With it being Plymouth’s newest school on the city’s largest development – it gave us every confidence that we’d help Sherford Vale (part of the Westcountry School’s Trust) attract new pupils – even in a short period of time.
After winning a tender to market the school to local parents we actually advised our new client to keep their powder dry for a few weeks – pretty bold considering this was February 2018 and the school was targeting 50 pupils to open in September 2018…
Using our education sector experience, we knew that timing was everything so we waited until just before parents with kids waiting for places were told which school they were given from their options. Then we hit the campaign hard during a short window of time between offer and acceptance to influence local parents.
Martyn King, managing director at Fuel, explained: “We had an unbelievable new school and real passion for education from the team but awareness of opening in September 2018 was low. So we bided our time given that most parents had already made their choice and didn’t know Sherford was an option. We had a couple of tactics: firstly to say ‘we hope you get your first choice but if you don’t, take a look what Sherford Vale could offer your child’. The second part of it was to say, you can change your mind and why wouldn’t you when your child can have small class sizes, gleaming new facilities with great outdoor space, and pathway through to most of the area’s finest secondary schools.”
Highly targeted Facebook and Google ads inviting parents to Open Days proved to be incredibly popular with the energy and enthusiasm of the Sherford Vale team doing the rest. Over 50 pupils walked through the door on the first day of term and they have a great future ahead of them!
“Fuel’s strategic support played a big role in driving up pupil numbers for our new school. Just knowing they had such a critical area of marketing under control was hugely reassuring in such a hectic build up to us launching. We really enjoyed working with their team and nothing was ever too much trouble. Thank you!” Helen Tipping, Headteacher, Sherford Vale School