Direct Mail

How to Create Marketing Plans for Schools

By 18 August 2022April 30th, 2024No Comments
education direct mail for schools, universities

Top 10 Ways to Build Successful Marketing Plans for Schools

“People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.”

This quote by Simon Sinek is apt for all institutions in the education sector. After all, parents want the best for their kids—a top-grade level education.

But, that’s not all you have to deliver with your school marketing plan!

education direct mail for schools, universities

And… As an institution, you have to go the extra step ahead to establish personal bonds based on authenticity and trustworthiness. Your students need to feel that they are a part of something bigger—something that would shape their futures, their careers, and their lives!

So, curating marketing plans for schools is no longer an option. It’s the need of the hour!

We understand the start can be puzzling. But, we are also sure you must have heard the phrase—the journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step!

So, here we are, ready to take you on a journey that will provide answers to questions like how to develop a marketing plan for a school.

Let us discuss the best school marketing strategies you can start implementing right away!

Importance of Marketing for Schools

According to a study, the e-learning industry will reach $458 million by 2026 worldwide. Private developers and traditional schools have released nearly 520,000 education apps available at your fingertips.

The point is- education is becoming more easily accessible with the rise of Virtual Reality (VR), online courses, educational software, learning analytics, etc. Parents now have more options than ever, and only an innovative marketing plan for a private school can help you set yourself apart from the competition.

“We were always skeptical about embracing the latest technology for learning in the beginning, but we did it, and we did it well. PostGrid helped us pave the way by offering automated direct mailing solutions with tracking capabilities. We could add QR codes and dedicated phone numbers to trace every respondent and collect more analytical data. It is by far the best thing I have seen in the print and mail industry.”

This is what one of our top-tier clients in the education industry commented when we asked us about their experience and having a school marketing plan. But, we are sure there are more reasons to implement a robust promotional program for your school, like:

  • Reconnect with the alumnus and encourage them to represent your institution.
  • Create strong parent-school relationships to enhance student welfare.
  • Have the edge over other schools and educational organizations in a competitive scenario.
  • Use marketing strategies for schools to call students from other areas or institutions to join you and level up enrollments.

Evidently, you need to upgrade your services and employ the latest developments to stay in business, like online payment options, video learning classes, etc.

Like Heraclitus once said- “There is nothing permanent except change.”

You can always start an online or offline fundraising campaign to collect funds for specific causes. But marketing your school is crucial to help you reach donors, get more students to enroll, and improve your reputation.

 

How to Create a Marketing Plan for a School?

Marketing can be overwhelming at first! It is often tedious, expensive, and time-consuming. But, you don’t have to take that pathway! You may use the following methods to boost brand recall, engage students, and keep parents hooked on your organization’s mission.

Design a Checklist for Your Marketing Roadmap

Determine what you want to achieve from a specific campaign depending upon your goals or objectives. Start by asking yourself questions like:

  • Do you want to get more virtual inquiries?
  • Does your school need help with an upcoming conference or seminar?

The answer to these questions will be your first step to creating a school marketing plan combined with SMART objectives.

Let’s learn the basics of developing your SMART objectives:

  • Specific: Be consistent with your goals and define what you expect from the campaign specifically. For instance, you can decide that you want to get 50 new enrollments for the year 2022-23 using this school marketing plan. Or do you want to meet 15 parents who have recently moved to the neighborhood? Remember, it’s up to you to lay down a checklist for your school.
  • Measurable: Find a way to make your campaign measurable. It helps you tie your leads and conversions to a particular program. You can use QR codes, personalized URLs, campaign-specific codes, etc.
  • Attainable: List objectives that aren’t impossible to achieve. For example, you cannot always have a 20% conversion ratio (assuming that’s your average success rate). Some marketing plans for schools might produce results in other ways, like improved brand image. Align your goals with your efforts to make them attainable.
  • Relevant: The relevance of your goals is another crucial factor for your school marketing plan’s success. You cannot expect to hear from parents if your prime focus is old students and vice versa. Thus, let your campaign objectives be relevant to bag the desired results.
  • Time-based: Try creating urgency to push your target audience to respond faster. Always add a deadline for your marketing plans for schools, like- ‘Click on this link and register yourselves before 20th August to join us.’ Such time-critical objectives help you measure results more systematically.

