Schools across the country have witnessed a sea change in the way parents search for and finalize school admissions. With or without the pandemic, changes in new school admissions or student retention in higher grades were in the offing. But this became a reality a lot faster in the new normal.
Who would have thought a couple of decades ago that parents would do months – even years of research for admissions to Pre-KG, KG, and class I! Prospective parents these days don’t just go by school facilities, topper information, or the campus features alone. Most of them turn towards online reviews, Google ratings, school comparison websites, parent forums, alumni feedback, and whatnot!
The biggest reason for the change in the millennial parents’ mindsets is the fact that they don’t just view schools as ones imparting education or preparing children for future employment opportunities. Instead, they see it as a safe place for their children to dream and become the best version of themselves. For them, it is where a child’s foundation is laid and almost cemented for life!
These assumptions and expectations are certainly valid. But it does create a bit of a challenge for schools with respect to the outcomes they create and their brand identification. Therefore, amidst these kinds of parent expectations, how can we define the growth and successful brand presence of a school?
The Proof Lies In The School Admission Scenario
One of the biggest indicators for the real outcomes and success of a school is how its alumni fare in their careers and life. But an equally important and tangible proof of an institution’s popularity and standing lies in its year-on-year school admissions. In cases of multi-campus schools, the differences in the admission numbers and between each one of them should also be considered.
Hence institutions must evaluate themselves based on these criteria. Here’s a checklist for your school to run through:
The Future of School Admissions
New-age marketing is crucial for any school – big or small. This means that instead of telling about the institution, schools need to show how they can help students evolve. Additionally, they should also share on how they enable parents to help their children and imagine their future. This calls for a shift towards thinking about the end-user and the benefits for them.
Some of the additional aspects that need to be covered in the school marketing strategy are:
- Make your school more relatable to prospective parents. This would mean sharing your vision and school brand story with them.
- Your marketing approach should include a human touch, a face so to say, for your school. Who better than your alumni, who can connect with parents and students alike!
- Share about the pain points that parents and students usually face and how your school has addressed them for your current and past students.
- The marketing efforts must also include a good social media presence and making your website aligned to your student outcomes.
- Answering queries and doubts raised by visitors on your website and search forums such as Quora should also be undertaken.
- Instead of talking about being better than the competition, your marketing efforts should focus on your school’s USPs.
Enhancing School Admission Outcomes
The school admission scenario has never been more dynamic! In cases of legacy schools or old branches in multi-campus schools, their popularity attracts many each year. But when they set up newer campuses or start new subject batches, the same may not be enough. In such cases talking about the new additions or changes, on the right platforms (like social media) can be a big help.
Big or small, all schools invest a lot of time and resources ahead of the school admission season. Many schools focus on their campus, infrastructure, and facilities in their marketing communication. However, these items reflect what a parent expects a good school to have anyway. Therefore a school’s marketing communication should stand out from the rest and focus largely on what they deliver.
Do feel free to explore the marketing strategies implemented by our partner schools with guidance and support from Univariety. And, make your school admissions and outcomes speak for themselves.
Nisha is an ex-banker, who has also worked in the IT industry. Being a 'chai ke saath book' lover, she decided to take forward her love for writing through blogs. When she's not making her own DIY cosmetics and jewellery, she tries growing her own veggies at home and experiments with new ways to reuse trash. An avid yoga enthusiast, she is also a trained instructor.