We love working with schools! One of the many reasons is that you have so many brilliant things happening in school every week. It's great to hear about all the things you're up to. What's more, schools have great stories to tell about all these fantastic things.
Your school events are such a vital part of how you promote your school that getting it right online is key. As expert school website folk, we believe it is our job to make telling the story of things that happen in school as easy as possible.
In this article, we're going to look at events and how you can use your website and peripheral marketing channels to improve how you promote them. So, firstly ...
What are school events?
Does that sound like a silly question? Well, there's a little bit of explanation to do firstly because defining what you class as an event in school will help with your planning. While 'News' is something that has happened, Events are things that have yet to happen.
The distinction impacts how we approach developing tools to help you promote your events effectively. It also impacts on how you approach marketing your events.
The power of your school website
Printed flyers still have their place, that's certainly worth mentioning straight away. While bits of paper go missing, sending something out to your community in hard copy is still a good idea a lot of the time.
That said, the digital promotion of events is much more effective. If you do it well, the info will always be available to anyone who wants to find our about your school events. Here's a few ways you can use your school website to effectively promote your events
Use a dedicated School Events section
Your school website should have a dedicated section to promote events. They should always show the event that is happening soonest and should be really easy to find on your website.
The best way to do this is to have a part of your system that makes it incredibly easy to manage your events. The Schudio School Website Software makes it so easy and has some vital features. A good school website partner will have something in place that makes event management a joy.
Be consistent with the content
Consistency is vital with everything to do with using your school website to it's maximum potential. To that end, make sure that you use a systematic approach to the content your add to your events.
This is also why a dedicated part of your school website software is vital. But if you don't have that option then make sure you create a set structure that should include, Title, Date / Time, text content and an image. Go further to sub-title any sections within your content.
Keep on top of your events - don't display any that are out of date!
It's so rubbish to see out of date events on school websites. It's drives us slightly potty because there's no reason for it! (Here's some related tips on stopping your website content from spiralling out of control) A good school website partner will provide you with the option for content to automatically be removed from your website when it's expired. This feature is fundamental to help you effectively manage your website. Why? Because you've got enough to do without having to remember to take past events off your website! (Of course the Schudio school website software does this for you).
Follow up your events with a great news article
This is just a little aside but the Schudio software will notify you when an event has passed to remind you to write a News article about it. It's an option that you can turn off if that's too much like Big Brother, but many schools find it incredibly useful.
The importance of sharing events socially
So you've got to grips with promoting your school events through your website well, what about sharing them through social media channels? The key is consistency, regularity and thoughtfully approaching the content.
Be consistent in your approach. That means that if you promote your events through social media then do it reliably. If you do, you can more realistically expect your audience (normally parents) to interact with you through these channels. If you're not consistent then nobody will rely on social media for the info.
If you are, for example, promoting all your events through Twitter then make sure you set up a procedure for promoting those events through that channel. Again, consistency is vital but timing is as well.
Creating a plan to promote your school events
There's lots to remember to do to ensure you're promoting your events as effectively as possible. That's why a plan is so important. The good news is that largely, you'll have an idea of what events are coming up for a whole school year. That means you can plan ahead, put everything in your website once a year and leave it to run. Then set tasks (or reminders if you've got access to a great school website product) to make sure you're promoting everything brilliantly.