What Can You Do to Increase Enrollment?
As operators, we understand all too well that operating at maximum capacity is necessary to keep our operations running “in the zone.”
Right now, in Alberta, many child care centres are struggling to maintain the enrollment that they already have. Dreams of the program being full have been put on hold while more and more people are finding themselves out of work.
Here are some low cost and no-cost ideas to increase traffic to your centre:
During tours, make sure to communicate your differences when compared to other programs in the area. Make sure that they focus on high quality! (i.e.: we serve only organic fruits and vegetables, we offer a music program, we have a huge indoor large muscle space.) Let potential parents know just how different and wonderful you are.
Offer a satisfaction guarantee. Give your guarantee a catchy name like, “The Daisy Care Satisfied Families Guarantee.” You can promise that if a parent is not satisfied with the care they are receiving in the first 30 days, they can withdraw their child and will receive a refund of their tuition.
Print a map of your community and begin marking where your families live. You will be able to determine where many of your families reside. Once complete, research the area to find out when there are local events, festivals, or even new construction sites. You can then determine if opportunities are available for you and your program to contribute to those communities. Perhaps you can set up a children’s craft table at a local craft market or event. Maybe take part in a community parade.
Offer to write articles for your local/community paper.
Make sure your program has a Facebook page. Ask all your parents to “like” the page and make sure that you have your Facebook URL on all of your marketing information. Make sure to dedicate time to post updates, polls and useful information.
Have a referral rewards program. When you think about it, one enrollment can mean $13,000.00 or more a year! Choose an amount (between $100 and $500) cash back to families who refer to a successful enrollment. Make sure you take a picture of you handing that hundred-dollar bill to the family and post it on your Facebook page and your parent newsletter. Work will quickly get around, and families will become your best enrollment partners.
If you are looking for even more ideas, Kris Murray has a book entitled The 77 Best Strategies To Grow Your Early Childhood Program. You can order your copy at https://www.childcare-marketing.com/get-your-free-77-preschool-strategies-book and only pay for the cost of shipping.
Until next time,