Every parent want the best for their child and they will always opt for the best when it comes to their education. They look out for a lot of things and until they are satisfied, they won’t enroll their children in the school
Example of a few things many parents see as important when sizing up a school include:
- The quality and state of the facilities in your school.
- The kind of additional activities you offer that many other schools do not.
- The Location of the school in relation to the location of the parent.
- Your school’s reputation.
- The general qualification of the teachers in the school.
- The standpoint of your school when it comes to religion. (If you’re a religious school, be vocal about it, you’ll be able to target parents who want their kids in this kind of schools.)
They are a lot more of these things, and if you can show to these parents that you have them to offer, they’ll gladly enroll their children into your school.
Digital marketing for schools in Nigeria
There are a huge number of schools in Nigeria, I don’t think the exact figure is known, but you’ll agree with me that the number is a lot.
I mean a lot.
With this large number of schools, what’s going to make your school stand out when it comes to marketing yourself?
This is where using digital marketing would give you an advantage. It will help you place your school in the faces of your prospective students and parents.
And it will also help you show what your school is offering that is different from other schools. This would give you a edge when they get to see what you’re offering.
Digital marketing strategies for schools in Nigeria
In using these digital marketing strategies, you must be able to focus your marketing to meet the things that your prospective parents see as important for their child’s education.
With that done, you can easily make them enroll their child into your school.
A good understanding of your current parents and future ones will help your marketing online easier, and more profitable.
If you’ve ever thought of how you could increase the number of enrollments into your school for each semester or term whatever the case may be, I have a strategy that can help you.
Knowing your target market
A sound knowledge of your audience is one of the most important areas of succeeding with anything online.
First of all, you’ll be creating content with them in mind, running ads to them, and targeting them. You’ll also be selling your services to them.
Knowing them, their demography, and their concerns when it comes to education should be your starting point if you’ll be running a successful campaign to increase enrollment into your school.
You should also be able to answer the question of why they would choose your school among many others.
What are you offering them that is unique to only you?
Do you have some extra-curricular activities that other schools do not offer?
Is there a difference with the way your teachers carry out their class activities that are beneficial to the students’ learning?
When you are able to find out that thing that is unique to you that is also relevant to your student and their parents, marketing your school will be a lot easier.
This is because you’ll be coming from a different angle that is unique to only you as against any other competitor you may have.
You’ll be using social media for this strategies, so you should already by now have social media accounts, and should how to Use social media for marketing your school.
Digital Marketing Tools to improve Enrollment.
In running a campaign that brings in a steady number of new students coming to enroll in your school, you’ll need the following.
#1 A Mobile friendly website
Having a website for your school is a must. This is because your school website is the first point of the impression when it comes to getting potential students.
Most Nigerians access the internet through their smartphones, so it is necessary that your website also be mobile friendly, that way your visitors can get a good experience when they visit your site from their phones.
Most of the other tools you’ll be using for marketing your school will link back to your school’s website.
And when you have an active website for your school-
- It creates an important first impression, shows you’re credible and creates a reputation of professionalism for you.
- It is important for any efficient Marketing to be done online.
- It can serve as a form of an online magazine, and also save you some stress.
#2 Landing Pages.
As the name suggests, landing pages are pages that people (your target audience) will land on when they click on the call-to-action you place in your ads.
The main purpose of landing pages is to collect contact information (names, phone numbers and email addresses) of your prospective parents, after which you can further contact them to follow up the enrollment process.
One mistake you should avoid is sending prospective students or parents to the homepage of your website. Doing this will reduce the success of your campaign.
This is where having landing pages come into play, they are created specifically for the purpose of marketing.
Creating a landing page can be a little technical. Depending on your website designer, you can request that he/she creates a new landing page on your site for you.
However, if your website is built on WordPress, you can purchase a landing page builder. This plugin makes building landing pages easy without you needing to know how to write codes.
Qualities of Great School Landing Pages.
When a prospect gets to your landing page, it is important that the following qualities are present on your landing page.
This means that your landing page can adapt to whatever device a viewer uses to view it. Be it a laptop, Tablet, or mobile.
Most of the landing page builders that are well fitted for WordPress built site are able to build well responsive landing pages.
When a landing page is responsive, it creates a positive experience for the viewer.
I specifically use Instabuilder for most of the landing pages I build.
Has a call-to-action
Your landing page should always have a clear call-to-action for the visitors to click in other to go forward in the whole marketing funnel.
A call-to-action is the specific action you want them to take. Could be sign-up, get access, apply.
Contains a well-written Marketing Content.
The content on your landing page be legit and should tell a story of what your prospective parent would be interested in hearing.
This content should be a combination of text and images or videos
What to include in your landing page for greater conversion.
Conversion is everything. The main purpose of having a landing page in the first place is to generate leads and increase the number of new students enrolling into the school.
Without a landing page that converts, our goal cannot be met. Here are a list of what to include in your landing page:
Your Value Proposition (Marketing Content)
This should be the first thing the viewers see, it is you saying what you’ll be offering them that is beneficial to them. This is where you incorporate your unique selling point in a very bold manner.
A Gripping Photo or Video
Videos work very well, but might be more expensive to produce. You could use an image that showcases the quality of your school.
Bullet List of Benefits.
Write out a list of things these students will gain from joining your school… Make sure to include the ones that will cause a “wow’ effect on them.
The purpose of this list is to affirm your value proposition. If you can come up with a list of either 3 or 4, that will be of immense benefits to the prospective students, then you’ll be almost done at getting them to apply.
People always make decisions based on the words of others. And this is what a social proof will do for you.
It is you showing this potential student or parent that what you’re offering, other people already benefit from it.
