Human motivators and needs

Direction setting

Action and activation

Stronger Together.


Australian Education Union (AEU) - ACT Branch

How might we build good foundations to grow our marketing and communications so that members are better informed?

The AEU is one of Australia’s largest and most influential education unions, passionately advocating for the interests of education professionals, encompassing teachers, support staff, and educators across diverse education sectors. This includes public schools, early childhood education, and vocational education and training.

Rowdy was initially commissioned by the AEU to set a direction for their marketing and communications efforts, with a particular emphasis on their valued members. In today’s landscape, member-based organisations face increasing demands to offer enhanced value, a central theme that resonated throughout our approach.

Taking a Design Thinking approach, rowdy engaged in collaborative workshops with the AEU team, where we conducted empathy mapping and audience segmentation. It became abundantly clear that to effectively serve educators, we needed a more in-depth understanding of their thoughts and emotions. In tandem with a comprehensive member survey, we immersed ourselves in the educators’; world, attending numerous events within their own environments and conducting numerous interviews. Only after we developed sound insights into our audience did we draft a strategy.

With minor changes, the strategy was approved by both management and the Executive Committee.


Greater value for their audiences was achieved by:


  • Member-centric approach
    Right from the outset, we recognised that the heart of the AEU’s mission lies in its members. Our strategy was carefully crafted to ensure that every communication and initiative would enhance the experience and benefits provided to AEU members.
  • Deeper understanding
    Using Design Thinking, we explored the world of educators through collaborative workshops, empathy mapping, and audience segmentation. This immersive approach allowed us to gain profound insights into the thoughts and emotions of educators, enabling us to better meet their needs and aspirations.
  • Inclusivity
    To capture a comprehensive view, we conducted a member survey and actively engaged with educators in their own environments, attending events and conducting interviews. This thorough understanding of our audience served as the foundation upon which our strategy was built.
  • Strategic refinement
    The strategy, with minor refinements, received unanimous approval from management, reflecting a clear alignment with the AEU’s mission to elevate the member experience.