How do you get parents to choose your daycare? If you have an online presence, how can you increase your search engine rankings and show up on the first page of local results? To complicate matters, there are as many digital marketing strategies for daycares as there are experts touting them. But, how do you know what works? Most importantly, where do you start?
When it comes to childcare, parents prioritize quality over cost. Research shows that 62% of parents worry about neglect and inadequate supervision when choosing childcare facilities. And, they are willing to pay for reliable care, shelling out more than $9,000 per child annually for the service.
Sure, the marketing focus should be obvious for facility owners. Yet, challenges abound. The marketing rule of 7 says that consumers need to hear about your business seven times before they make a purchase. In that light, digital marketing can substantially increase that engagement level. According to Retail Dive, 87% of consumers search for products and services online before they make a purchase. Therefore, ignoring digital marketing may be a disservice to your business.
Though disasters like the COVID-19 crisis have hit businesses hard, these digital marketing strategies for daycares are some of the smartest tactics in the marketplace. Let’s start with the basics.
Digital Marketing Strategies for Daycares: Local SEO
Local search engine optimization is the customization of your online presence to increase the visibility of your brand in your local region. Most customers of daycare centers are area residents. So, be sure to implement digital marketing strategies that target this group specifically.
Add your location to the titles of your webpages, including the city and state. Since searchers will be looking for local daycare facilities, search engines will direct them to your pages.
You can also use Schema markup, a type of microdata that provides more details about your webpages. It lets search engines display your address, days and hours of operation, acceptable payment methods, and more. Improved visibility on search engine pages can increase your leads and conversions.
Digital Marketing Strategies for Daycares: Email Marketing
Studies show that the return on investment for effective email marketing can be as high as $42 for every $1. It involves building a mailing list and sending emails to potential customers. For a daycare facility, the prospects are parents below 50 years of age.
A good start is collecting the email addresses of parents whose children are already enrolled in your daycare. You can also obtain more contacts through opt-in forms, where you ask your website audience for permission to add them to your mailing list.
Next, be sure to segment your email list. Segmentation is the practice of dividing your email subscribers into groups based on factors like age, income, purchasing behaviors, values, and motivations. Read about the four types of market segmentation here. Monitor your open rates to determine if segmentation is working. The email open rate is the percentage of subscribers who open your emails.
Most importantly, know the difference between open rates and click-to-open rates. Open rates reveal the percentage of subscribers who opened your email. Meanwhile, the click-to-open rate shows the percentage of recipients who opened your email and clicked on your CTA (call-to-action) link. If you want to know how effective your email campaigns are, look for the click-to-open rate.
You can also look at the click-through rate, which shows how many emails you had to send out to get a desired rate of response. For example, you sent out 10,000 emails to get 100 subscribers to click on your CTA link for a coupon promotion. This amounts to a CTR of 1%.
Finally, consider using an email marketing platform that automates the task of sending out emails and provides analytics reports. Try MailChimp or these affordable MailChimp alternatives to get the results you want.
Online Reputation Management for Daycares
Studies show that about 82% of people read online reviews for local businesses. Therefore, maintaining a good reputation is critical. You need to know where parents are talking online and join in the conversation.
Your daycare service should have a system that leverages technology to get 5-star reviews. Examples of reputation marketing solutions include ReviewTracker, Reputation Loop, and Falcon.io, among others. The system should gather reviews ethically using proprietary feedback.
Virtual Tours of Business Premises
These tours highlight your business premises using images, video, sound effects, and music. They portray reality on video and are especially helpful during crises like COVID-19.
With videos, you can showcase your center to parents from the comfort of their homes. Most importantly, you can impress them with crisp pictures of play, classroom, and dining areas in your facility.
Virtual tours are unique in that they can also resonate with children. Little ones can watch videos and form an impression of your facility, even before they step foot in it. For many children, a sneak peek before attendance may help reduce the anxiety of leaving home.
Digital Marketing Strategies for Daycares: Social Media Marketing
Social media platforms are the best places to find parents with young children. According to Edison Research, 92% of mothers in the United States use social media; 81% especially favor Facebook. In fact, mothers with children below five years of age are more likely to use social media than others.
Thus, visibility on Facebook is vital for daycare centers that want to reach parents. But, Facebook marketing requires a strategic approach. Be sure to contribute to online conversations where parents of young children are active. Familiarize yourself with the different types of Facebook ads and learn how to create a retargeting campaign on the platform.
Your Facebook page should also keep parents updated about your services, offers, and facility developments. Be sure to create compelling content that parents will enjoy reading. If they like what they see, they’ll share your posts with their friends, thereby increasing your leads exponentially.
Online Directories for Daycares
Regardless of whether you have a website, consider listing your daycare facility on several online directories. They help consumers find local businesses like yours. The web has a plethora of free and paid online directories. Get your daycare center listed on as many as possible.
Online directories also help to increase your online visibility and build citations. An SEO citation is a reference to your business details in an online directory and can help increase your search engine rankings. Not sure which directories to list your business? Start with these 21 web directories.
Pay-Per-Click Ads for Daycares
Pay-per-click (PPC) ads can help with ranking. You pay each time someone clicks on your ad. According to studies, brand awareness can increase by about 80% through PPC.
You can also run PPC campaigns on various social media platforms. For example, a Facebook retargeting ad is a type of PPC ad. An advantage of PPC is that it’s measurable in terms of your SEO efforts. Additionally, you only pay for clicks, meaning you’re paying for visitors who show interest in your childcare services.
Choosing the Right Digital Marketing Strategies for Daycares
There are many more digital marketing approaches to add to this list, and many factors will influence the outcomes of each. However, the above constitutes the key strategies to put into practice.
Whichever digital marketing line you take, rankings are critical. The top links in search engines get about 28% in click-through rates. Websites at the very top get 42% of the traffic, while the third link down gets only 8% of the traffic. And, of course, the most influential search engine is Google. So, take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with its ranking factors for 2020.
Cloud-Based Daycare Management and Digital Marketing: Twin Forces for Success
From finances to student data privacy, there are many aspects to running a successful daycare program. To reduce the time spent on administrative tasks and to eliminate the risks of cyber breaches, our groundbreaking cloud-based childcare management tool can help. Combined with targeted digital marketing strategies for daycares, you’ll be well on your road to success. To learn more about what Prime Child Care can do for your business, contact us.
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