We are really excited to be expanding the preschool at First Trinity. We haven’t really done much advertising in the past. Most of our families come from the church or word of mouth from other families in the preschool. With the expansion, we wanted to get a little more intentional about advertising. We took a survey of our families and found (not surprisingly) that many people look online for a preschool in addition to recommendations from friends.
We decided to take 3 first steps:
- Reorganize our preschool portion of the website into several smaller, more focused pages instead of one giant page with information. We’re also exploring moving the preschool to a separate website so they can have a more appropriate theme/design.
- Create an “Open House” event on Facebook and promote it through paid Facebook ads.
- Purchase some ads in Google search results that send people to a special open house page on our website.
We moved from a single page to six total pages. The pages are:
- Preschool Home
- Large photo of the teachers and students from Sunbeam Sunday.
- Brief overview of the school.
- Quotes from eight current parents that capture some of the best things about the school.
- Classes: We list what classes we offer, including a brief description of what students learn in the class, student/teacher ratios, days the class is offered, and a picture from that age group.
- Enrollment: Everything you need to enroll in the school on one page. Most of this is legacy content from the old site and will be reorganized when we launch a dedicated website.
- Areas of Study: A more complete list of what kids learn across all classes by participating for three years. This is a direct copy/paste from the parent handbook from this past year for now. More revamp to come in a new site.
- Staff listing and bios.
- Open House: A page dedicated to the open house event and used in the Google Ads campaign.
We chose to create an event for the open house and focus our advertising efforts on the event rather than “likes” or a specific product (in this case enrollment in our school). Facebook lets us use high quality stock photos for the ads for free, which is great. Here’s the 6 we used:
We have the opportunity to asses how the ads are doing and turn off the lower performers. More on that in another post probably.
Google Search Ads
I’ve never purchased ads with Google before, so this was a great first experience. We redeemed an ad promotion to get $75 free after spending $25, which makes for a pretty good deal. The ads point people to the open house page on our website. If I were to do it again, I’d create a campaign that focuses on a specific action on our website instead of just viewing the page to better assess the effectiveness of the campaign.
Here’s what the ads ended up looking like:
On our survey, we asked parents to give us 5 words that describe the school. These three were the most frequently mentioned when we were ready to create the ad. Side note: we pay for each click, so don’t go searching for the ad to click and see what happens! 🙂
Thank you, Jason.
I am a volunteer leading a communication team at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church and School in Springfield, VA. I plan to show your plan to a group of people working on school communications this afternoon. It looks fantastic! Thank you for sharing.