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Old 05-22-2019, 10:04 PM
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Question New Daycare

I just opened a home daycare about 2 months ago and I am struggling to get families to enroll. I know it's really close to summertime so I'm thinking families are probably going on vacation. About how long did it take for you to get children enrolled in your program? How did you advertise? So far, I am advertising on Craigslist, Yelp, Google,, and I really would love to get up and running soon. Any advice?
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Old 05-22-2019, 10:58 PM
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Michael Michael is online now
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Welcome to the forum. We suggest you register here to fully utilize the threads and posts here. Here are more threads regarding Marketing Ideas:
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Old 05-23-2019, 04:49 AM
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Cat Herder Cat Herder is offline
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I got my initial clients by volunteering in my community and establishing a personal reputation prior to opening. It is the quickest and most efficient way I know to start and stay in business.

Some people have had success with open houses. I never wanted to go that route due to security concerns.

Some local restaurants, public libraries, and grocery stores have bulletin boards that you can post your business cards on.
- Unless otherwise stated, all my posts are personal opinion and worth what you paid for them.
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Old 05-23-2019, 05:05 AM
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Gemma Gemma is offline
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Hi and welcome to the forum
I don't really remember how long it took me to enroll the first family, it's been too long, but definitely a few weeks went by.

Do you have a web page? How do you advertise your business?
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Old 05-23-2019, 05:18 AM
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Ac114 Ac114 is online now Member
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It took me about 2-3 months to enroll my first family. And about another 2 months to enroll 2 more. I advertise on Facebook only. Between my personal page and a few of the mommy groups, buy sell trade pages, I garner enough inquiries when I have an opening that I can finally be picky on who I take in. It took about 2 years to get a good group and get my name out there. The last 2 or 3 children that have been enrolled were from referrals from current families! Good luck!
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Old 05-23-2019, 07:40 AM
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rosieteddy rosieteddy is online now Member
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Why not try the local library.You could scope out story time and pass out flyers or business cards.Would you consider doing drop in care for the summer.I knew a provider who took children for their moms to use the local fitness center.She offered 2 -3 mornings a week.The children were served their home brought lunches then left for nap at 1pm.Might be a good way to get your face and program noticed.
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Old 05-23-2019, 08:27 AM
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Snowmom Snowmom is online now Member
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I honestly think the first year, new providers should expect to struggle a bit for enrollment.

Getting babies is easy here. It's the 2-5 year old spots that take some time to fill.
Local associations usually have websites to list on. Join some networking groups through churches, MOPS, your local providers groups, mom's groups & daycare groups (Facebook). Building up your reputation and getting referrals will come in time.

Usually, the peak time for enrollments here is July (for school year), a surge in January (usually people who left their providers high and dry at Christmas) and April (surge for summer care).
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Old 05-23-2019, 10:43 AM
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littlefriends littlefriends is offline
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I advertised on some online childcare finder websites and posted flyers at both community parks/library/and at our indoor play place. I also walked my entire neighborhood putting cards in mailboxes. A daycare friend of mine put cards in candy buckets while passing out candy at Halloween when she was starting up.
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Old 05-23-2019, 11:27 AM
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LittleExplorers LittleExplorers is offline Member
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I got most of my first families from local Facebook groups. Our local early childhood office also gets lots of calls and asked that we call them when we have openings so they can refer parents.

Have you had interviews? Do you know how your rates, hours and vacation compares to others in your area? Think about what sets ypur daycare apart. What do you offer that others don't?

We just had 3 providers open in our small town. Existing providers already had openings for the age group of 2 and up. Sometimes it's a saturated market.

When I was first opening 2 years ago, I would feel bad when a family didn't sign with me. My husband pointed out there is no way I would leave my child with someone who did not have experience, no matter how amazing they are. Some people are that way. Once I got my first family, it was fairly easy to get more. Good luck!
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Old 05-23-2019, 12:14 PM
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Meeko Meeko is online now
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Get a Facebook page. Ask friends to share it/like it.

Print business cards (Vistaprint is cheap) and leave them in supermarkets, laundramats, restaurants etc. Anywhere you can think of.

Ask human resources at any large employers around you if you can leave a card or flyer in their break room.

Does your state have a childcare web site? Utah has one where all providers can upload photos and info about their daycare.

Ask friends to give you a shout out on FB if they don't mind. Just a "Hey! FYI! My friend has just started a home daycare! " comment.

Go to story time at your local library and hand out business cards.

I asked the local school to keep my business cards on their check in desk. I don't take kids past first grade (and then only if they grew up with us)...but lots of school kids have little brothers and sisters!

When starting out, I offered a sign up special. If a client referred someone and they signed up, they got a discount after the person they referred had been with us 4 weeks.

Have an open house (not for everyone, but I have heard success stories). Put fliers all over town.

I now never, ever advertise. I get calls every single day. My husband worked hard getting us visable on Google (No, we didn't pay their fees). I ask everyone who calls me where they found my info. They usually either say the state site or the most frequent answer is "I just typed daycare/town into google and you were the first thing that popped up".

But that wasn't overnight. Think outside the box and you will get your name out there! Good luck!
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Old 05-23-2019, 12:35 PM
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LK5kids LK5kids is offline Member
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I just reopened in November 2018. I had three families waiting to get in as we needed to close on the home and do about 10 days of updates. 1full tine and two part time

First part Time child didn’t come past first week-weird story

The second part timer then didn’t start right away.

So I had one FT. Then another PT boy started. Then illness hit me and some kids in January. . Then my FT was off two weeks in Dec as mom is a teacher. Ugh.

In Feb/March I limped among with two part time one FT and two school age.

Now in May I’m full. I can have 8.

My best avenue for advertising is Facebook. I also put some ads in the paper and then the paper did a front page story on me , which was so nice! (Small town). I put up business cards in a few convenience stores.

Also a local child care center asked if they could give out my name which was nice.

It does take time depending on your area.
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