Top Tips For Marketing Your Driving School

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  • 7 January 2021
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Top Tips For Driving School Marketing

Top Tips For Marketing Your Driving School

If you are running a small driving school or you are an independent driving instructor, one of the key issues you will always be looking at is how to keep your diaries full and market your driving school business. Here we will give you some top tip for marketing your driving school and lots of links to a wealth of resources that are available to you.

If we break down this process we can set out 5 key areas to look at.
  • Keep it simple but effective
  • Be clear about where you want to work
  • Set your budget
  • Use your money wisely
  • Commit your time to keep it updated
Example of Great Driving School Marketing
  • Keep it simple but effective

Understand the key social media influences for your customers.

In our market place you have several types of customers but the two main categories are

• Young Student Drivers

• Parents of Young Student Drivers

The parent category is fairly easy to target with Facebook however, with the Student this can be a minefield. My recommended resource here is Instagram, although you could also be using Snapchat or even TikTok.

Search Results – You need to have some form of webpage, there are free versions available, we offer this on www.driveacademy.uk, the key element though is that you are listed on Google Maps, Bing Maps and Apple Maps. These will give you a chance to land on the first page of a search in your local area without spending a single penny.

  • Be clear about where and when you want to work

Set out in your mind where it is exactly that you want to work, as driving instructors you will know the areas that work for you, in regards to travel distance and pick ups. This is a key part of your overall business strategy, but if you do decide to add in ‘Paid Advertising’ to your marketing plan, then you only want to be paying for adverts that are in your working area. Why spend money on potential customers who you don’t really want and will end up costing you in travel time and extra mileage.

Give your day a structure and try your best to stick to it, for example I work 3 x 2hour lessons per day; 8am – 10am, 11am – 1pm and 2pm – 4pm. I also give students a fixed day and time of the week, if a potential customer doesn’t fit my schedule then I pass them over. Obviously I have a general understanding of all my students availability so I will sometimes move people around to accommodate but not at the detriment to my own working schedule.

  • Set your budget

How much are you prepared to invest in your business each month to gain awareness and new students? I ask this as how much because it is important to know your budget, the beauty of many of the advertising models that you can choose to use is that they have daily limit spends and you have the ability to turn them on and off, as and when you need them.

If you are currently working with a franchise then you could, base your initial budget on the same amount that you are spending with them. I can tell you one thing for sure is that if that was the case you will be turning your ads off very quickly because you will be inundated with new customers within 2 weeks. Once you have got running you will find that your budget will possibly be around £50 per month with actual spend around £25 per month.

  • Use your money wisely

My advice here is to be cautious don’t throw big chunks of money at thing’s. Through my experience Google Ads is my go to place for advertising and getting new customers as it covers a broad spectrum of people.

I currently have an advert set up in Google Ads, it runs with the lowest possible monthly budget of £40 which equates to around £1.30 per day. The advert is only set to run within the postcode that I live so targeting specifically customers within a very easy pick up distance, if I have a vacancy coming up or am short of students I turn it on, I would say that on average I run it about 15 days out of each month so my actual spend is around £20 per month – £240 per year, given I was in a franchise agreement previously of £100 per week, I am now saving somewhere in the region of £4,500 per year.

  • Commit your time to keep it updated

With all of what we have discussed it is important to keep track of what’s going on, reply quickly to customer enquiries this helps with ranking on some sites, and keep posting news items on your social media accounts (if you’re not sure what to write just copy someone else’s).

It is these posts that will keep you in peoples minds and active. Without question you will already be getting referrals from some of your friends, they may well be on your social media also, posting every time you have a student who passes is good, it keeps you in their minds and presents you as an effective driving instructor. Make sure that you build a rapport with your students so that when they pass they will leave you a review, and ideally on multiple websites such as Google Maps, Facebook Page and Bing Places. Another trick is to get them to like your Facebook Page or become friends with them on Facebook/Instagram so that when they pass you can tagged them and then not only do your friends see it but also their friends! You can’t buy that kind of marketing.

Examples of Great Driving School Marketing

Now that you have read through the top tips for driving school marketing here are the resources to get you going

Resources – Google

Google as I previously mentioned is probably your best free resource. What you need to do is set up a Google Map listing, this listing will put you on or near the front page of google depending on the competition in your area, you can add photo’s, reviews and promotions to help you improve your rankings. Additionally you can also run Google Ads from here if you need to quickly increase you awareness and get new customers

Here are a list of resources

Simple Guide to Set Up – https://www.google.com/intl/en_uk/business/resources/getting-set-up/claim-verify-googlemy-business-listing/

Register Here – https://business.google.com

Google Ads – https://ads.google.com

Resources – Facebook

Many of you will already probably have a Facebook profile account, the trick here is to make it work for you in a business capacity. I personally have two profile accounts one for my personal life and a second for my work life that way I can add students to my Facebook work profile account without them peering into my private life.

