If you are thinking of starting a pre-school, school, daycare or after-school in Dhaka or Bangladesh, there are few considerations that you should take to be successful.
These are also applicable for existing schools, pre-school or daycare who have started out few years ago but still struggling with a lot of challenges.
I have been working with schools, pre-schools for over 8 years now and currently running Kids Time under my company Light of Hope Ltd. I talked with hundreds of principles in-person to learn and understand the challenges, and how some of them became good and reputed brands.
So, what makes a learning institute for children in the Year 2020 and beyond? What are the factors that will make your institute successful? Let’s have a look.
Identify the customer segment well
Before even you start thinking of setting up a school, pre-school or daycare, you should consider which segment of the market you want to target. The most attractive segment for you should be the middle class and upper-middle-class families.
Set up the price range
Set up a price range that is higher than your general competition in the area and lower than the highest. For example, if you want to start a school in Mirpur area, and the average school fee is 1000 tk for 5 schools around your area, you set your price for 2000-2500 tk/month. In every area I see new schools fix their price range lower than others or equal to them to attract customers. This is a bad strategy.
Why? Because if you are new, you can’t compete with price and reputation with others. The only way is to give better service and charge higher. Middle class and higher middle-class families want to give their children to the best available institute. But they can’t afford to give them to the most reputed and most expensive schools, pre-school or daycare.
So, you need to target this segment. This is true for Dhaka and other districts in Bangladesh. Never aim to become the lowest in the market. Then you can’t give the good service that this segment wants from you.
The location is one of the most important indicators. When we think of setting up new Kids Time centers, we look for the schools that are located in prime locations. In areas, where most of the target segment lives. You may need to spend a little high. But that’s fine.
The Teachers/ Caregivers
The most underrated thing for schools, pre-school and daycare is the teacher and caregivers. But they are the most important people who will make your institution successful. Try to hire the best teachers, train them properly and give them good remuneration. In fact, instead of investing much on the interior, AC, and other things, invest to hire young enthusiastic and trained teachers.
You can get your teachers and caregivers trained from Teachers Time through online courses and certification at almost no cost.
The curriculum and activities in your institutions
You need to provide curriculum that is relevant to the future. Every school, pre-school is teaching math, language, science, drawing etc. How you are different? In Kids Time, we focus on Creativity. What will be your focus? What kind of books, contents and activities that you will do that will make your different from your competition?
Marketing and Branding
You must have a website. You can make your pre-school, daycare available on other platforms like ToguMogu. You should have Facebook page and presence on other social media. You should hire a person who will do this regularly for you. Nobody is going to find out about you unless you do this.
In your marketing and branding, you should share how you are different than others, share pictures and video clips etc. You can follow what Kids Time is doing on their Facebook page.
Definitely enlist your pre-school and Daycare on ToguMogu. ToguMogu is a one-stop solution that connects parents with different services including finding the best pre-school and daycare nearby. Every month, it helps thousands of parents to find the best daycares in Bangladesh.
Check out ToguMogu parenting app: https://togumogu.com/app
Work closely with parents
Once you are up and running, you should be focused and consistent with your marketing and branding. Starting a school is easy, but getting students or children is difficult. You will build your reputation through the parents who will enroll their children at the beginning. Make sure you treat them well. Organize a parenting workshop regularly. Discuss issues like effective parenting, spending quality time with children etc. Don’t just talk about the results and marks of their children in the parenting meetings.
Be strong and determined to keep going
Usually, it takes 3-4 years for good schools, pre-school, or daycare to reach operational break-even. You need to be strong and determined. I often see people closed down their daycare after just 1 or 2 years. Before you start, you need to know it is not easy to develop a good brand and reputation. You need to work tirelessly, use online channels, participate in various programs, partner with organizations etc. Most importantly, you need to continuously give good service to children and parents. Try to make an institution where children will love to come back again and again. Make the parents feel that you deeply care about their children. And they will become your ambassador.
So these are the main areas that you should focus on – either for new or running schools, pre-school, after-school or daycare. Do you have more questions? Or want to work together to make your institution a great one?
Frequently Asked Questions
1.What kind of legal formation I need?
Ans: You can start the business with a trade license for now. Govt. is preparing a new policy now where there will be separate rules on how to register a daycare. It’s not finalized yet.
2. How much capital I need to start a daycare, pre-school?
Ans: You should start with BDT 10-15 lakh cash to start with. That will give you minimum 6-8 months runway to operate. You will need 5-6 lakh for advance for space, initial set up costs etc. The rest you should keep for operation.
3. How long it may take to break-even on my investment?
Ans: There is no straight answer to this. But if you have a target for 30 children in your daycare, depending on where you are starting you may need 6-8 months to fill up that seats. To ensure you have faster admission and good marketing in front of parents, make sure you enlist your institution on ToguMogu.
4. I have capital, and I want to start. Who should I contact to take advice for starting a daycare?
Ans: Feel free to reach out to me or my team. We help educational and learning institutions to provide the best services to the parents by improving their capacity and skills
Email: email@example.com, Whatsapp: +8801777800866
For reaching out to ToguMogu, email at firstname.lastname@example.org