You can use testimonial, either test or video from parents, or students. This alone can influence their decision in your favor by far.
Your social proof could also include awards or rankings you have attained, as well as sponsors that are highly recognized.
Check out this school landing page below.
This is where the prospective parent will fill in their information.
Having this information, gives you the privilege of further communicating with these people, either via mail or by a phone call. Whichever you choose.
On the form will be a list of field you’ll ask them to fill which ends with the call-to-action that leads to another page (Which could be a page o continue the vetting process or one that is a thank you page.)
A list of the field that you could place in your form includes.
- First name.
- Last Name.
- Email Address.
- Phone number
You can also make a number of these fields compulsory, such that whoever is filling it cannot get to the next age except that field is filled.
Always try to make sure that your landing page has no other links that can lead the prospective parents out of that page, except that of the call-to-action, which can lead to another page or to the final thank you page.
Using Online Advertising to Increase Enrollments.
The good thing about advertising online is that it can be super targeted.
You can target just about anybody online.
Targeting can be done using the locations of the parents, it can be through their specific online behaviors or through various interest that they have shown to have online.
So if you’re a school based in Abuja, you can run a campaign targeting parents between any age bracketing of your choosing, who live in Abuja and have visited your website in the last 3 months.
Before now, schools depend on traditional means of targeting such as newspapers, billboards, fliers e.t.c. But not only are this expensive in comparison to the results they bring,
They are never targeting, and as such these schools depend on the hope that the right sets of people will see their ad.
Using online advertising also gives you the leverage of measuring its success. You can determine if the campaign is bringing a substantial amount of returns from the investment made.
#3 Using Facebook advertising to advertise for school admissions
If you’re interested in getting your school in front of new prospective parents, then you’ll have to know how to use Facebook for your business. Facebook advertising is one sure way to go.
Facebook ads are not just images or videos shown to a number of their active users, rather they are a combination of video or images and text shown to a specific group of people based on the targeting that was used.
In a running a running a successful Facebook Ad Campaign in Nigeria, you’ll need the following.
- A Title
- A body
- An image or video
- And a Call to action
The call to action will contain a link. This link will be the link of the landing page, such that anybody who clicks the ad is directed to the landing page.
And if the landing page is well built with a selling point that entices a prospective parent, and the ad is also well targeted, you’ll have people filling the form to get their children in your school.
There are various ways you could use to go about getting people to see your ads.
If you have a list of the emails of the parents of your current students, you could use that list to generate what is called a look-alike-audience and run the ads to this new audience.
What this means is that you are running your ads to only people who have similar characteristics to the parents of your current students.
If you have a blog section for your site with good content written, but you don’t have a list of emails from your current students, you could run an awareness ad to get new visitors to read the content you have, and then with the use of a Facebook pixel installed on your site, run a subsequent ad for enrollment to the same set of people (or people with similar characteristics) that read the post you published earlier with the call to action to your landing page.
Facebook pixel is a code that when you place on your site, can help Facebook track your site visitors, as well as purchases. Using Facebook pixel can help with detailed targeting for ads.
That way you can re-target parents who have visited your site between a period of time
If you do not have a blog, or the emails of your current parents as shown in the above examples. You could simply create ad campaigns targeting parents and students based on demography, interests and online behaviors.
And converting them into customers of your school.
Benefits of using Facebook ad.
- Facebook has one of the most advanced and details targeting options.
- Using Facebook as an advertising medium is very cost effective, and Facebook advertising works in a way that you can run your campaign according to the budget that you have.
- Facebook has a very huge amount of users, and so the exposure for your ad is greater than a number of other online advertising platforms.
#4 Email Marketing.
One of the advantages of using this form of marketing is that you can follow up with people who give you their contact information.
Truth is lots of this people will not make a decision at the spot, there a million and one things that can take their attention away. But because you have a means of contacting them, you can get them to commit a later phase.
You can send personalized messages to them still pushing out the benefits they’ll get from placing their kids in your school, with call-to-actions for them to commit.
Your follow-up may be in the form of phone calls, but I’ll advise using emails. This is because using emails can be automated.
And so, you wouldn’t need to type your emails every time you want to send them out. You can have them all created for your campaign and have them sent at any sequence you choose.
Be it daily, every two days… Whatever.
For this, you’ll need to sign-up with an email marketing automation platform to help you with this.
The above image is the framework for everything, you first of of attract them, then you convert them by turning them from mere visitors to leads.
Your ads gets them to your landing page, then with the landing page you get them to commit to your school. After which you nurture them into making a decision thereby closing the deal.
My Tips to attract parents to your School with digital marketing.
- Improve your website experience. Make sure your website is responsive, loads fast and easy to navigate
- Get the email list of all your current parents. This will be useful for any ad campaign, you’ll run in the future. Plus this can be used as a means of communicating with the parents through your school’s newsletter.
- Have a blog, and create very valuable content.
- Encourage your students to create contents as part of learning activities. Having quality content on your blog will help your school rank high in search engines, and also build a very good online reputation for your school.
- Be sure to understand your parent’s need.
- Have a steady and healthy budget for your campaign fit for the result you want to gain.
- Always measure and optimize for better results
Using this strategy, you can get a large number of new students to enroll into your school. You can get a digital marketer to help you with doing everything that seems confusing.
If you ask a question, feel free to ask, I’ll answer as quickly as I can.
Alexander Ubaka is the Founder and CEO of Topsocialbrand.com, A digital media company aimed at helping small businesses get succeed online. With a goal of getting these businesses better targeted leads, increased brand awareness, and a maximal use of every available digital for the growth of the business.
Connect with Alexander on LinkedIn