Analyze Your Standing in the Education Sector

The next step is analyzing your performance until now before starting marketing your school. The SWOT analysis method can help you get there:

  • S (Strengths): Find your strengths to work with your school marketing plan. Why do parents of your existing students trust you? How strong is your student body currently? Determine your reputation in the industry and how you can use it to expand your operations.
  • W (Weaknesses): Like strengths, your weaknesses are also among the internal factors you can control. Then, use your school marketing plan to transform these drawbacks or limitations into something beneficial. Here’s a quick example: Suppose you don’t have a responsive website yet. Here,  you must determine it as a weakness and work on it to improve your digital presence. This step allows you to get better and boost results considerably.
  • O (Opportunity): Look for opportunities around you! It is a never-ending process and perhaps, the most advantageous one. You can grab opportunities as they appear before your competitors steal them. And developing marketing plans for schools is an excellent way to create and embrace such possibilities.
  • T (Threat): Never underestimate your competition. Perhaps, other private and charter schools in your neighborhood have some unique school marketing strategies you should know. It is advisable to be aware and draft your promotional plans accordingly.

Launch a Well-Designed Direct Mailing Campaign

You may launch several digital marketing campaigns, but nothing beats the nostalgia that education direct mail items create. Using snail mail for your marketing plans for schools allows you to reach people 1:1 and grab their attention.

There are several more qualities that direct mail possesses and other school marketing strategies lack. Traditional mailing is memorable and long-lasting, unlike most social media ads and emails. You can stay in a household for several days with a well-crafted mailer, and here’s an example of how:

Imagine you want to execute a mailing campaign under your school marketing plan. But, instead of sending generic items, you ship personalized mailers to target parents of young children. You can call on them to visit your campus and meet with the teachers. Also, you may ask them to visit your website by printing a custom QR code or even a pURL that redirects them straight to your page.

Hence, parents don't need to go online to check your website every time or refer to a screenshot on their phones.

Now, they have something tangible they can hold on to further inquire about your school… They can clip it to their boards or stick it on the refrigerators, improving the results of your school marketing plan. Thus, everyone in the household can view or share it with their relatives and friends.

None of your emails or online banners can share these characteristics. Thus, they produce lesser results, while direct mail generates a 9% response rate. To achieve a higher response rate and better outcomes, you can use PostGrid’s direct mail API to automate the process and save tons of your marketing dollars.

PostGrid offers cost-effective, efficient, and quick ways to launch your offline marketing plans for schools. Our API integration allows you to integrate with your system solutions, CRMs, or more and launch triggered drip campaigns with only a few clicks.

“When we first used PostGrid, we did not expect to see quick results because we thought direct mailing is a time-consuming process. But, PostGrid’s solutions make direct mail marketing painless and result-driving. We were able to get a 60% response rate on a targeted list in only two weeks, which was quite impressive.”

  • This is what one of our clients has to say… 

We helped them with highly triggered and personalized letters, postcards, and other mail items to help get noticed in the crowd. So, we guided them through every step of the process and curated the best direct mail school marketing strategies with a touch of customer-oriented messages to combine with dollops of creativity (thanks to our template editor!).

Our print & mail API allowed our clients to support their school's honest and upfront style of customer acquisition. Plus, the triggering aspect ensured that they sent the right messages at the right moment to both the parents and students.

“Using PostGrid was one of the best decisions we made for our institution. It helped us talk to parents and students directly, which brought our long-term goals to reality. We are in the process of launching another campaign soon to reach more people, and we know PostGrid is the one we can rely on.”

  • Commented their Senior Board Member.

