When I first heard Kris Murray talk about building assets in your business, it made me HOORAH out loud. You see, before I started my first business, I made my way through university paying for books and tuition as an investor.
A stock broker once said to me on the phone, “Wow, you’re trading short-term in-the-money options on highly volatile stocks… you’re insane.” When you’re young, your tolerance for risk seems to be infinite, so it took many years for a very important lesson to be hammered into me, from repeated huge wins and huge losses (ask me how I made 1.4 million dollars in a day, starting with just 4k and how I lost it not long after…).
The key lesson I learned is understanding the true nature of an ASSET. Assets pay you day after day after day. You do the work once, you maintain it over time, and it’ll do the heavy lifting for you. When applied to a business, assets pay you back in time, energy, and actual dollars.
Now the #1 asset you can build to market your business, day in, day out, constantly working to generate you new inquiries is ALSO the one that gets the least love. It’s not as exciting as the latest social media trend, or cool phone app. It’s the tried, true, tested, and still THE MOST RELEVANT piece of marketing you can still OWN.
It’s your gloomy website that has been quietly sobbing in the corner for years, just begging for a bit of TLC. Yep folks, an awesome, inspiring, great first-impression-making, millennial-proof WEBSITE is the MOST IMPORTANT MARKETING ASSET IN YOUR BUSINESS.
Think about it for a second. Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, Twitter… all the social media sites – you’re just a renter on those platforms. You don’t own your pages and accounts, you’re merely allowed to have space there. And they keep changing the rules of what you’re allowed to do and not to, and they are constantly “updating” how you get things done.
Don’t get me wrong – they are important. Especially Facebook. But they aren’t as important as your WEBSITE. You OWN your website, and it can’t be taken away from you or have the rules changed suddenly like with every other social platform or app.
It’s also the HUB of all your marketing. All the other platforms GET ATTENTION, but your website does the heavy lifting of converting that attention into LEADS.Your site is the first place folks go to get their first impression of you. When someone refers you to a friend, you’re getting checked out before that referral calls. Spouses share their list of websites with each other when looking for child care options. Especially millennials. They just don’t make buying decisions without doing their research.
Now compare how your website looks and reads to your top competitors. Yep, they very likely look better than you, but here’s a secret… you can actually do 10x better without that much effort.
The biggest opportunity is that your competition isn’t doing much better. You truly have a chance to dominate. You read that right – none of the major chains, and none of the new upstarts in your area are unbeatable. If your enrollment is at max capacity – NOW is the time to make this investment, and do it well before you need it.
And if enrollment is something you’re STILL struggling with, then this is one big item that will support ALL your marketing efforts. If parents see a Facebook Ad, they may check you out online, if you try to get referrals, you’re definitely getting checked out. If you’ve got a billboard or they drive by your sign every day, they are going to your website first.
Does your website represent the value you offer to parents and their children? Here Is Your 3-Part Framework To Get You From Good To Great:
1. Look Good
You’ve got to look good for your first impression with your prospective parents. You’re just not going to show up to a first date wearing your favorite sweat pants, as comfy as they are, you need to put in some effort.
You need a “WOW, this looks like the kind of place I could send my kiddo to!” when they first hit your site… all the way through until they fill out that inquiry form.
2. Sound Great
SOUND FABULOUS as they read your content. Looks are skin deep, but your school offers soooo much more value than a pretty face.
So let’s show’em what you’re about – write conversational style copy that captures their imagination and gets them thinking, “Wow, we really need to check this place out!”
3. Make it About the Reader
The great tragedy of most marketing is that it’s generally we-focused, “Who We Are, What We Do, Where We’re Located.”
To win, translate “we” to “what’s in it for me.” “Your Child Will Be Loved, Cared For, Nurtured, Educated, Socialized, and Prepared For School, Not Only So They Will Succeed, But So You Can Be One Proud Parent.” You have to make it about the parent’s desires, hopes, dreams, ambitions, and ability to show-off to their peers that, of all the things in life, this is one thing they are doing right.
Yep, you read that right… your website needs to be a destination where a parent can send their friends and say “THIS IS WHERE MY KID IS GOING” and be 100% proud of that fact. That is the ultimate litmus test — if your website can be proudly shared by your existing parents to their friends… then EVERYONE wins. It’s why you’ll see an uptick in REFERRALS when you have a site you’re proud of and your existing parents are too. The downside of working on your website is it’s not an immediate lottery of leads. You won’t get a flood of new inquiries and everyone in town won’t instantly knowing your name.
That said, on average, most child care websites are missing out on 8-15 new inquiries EVERY MONTH. These are folks who have been referred to you, or saw an ad, or saw your sign, Googled’ you, checked you out and then didn’t call.
It’s a medium-term strategy that builds a long-term business ASSET.
In the long game though, it will have tremendous value. Your domain name and website can actually add TENS OF THOUSANDS, perhaps even HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of dollars to the value of your business (if selling is something you may one day consider).
Now consider this – someone who buys your business is looking for assets that make it easier to run. Your website will be one of those assets, and an incredibly important one that keeps you full, and keeps the inquiries rolling in every day. If your website is one such asset – what’s the value?
For those who love math: if you have a capacity of 100, with an average of 1k/month tuition, and your website generates you an average of JUST ONE new enrollment a month, that’s a 6-figure marketing asset (12 enrollments a year, x 12,000 a year = 144,000 annually). Summary:
- The biggest marketing opportunity is your website
- Turn your website into an asset that generates you “hands-free” leads consistently
- Your website has intrinsic value that can add 6-figure or more to the future value of your business
This is how true wealth and success are built, one asset at a time.
Bruce W. Spurr
Co-Founder, Grow Your Center
Need help creating an awesome website? Book a call with Bruce and learn how Grow Your Center can do help you get it done.