In business, and especially in the child care industry, it is incredibly important to develop trust with prospects and with current customers. However, Perry Belcher (a mentor of mine), says that today is the hardest time in history to develop that trust with a potential customer in order to get them to do business with you for the first time.
Looking at this topic of trust, it’s important for you to analyze your marketing, enrollment, and day-to-day processes at your child care, daycare, or preschool, to figure out where the elements of trust are being stretched or broken down with existing parents and prospects.
In our society there are unprecedented levels of mistrust and a lot of it relates to the social media and instant communication technology that is pervasive in our lives. If a business does something that a customer doesn’t like, that person can immediately go and spread that experience on social media.
It’s essential for you to create a strong sense of trust with your prospects and clients. They are the ones the will refer you to others, give you rave reviews, and will enroll with you and stay with you as their family grows.
Take a step back and look at different parts of your program to identify where levels of trust and communication can be improved. Look at how, where, and when your communication with existing parents takes place. Do they feel fully vested and trusting with you? Do they know 100% what’s going on with their child or is there some kind of disconnect along the way?
One idea to improve the trust level from the very beginning is to have your lobby looking the best it can possibly look. First impressions last.
Consider having a flat panel TV in your lobby with revolving pictures of happenings and activities at your center that week. A new visitor will be immediately impressed with all the goodness that’s happening in your program and your current customers will have a constant reminder of all the fun activities their child is experiencing. It provides another level of multimedia/visual communication of why your program is great.
There are other little things you can do, such as writing guides or pamphlets that are relevant to early childhood education. Two weeks ago I talked about writing a book to elevate your expert status. This makes you an authority in the eyes of the parents, improving your relationship of trust with them.
I’ve also talked about follow-up in previous articles. Constant communication after a tour via email, social media, phone calls, etc. also develops a deep sense of trust. There are apps such as Kid Reports that make it even easier to connect with parents on a constant basis.
Creating a strong trusting relationship is a long term strategy to get and stay fully enrolled at your child care. So take some time to improve your trust based marketing and communications to your current and prospective customers. It’s a tough time to do business but we’re here to help you with strategies to reach success!
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