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How to Promote Your School

Updated on February 26, 2013

Education Marketing Needs Strategy

Our world is changing, and many people are concerned about their educational and economic future. Recent graduates question the effectiveness of Higher Education, in terms of types of universities and college and the skyrocketing costs. Prospective students want to know that their education will ensure their future career.

For business owners in Higher Education, you may find this is an ideal time to build and expand an education business. People want to continue their learning, and they're researching the best ways to receive a degree, certificate or other competency. Your biggest problem is how to make your business stand out among all your competitors.

The Internet has leveled the playing field, in many regards. More people have access to it and connect in a variety of ways (websites and social networking sites, like Facebook or Twitter). You need a marketing strategy that pinpoints your prospective customers and helps them solve their educational needs. While every business can suit up and hit the field, you want to make sure your marketing plan strategy is specific to Education.

It's not a one-size fits all mentality. There are some basics in marketing, so you'll begin with a website -- virtual real estate that is open for business 24 hours a day and seven days a week. If you're promoting a niche program, such as promoting a language school, dance school, or driving school, you'll need to create an Education marketing plan.

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Language Schools Are in Demand
Language Schools Are in Demand

How to Promote Your Language School

Many people love to travel, whether for business or pleasure. Some are jet-setters taking a trip to explore other countries and cultures. Others travel to see distant relatives. Business leaders book trips to meet potential partners. All of them have one thing in common - the need to learn a language.

If you've started your own language school, you'll have a huge audience of people needing your services. In addition to the frequent flyer or vacation planner who want to learn a new language, there are also people who love learning -- and aren't travelling beyond their living room. We live in a world where Internet sites bring us closer to other countries, where we can virtually meet people worldwide.

So, you'll find customers who are excited to start taking your courses. You'll need to create a good website, one that clearly explains your courses, fees, start dates, and policies. You need an easy-to-navigate website, so visitors will know exactly where to find information (such as available courses, location, FAQ's, etc.), how to pay for classes, and how to contact you for further questions.

So, you might ask: If I build a website, will I get tons of visitors? Unfortunately, it doesn't work that simply. Your website needs some additional work in order for people to 'find' it on the Internet. You will be competing with all your competitors for online visitors. Your goal is to make a quality site that ranks high in search engines. When a visitor searches for a school, your website needs to come up in the results page. The first page is the best because most people don't want to search beyond the second page of results.

To receive targeted traffic, you need to include keywords. These are the phrases most used by people searching for an online service or product. The practice of using this type of marketing is called Search Engine Optimization (SEO). It can be very complicated, as different search engines (like Google and Yahoo) change their guidelines. You can research on how to find the best keywords and how to use them on your website. It's not something you can do once and forget about it though. Ask yourself, are you in business to help people learn a language, or do you want to be a marketing expert?

While it's good to know marketing basics, your business will flourish with the expertise of a marketing expert with specialized skills in Education Marketing.

How To Promote Your Dance School

Dance schools are always in demand. The art of dance allows for creative expression, skill building and healthy movement. Some students start at a very young age and continue through adulthood. The students' purpose varies from enjoying the art to building a skill that transforms into a career.

If you own a dance school, you need to be very clear on your organisation's purpose and ideal students. What is your mission? What will students gain from your school? Will classes be a fun afternoon activity? Or will students learn to hone their craft into a lifelong career?

Many prospective students learn of schools through word-of-mouth. Is that part of your marketing plan? Does your website list testimonials -- written and video -- from current students? Do you use marketing tools, such as Facebook or Twitter to reach new students? Are you involved in online conversations that promote dance and attract students?

As with any Education business, it helps to have a professional marketer create your best strategy. Your first step is to build a quality website that is optimized to reach your target audience. Then you can spread the word with a few effective marketing tools.

With a solid Education Marketing plan, you'll discover exactly what you need to reach new students and become a standout school.

How To Promote Your Driving School

Your business is to turn students into responsible, law-abiding drivers. Your customers could be: young, inexperienced drivers, experienced drivers needing a fresher course, or people cited with traffic tickets and who are required to take additional courses.

Of course, you need a basic website, just like any business. But you'll also want to include keywords that target your ideal customer. Since you're competing with hundreds of other driver schools, you'll want to make sure searchers find you on the first page of their Internet results.

On your site, you'll want to include good content and articles that are frequently updated. Perhaps, you'll want to include articles or reports on the rules of the road, preparation steps, and new laws to show your authority in the field.

Once your site is published, you need to share it online. You need to do some research and find out where your customers are. Are they active on social networks? Do they use the latest technology, like smart phones or iPads? Your site can be customized to read well on different platforms.

You may want to film videos on your instructors, or include video testimonials of your graduate students. You can embed these videos on your site and also attract students that are browsing YouTube.

If you'd like to take the guesswork out of finding your customers, consider creating an Education Marketing strategy plan. This will go beyond the basics of business marketing and include action steps defined for your special niche.

Share your biggest struggles in education marketing.

What's Your Biggest Problem in Marketing Your Education Services?

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    • JenniferAkers LM profile image

      JenniferAkers LM 5 years ago

      @LisaDH: I've seen the same issue, Lisa. Here, some local schools have developed, interactive sites, but they're in the minority. Thanks for visiting and commenting!

    • LisaDH profile image

      LisaDH 5 years ago

      This is good advice for any school, including public schools. The PTC at our local school just developed a website, and they're struggling to figure out what to do with it.