Running a children’s activity business can be an enjoyable and fulfilling experience, yet it also comes with its own set of challenges and frustrations.
Attracting students, spreading the word, and securing more bookings may seem daunting, but it’s possible with the right approach.
In this article, we’ll provide you with practical advice and effective strategies to help you boost bookings for your kid’s activity business, guiding you on the path to success.
Optimise your website
A website is the digital face of your business. While having a website is essential, it’s crucial to ensure it’s optimised to truly maximise its potential and effectiveness.
But what does that mean? It means you need to make sure your website is:
- Up to date – Having old news or information makes your business look unprofessional. Get into the routine of checking it every week to make sure everything is current
- Easy to navigate – You want anyone who visits your site to be able to quickly find what they’re looking for. If they have to search through several pages before finding the right information, they’ll get frustrated and may even leave your site. Make it intuitive by thinking about where potential customers would expect to find these things and having a clear, concise menu
- Informative – Make sure your site has all the information a new or existing customer would want to find out. This not only includes, contact and location details, class times, prices and testimonials, but also things like news and upcoming events and descriptions of what happens in your classes
- Visually appealing – Make the design of your site clean and clear with aesthetics that suit your business. It’s worth getting a website designer to create it with a clear brief so that it looks as professional as possible. Also, remember to include lots of images and videos to show potential clients what you do and how much fun the kids are having in your class
- SEO ready – SEO stands for “search engine optimisation” and what it means is that you should consciously include words and phrases in your descriptions that potential customers would search for
- Calling potential customers to action – A book now or enquire now button, makes booking a class or making an enquiry really easy and encourages people to get in touch
Get listed on Google Business
If you earn a kid’s activity business, local searches are critical. Listing your business on Google Business is an easy way to increase your visibility in local search results. Creating a Google Business profile is easy and free. It takes a few minutes to set up, but through it, potential students can get valuable information on your business. Your listing can show valuable information such as hours of operation, address, phone number and reviews.
List with local directories
Listing your business in local directories such as Yelp or Yellow Pages is a great way to drive traffic to your site and get more bookings. It can also help with local search engine rankings which will push your business to the top of the search results page.
It’s also worth enquiring about directories that are specific to your niche or purely local as they’re usually free and only take a few minutes to set up.
Make the most of social media
Utilising social media is a simple and cost-effective way to promote your business, interact with your target audience and grow your brand. With the advent of different platforms like Instagram, Facebook and TikTok, it’s really important to work out which platforms your target audience uses so that can be the focus of your attention.
It’s also worth remembering that social media is not a one-way street, you actually have to interact with people who comment on your posts. By having these online conversations you’ll not only build a loyal online community but also get more views as these platforms reward content creators who interact with their followers.
Approach local schools
Partnering with schools is a great way to promote your business, get more bookings and connect with parents and kids in your community. The school’s facilities can also serve as an excellent venue for your classes, reducing your overheads and allowing you to be in a venue at the heart of the community. Promoting your business activities within the school can give you great exposure and increase awareness about what you offer.
If the school offers clubs and extracurricular activities you can always find out if they’re interested in collaborating with you and offering your classes as part of their program. Discover how to get your business into schools and nurseries here.
Consider a referral programme
The vast majority of people choose to go with a particular business or brand because someone they know has recommended it.
Word of mouth is still one of the most effective marketing techniques around and by offering incentives such as discounts to students who get a friend to enrol in one of your classes you are asking people to proactively recommend your business. This not only brings in new clients but also reinforces loyalty in your existing clients.
Display flyers in key spots
Flyers and posters are a traditional method but can still be effective in delivering quick and important messages directly to potential customers. Strategic locations like parks, supermarket notice boards, libraries and cafes can significantly increase your reach.
Partner with complementary businesses and organisations and increase your visibility and group booking opportunities. Look for local businesses that serve your target market and reach out to those that would benefit from your services.
Special promotions are a fantastic way to incentivise enrolment. Offering discounts, free trials or promotions can also attract new customers. Promotions have proven to be an effective way to create interest and drive bookings in the short term.
Be seen in the public eye
Participating in public life events or parades as well as other community-based activities can significantly boost public perception and brand visibility. This can also create awareness and a sense of trust among potential clients. You could also arrange your own event and invite the public along!
Perform at local events
Showcasing your business activities at different events is a great chance to attract attention from potential customers. Performing at community events like summer fairs and festivals can show the local community what you do and inspire them to get involved.
Make the most of positive reviews
Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews on your website or Google Business listing. This can have a huge impact on potential new students’ perception of your business and will encourage people on the fence to take the plunge.
Also, don’t be afraid to use good reviews as part of your marketing campaign. Proudly show them on your fliers and posters and have them on a loop on your website’s front page.
Trial and error
Don’t be afraid to experiment with different marketing styles and strategies to find out what suits your business and target audience.
Marketing is a constantly evolving field, and what works for one business may not work for another. That’s why it’s important to experiment with different marketing strategies and objectively evaluate their effectiveness.
Test out different campaigns and channels such as email marketing, targeted ads, and direct mail. Look at the data in terms of customer acquisition costs, conversions and return on investment. Determine what works best for your business and keep track of metrics so you can learn and improve your marketing efforts over time.
Refine your messaging
Your messaging needs to be concise and able to demonstrate the value your business offers. A good understanding of your target audience is essential, as it can really impact how effective your messaging is. Apart from focusing on the benefits of enrolling, you also need to communicate their benefits and how your classes are unique to others in the same market. Refining your messaging is an ongoing process and it’s a good idea to regularly get feedback from your target audience.
Your ability to successfully run a kids’ activity business relies on getting noticed so that parents can enrol their children into your programs. Focusing on these 14 tips can drive bookings and help you grow your business.
Making the most of online marketing, running promotions, approaching schools and creating collaborative partnerships, will speed up the process of getting more enrolments.
Remember to consistently experiment, refine your message, and track your metrics to ensure you’re making informed decisions while testing new ways of getting new customers to enrol.
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