When a family joins your center, it’s not because they decided yesterday they need child care. Every big purchase decision, including finding the right child care solution, is part of a series of steps called a marketing funnel.
Your Marketing Funnel, Explained
There are four steps within the marketing funnel: awareness, consideration, conversion and loyalty. It’s called a funnel because of the shape, which is an upside-down triangle. The greatest number of people are within the first step, awareness. As you move down the funnel, there are fewer people at each step.
To optimize your customer’s journey through the funnel, you need marketing that reflects the stage they’re in.
Step 1: Awareness
In this stage, parents are aware that your center exists. They may have found you via a Google search, gotten a referral from another parent or driven by your center. To increase awareness of your center, use marketing that reaches new audiences, such as guest blogging, community events and search ads.
Step 2: Consideration
In step two of the marketing funnel, parents are considering your center as a solution to their child care needs. It is likely these families will reach out with questions and sign up for a tour. To connect with potential customers who are in the consideration state, post regularly on social media, encourage current families to leave reviews, send followup emails and employ a remarketing strategy.
Step 3: Conversion
A family enters step three when they register their kids at your center. To encourage parents to move from consideration to conversion, use remarketing ads, email reminders and tuition specials.
Step 4: Loyalty
The last step of the funnel occurs when a family is loyal to your center. Maybe they register younger siblings or return for summer camp when their kids are school age.
While loyal customers are the smallest group in the funnel, they are also the most valuable. It is more expensive to move new parents through the entire marketing funnel than to reward the families who are already part of your center. This is where sibling discounts and referral bonuses can be helpful.