Wilmington Montessori School is an independent Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 8 school located in Wilmington, Delaware, USA. Since 1964, Wilmington Montessori has inspired children on a journey of joyful discovery while adhering to the Montessori Method. Children experience a positive, inclusive and vibrant community on the school’s 25-acre campus, and embrace hands-on learning in an environment that promotes collaboration, critical thinking and self-directed learning.
In 2021, Wilmington Montessori approached Metric Marketing with an ambitious goal of significantly increasing K to Grade 8 enrollment for the 2022/2023 school year. They faced a challenge of standing out in a saturated local market, where both private and public schools competed for attention.
They also faced an additional hurdle of first needing to educate families on the benefits and value of the Montessori Method, before then explaining why Wilmington Montessori was the best fit for them.
The school needed an eye-catching campaign that performed the dual-purpose of educating parents about their method, and attracting the families and children who would benefit most.
We started with an in-depth dive into the school’s performance metrics, to identify what was working well and what required improvement. Our Measurement and Analytics work helped to inform a robust digital strategy, including a targeting framework that outlined key audience groups and the content they were searching for throughout their customer journey.
At the same time, we conducted primary and secondary market research, including interviews with key internal stakeholders at Wilmington Montessori. The result was a comprehensive Campaign Assessment that defined the Wilmington Montessori brand difference, its unique audience and their customer journey, and the messaging strategy we could use to help the school stand apart.
Ultimately, our research revealed a key difference that makes Wilmington Montessori truly special: While schools traditionally look for students that fit their mold, Wilmington Montessori adapts its approach for each student according to their unique character, interests and strengths. Instead of having a fixed curriculum that all students follow, at Wilmington Montessori School, the students take the lead.
We developed a creative digital campaign that showcased the ways in which Wilmington Montessori puts your child first—both literally, as a child-led learning institute, and figuratively in the way it nurtures each child’s gifts and talents. This concept did double-duty of communicating the advantages of both Montessori generally and Wilmington Montessori specifically: a child-led education that sets your child up for success—whatever that means for them.
Visually, it featured original photography of Wilmington Montessori students engaged in hands-on learning activities. The copy, meanwhile, positioned both the child and Wilmington Montessori as leaders, with playful phrases commonly used in children’s games.
This campaign was executed over a host of digital and social channels—including Google Display, Google Smart, Google Search, Facebook and Instagram—with hyper-focused targeting designed to reach the right viewers with the right message at the right place and time. We also featured multiple iterations of each ad, designed and written according to the various stages of the customer journey (awareness, familiarity, and consideration), as well as the various age groups that Wilmington Montessori serves (early childhood, elementary, and middle school).
As a result of our work together Wilmington Montessori not only has an eye-catching campaign that speaks to right-fit families and helps differentiate them in the market; they also have a deeper understanding of who their audiences are, the tools they use when researching schools, and the messaging they desire to find along the way. Their ad sets accurately and competitively communicate the school’s strengths and benefits, and their campaign platform provides a toolkit for future marketing.
We look forward to updating you with campaign results as they roll in!