|Promoting Your Business|
Promoting your business is a year-round activity. Don't try to squeeze all of your efforts into a few months. Try to maintain a steady stream of activities each month. The cumulative effect of your marketing will grow over time.
Here is a sample list of marketing activities you can do over a few months during the year.
- Anticipate how many school-age openings you will have for the summer and tell your local Child Care Resource and Referral agency.
- At a local family child care association meeting, ask providers if they have waiting lists. Talk to them about why they are successful.
- Record a new greeting on your answering machine.
- Set (or raise) your summer rates now so parents have adequate notice. Reevaluate your vacation pay policy for parents who leave in the summer but plan to return in the fall.
- Locate at least three provider Web sites on the Internet. Write down three marketing ideas you pick up from these sites.
- Send a thank-you card to current and past clients for Mother's Day.
- Contact local real estage agents and moving companies and ask them to pass out flyers about your business to new homeowners in your area.
- Update your contract with parents.
- Distribute 50 business flyers at local businesses in your neighborhood.
- Start an electronic newsletter for parents.
- Hold a garage sale with your neighbors and put up signs (or pass out flyers) about openings in your business.
- Conduct a clean-up project for the outside of your home.
- Run a classified ad in a neighborhood newspaper.
- Call your Child Care Resource and Referral agency to update your listing and talk to a referral counselor about parent demand.
- Enter a neighborhood parade and bring along some children to join you. Have the children carry balloons and attach a sign about your business on a children's wagon.
- Register your business name with your state's secretary of state office.
- Start a photo album showing off the benefits of your program. Caption the photos to explain your benefits more clearly ("Children learning responsibility by picking up after themselves").
- If you are offering school-age care and your local school or child care center does not, ask them if you can post a flyer about your program on their bulletin board.
This handout was produced by Think Small (www.thinksmall.org).
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