Marketing for nurseries is essential. If you are not promoting yourself, then parents will more than likely go elsewhere to your competitor. Reputation is important, and if you have a reputation locally for being good for children, safe, affordable, then you will flourish. However relying on this alone is not enough, if the current recession gets worse, then parents may take children away to someone cheaper, or keep them home. There are many options available to you for promoting yourself:
Having a website is essential these days, you are a business that need to project an image and to attract customers. The best websites are built by website designers that have built websites for nurseries in the past. They have a good idea of what the message needs to be and a track record in designing great sites. You want your website to be responsive and for parents to engage with your through it. A dynamic website is a big part of marketing for nurseries.
Having local PR going on is always wise. PR is about communicating a message. If the message about you is going out to the local population regularly, then parents should respond. It can be in the local press, or on-line. The best advice is to talk to an agency that has done PR for nurseries in the past, and has a track record of success. Public relations does not have to be expensive and is a very powerful marketing tool.
All nurseries look to target local parents and to draw children in from the local area. So any advertising needs to be on a targeted local level. This could be radio advertising, local newspaper advertising and other fairly low key advertising methods (such as church newsletters, etc.). It is always advised to talk to an agency that has experience of doing advertising for nurseries, as they should be able to achieve quicker and better results. Another good idea is to have some leaflets in some of the local supermarkets, pet shops. Places that parents are likely to visit.
SEO is quite an important area for you, as the internet is used by parents to research. If you are appearing high on the local search results, this should make a big difference to the number of visitors to your website. SEO for nurseries is important in order to ensure that your site is appearing for local web searches. As you are targeting the local area (in most cases) the cost should be quite affordable (unless you are in highly populated area such as London).
PPC advertising is another service that is important to you. Again, all parents will use the internet when looking for a nursery. Having an advert appear each time a search is done will ensure that you are found. This is advised even if your website is appearing in organic results (the main search results) as it gives double the exposure. PPC for nurseries is a great way for any (startup or established) to appear quickly on local web searches. PPC advertising plays a big part of marketing for nurseries.
As a price comparison website, we are here to help your nursery if we can. Marketing for nurseries does not have to be expensive, but it is necessary. There are other resources available to help with childcare which may be helpful to nurseries.