Back to school means back in business. Selling your yearbooks should start as soon as you do! Here are five easy ideas to immediately implement to gain sales momentum at the start of the school year. Plus, we’re giving you a social calendar and slew of of sales flyers you can customize, then share.
1. Stick it to Them
K-12 yearbook adviser Erika from California goes sticker crazy: “Our class meets 7th period, and with end times being staggered, my students run to the lobby and place a sticker on each [elementary] student as they head to the pick up lines.” The stickers have purchasing info on them.
In Georgia, adviser Dara does the same, then takes it one step further by sending a humorous follow up email:
We didn’t want you to get stuck without a yearbook, but if you accidentally ran the reminder sticker through the wash, here’re some handy tips to take care of it.[Link to purchase yearbook online]
Consider designing your stickers to match the yearbook theme for a branding tie-in.
2. Plan Posts
We all know the cliché: failure to plan is a plan to fail. Use a promotions calendar to diversify your posts and make sure your yearbook sales and marketing strategy match your audience.
We’ve created a free social calendar to promote your yearbook and your program.
Bottom line: parents buy the books. They’re mostly on Facebook and Twitter, so angle your yearbook sales posts to them. Unless you’re a huge *NSYNC fan, reading buy, buy, buy is not going to get the job done alone:
- Use #throwbackThursday as a feature for campus leaders and parent volunteers to pose with an old yearbook
- Ask parents to share their advice to seniors
- Do a guess the teacher feature with senior photos
Social proof is one way you can positively encourage others to support your program by buying a yearbook.
We trust our mom friends, so let’s give them a social badge to share.
We want students to want the book. Mix in student-centered messaging on Facebook and Twitter, such as reasons to buy a yearbook or highlight yearbook photos from a recent event that showcase non-buyers. Also, focus social media efforts on TikTok and Instagram to
- Play up a trending sound or duet with a popular video
- Post a variety of messages to increase engagement
- Partner with campus influencers (ASB, PTA/PTO accounts, athletics) to hype your yearbook or upcoming event
3. Sell your Program
One step beyond using social media to post links of how parents can buy yearbooks or recognition ads, is to show people the value of your yearbook program. The people who help make the book are just as important as your product.
- Show behind the scenes work: time lapse Photoshop work, someone hand drawing a layout, the yearbook committee meeting up for lattes and layouts
- Have the student body vote on a dominant image for a spread
- Reveal sneak peeks of the book
- Share your goals (e.g. 200 new followers, 60 books sold by December, 10 photos submitted) and, more importantly, how you celebrate
- Thank the yearbook heroes publicly on a #thankfulnessThursday
4. Simplify Your Sales Processes
When someone says, “I need to buy a yearbook,” then you should be ready to sell it, not hand them a flyer. Repeat after me, “Sell the book.”
Evaluate your Sales Platform
Your yearbook program is a business whether you have a multi-year contract with book minimum orders or not. Therefore, one way you can serve your customers aka mom and dad is to make it easy for them to buy your product!
- How many clicks does it take to go from home to checkout?
- Do you have to scroll for days?
- When you share an ordering link, it is two miles long?
- Can you link directly to your school’s store or do families have to search?
- Are the sales reports easy to find and read?
Parents want to buy your yearbook because they know their child will be in it. Make it easy to contribute:
- Add a specific, bi-weekly call-to-upload to your social calendar
- Pass out cards at games and events with your yearbook email to that mom with the camera
- Give shout outs to people who send you photos
- Use QR codes
Use QR codes on all. the. things.
5. ReMEMEber the Posters
Texas PTA mom Rachael said she drives past her children’s school every week. When there’s a big announcement, such as yearbook sales, her school puts a banner on the fence or a series of yard signs. Because it happens intermittently, she knows it’s valuable.
Old school paper posters can be effective (just don’t be wasteful!) if the messaging is correct and the location is on point. While we love a good yearbook meme, keep it clean, positive, and fun—just like your yearbook!
But wait, there’s more: do you still have spots to fill on your yearbook committee? These parent recruitment posters should help!
BONUS tip: Celebrate Tree-mendous growth!
Chrissy, a PTA mom and yearbook editor in Illinois created a tree trunk to which she tapes leaves as yearbook sales come in. “Kids get a leaf with their name when they purchase a yearbook,” she said. The buzz it creates as it grows throughout the year advertises the book in a non-salesy way.
Other schools, like Merton Williams in New York or Cal State Northridge’s Teenage Drama Workshop in California, celebrate their annual goal for reforestation by sharing their tree planting achievements with their social community.