At the core of any school marketing strategy, you’ll likely find an admissions goal. Attracting new students and prospective families to your school is crucial to your ongoing success, after all. So how do you make sure your school places are filled?
The recently published Education Communications Survey found that while 50% of MATs are looking to expand in the next 12 to 18 months, nearly half (48.8%) report that their biggest communication and marketing challenge is filling student places.
The results are interesting, and suggest that many could improve upon their current practices to ensure success.
That’s where Eduprise comes in. With over 20 years of experience across the team, we help schools and MATs improve their marketing and communications strategies to generate those all important admissions. And, in our latest blog, we’ll reveal the 4 key steps you need to take into account to increase your school admissions.
Planning ahead is a well-known strategy for success, and one you probably tell your students time and time again in the run up to the exam period. Yet, when it comes to planning school marketing, it can be easy to overlook.
Competing priorities can make it tough for schools and MATs to find the time to put a yearly plan in place, but doing so will almost certainly make a huge difference further down the line.
For instance, we all know how crucial a school’s reputation is when it comes to admissions, but a good reputation is hard earned. Don’t leave it until the last minute; release good news stories, and work with your parents, current students and even your alumni to build your reputation in the local community. Make sure your school is seen all year round!
We understand that this can take a lot of work without the right support. Working with Eduprise means you have access to a fully fledged marketing team, at a fraction of the cost, with all the expertise you need at hand, all year round.
Manage Your Social Media Presence
Social media can be a great tool to get your voice heard and spread the message about how amazing your school is. And, chances are, your audiences are already there.
When it comes to advertising via local newspapers or buses, activities can be imprecise, and this makes it difficult to track success rates. It also means that it can quickly become very costly, with an unpredictable return. In contrast, platforms such as Facebook not only provide a quick and effective means of getting your message out there, but it’s also possible to be much more targeted in your approach when compared to traditional methods.
For example, a recent social media marketing campaign enabled us to target a crucial admissions campaign to prospective parents with children aged 10 to 11. This resulted in a total of 112 applications needed to open a new school with a full Year 7 intake, and generate extremely high levels of engagement within the local community.
Work With Local Press
The old adage ‘any publicity is good publicity’ certainly wasn’t in reference to school marketing! However, neither was ‘no news is good news’...
Neglecting the press means you’re missing crucial opportunities to boost your reputation and brand awareness. A good relationship with your local press makes it much easier to make a splash with all the amazing work your school does, and means that if there is ever the need to combat a negative story, you’ve got a history of good publicity to help fight your corner.
After all, if your prospective parents only ever hear from you when the news is bad, you aren’t giving them an opportunity to form a positive response on your behalf.
The team here at Eduprise work hard to develop and maintain strong relationships with local journalists in our clients’ area. This means we’re best placed to provide press releases about notable school events that boost our clients’ reputation, and can liaise directly with journalists when stories break, be it good or bad.
Optimise Your Response to Enquiries
We’ve arguably saved the most important step for last; responding to direct enquiries.
Picture this; you’ve put all the work in to plan ahead and build up your reputation. You’ve got word of mouth going via the local press, and your social media campaigns are generating interest among prospective families. Now, enquiries are rolling in via your school’s website, with plenty of prospective families who all want to join your community.
The problem? You aren’t able to handle the enquiries quickly enough, and people start to look elsewhere.
It’s crucial that you’re able to convert enquiries into admissions, so think about how you can mitigate the issues of response times. For instance, using automation means you’re able to almost immediately contact enquiries and stagger wait times, so prospects are not left in the dark.
At Eduprise, we are experts in automating services such as these to save your school time and money, whilst ensuring you do not miss out on any enquiries coming in about your school.
How We Can Help
Here at Eduprise, we have over 20 years experience helping schools and Trusts to carry out their school marketing strategies effectively. From helping to make the most of your school news, through to admissions and recruitment campaigns, we’re here to help.
You can also join us at our latest Crowdcast Event on 11th November to learn more!
Chaired by Danny Kershaw, he will be joined by Eduprise’s resident expert, Ryan Green. Together they will discuss the power of social media in driving admissions and putting your school(s) firmly on the map.
With plenty of insights and real-life success stories to share, this is an event you don’t want to miss. Save your spot today.