Employ Email Workflows

An email drip campaign or automated emails form one of the best inbound marketing plans for schools. Email workflows are a series of informative and engaging messages for students, parents, and staff members.

You may also segment the emails according to the subscribers’ preferences, online behavior, and contact details. For instance, you can trigger an email school marketing plan for everyone who fills out the inquiry form. Or you can set up automated emails to send e-newsletters to your intended audience weekly.

Automating your email marketing campaign saves time and effort. Also, it is more effective because you can send your messages at the right time. These simple and quick school marketing strategies help you stay in touch with parents and students. Plus, they allow you to engage potential students by email personalization and laser-focused targeting.

Here are some more ideas for you:

  • Onboard new staff members
  • Welcome newly admitted students
  • Promote your school events, etc.

Revamp Your Website 

Your website is the central point of all your online marketing strategies for schools. Naturally, most parents, students, or board members would want to visit your website before calling your office or looking at the admissions process. And what happens if they can’t find it?

Not having a website or presenting a poor website experience mars your brand image and school marketing plan. It can also hurt admission and retention levels. Thus, consider creating or revamping your website to fit your audience’s needs. Perhaps, they want a news section on the front page. Or they need an easy way to get the contact details of faculty members.

Remember, 79% of people who don't like a website design or content search for another website. Thus, you can lose hundreds of prospective students because of having a poorly functioning website. A top marketing plan for private school is to check whether its website has the following sections:

  • Contact information
  • Alumnus details
  • About us
  • Upcoming events and projects
  • Faculty information
  • Blogs

Also, ensure your website is easy to navigate and mobile-friendly. These small things make broad differences in how your audience views your organization.

Work On Your Search Engine Strategy

A search engine strategy offers many ways to help you connect with people, like:

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Online testimonials
  • Paid Per Click (PPC)

Thus, this strategy is a crucial part of your marketing plans for schools. Furthermore, it enables you to use online advertising tools to enhance your existing efforts. You may use one or all of the above methods based on your budget and goals.

SEO

While SEO is vital for online visibility, integrating technology directly into education is equally crucial. If you're pondering the next steps in digital education, understanding how to build an educational app can offer a significant advantage. Hence, most schools avoid including SEO in their marketing for schools.

However, a well-curated SEO program can help you see massive results in a few months. Also, you can balance out the efforts, in the long run—making it an ideal plan for marketing your school.

Online Testimonials

Testimonials, use cases, surveys, etc., are resources people trust. Most parents and students rely on a school’s reviews to decide whether it’s good enough. Thus, try incorporating these things into your school marketing plan to provide more value to your audience.

90% of customers read digital reviews before they visit a business.

You cannot ignore the power of mouth publicity! People are likely to share their thoughts about your school, increasing the pressure to provide better quality services. Hence, urge your old and existing students to leave online reviews on Facebook, Google, Yelp, etc., via your school marketing strategies. They help you compile genuine content to reflect your brand vision.

PPC

PPC is another impactful tool to generate more traffic to your school’s website. If you don’t want to wait for your SEO program to produce results, PPC is an ideal school marketing plan you can implement in the meantime.

Start a Blog to Showcase Your Expertise

Blogging is one of the best ways to communicate with your audience almost daily. It helps you tell stories about your school, share advice, seek feedback, and bring your community together.

You may see blogging as a separate or standalone marketing plan for private schools. But, it is advisable to integrate it into other programs to elevate your campaign performance in little time.

You can create and publish blogs on numerous topics for your school marketing plan, like:

  • Top 7 Reasons to attend your school
  • How to select the right school for your children?
  • Why is student participation in community events significant?
  • Looking into our school’s handbook
  • Meet our new faculty member
  • Report: Launching the new e-learning program for K-12 students

These are a few examples of how you can draft engaging content to appeal to your target audience. Try scheduling these blogs in alignment with your other marketing plans for schools to create an omnichannel strategy.

