What is the best way to recruit students in the 7th – 9th grades to a summer business camp?

It’s a two week non-residential camp in the California Silicon Valley called Camp BizSmart to teach entrepreneurial skills by assigning students to teams coached by real world CEO’s and company founders. The camp is conducted at Foothill College.

OK – I checked out your website.

I think you need more information on the site without having to download the brochure.

FIRST
Most people are going to want to know: cost, safety information, residential information (I know you say it is non-residential here but you do not say that on your website), is it possible to earn dual credit, how much does it cost, etc. Put up an FAQ section. Also – you are in Silicon Valley! Put together an online application rather than paper. The site that I could see does not list the ages of attendees.

I bet you have a high bounce rate on your site… someone looking for an educational camp is going to be sifting through a bunch… I honestly think you need to make your site more compelling and more informative. Ask your IT folks what your bounce rate is…

Compare your site to the two I list below… see if you can tell a substantive difference in immediate impression and availability of information necessary to make a decision…

Jaz it up some… Again – we are talking about a camp in Silicon Valley with a couple of decent looking CEOs involved. Don’t just list their resumes – who cares? Why would a kid and a parent want to hear what they have to say? What is in it for them… What you have reads like resumes. Also, list the non-ceo camp counselors somewhere else – they dilute your A team.

SECOND
Since this is a non-residential camp, your target market must be local. Kind of late for this year, but I’d say market through middle school and high school guidance counselors. Don’t forget the homeschool crowd – not too late to possibly attract some this year. Google for area homeschool groups and you will find a bunch… Contact the president of the group and ask if your information could be sent out to all the families. Perhaps offer a small discount.

THIRD
If you have not, again assuming a local market, do some press releases in local newspapers, parenting magazines, etc.

FOURTH
Local advertising.

Get your camp listed on all the Lists of Summer Camps that are on the net.

Well… just some thoughts.

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3 Responses to What is the best way to recruit students in the 7th – 9th grades to a summer business camp?

  1. J.S. says:

    Is it possible to get someone who went to it and really liked it to go and talk to the students?References :

  2. neniaf says:

    The first thing I would want to know was who was sponsoring this? Is it being put on by a recognized organization (such as a university or business organization) or is it someone’s private business venture?

    Secondly, it would be extremely difficult to reach the students directly. I would go through middle school counselors and also through the Human Resources departments of the companies at which the parents are likely to work.

    There are also camp directories that you would want to be included in, and make sure that you have a website with the appropriate key words in it so that if anyone were looking for such a camp, they could find yours.

    Keep in mind that while CEOs and company founders may know their stuff and may impress the parents, they are not likely to be recognizable to kids between the ages of 11 and 16, and they don’t necessarily have good skills for teaching such young kids. You need to make sure that you have people involved who have experience working with groups of kids this age.References :

  3. ysn - yourstudentnews says:

    OK – I checked out your website.

    I think you need more information on the site without having to download the brochure.

    FIRST
    Most people are going to want to know: cost, safety information, residential information (I know you say it is non-residential here but you do not say that on your website), is it possible to earn dual credit, how much does it cost, etc. Put up an FAQ section. Also – you are in Silicon Valley! Put together an online application rather than paper. The site that I could see does not list the ages of attendees.

    I bet you have a high bounce rate on your site… someone looking for an educational camp is going to be sifting through a bunch… I honestly think you need to make your site more compelling and more informative. Ask your IT folks what your bounce rate is…

    Compare your site to the two I list below… see if you can tell a substantive difference in immediate impression and availability of information necessary to make a decision…

    Jaz it up some… Again – we are talking about a camp in Silicon Valley with a couple of decent looking CEOs involved. Don’t just list their resumes – who cares? Why would a kid and a parent want to hear what they have to say? What is in it for them… What you have reads like resumes. Also, list the non-ceo camp counselors somewhere else – they dilute your A team.

    SECOND
    Since this is a non-residential camp, your target market must be local. Kind of late for this year, but I’d say market through middle school and high school guidance counselors. Don’t forget the homeschool crowd – not too late to possibly attract some this year. Google for area homeschool groups and you will find a bunch… Contact the president of the group and ask if your information could be sent out to all the families. Perhaps offer a small discount.

    THIRD
    If you have not, again assuming a local market, do some press releases in local newspapers, parenting magazines, etc.

    FOURTH
    Local advertising.

    Get your camp listed on all the Lists of Summer Camps that are on the net.

    Well… just some thoughts.References : http://www.digitalmediaacademy.org/

    http://www.livewiresummer.com/

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