Nowadays, more parents are interested in enrolling their children in early education. Because they are being informed on the various benefits of early childhood education, they may have many questions about which care facility is best for their needs. While curriculum and activities are important for parents, quality service and convenience top the charts of their most wanted demands.
Child care marketing makes all the difference for early childhood education centers. As a business, you always want to be expanding your client base and work on tactics that could lead to more prospects, and many of these prospects are busy parents. Here are the top six marketing tips that any child care business can follow suit with.
Promote Your Business Wherever You Can
You never know where you can find a great lead, so communicating on every platform you are on can be a great opportunity for generating leads. Make sure your service’s name and description are available in all correspondence. For example, any employee should have a link to your website in their email signature, in addition to general service information.
Utilize Social Media
Practically any business can benefit from engaging on social media. Contributing to other online networks of parents/parenting groups is also a fantastic way to connect with parents. While it may be overwhelming, social media is an incredibly powerful tool. At the very minimum, you should use your social media to promote events or as a general promotion for the services your business provides. However, if you want to be more successful, sharing content on your feed and creating posts will help establish a clear tone and voice for your brand.
By actively contributing to online discussions, many parents can learn a lot about your business. Try to keep a professional yet nurturing tone, as you want to show that your business knows what it is talking about, yet it is still cheerful and warm.
If you don’t already have a Facebook page for your business, you should go and create one as soon as p[ossible. Include your location, hours, and contact information as well. Treat this as you would with a Google listing.
Create Educational Content
When it comes to overall marketing tactics, digital marketing reigns as king. One of the most effective and cheap ways any business, especially child care businesses, can benefit from is content marketing. Content marketing is a type of marketing that focuses on creating content (blog posts, videos, etc.) for a specific audience. In the case of a child care facility, that audience is likely parents.
Creating content is just one step, but figuring out what exactly to create can be a whole other beast. Putting an educational spin on your content can establish credibility for your brand, as it provides vital information for parents who stumble upon your website. And when that happens, they will view your brand as a trustworthy source of information.
Not all content needs to be strictly educational, however. For example, when the seasons change, it might be a great idea to share some fun and festive activities that parents can do with their children. As mentioned previously, building the tone of your brand is incredibly important for anything you contribute online. This applies to the content you create. Balancing professional and nurturing is your goal for the content your produce.
Creating content is a great way to increase your brand’s credibility and perception, as it converts your website into a fantastic resource. However, there is also an additional benefit of content marketing, and that is Search Engine Optimization.
Don’t Dismiss SEO
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing your website to appear in higher search engine rankings. For instance, when someone searches for a child care facility, they will likely stumble upon ones that are closer to them or businesses that have thoughtfully invested in their SEO efforts.
Content marketing and SEO go hand-in-hand. While many techniques can be used to boost your SEO, it is not something that can happen overnight. Optimizing your website and maintaining your ranking is a marathon, not a race.
Websites that have an abundance of well-written content will almost always rank higher than those without it. Therefore, your child care business’s website must have a blog for all of your content.
Referrals Are Always Relevant
While digital marketing is where much of your marketing efforts should be poured into, word of mouth is still one of the most powerful tools for any business, but it is particularly helpful for childcare centers. There are two parts of the word of mouth marketing:
- Do your customers communicate your brand’s value accurately?
- Is there any motivation for them to mention you?
Carrying out messages about your brand through parent-to-parent communication can be one of the best ways to increase your brand awareness. While much of this will happen naturally, there are ways your business can promote word-of-mouth marketing, and that is through a referral program.
Many services often incentivize referrals, which is something your brand should consider doing. There are many creative rewards you can offer, for example, a free week for every referral. Get creative with the notion of implementing a referral program, as it can be incredibly effective for any childcare provider.
Don’t Stop Networking
A general part of any marketing is networking. Connecting with your community will be key to your child care marketing success. There are always local parenting groups you can find, so make sure you get your business’s name into one of these groups.
There are many different conversations you can insert yourself into, as your business knows more than you think! Some topics to consider are transitioning to schools/preschools, help to find child care services, and general questions about early childhood education.
Make sure to be transparent when you are building community awareness. You shouldn’t make your responses sound like blatant advertisements–that will come off as too spammy. Show why your services value childhood education, and how you can be a great resource for parents who are in search of such service.
Alec C is a marketing spokesperson for Today’s Life Schools and Child Care, a child care company based in Minnesota.