I ran across this blog post the other day for summer camp directors, called Camp Directors: Spring Break is a Parental Preview of Summer. As we well know, it’s serious business marketing our summer camp programs, so I feel compelled to share it with you.
And as the largest and most-comprehensive youth camps resource in Nor Cal, SportStars looks forward to sharing as many Spring and Summer resources with our community.
Data points here are valuable. See if you agree.
Camp Directors: Spring Break is a Parental Preview of Summer
Active Network, March 3, 2016 blog post
There’s nothing that can make parents look forward to summer like the last few weeks of school. They imagine it as restful, with its broad expanses of free time and relaxation.
There’s only one thing (besides summer itself) that can remind these parents of how often summer’s NOT restful and relaxing…and that’s SPRING BREAK!
My Informal Analysis
As you would expect, searches start to escalate at the beginning of the year and taper off as summer wanes. What surprised me, however, was the timing of the peak. Summer camps start in June, so I assumed the peak of searches would be in May. I was wrong. They peak in June and, while decreasing, remain at pre-camp rates until the fall.
I could make a rookie analyst mistake and say “See how camp searches increased after Spring Break!” I won’t go that far. But I think it’s safe to make two hypotheses about the search trend:
A) A lot of parents are procrastinators! Maybe they plan to register their kids for camp but don’t get around to it ’til summer arrives.
B) A few weeks of summer causes parents to rethink their camp and activity decisions.
(I’m going with B.)
As I said, this represents some marketing opportunities for you. (The blogger goes on to suggest some noteworthy marketing tips. Among those are these 3
1. Remind them of Spring Break. Starting after Spring Break …, reference Spring Break in subject lines and other marketing messaging while the memories are fresh. Whether it was fun or frustrating, just the thought of it could trigger a desire to find a camp registration form—any camp might do at that point—and fill it out.
2. Offer “Super Late Bird Specials.” Run last-minute marketing campaigns even after camp starts. It will help you fill empty slots with people for whom the reality of summer at home with the kids is sinking in.
If they didn’t choose camp to start with, finances might be a reason. A summer sale could make the decision easier for them, while filling empty slots for which you would otherwise get nothing. (This is how airlines operate.)…
3. Expand your reach… Get your camp in front of millions of parents. It’s never too late. As you can see from our graph, some parents are searching year ’round.
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