Last year we were running Facebook ads costing us 15,000 CHF and I thought there must be a better way to reach our target market and sell our camps.
Don’t get me wrong our ads were effective, they were bringing us enormous amounts of traffic and visibility but it wasn’t converting well.
Until we got our first enrolment if felt like it was just burning money.
I knew there must be a better way. We used agents but again their 15% commission was a big cut of our profit!
I wanted to find how other camps could advertise they were full from as early as January? Did they have bigger budgets for marketing? Were they spending more on ads?
So I spoke to the Director of a big International camp based in Scotland. What I found out was suprising….
How big were your camps this summer?
We had 8 weeks of camps and each week was full with 400 kids.
Wow, Ok that’s impressive. You must spend a lot on marketing to get such good numbers?
No actually we spent 0 last year.
What! Nothing and you were full?!? How have you managed that?
Well we know if kids have a great time on our camps they will come back and will bring their friends. So we focus on delivering the best experience possible. We build trust and then sit back and wait for them to sign up for the following year.
So you don’t do any events or ads to promote the camp?
No, we used to when we were growing but it felt like throwing money in the air. It didn’t seem like we were getting good value so we stopped.
Was that not a risk? Weren’t you worried you wouldn’t get enough people?
A bit but we conditioned our parents to sign up early as we expect to be full. We also asked them to bring friends and we will give them 5% discount.
And it worked.
Yes, not immediately but over 10 years it has grown like that and now we are full with a waiting list.
And you spend nothing on marketing. That is amazing. So how do you spend your year if you don’t have to market and sell?
Well, it frees us up to focus on the important things like running a good camp. Getting the right staff and planning good activities. We also like to travel so we take long breaks.
That’s awesome, congratulations. Great speaking with you.
All the best for this year.
And that is it. Relying on word of mouth to grow your camp is the way to grow without wasting a fortune on Facebook ads, or agents.
This was how Camp tree was born, a platform designed to accelerate word of mouth to fill your camps.
Take a look at what we are creating.