Here are some things you should consider before starting a blog section on your website for your school marketing plan:

  • Who will be on your writing team?
  • Will your blogs cause a difference in your school’s marketing strategies?
  • Who is going to edit the blogs? What will be the editing process?
  • What topics suit your organization?
  • Who is your target audience?
  • Can you post regularly, at least one blog weekly?
  • What will be your call to action?

Invest Into Video Marketing

People like watching visual content more than reading something. Videos get more engagement and responses, making them an apt tool for your school marketing plan.

Your school can benefit considerably by posting videos of your activities, events, etc., on your website and social media. Think about the number of potential students who would want to enroll themselves after watching these videos. It is an excellent way to improve your marketing plans for schools in a short period.

Here’s a fun fact: Videos receive 1,200% more shares than images and written content. Isn’t that impressive?

Thus, it can help to use videos to enhance your school’s marketing strategies. Also, it is easier to compile visual content than texts, like:

  • Livestream your school’s events for parents who cannot attend them personally. Furthermore, upload these long-form videos online for students and their families to view anytime they want. This way, you offer them a way to look back at memories, helping you create emotional bonds with your audience.
  • Ask your students to help you create more videos for marketing your school. Ask them to record themselves on campus, in the canteen, or in the library. Or leave it up to them to record exciting videos according to their preferences.
  • You can also use fun interviews with teachers and students, video testimonials from parents, expert advice, etc.

Take Advantage of Social Media Platforms

You can also add social media to your school marketing plan mix. But, ensure to use the right platforms, depending on your target audience. School children prefer using Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube, whereas young adults are more active on Facebook.

You can combine your social media, email, and direct mail campaigns to increase brand recognition. Also, you may pair it with QR code marketing for schools to drive people to your website and encourage people to fill out a form.

Remember, it doesn’t matter which school marketing strategies you use if you aren’t creative. People appreciate uniqueness and authenticity! So, ensure to use out-of-the-box content to engage more people. Also, insert relevant imagery and headlines to make your message pop.

It is essential to understand your audience’s preferences and post relevant content. Encourage your student community to support you on social media and tag you in posts about school events, field trips, etc.

Re-Assess and Revise

Before you launch a full-fledged school marketing plan, you can try testing small samples and recording the results. It lets you experiment with different marketing plans for schools and spot any discrepancies. Thus, you can make the necessary changes and launch a better campaign.

You can never design a perfect marketing strategy unless you know what works for your brand. Always try to refine your plans to optimize your resources and budget.

How Can PostGrid’s Direct Mail Services Improve Your Marketing Plans for Schools?

Now that you know how to develop a marketing plan for a school, you can decide which strategies are apt for you. Though you feel that digital marketing programs are more convenient, offline mailing plans are more productive and profitable.

Also, you don’t need to spend weeks executing a direct mail campaign or drain your budgets like in the old days. PostGrid’s direct mail API and dashboard help schools, universities, and other organizations promote their services to prospects online.

Yes! You may launch an offline school marketing plan using online tools to cut costs and save time. Doesn’t that sound exciting?

You can start by designing your mail artwork using our professionally-built templates. Furthermore, you can add your logo and customize it according to your messaging. PostGrid makes sending branded direct mail items for marketing your school a breeze.

Along with the design, PostGrid’s automated direct mail services let you compile segmented mailing lists. Our address verification feature helps you confirm the validity of your delivery addresses, guaranteeing deliveries to the correct destinations.

Some of our other features include:

Also, you can monitor your school marketing strategies using your dashboard to assess your performance and prepare for future campaigns.

To Summarize

Like businesses in any other sector, marketing your school is crucial because of growing competition. You must step out and make your brand more visible in your community. Your competition is likely only with two other charter schools down the street. But, a school marketing plan serves many different purposes.

We hope this blog helps you understand its significance and develop robust programs. You can always employ PostGrid’s direct mail API to send offline marketing mailers affordably and quickly. If you need more information or have questions, request a demo now, and we will explain how you can improve your marketing plans for schools with PostGrid.

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