Increase Sports Camp Enrollments with This Tip
How many times have your instructors assured you that plenty of kids were verbally committed to attend an upcoming camp, only to have those assurances slowly disappear as the camp registration date closes in?
It is natural for instructors to feel optimistic about the prospects for an upcoming camp. Especially when the kids or parents they’ve talked to seem enthusiastic. However, informal and verbal commitments don’t always turn into paid attendance. Here are three reasons why:
- Clients don’t actually intend to come to the camp. Maybe a part of them thinks they should attend the camp, or they might say they will just to save face. But when registration time comes, they’re a no show.
- Clients do intend to come to the camp, but they’re not actually available. High schoolers, in particular, can fool you. They’re old enough to state their intent and show excitement about a camp. But no matter how much they want to come, their parents are usually the ones paying the bills and double checking the calendar.
- Clients are available and willing to come to the camp, but don’t follow through with enrollment. These are the clients who intend to come. But they forget to enroll or submit the required paperwork by the deadline. They might also put off the enrollment until something else bumps your camp off their schedules.
As a sports camp organizer, you should never reserve spots for players until they’ve paid. Enrolling clients without payment can create big problems. This is why the sports facility management software like eSoft planner always defaults to requiring upfront payment (this can always be adjusted depending on your facilities’ needs).
You also need to take active steps to reach your minimum enrollment goal weeks before the camp. Once this is accomplished, you’ll need to continue to fill spots in order to maximize revenue.
To fill your camps and fill them early, create a sense of urgency in your marketing.
Here are two tips:
- Create Time Limits and Incentives for Early Registration: Creating a significant discount for early registration will help you meet your minimum attendance requirements well in advance of the camp start date. That way, even if you do have to cancel it due to low enrollment, your enrolled clients will have plenty of time to adjust their plans.
- Emphasize Limited Space and Enrollment: If your camp is semi-private or has fewer than 10 spots, emphasize the size limit in your marketing efforts. As spots begin to fill, notify your clients of the dwindling available space. A week before the event you can remind clients that registration time is running out. Then, just a few days before the event, check the registration numbers. If fewer than five spots are remaining. You should send out another email and social media update with the headline, “Just X spots left!” In some cases, these last-minute reminders will generate so much interest that you will need to create a second camp session just to accommodate the demand!
These deadlines and incentives won’t make a difference if you don’t have a reliable way to get your message in front of your clients and prospects. Whether that’s through email marketing, social media, or traditional signage in your facility (I’d recommend using all three). Remember that it typically takes between six and eight customer touch points to convert a new sale.
eSoft Planner allows facilities to set a required upfront payment for sports camp, drastically reducing the number of cancellations. If a client does have to cancel, they will automatically receive their refund.
Email Marketing integration is also included with the software. Send out automated email and text reminders about camp availability. Even allow clients to sign up for themselves directly through the platform.