As a driving instructor, your time is precious. You’re often out on the road with students and once you’ve finished your lessons, you spend the rest of your day returning phone calls and emails – filling your schedule as much as you can. With so much going on every day, it’s understandable that marketing your business might take a bit of a back seat!
To help take the overwhelm out of marketing your driving school, we’ve compiled a list of marketing tips for driving instructors that will help increase your lead generation while keeping your students engaged and referring!
1. Optimise your website
Being a business owner, you probably receive a lot of spam emails about cheap search engine optimisation (SEO) services. While these spam emails are annoying, optimising your site to be found by Google is vital. SEO can be very confusing so we suggest that you speak with us or a reputable SEO agency to assist you. Alternatively, if you have access to update your website, you could try a DIY approach:
- Make sure each page has a page title and meta description which contains your chosen keyword for that page
- Build your page content to make it more education and user-friendly. Google prefers you to have at least 350 words per page
- Make sure every image on your site include alt text – this can be crawled by Google
- Google like sites that are updated regularly with new content. A blog page is a great way to achieve this, while providing great educational articles to potential new students.
If these points are still confusing, feel free to get in touch and we can review your site and advise the best way to optimise it.
2. Keep track of your students via a database
Whenever we ask driving instructors how they keep track of their students, the usual answer is “I’ve got a bit of an excel list but most details are in my phone.” Does this sound like you?
Keeping a database of your students is vital to grow your business. Each student (and often their parents) are potential referral opportunities. By keeping their details, you can build a list for ongoing marketing communications. This might include requesting an online review at the end of their lessons, or offering a referral deal for any of their friends that they send your way. Keeping email addresses and phone numbers of your students can also help you build audiences for Facebook advertising so that you can target similar people.
We suggest including the following in your database:
- Student name, email address & phone number
- Parent’s name, email address & phone number (if applicable)
- Lesson start date and package purchased eg. 5 lesson pack
- Final test pass date
- Additional notes such as younger siblings so that you can connect again once they turn 16
3. Claim and update your Google My Business listing
Google creates business listings for most new businesses on the web. If you haven’t already, you should claim your business listing so that you can update business information, link your website and add images and information for your students.
Click here to view a step by step instruction to claim and complete your listing.
4. Encourage engagement on Facebook
Almost all driving instructors that we work with have a business Facebook page. Most will include photos of students as they pass their test but many struggle to get good engagement on these posts.
Ask your student to like your business page before you upload the photo. Once they have liked the page, you are then able to tag them in the image which gives them and their friends more opportunity to engage with the post. This is also a great time to ask them to leave a review on your Facebook page.
You might also want to check out this blog we wrote on building engagement on social media.
5. Actively pursue and display testimonials
Testimonials and reviews give potential new students the ‘social proof’ that you provide great quality driving lessons. Google also look favourably on businesses that have external, independent reviews from Google, Facebook, True Local etc.
Make sure your Facebook and Google My Business page are set up to receive reviews. For Facebook, you need to make sure your page’s category is listed as a local business and that you have a valid address included. When your students complete their test, use this time to ask them to leave a review for your business on either Facebook or Google.
But don’t stop there! Pick a few of your favourite reviews and include them on your website. There are ways to automate the process of requesting reviews while managing feedback and automatically having your best reviews display on your site. If this sounds like something you’d be interested in, give us a shout and we’d be happy to assist you.
If you have completed the tips above but are still struggling to get a steady stream of students through the door, you may want to consider paid advertising via Google or Facebook. We’ve helped a number of driving instructors reach their lead goals using these methods and it can be a cost-effective way to see results quickly.
If you’d like any more information about any of these suggestions, we’d be happy to help! Feel free to get in touch to arrange a time to chat.