Have you ever wondered “how do I promote my class to new customers?” If so, you’re in the right place! The key to reaching a broader audience is to market your program smartly. When marketing to a wider range of customers, you’ll want to take a systematic approach and test different strategies to see what works best for your business.
When thinking about how to promote your online courses, consider the following:
1. Offer trials or introductory discounts
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again — if you can offer a free trial or introductory class, you can reach more customers! In 2020, the most popular search term on the Sawyer Marketplace was ‘free.’ While we understand that not every business can offer free classes, offering a trial at the beginning of a semester is a great way to let potential customers sample your offerings. Businesses can also use trials to increase capacity during less popular class times.
If free trials and classes just aren’t in the cards for your business, consider offering introductory offers. Introductory discounts range, but can take the form of first-time customer coupons, a discounted week of unlimited classes, a discounted class pack, or even a special membership rate! To determine the right discount for your business, make sure to consider how much profit you’re willing to part with to acquire a new customer. Make sure to test a few different options to see what sticks for your target audience!
2. Build your email list
One of the benefits of offering free classes and free trials is that these are easy ways to grow your email lists. Growing your email list can allow you to reach more customers, in more places! To get started, make sure you’re partnering with an email service provider like Mailchimp or Constant Contact to take full advantage of email marketing.
To collect more emails, here are some strategies you can try:
- Add an email sign-up to your site: Make sure that your website has an easy-to-locate email sign-up that customers can find and subscribe to.
- Host a giveaway: To acquire emails in different neighborhoods and locations, consider hosting a giveaway with other small businesses.
- Sponsor an event: Whether in-person or online, sponsoring an event in a target market is a great way to reach new customers! As a children’s activity business, look into partnering with schools, kid-focused brands, or media outlets that families love to promote your classes and courses.
- Add a signup button to your Facebook account: This might be the simplest way to increase page signups. Simply integrate your email service provider with Facebook so visitors to your business page can subscribe to your email marketing via a call-to-action button.
The more emails you acquire, the more marketing messaging you can send! Make sure to refresh your email acquisition modals and calls to action every month or so to keep things fresh.
3. Talk about your classes and activities on social media
If you aren’t talking about your online classes and activities on social media — think again! Even if your posts get just a few likes, sharing your activities on your social channels will help spread the word about your business and build your credibility.
When posting to social, you can do more than just share a simple graphic or photo. Consider recording weekly updates on your offerings, daily schedules, current offers, and sneak peeks into activities. You can also test spotlighting specific activities that are popular with students to help parents see what your business is all about.
For more ways to reach families, check out this article!
4. Partner with a non-competitor
Above, we mentioned a few ways to partner with brands to grow your email list. Did you know that brand partnerships are used in every industry to widen marketing reach? When thinking about what types of businesses to partner with, here are some points to prioritize:
- Audience: When thinking about brand partnerships, the first thing you’ll want to consider is the audience. Make sure the businesses you work with reach customers that your business serves.
- Location: When expanding to new markets, look for businesses that have a stronghold where you want to acquire new customers. Whether you’re looking in another town or city, partnering with a beloved business can help get the word out about the things you’re doing.
- Relevance: If you’re a children’s activity business, make sure the businesses you partner with are somewhat relevant to your offerings, product, and community. For example, a children’s art studio could host a giveaway with an art supply company, clothing company, and snack company to reach new target customers.
- Non-competitiveness: When you’re identifying potential business partners, make sure that your products and services differ. While partnering with similar businesses is often a good idea, when expanding the reach of your business consider doing so with brands that align with your mission, but aren’t selling the same product.
5. Leverage your team
If you’re running a business, chances are you have an incredible team helping you along the way. Leverage the stories of those you work with to demonstrate your why to potential customers. Instructors, camp counselors, and beloved staff members are your secret weapon in widening the reach of your brand!
To leverage your team, especially on social media, consider sharing stories to show potential customers how special your staff — and more broadly, your entire business — is! You can start by sharing interviews or ‘a day in the life of one of your instructors or letting a teacher take over your Instagram for a day. If you offer online classes, you can ask your staff to post about the classes they teach on their social media and in Facebook interest groups. The more you share, the more likely word about your business will spread!
What marketing methods do you use? Let us know by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.