Adapting Your Center’s Brand During COVID-19

When parents are searching for the right place to send their child, they no longer have curriculum and play space at the top of their lists. During this pandemic, parents are more concerned with safety precautions and health guidelines being followed. In order to still stay true to your philosophy and also show you are prepared during COVID-19, you may want to rebrand some things including your website, brochure, social media posts, etc. Most parents will have already “sized you up” based on your internet presence, so having that rebranded content will be a great foot in the front door for potential enrollments.

*New to the world of branding? Read our Branding 101 for Childcare Providers article first!

Here are some easy ways that you can adapt your center’s brand:

Add Photos to Your Website of Screening Procedures and Safety Precautions

Most websites have a flashing banner where you can have a slideshow of photos that change every few seconds. Some websites just have one or two main photos on the home page. In light of what parents are looking for these days, make sure at least one or two of the first photos potential families see shows teachers in masks and following CDC guidelines.

Revise Your Motto or Slogan

You will want to include keywords that make parents feel better about sending their child. Words like “safe” or “prepared” will help articulate your focus on new measures.

For example, if your usual motto is “Where children come to play and learn,” your new motto can be “Where children come to safely play and learn.” Just adding that one word will make a difference for parents.

Host Virtual Tours

Advertise virtual tours via FaceTime, Zoom, or other virtual platforms. Knowing that tours are not as easy to have in person during this time can negatively impact potential families with enrolling. Offering a virtual tour in real time will help them feel like they are there in person with you and may set parents at ease with enrolling sooner than later. Having teachers there for the virtual tour is a bonus if possible! 

Post Regular Tips on Social Media

Your online presence is so important, now more than ever. You should already be giving pointers on there at least weekly, but it would be a good idea to focus on safety techniques and tips on things parents can do at home to be safe and healthy.  You can share things like fun songs to sing while washing hands, replacing pillows with outdoor cushion/pillows for easy wiping and cleaning, how to have a safe play date at home, and so on. Having safety and health be the focus of your social media posts will translate to parents that you care.

Create a Video Tour

If possible, get a professional recording of a virtual tour from the perspective of a child in your center. Have someone video what it’s like from drop off until pick up time. Create a YouTube link and post it on your homepage so that it is always accessible. This will set parents’ minds at ease being able to see exactly how things are done visually. Since parents are not allowed to enter the building beyond your lobby, this will be a helpful tool.

Add Health & Safety to Lesson Plans

This should already be happening anyway, but it’s important to be intentional with having this as more of a focus. Have lessons that include proper handwashing, how to wear a mask properly, and why we need to practice physical distancing. Children can greatly benefit from learning proper hygiene and the reasoning behind why we do these things.

Have a Revised COVID-19 Handbook

Having a revised handbook is necessary for potential families and should be posted on your website. If you haven’t done so already, you will want to revise your existing parent handbook to reflect modifications made since the pandemic.  Many of the revisions will be things that you’ll want to continue long term and not temporarily. Post this handbook as a PDF onto your website so that parents can access it whenever they need.

Need help updating your parent handbook? Download our free template!

Rebranding is never easy, especially when it feels hurried and unexpected. No one is asking you to completely change everything. But adding these few changes will greatly benefit your future enrollments. In order to avoid feeling completely overwhelmed, chip away at these suggestions one at a time, and have your staff included in helping. Who knows? You may want these changes to stay for the long haul, even after the pandemic is in our rearview mirror.

Missy Knechel

Missy is a professor in the early childhood department at Eastern University and director of Victory Early Learning Academy, a childcare center that she started ten years ago. Prior to that, she taught Kindergarten and second grade for a total of 10 years. She has been married to her best friend, Jason, for 18 years, and together they have four beautiful children ages 8, 9, 12 and 13 in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA. In her spare time, Missy loves to bake, read historical fiction, sing karaoke and travel to Central America on short term missions.

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