Are you not responding to prospective families fast enough?
With numerous options for childcare centers, it’s important that your center implement strategies to make the enrollment process smoother and make your center stand out from the rest. To learn how to automate your enrollment funnel, it’s crucial to understand the parent journey and how to optimize each enrollment stage with automation.
There are five stages in the enrollment funnel and learning how to automate those five stages will give your parents an ideal experience. An optimized parent experience looks like: giving the parents immediate responses, text communications, self-service, and convenience.
Read on to learn how to optimize the parent experience.
Automate New Lead Responses
Contacting a lead within 5 minutes of their inquiry is 21 times more effective than contacting them after 30 minutes.
Enrollment Stage 1: New Family Lead Inquiry
The center that follows up first has an 80% higher chance of gaining that enrollment. If you aren't taking the necessary steps, you could be losing up to 79% of your potential families. Combat this by using marketing automation to respond to new inquiries immediately.
Increase conversion success and parent satisfaction using automated workflows that ensure families are being followed up with - fast. Stay top of mind with quick, consistent communication – from initial inquiry and beyond.
Demonstration of Enrollment Stage 1
Instantly Schedule Tours
After responding to an initial inquiry, include a link for parents to schedule a tour (online on your website). Then, automate tour confirmations, reminders, and give your staff key points to talk about during a tour.
Enrollment Stage 2: Tour Scheduled
Automated tour confirmations and reminders lead to decreased no-shows and increased enrollments. Not to mention, busy center staff will gain more time back in their day and will also receive automated notifications and reminders.
Plus, scheduling a tour with a family lead within the first 24 hours of initial interest increases the chances of conversion success by 83%. Proactively highlight your center’s unique features, classrooms, and exceptional teachers by equipping your staff with tour talking points. Improve the touring experience and standardize talking points by each individual center, region, or brand, to ensure staff is on the same page and every location is putting its best foot forward.
Example of scheduling a tour
Effortlessly Guide Parents Toward Enrollment Once Tours Are Complete
There are many steps in the parent journey - from new inquiry to tour scheduled, tour completed, and waitlisted or registered. Without guidance, parents can get lost along the way.
Guide parents through the journey with automated communications at each stage that let them know what to do next and how to move forward.
Enrollment Stage 3: Tour Completed
Keep parents engagedand moving towards enrollment after their tour, while also personalizing communicationswith families. Build a better connection with parents by adding personalization keys to your email and text templates. Add a parent's name at the beginning of your automated emails by including a variable tag like [Guardian First Name].
Also, make sure you're following up with them about the correct location with a variable tag for [Location Name] and [Organization Name] if you have multiple sites or brands.
Email template for emailing a lead
Offer Parents Online Enrollment Options
Filling out enrollment paperwork is time-consuming and requires parents to fill in the same information multiple times. It takes more than 2 weeks, on average, for families to return their paper forms. In contrast, it takes an average of 4 days to complete online enrollment and the completion rate is 65%.
Enrollment Stage 4: Parents Pay Registration or Waitlist Fees
94% of Millennials are active users of online banking, 41% prefer to pay their bills using a debit card or ACH transfer, and 21% have never written a check. Yet nearly half of all centers only accept cash or check for registration and waitlist fees.
When you provide mobile payment options, on-the-go Millennials can pay in near real-time, pushing funds to your center quicker than ever. Giving parents online payment options is critical to improving the parent experience by letting them pay for services the way they want to pay. Through automated, digital options – you’ll increase conversions at the end of your enrollment funnel.
Screenshot of online enrollment packet
Use ChildcareCRM's Automation to Enroll More Families
The final stage of your funnel is enrollment and retention. When you automate your enrollment journey, families will get to this part of the funnel smoothly.
Watch our latest webinar to learn more about your enrollment funnel and how ChildcareCRM can automate each stage to boost enrollment.
Interested in Using ChildcareCRM?
Schedule a quick demo to see how ChildcareCRM works in real-time. Discover how ChildcareCRM saves time with marketing automation.
Asyah Jiron is a marketing intern with professional experience in field marketing, content, and advertising. She attends the University of North Texas and is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies with a Marketing concentration. Asyah is passionate about growing her marketing knowledge and always tackles any new challenge thrown her way.