Marketing Your Adoption in 2011

Guest Blogger Carrie Bedwell Shares Her Secrets

You’ve signed your contract with your agency and now it’s time to promote yourself as a potential adoptive parent or parents. Though my husband and I are still waiting to “match” with our potential birth parents, here are the marketing strategies we are currently utilizing

Decide what marketing pieces you will use and make sure that each one tells a little bit more about you. Overlap some of the information and pictures, but be sure not to share ALL of the same information on your birth parent letter, website, Facebook page, video, blog, etc. Each marketing piece should divulge a little bit more about you as potential adoptive parents and not bore birth parents by sharing the same information over and over again.

Make your birth parent letter shine! Birth parent letters tend to look like a series of boxes and can often look very much alike. To set yourself a part, if you can, hire a graphic artist to create a birth parent letter that reflects who you are by using whimsical lines, curves, and interesting section topics to set you a part. Do your research. Instead of using titles such as: About us, Carrie by Rob, and Rob by Carrie, etc., think of creative headings that show who you are and provide potential birth parents with important information in a unique way.

Variety is the spice of life! Do not copy and paste your birth parent letter directly into your webpage that is connected to the IAC web page. You can of course, because a lot of people do, but again, put yourself in the shoes of potential birth parents…do you want to keep reading the same information over and over again? My advice is to keep a couple of the sections the same so there is connectivity, but give them something new to read. Additionally, try to create lists or other shortened forms of information. Let’s face it, who wants to read paragraph upon paragraph when they could just as easily be presented the highlights and important pieces of information?

Use the ‘Net! The internet makes sharing information so easy. First, as the agency suggests, create a letter sharing your story and send out a mass email to all of your friends asking them to forward your message to all of their friends in their address book.

Next, create a Facebook page that shares your contact information, photos, etc. Try different tactics to increase the number of “Likes” on your page. One good way is to create an event invitation to get your friends (and their friends) to your page. As your “Likes” increase, so does your visibility. The goal is for your posts to be seen by as many users as possible.

Create a video! Most computers have software that will allow you to create a video fairly simply. First choose pictures you want to include in the video. Again, make sure you don’t choose the same pictures you have shared in all of your other parenting pieces. Decide on an appropriate order for your pictures and then create a script that matches the pictures and tells your story. Finally, set it to music that you feel represents you as a couple or potential adoptive parent.

Share your story via a blog. One way to create a blog is through www.wordpress.com. Here you can pick a theme that best suits you, while sharing your journey to a wider audience. Though blogs are like online diaries, be sure not to share too much information and stay positive in your posts. You never want to sound too desperate as it will turn off your audience.

Create business-card sized advertisements. These miniature marketing pieces can easily be created inexpensively at www.vistaprint.com. They are the perfect size to drop off at doctor’s offices, hospitals, churches, or to send via mail to your friends and family members all over the country and world. Keep the information on these marketing pieces simple: mention that you would like to adoption and include your name and contact information.

What other marketing strategies have you used to promote yourself as potential adoptive parents or parent?

About the author:
Carrie Bedwell, and her husband Rob, are IAC clients waiting to adopt their first child. They reside in Hobart, Indiana and are excited to start their family through open adoption. If you would like to learn more about them visit: http://www.iheartadoption.org/users/carriebedwell or watch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GO4YfQe9U3w&feature=share
If you want to follow them on their adoption journey, tune in to their blog: http://carriebedwell.wordpress.com/

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  • http://www.adoptionhelp.org Michelle Keyes

    Great ideas!  Glad to see you all so involved!

  • Carrie Bedwell

    Thanks, Michelle!  Many of these are the ones you shared with us at our weekend training session.  Thank you for all of your continued help and support!

  • Maggie

    I like this blog. As a birthmother, I know that it would have been helpful to have more information about families when I was choosing them. I LOVE the family that I picked. I couldn’t have asked for a better one. But, I have seen blogs and tweets and facebook pages from perspective adopting families and I love that idea. I think it’s awesome. These are great tools to help adopting families let a potential birthmom know about them! Thanks for sharing these! I have a blog at http://www.premieradoption.org/premier-blog/ - it’s still in the works but I share my experience as a birthmother if you might find any of that information helpful for you. Also, I have a FB page The Enclave – that can give insight into the thoughts and feelings of other birthmoms. :)

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