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Operating Tips On Caring For Kids - Part 2

Updated on March 20, 2011

Direct mailing, even though it's not free, is also a great way to reach families. You can create a direct mail marketing program targeted to parents in your community with children in the age groups you serve. Direct mailing is yet another way to market a program and can be very cost efficient. When evaluating your marketing avenues take time to do a cost/benefit analysis. A national television ad can be extremely expensive. And yes that expense becomes even greater if your program does not serve families outside your immediate community. On the other hand, a thousand copies of a well-designed brochure that will be distributed in newcomer packages by the local Chamber of Commerce can bring a greater return for less money.

If you're looking to do a direct mail piece, the first step is to purchase a list from a reputable list broker. Make sure whatever you mail is attractive and consistent in look and content. Mailing time is also very important. Try to get your direct mail supplier to drop your mailing at the post office so that it arrives at addresses on Mondays or Tuesdays. Mail received on Friday or Saturday may not be as effective.

With all the high-tech advertising techniques in our society, people are still drawn to what they can touch. This may be the reason why newsletters and brochures are such effective marketing tools.

Newsletters sent to parents keep them in touch with what their children are doing at the center and make them feel more involved and less like someone who just pays the bill. They are also good tools to drop off, along with brochures and other collateral materials, at local businesses and companies whose employees may have need of your services. Newsletters can be created in-house for a relatively low cost, provided you have the proper software. Many graphic art programs like Quark Xpress and Publisher now come with newsletter templates to help you with design. A quick search of the Internet will reveal several companies that sell newsletter-style templates online.

Brochures are another great marketing tool, one that can be mailed to families in your area, dropped off at businesses or handed out at community events. There is an irresistible need to unfold them, look inside, and then refold them.

A brochure can be defined as your center's capabilities list. Yes, there are many centers out there, and yes, they all care for children. But no, they don't provide service the same way. When creating your brochure, make sure to include these extra services.

If you're making a brochure to increase enrollment, consider how your center is unique:

  • Education programs
  • Staffing
  • Security
  • Facility and playground highlights

The costly development of a brochure or Web site with a professional appearance can be avoided by utilizing connections within your community. Become familiar with the local community colleges and universities. Their instructors are often looking for design projects for their students. Allowing advertisers access to your site can reduce Web costs. Many advertisers will pay your business for the privilege of providing a link back to their home page.

Continued In Operating Tips On Caring For Kids - Part 3

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