A key part of growing your childcare center is effectively marketing it. With the craziness that comes with owning or working at an early education center, it’s easy for marketing efforts to get overlooked. However, there are simple marketing tips and strategies that you can implement that will have a huge effect on your business. From social media to email marketing, there’s so many ways you can spread the word about your childcare center.
Your marketing efforts don’t have to come with a huge budget. Many avenues, like social media, reviews, and referrals, can cost no money at all. By placing a greater emphasis on marketing your childcare center, you can help build a brand and attract new customers. In this post, we’ll outline six ways you can effectively market your center using affordable and attainable strategies.
1. Utilize Social Media
Facebook is a great place to connect with parents, other owners and directors, and industry leaders. Today’s parents like being connected to brands and businesses they support. A Facebook page is an easy and free way to communicate with your current and prospective families. Posting photos of fun activities, reminders for upcoming events, and center news can help you build a brand for your center. Try and post 2-3 times per week in order to keep people engaged. To create simple graphics for events, promotions, job openings etc. a great site to use is Canva. Canva is free to use and comes with preloaded templates, fonts, and photos.
Instagram is another great social outlet that can help you connect with families and other childcare professionals. Posting photos of fun events, activities, job openings, center offerings, and more can help customers get a better understanding of your center. For a more sales focused approach, you can incorporate photos of spaces and rooms around your center and link to your website.
Twitter is another network you can use to stay in touch with current and prospective families. While this may not be the primary network you use, it’s important to have a presence on all platforms in order to build credibility. Feel free to repurpose content you’ve posted on other sites in order to stay active on Twitter.
LinkedIn is a professional platform that will help you connect with other childcare professionals. You can post similar content here to what you’ve posted on other platforms. While this won’t be a main tool to communicate with potential families, it can help you build other great relationships and lead to a more well-rounded social media presence.
Pinterest can be used as a variation of a search engine for any childcare related searches. Here, you’ll find great ideas for classroom decor, activities for kids, lesson plans, and more. While this can be a resource, you can also post original content and help get the word out about your center.
Paid advertising is becoming more and more affordable through social media. Facebook has a great advertising platform that is easy to use and relatively inexpensive. This tool will allow you to target potential families based off of different demographics such as location, interest, job, income, etc. You can run full campaigns to promote your center or even promote ‘boosted posts’.
2. Optimize Your Website
Your website is where families will first be able to see all your center has to offer. Make sure this is updated with the most recent contact information, email addresses, classroom offerings, etc.
Fill your website with photos of fun events and your children learning. It’s also a good idea to have tour and contact options clearly displayed so your site visitors know how to take the next steps.
SEO (search engine optimization) plays a huge role in who sees your website. Make sure you include words like “daycare”, “childcare center”, “early learning center”, and your location within your site to make sure the right people are finding your website. You want to use language and terms on your website that parents will be using when they search for childcare options on the internet. For more information on SEO, click here to read Moz’ Beginner’s Guide to SEO.
3. Start a Blog
A great way to get more visitors to your website is to start a blog. Creating a blog is an easy way to create more content for your website and increase traffic. Focus on content you already have a strong knowledge of and that will be helpful to parents as they are looking for childcare. This could include “How to Choose the Childcare Center Right for You” or “Easy and Fun Activities to Do With Your Toddler”. The goal of your blog should be to provide valuable information for people searching the web. This helps build your brand, increase website traffic, and boost enrollment at your center. Think of topics that parents will be interested in as they look for childcare for their children and how you can answer those questions. You can add your blog right within your website using tools and services like wix.com or squarespace.com.
4. Use a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Platform
A CRM will give you all the tools you need to manage your sales processes. This service will help you capture lead information from phone calls, emails, website inquiries and walk-ins. It will also allow you to keep up with follow up tasks including scheduling tours and meetings and sending follow up emails.
A CRM will also give you the tools to get involved in effective email marketing. Here you’ll be able to set your leads up on drip campaigns so they don’t lose sight of your business. For more information on drip campaigns, check out this blog post from ChildcareCRM. Email marketing can be an effective way to keep prospective customers engaged and convert them to actual customers for your business.
Once you’re established on a CRM you’ll be able to see analytics and reports on your performance. This data will allow you to see which marketing avenues are most effective and where you can improve. To get started with a CRM made specifically for childcare centers, check out ChildcareCRM.com.
5. Connect to your Network
Connect to your network and help get the word out about your business. Using social media platforms like Facebook or LinkedIn and joining childcare groups can help connect you with owners, directors, parents, and more. This is a great way to connect with others in your community and increase your center’s brand awareness.
Reviews go a long way in this day and age as parents spend a lot of time researching which childcare center is best for their child. Hearing a real parent’s experiences can help new families build trust within your center and feel confident in choosing your center for their child. Loyal families at your center may be willing to write positive reviews to help keep your business thriving. Encourage Google Reviews as they are a great option and they’re free to take part in! Simply register your business with Google My Business and you’ll have a better chance of being noticed by new families.
6. Host a Virtual Event
Hosting an event—even a virtual event—can be a great way to generate buzz for your center. Traditionally, these could be fundraisers and family fun days but, due to the pandemic, many events have had to turn virtual. Consider hosting a virtual open house, meet the teachers night, center tour, happy hour, or information session. These are easy, low-pressure ways to get prospective families involved.
As you navigate the new normal, don’t forget about the importance of marketing. Using these tips you can ensure your center will be seen by the right people and thrive for years to come.
Kangarootime is the leading all-in-one childcare management software for daycares and preschools. With billing and invoicing capabilities, parent communication and staff management tools and classroom automation, Kangarootime helps childcare centers grow and scale. To learn more about optimizing your center with Kangarootime, visit kangarootime.com.