Every year we offer free MySchoolBucks materials so districts can share the benefits of online payments with parents. To make sure we're providing the best marketing resources to districts, we surveyed over 90,000 parents to learn more about how they receive school communications and used this information to grow our offerings!
Here's what they told us
Top ways parents view school communications on a daily basis:
Mobile or text messages - 46%
Emails from faculty or teachers - 40%
Flyers or letters sent home with students - 40%
Top ways parents prefer to receive school communications:
Emails - 77%
Mobile or text messages - 68%
Automated phone calls - 36%
When receiving information about student(s), parents typically hear from:
Teachers - 77%
Principals - 50%
Parent Leaders - 36%
How to get the most from these results
It's never too early to begin planning for the upcoming school year and start growing participation in school meals, student programs and activities. Here are three things districts should keep in mind for the new school year:
- When communicating with parents, mobile is king
The world has gone increasingly mobile, and the use of apps and smartphones is only slated to increase. When you need to communicate a message to parents, it's more likely to be read on a mobile device, whether via text or email. With MySchoolBucks Marketing Central, we've introduced new tools to help reach parents including mobile/text messages, social posts, emails and automated phone calls.
Does your district have a mobile app? Studies show that mobile users are spending 87 percent of their time in apps, versus just 13 percent on the web. So if you have a mobile app, make sure you let parents know! When spreading the word about the MySchoolBucks app, we've found that mobile app handouts are a great way to inform parents and students about how to pay for school meals or fees.
- Leverage leaders at each of your school sites
Our survey results noted that parents most often received (and more importantly, read) school communications that came from a teacher, principal, or other parent leader at their school, such as a PTO/PTA member. So start with this group when sharing the benefits of your programs. Encourage them to send an email, text message or automated phone call to all parents before start of school!
- Get materials in front of parents
Printed materials sent home with students are still an effective way to reach parents. Work with teachers to send a letter or flyer home with students the first week of school. Here are some other simple things you can do:
- Place a pop-up display with handouts or magnets in each school office location
- Share social media posts on your districts Facebook Instagram and/or Twitter pages
- Add the MySchoolBucks website button to your district homepage.
Feel free to visit our Marketing Guide for more tips and tricks on how to increase participation in the upcoming school year!