout model may be a path revolution that has a profound impact on the online education industry.04 It is undeniable to write at the end that the epidemic has accelerated user education and market awareness of online education, and at the same time has laid the fast-forward key to market competition.Potential users who had been mining for many years were concentrated in one month to release. If this wave of demographic dividends cannot be seized and the past misunderstandings in user retention can be overcome, the next question may be whether they can survive.After all, users are harvested once, indicating that the growth of new users requires higher customer acquisition costs.Besides, barbarians such as smart speaker players have appeared on the market, and they are conducting dimensionality reduction attacks on online education players who focus on data growth and financing renewal. In particular, the path to hardware market entry has been further verified.This is another “battle” that online education players have to face..

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