Shariee Calderone & Susan Remick Topek
How excited are we to kick off this summer series of 10 Must-Do Marketing Tips* to help you grow your Jewish Early Childhood Program enrollment. This series was inspired by our In-site-ful Journey visit to Old Westbury Hebrew Congregation with Director Jen Fusco. Jen’s marketing suggestions raised a great deal of interest with participating educators so we thought we’d support this interest a little more. Each week we are going to highlight a different marketing tip. You may know some of the strategies, but we guarantee you haven’t thought about all of them!
As always we encourage you to share your own experiences with us through our FB page as we strive to link these posts to posts there and expand the conversation between educators.
TIP #1: Be Found on Your Local Map
Imagine you are sitting in your living room and you start gazing at the curtains that have hung above your windows for 10+ years (ok maybe even 20+). You decide you need a change. You grab your phone or sit at your computer and you begin to search “curtains” through a web search or directly through Google Maps. And wow look what you’ve found. Three curtain stores in your area.
Being found in your community is one of the first things you need to do to be successfully marketing yourself. After all, if your not on a map (in this case Google Maps) how can anyone find you?
“Over the past 10 or 15 years, and especially within the last 5 years or so, there’s been a ‘sea change’ in the way today’s parents search for child care. It’s all about showing up on Google and the other major search engines for your top key phrases – things like “child care centers, your town” and “preschools, your zip code.” (10 Must Do Marketing Tips)
Jewish preschools NEED to show up on the map – right next to the secular preschools in the area. We tested this out recently and searched “preschools” on Long Island and in Westchester. We were pleasantly surprised to see some schools show up with multiple search terms however, we were even more surprised to learn that the majority of our schools did not show up at all! (But the secular preschools DID!). When listing your school think about a variety of search terms such as: Jewish preschool, nursery school, early childhood centers, and Jewish early childhood centers.
“So if you have not claimed your Google Places local listing page, you are leaving serious enrollment dollars on the table.”
Resource links to help you get started:
If you want to plunge right in we recommend starting on the Google My Business page.
For those who need a little more support and guidance we recommend you start with these two links:
5 Easy Steps to Get Listed in Google Maps for Free (blog tutorial)
Get your business listed on Google search and maps (15 min. video tutorial)
*We gratefully acknowledge the permission we’ve received by Matt Harrell, CEO & Co-founder of MemberHub, to reference Childcare Marketing Tips: 10 Mus-Do Marketing Tips to Grow the Enrollment of Your Early Childhood Program (July 2012). The e-book was coauthored by Matt Harrell and Kris Murray, President and Founder of Child Care Marketing Solutions.