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Old 12-12-2012, 09:08 AM   #1
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Ways to draw in good daycare parents..

Trying to get a home daycare going. I still have 0 kids for daycare, but it only has been 3-4 weeks, I know it can take time. I can't advertise locally because I'm not licensed yet (and it will cost me another $400+ before I can be). I'm also waiting on an appt. that I need for it at the end of January.

So I'm using Craigslist Facebook groups to advertise with pictures. I'm wondering how else I can get my name out there.

I have thought about doing a couple 'free' holiday parties for kids so parents can get some Christmas shopping done. It would be on the weekends, for about 3 hours, like 9am to 12 noon (to avoid lunch) and 1pm to 4pm. We can do a holiday craft for ages 2+, have a holiday movie, and a special snack.

Would you take your child to this? Should I make it free, or cheap (like $5/kid)? And then siblings are cheaper? Trying to figure out how I can make this appealing to parents while drawing them in to possibly changing their current daycare to mine or wanting more info. on part time spots. I just don't want parents to be turned off by free, or ask for 100 references and a 1 hr. appointment just for 3 hours of babysitting. Good idea for hopefully finding good parents?

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Old 12-12-2012, 10:20 AM   #2
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Re: Need Ideas... Cheap Party for "Advertising"...

I think a good idea would be to have an event like you described but instead of making it free I would offer whatever you charge discounted off their bill if they decided to enroll in your daycare. So, if they pay $20 for their kids to come to your holiday party, then that $20 comes off their first week's rate.
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Old 12-12-2012, 10:34 AM   #3
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Re: Need Ideas... Cheap Party for "Advertising"...

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Originally Posted by MyKzooFamily View Post

Would you take your child to this?
In a flipping second and I would pay you, if I knew you or at least of you as a "childcare" person.

If I came across advertising for something like that from a person who doesn't appear to have a daycare I would find it creepy.

Do you have a mommy and me group you go to that you could offer the services to?
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Old 12-12-2012, 10:42 AM   #4
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Re: Need Ideas... Cheap Party for "Advertising"...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AfWife8405 View Post
I think a good idea would be to have an event like you described but instead of making it free I would offer whatever you charge discounted off their bill if they decided to enroll in your daycare. So, if they pay $20 for their kids to come to your holiday party, then that $20 comes off their first week's rate.
I totally agree with this. The idea is great, but making it totally free I think will hurt more than help.

First, it will cost you money in terms of the cost of your snack, craft supplies, and movie rental, not to mention advertising materials to give out. You will be out that money with no guarentees of anything to show for it.

Second, making it totally free will not attract the clients that you are looking for. You will get people who are either not looking for daycare at all, just a free day to shop kid free, or people who might be looking for daycare but are looking for the absolute cheapest possible. And I am sorry to say it but it's been my personal experience that most people who are looking for the absolute cheapest possible are among the most difficult clients to work with.

A book Dave Ramsey recommends to help with inexpensive marketing ideas is Guerrilla Marketing, author is Jay Conrad Levinson. I am just getting started through it myself. I borrowed it from the library, which reminds me that I need to renew it. So far I am liking the ideas though the beginning of it spends a lot of time trying to convince the reader why they need to read it...which I suppose isn't a bad thing considering it's a marketing book.
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:09 AM   #5
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Re: Need Ideas... Cheap Party for "Advertising"...

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Old 12-12-2012, 11:16 AM   #6
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Re: Need Ideas... Cheap Party for "Advertising"...

Unless I knew you personally, no I wouldn't leave my child anywhere that I hadn't interviewed, background checked and had references from. It sounds nice, but my caution is probably why I don't leave my kid many places. Even for three hours, it is not worth my child's safety. Now if I had already done those things and you offered this, I might consider using it as a "trial run" of sorts to see if I was interested in switching. But not just from an ad.
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Old 12-12-2012, 01:39 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by slimy72
Unless I knew you personally, no I wouldn't leave my child anywhere that I hadn't interviewed, background checked and had references from. It sounds nice, but my caution is probably why I don't leave my kid many places. Even for three hours, it is not worth my child's safety. Now if I had already done those things and you offered this, I might consider using it as a "trial run" of sorts to see if I was interested in switching. But not just from an ad.
This.
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Old 12-12-2012, 01:59 PM   #8
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I can't imagine you will attract clients from this. If they are happy with their current daycare, your party will just be weekend cheap babysitting since most regular providers are M - F.

I doubt you will gain any business this way personally. The kind of people who would do this aren't likely to be regulars. I would not offer it for free, or even "cheap." maybe $5/hr.

Some of these people may not even be looking for daycare...just cheap childcare on a weekend to get out and xmas shop. A lot of kids coming together that don't know you or eachother sounds miserable to me!
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Old 12-12-2012, 02:01 PM   #9
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Host a moms day out or moms night out a few times to start a customer base. I'd charge $5 a kid, $3 each sibling.
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Old 12-12-2012, 03:12 PM   #10
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Re: Need Ideas... Cheap Party for "Advertising"...

If you want parents to trust you have to get licensed. You can't run a daycare. At the moment, you can offer "babysitting". I think "babysitting", a weekly "mom's day out" and "date night" babysitting could earn you enough to pay for your license. I would NEVER leave my kid with a stranger who offered to babysit for free. It would just send up red flags that something is not right. I would also not take my kid to a "party" as I would be afraid there would be too many kids! I think you will get a better response if you offer babysitting ans mention "weekend hours available so parents can get all the holiday shopping done".

I ask a million questions. Typically, are you up to date on CPR? Are your children vaccinated and when was the last vaccination? If your children are sick, how much notice will you give me? What is your policy on sick children? I ask weird things because my child has health issues. I think a responsible parent always asks questions.

But my answer can be taken with a grain of salt as DD is 17 months old and has never been out of me or DH's care. (DS was in Daycare on and off his whole life).
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