One of the most stubborn myths that seems to linger about digital marketing for private schools is “overnight success.” In today’s digital age, an instant gratification mindset rules the web and may affect how private schools view successful digital marketing.
This stubborn myth is still being sold to private schools and many of them are susceptible falling for it when they do not fully understand the basics of website optimization and search engine use.
Do You Believe Any of These Private School Digital Marketing Myths?
Keep reading to see if any of these common private school SEO myths have impacted the digital marketing of your private school:
There’s a “Top” of Google–And Your Private School Can Get There
A number one ranking position by Google is possible for any particular search initiated, but there is no such thing as the “top” of Google.
If you conducted a search for a simple phrase like, “Best Private Schools California” you will receive different results depending on several factors. Just a few of these factors include the device in use, the browser, time of day, day of week, and the location the search was generated from.
Prospective students will have a very similar search experience.
However, when a potential student searches for simple keyword phrases like the example we used above, it is making the assumption that the searcher already is aware that they need the services of a private school (and this is rarely the case).
Many prospective students or their families conduct searches by asking questions about very specific issues or concerns. While these questions can certainly include some simple keywords, up to 75% of Google searches are completely unique, so the results displayed will be equally unique.
Top Rankings in a Very Short Time Period
Another, related private school marketing myth is that a first ranking position for a well-known private school keyword is achievable in a very short time– as stated earlier, potential students aren’t generally running searches for the “popular” keywords.
Some private schools resort to Pay-Per-Click advertising, in which they are paying a set price for each click they receive on their ad. Many private school keywords are incredibly competitive, and as a result, also incredibly expensive. If your facility has attempted PPC for your private school’s website, you are probably well aware of the high costs involved.
With so much competition, it is very challenging for a newer private school’s website to rank organically for such high-demand and expensive keywords. If your private school does decide to pay to enter the competition for those keywords through “disposable” advertising like PPC, you can expect to pay large sums of money for clicks that may not even be qualified candidates for your institution. The cost to you will be the same, regardless of whether they are legitimate leads or not.
Often, pay-per-click is not the most effective search engine optimization strategy for private schools.
It is by no means impossible for a smaller private school to rank well for competitive keywords, it just takes time and work. These facilities accomplish this by consistently publishing a significant amount of accurate and valuable content that is relevant to those particular keywords. The most successful digital marketing tactics for private school content is based on long-tail variations of those keywords.
A private school with a smaller marketing budget won’t be able to compete for the most in-demand keywords from a PPC (pay-per-click) campaign, but it certainly can rank on the same topics by developing content that provides information on related search queries. Here are a few examples of topics your private school might address through it’s content:
“My son doesn’t like his public school, what should I do?”
“What should I do if I think my child is falling behind in school?”
“How to prepare my daughter for college?”
The best route to successful private school marketing is through the regular development and publishing and of relevant, educational website content. If a private school effectively publishes consistent content, it keeps search engines coming back to your website to scan and index the new content. The more content you provide to search engines, the more the search engines will have to offer you potential students, parents, staff, and supporters.
The More Pages You Create For Your Private School’s Website, The Better You’ll Do In Search Engine Rankings
This content marketing myth for private schools is not only inaccurate, but in practice, can also damage your private school’s digital presence.
More does not always equal better in regard to web pages. Of course there are private school websites that have hundreds or even thousands of pages, and they rank well, but the reason for those rankings is based on the quality of those pages. If your site only has a few pages, but each page is full of high quality, useful content for potential students, it will rank better than a site with a lot of poor-quality pages.
Investing the time and effort in developing a marketing plan for private schools that includes content that serves the needs of your prospective students will have a major role in the success of your school’s digital marketing efforts.
It actually doesn’t make a difference how many pages a website has, what the search engines really focus on is the quality and usefulness of those pages. In terms of rankings, few pages of content that thoroughly address the topics your ideal students ask about will have more impact than dozens of pages that that offer no real value to the reader. Producing page after page without creating high-quality, informational content diminishes the value of your private school’s entire site, and can result in lower search engine rankings.
According to Google’s Webmaster Guidelines:
“One of the most important steps in improving your site’s ranking in Google search results is to ensure that it contains plenty of rich information that includes relevant keywords, used appropriately, that indicate the subject matter of your content.”
Some webmasters try to artificially increase their websites’ rankings by slapping out pages with a lot of words (or repetitive lists of keyword variations- yikes!) but little to no educational value. Google has the ability to “punish” domains that attempt to cheat the system, through lowered rankings, blocking, or even blacklisting a site entirely.
Confused About What’s Fact and Fiction in Digital Marketing for Private Schools?
At AdInfusion, we know that an effective digital marketing campaign for a private school requires spectacular content. We can show you how to launch an effective and profitable digital marketing campaign, and save you from wasting resources of tactics that don’t get results.
There is no “top” of Google, but there is a huge demand from students and parents for the educational services your private school provides. When you connect with those individuals and provide them with solutions to their issues, you will be inspiring them to contact you.
There are no shortcuts or quick tricks that will boost your search engine rankings. “Overnight success” is a myth. If you are questioning what are effective SEO strategies for private schools–and what aren’t –let’s talk about how to skyrocket your private school’s digital marketing. Reach out to us today! 916-798-5707.