Marketing for Adventist School Leaders


"Marketing" is not just advertising. "Marketing" is choosing who we want to be and then becoming that so authentically that engaged consumers will be our most effective advocates.


Graduation Week – A Marketing Bonanza

Graduation is not The End. It’s The Beginning of Next Year and an opportunity for you to let Satisfied Customers speak clearly for you and the school. Here are 5 Things You Can Do to turn graduation week into a Marketing Bonanza.

1. Have board members give flowers to the grandparents of each graduating student.

2. Invite ALL of your prospective new students to graduation. Have them sit with their parents in a special seating area and recognize them during the graduation service.

3. Give each graduating student a new Bible, one you and each of your staff have signed. Ask each person to add the reference for a favorite verse with their signature.

4. Recognize the students who will be graduating next year – and their parents!

5. Early in graduation week give each current student a “recruiting envelope” (including everything you would give a prospective student) and ask them to use it to help recruit one of their neighbor friends to come with them to school next year.

One extra suggestion…At one of the graduation services recognize each of your staff members. Call them to the front and have a student or parent commend them publicly for something specific the staff member has done to make your school a special place. e.g “Mr. Franklin made me stay after class at least a dozen times to re-write my spelling words till I finally got them all correct. I can spell because Mr. Franklin cared about me!”

That’s great marketing! And it helps your school become a GREAT SCHOOL!

Dick Duerksen

Dick Duerksen, Editor
Grow My School

To ask questions or comment on anything in the GROW MY SCHOOL NEWSLETTER, or for more information on Marketing Adventist Schools, please send an e-mail to Dick Duerksen



Issue 2010 : 5

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About the Author

Dick Duerksen is Assistant to the President of Maranatha Volunteeers International where he serves as Storyteller. He is also Creative Consultant to the NAD Office of Education. Dick has worked within the Seventh-day Adventist church as a pastor, administrator, editor, planner and consultant for creative ministry.


1 Think Parent

Ask: What would a parent like?
Then do it. Surprise them. Again and again till they know you're serious about serving them. Choose to like them.


2 Turn Pages

Move your office to the library

Not forever, but for at least an hour each day.  Read to kids and have them read to you.  And spring $20 for "Cats," "Dogs," and "Horses" books at Borders.  They're on the SALE tables.


3 Recruit "the gifted"

Who's $ needy...with smarts
Bring 'em to a series of donation only "How To" seminars on texting legibly, hooking up stereos, photographing kids, and growing tomatoes. Be known as the school with creative solutions.


4 Listen Aloud

...and post hours

Make yourself incredibly easy for parents to find.  Place your schedule in church bulletins.  Hold a couple "open-forum" conference calls.  Listen, and they will share...and support.


5 Donors Must Read

Choose three of your older church members who are school donors and supporters. Personally invite each to do three readings of their favorite children’s books in the school library. Schedule the readings so different ages of kids can come, listen, and ask questions. Have students do a public Thank You at church next Sabbath.