15 January 2014
Gone are the days where you as a school can completely control your brand. With the prominence of social media, conversations about your school are going on, whether you like it or not. Public perception of what your school is like can be based on the school’s facilities, how the kids behave in public, or your latest academic results, however, and these may not truly represent the vision and environment you are trying to create for your students.
I must admit, having recently gone through the process of selecting a school for my son, it wasn’t until I walked through the gates on an open day that I got a true sense of what the school was about, and whether it would be a good fit for our family. Listening to the teachers and principal detail their vision for the students, and values set out by the school, along with talking to current students, and new parents, I instantly knew we were in the right place. It wasn’t the lovely facilities, the expansive sporting grounds, the fancy website, or the glossy brochures, we made our decision based on the conversations we had with others connected to the school.
Why is it then, that most schools still seem to focus on the fancy brochures and a static website that preaches to parents, instead of getting involved in the conversation? Sadly, many prospective parents may never attend an open day, they may simply rule your school out by researching online. What sort of online profile does your school have? Are you able to have a two way conversation with perspective parents? Imagine a prospective parent being able to access a school Facebook page, or follow the Principal on Twitter to get a true sense of the day to day activities going on at the school. Surely this is a far better investment both in time and money for the school to concentrate on?
If your school needs help in showing your true brand essence online, please feel free to contact me for a chat.