The second thing is then to set up a Facebook Page for your business, from here you can add both profile accounts to manage the Facebook Page so you can invite your family and friends to like it and invite your students to like it and also tag them when they pass. Don’t take it personally if they don’t wish for you to add them it is a personal choice. I have intentionally left out details of Facebook Ads as I don’t personally recommend them, feel free to explore this yourselves just be cautious with you spending

Here are a list of resources

Register for Facebook – www.facebook.com/register

Guide to Creating Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/business/pages/set-up

Create your Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/pages/create

Resources – Instagram

Again you may already have an instagram account but what we are suggesting here is to have a business account.

Instagram will let you have 5 different accounts at any given time and you can access them through one app on your phone or through the internet on their webpage and switch easily between accounts. The benefit with a business account is that you can add additional services and information pertinent to your business.

Here are a list of resources

Instagram Business Account Guide to Set Up –https://business.instagram.com/getting-started

Another Good Guide is Here – https://www.facebook.com/business/profiles

Instagram Advertising – https://business.instagram.com/advertising/#types

Resources – Facebook Business Suite

This is a really nice website and app that combines both your Facebook Page and Your Instagram Business Accounts together in one place so that you can prepare one post but put it into both places and also lots of other great features such as seeing your insights into your stories and managing boosting posts and adverts. Always be cautious with your spend when you start out if you choose this route.

Here are a list of resources

Introduction To and Set Up Facebook Business Suite –https://www.facebook.com/business/news/introducing-facebookbusiness-suite

Facebook Business Suite Help – https://www.facebook.com/business/help/205614130852988?id=765488040896522

Resources – Bing/Microsoft

Although for many people their default search engine is Google, Bing is still important, with around 10% share of the market place in the UK so it is well worth setting up a Bing Places listing so that you may show up in these search results too. It’s free so why not take advantage and they have a fantastic import tool which just takes your information straight from Google My Business.

Here are a list of resources

Register and Set Up Bing Places –https://www.bingplaces.com

Resources – Apple Maps Connect

Again although Google is the dominant player for overall internet searches, the iPhone is around 46% of all mobile phones in the UK and therefore maybe no at the forefront of you search requests how many times a week do these 46% ask “Siri” for information. If you are listed in there maps then you will show up in the “Siri” answers

Here are a list of resources

Register and Set Up Apple Maps Location –https://mapsconnect.apple.com

This is a Good Guide to Setting It Up – https://intuitivedigital.com/blog/add-business-to-apple-maps/

Resources – www.driveacademy.uk

Let me introduce to you Drive Academy – this was a brain child of mine that I have been working on since becoming a driving instructor, what I found when I started out was that in some case new customer leads can be poor quality, and therefore a waste of your time. What I set out to achieve with Drive Academy is to build a directory based search that is FREE both for the instructor and the student but also has some real positive value and has the potential to be a leading resources for the driving school industry.

I have focused on keeping it simple but secure so your personal email and phone number will not be shown online as the site as a built in messaging services, also if you do not have your own website we will provide you with one, this is still FREE, no charges what so ever.

Take a look here at www.driveacademy.uk 

What makes us better than the rest –

Free To Use – It’s 100% free for you to use and not only that, it’s free for students

Full Search – Search by Postcode, Transmission,Gender, Services Offered, Availability

Live Calendar – Update your availability so students can search you for a perfect match

Secure Messaging – Built in messaging service so that your personal email is secure

Feedback – Students can leave you feedback for others to read their recommendations

Free Webpage – Your profile comes with your own personalised page with it’s own URL

Testimonials – You can update your webpage with all your latest passes and reviews

CLICK HERE TO TAKE A LOOK www.driveacademy.uk

Drive Academy Logo

Resources – Other Directory Services

https://www.gov.uk/find-driving-schools-and-lessons  – gov.uk website- free listing

https://driving-schools-directory.co.uk  – Limited free listing – £25 to use full service

https://www.findyourinstructor.co.uk  – Based around Birmingham

https://www.best-driving-schools.co.uk  – Charges a subscription

https://driving-school-adi-directory.co.uk  – Free basic listing – charges for full access

https://www.searchclickdrive.co.uk  – Charges a subscription

https://www.findadriver.co.uk  – Free basic access – charges for full access

https://www.getdriving.co.uk  – Free basic access – charges for full access 

 

I do hope this has helped

Joshua – Founder and Driving Instructor

Joshua Pycroft - Drive Academy Founder

 

 

 

 

 

Still looking for a driving instructor click HERE to search our list of instructors in your area.

Our theory test blog is available HERE if you need more help passing it

Check out the DVSA website for all the latest information on theory and practical driving tests

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