Senior parents at graduation are filled with emotion about their child and your school. Tap into that marketing resource by documenting their voices.
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Why does a family seek out an independent school in general and yours in particular? They are motivated. What motivates them is that they have at least one “pain point” — a need, want, or problem — that your school addresses. Start your marketing with that pain point.
Rob and I were lucky to be chosen by Brendan Schneider, the school social media guru who is famous for his blog on SchneiderB, to be interviewed about branding for school on his (now famous) podcast. Get to know us by listening in.
With so much branding, marketing, and social media going on, we rarely look at what gives people their first impression of an independent school’s image: the name itself. While you can’t do anything to change your school’s name, you can and should look at it from your external audience’s point of view.
"We have small classes, dedicated faculty, we educate the whole child and create a lifelong love of learning, and we have a community that's like family." Is this how you describe your school? Don't.
So you’ve determined you’re buying ad space. What makes a strategically-driven, well-executed open house ad? I’m going to offer recommendations and show a number of ads, but leave the assessments up to you. Do any of them hit the mark? What’s missing in some that are otherwise effective?
We have an idea. Create a “slogan” for the enrollment year and plaster it on everything you do for admissions. Make it exciting, interesting, and memorable. Have it lead the charge and carry your other brand messages along with it. “But we have a tagline. Isn’t that the same thing?” No.
I am pleased to say that I’ve worked with a number of truly excellent independent school marketing committees over the years. I’ve also worked with a number of committees that generated marketing efforts, which confirmed, “A Camel is a Horse Designed by Committee.” What's the difference?
Answering one big fat question is the key to driving inquiries. It's simple, or at least the words are. The answer is more elusive for most schools, but shouldn't be. "Why is your school worth it?
Brendan Schneider is Director of Advancement at Sewickley Academy by day, and independent school inbound marketing superhero in his spare(!) time. He invited us for a virtual cup of coffee and a chat. Brendan lobbed some great questions over the net.