Part 3a: Know and Serve Your Target Audiences


School Marketing Matters Overview Page

Now that you have completed your research, it’s time to develop a school marketing plan.
 
Administrators and educators should think of school marketing in terms of demonstrating accountability:

Demonstrate what students experience while at your school and
what parents can expect their children to gain by going there.

According to http://www.schoolmatch.com, an independent, nationwide service which helps corporate employees find schools that match the needs of their children, the following characteristics are what most parents want in a school:
  • Academically solid, but not so rigorous as to intimidate their children
  • Accredited
  • Competitive in academic test scores
  • Recognized for excellence
  • Above-average expenditures on pupil instruction
  • Above average teacher salaries
  • Above average library and media services
  • Small class sizes
  • High expectations of students
  • Results-oriented
  • Special programs offered to meet students' needs
  • Good curriculum for their students
  • Open, warm atmosphere
  • Accessible staff
  • Positive communication
  • Academic and athletic achievement
  • Involved parents
  • Safe neighborhood
  • Location convenient for parents
  • Alumni speak well about the school

The National School Public Relations Association lists the following benchmarks for a school of choice:
  • High expectations for all students
  • In a neighborhood where realtors sell the most homes
  • Businesses decide to locate and the tax base increases
  • Bureaucracy is minimal and decision-making is local and flexible
  • Accountability is communicated
  • Access to staff is easy
  • Communication is responsive and two-way
  • Community and parent involvement is the norm
  • Recognition for both adults and children is a priority
  • Alumni programs flourish
  • Parents want their children to go to the school
  • Students want to go to the school
  • Teachers want to teach at the school

Successful marketing is always results-driven. The most successful schools have an operating plan for how their school will function during a designated period of time – this is the Single Plan for Student Achievement at San Diego Unified. Incorporating a school marketing plan into your SPSA can be accomplished through the following steps:

In developing your SPSA, under the area concerning Parent and Community Involvement: Major Strategies/Action Steps, include a section for a School Marketing Plan and utilize the district School Marketing Plan template to describe strategies and action steps, and/or attach the plan as an addendum item to your SPSA. The template allows you to create your own school’s plan with a four-step process to make and market your school as a school of choice:
Step 1: Identify Target Audiences
Step 2: Identify Desirable School Characteristics
Step 3: Cater Messaging
Step 4: Develop, Implement and Evaluate


Back to OverviewReturn to Overview PageContinue with Part I