Just like any business, your flight school needs customers to thrive.
In this case, your customers are your students. While filling your rosters through word-of-mouth marketing or old-fashioned traditional advertising might help you succeed, they can’t be your only target.
If you aren’t exploring the landscape of digital marketing, you’re leaving countless leads on the table. Actually, forget about the table, you’re leaving them crumbled up in the inbox out of sight and out of mind.
Think of it this way: how are your students going to find you? Three basic ways come to mind…
- Referral. They know one of your former students who recommend your flight school. While these are awesome leads, the numbers are unreliable and referrals are going to be low until your school is well-established.
- Traditional Advertising. You put ads on billboards, radio, Yellow Pages, etc. The problem here is that you are throwing money away targeting a lot of people who have no interest in flight schools.
- Digital Marketing. Through intelligent digital marketing through social media, pay-per-click, and organic search, you can get targeted traffic that converts into hot leads because these are people who are actually looking for your services.
So if you haven’t started digital marketing for your flight school marketing yet, or if you have been doing it without a clear plan, here are some factors to get you success in your next campaign.
Flight School Marketing Starts With ROI
Keep in mind that your flight school marketing attempts are only as good as your return on investment. If you spend $10,000 on a billboard that only nets you $8,500 worth of students, you haven’t made your money back.
The good news about digital marketing is that you can very easily track your ROI, and make on-the-go adjustments to increase it at regular intervals.
For example, if you’re driving potential clients to a landing page to register online, you can experiment with different ad copy to find what resonates best with your audience.
Which brings us to the next factor…
Quality Traffic Means Quality Leads
Whether you are using Facebook ads, Google PPC, or organic SEO, your first goal should be to make sure that you aren’t throwing money away by attracting visitors who aren’t looking for what you have to offer.
Consider pay-per-click ads, which typically allow you to provide a list of keywords that will trigger your ad to display. Aim for what we call “buyer intent” keywords, or search terms that are more likely to be entered by someone looking to buy.
For example, someone who searches for “flight school registration” is probably more likely to be ready to sign up than someone who searches “flight school requirements”.
While the best way to learn which keywords provide the highest quality traffic is through trial and error, a little bit of brainstorming on the front end can usually help you avoid dumping money down the drain on your initial campaign.
After Traffic, Focus on Conversion Rate
Once you’ve got your traffic fine-tuned so that only highly qualified potential students are seeing your ads, the next step is to work on increasing your conversion rate. Here’s why…
Imagine you have a website that’s currently converting 1% of visitors into a lead, and that every visitor costs you $30 in advertising.
That means you need to spend $300 for every new lead. If you can tweak your website to increase that conversion rate to 2%, your price per lead suddenly drops to $150.
Talk about return on investment.
There are a lot (and I mean a LOT) of factors that determine your conversion rate. The trick is to split test your landing pages and ads one at a time. Don’t change more than one variable or else you won’t know what really works and what doesn’t.
Here’s a quick list of elements to focus on when split testing your flight school marketing efforts:
- Ad copy
- Landing page copy, such as…
- Long form vs. short form
- Persuasive vs. informative
- Formal vs. informal
- Font size and style
- Call to action frequency and wording
- Heading wording
- Button color (yes, it’s been proven to matter)
Don’t Go It Alone
Digital marketing is not a simple landscape to navigate. If you are new to advertising on the internet and looking for a way to step up your flight school marketing game, reach out to me for a consultation. I’d love to help you take your flight school to new heights.