View Full Version : How did you get your first customer?

09-02-2015, 03:34 PM
Just wondered how you got your first customers and whether it out them off that you were new to childminding?

09-02-2015, 04:06 PM
My very first family, found me through childcare.co.uk they were not at all worried that I was new. Their second baby should be starting with me in the summer.

My second family found me when I sent flyers home in school book bags, I got several families this way. They were very fussy, viewed several minders & came back to me, so obvs weren't worried either. The stayed with me until they moved to a new area.

lollipop kid
09-02-2015, 04:12 PM
While waiting on my registration finalising, I stood at my front gate and spoke to every pregnant woman (or one with a pram) in the street.

I got my first 2 babies this way, who were with me for years. (I hadn't heard of Childcare.co.uk then, which is where many of my children have come from since.). That and personal recommendations.


09-02-2015, 04:20 PM
When I first started childminding my first children were recommendations from health visitor and aquaintances. But I'd been a nanny for 5 years in the same village so lots of people knew me. That said, I also got quite alot of 'cold calls'!
When I moved no one knew me and despite lots of experience it took a while to get children as here its much more 'word of mouth', although my first mindee was a mum from toddlers, the rest of my new children were 'cold calls' from people who'd got my name from fis. Now pretty much all my work is from recommendations.

09-02-2015, 04:44 PM
My first 2 families came from me putting flyers on the cars in mother and child parking spaces in the big supermarket round the corner from me. A c/m had my leaflet on her car rang and said her friend was giving up and could she pass my details onto her...
Got 3 after schoolers from that. My first lo came from childcare site.

09-02-2015, 05:56 PM
I had my own website and a profile on childcare.co.uk from the word go, I was still in full time employment when I first started and wanted to wait until I had someone starting before I gave notice there.....I left on the 20th january 2011 and on the 21st January I had twin 8 year olds, a 6 year old and a 2.5 year old :) 2 from my website and 1 from childcare.co.uk :)

09-02-2015, 06:23 PM
My very first child came via the local council (I had childcare qualifications and experience and joined their scheme for placing vulnerable children when I was pre-reg) but the first parent I signed up 'all by myself' had placed an ad on the one that is Mumsnet-but-the-other-way-around* for temporary care whilst her childminder was on a long holiday. I contacted her and then she came to visit and signed up. I carried on having her child on an ad-hoc basis and then for one day a week that the other childminder couldn't do. I liked having a temporary contract for my 'first' child as it felt less pressured, somehow - and it probably made the parent a bit less choosy too :thumbsup: :laughing:

ETA: Like tiny tinker, I had a website and found it very useful as I could give the parents a lot of info about my service in my initial message to them. I had profiles on Childcare.co.uk, the one that is Mumsnet-but-the-other-way-around*, i c h i l d* (Pacey's one) Mumsnet and the council listings.

*Sorry, some company names get starred out if you write them properly.

blue bear
09-02-2015, 06:55 PM
My first was after covering sick leave for a childminder who decided to stop working.

10-02-2015, 01:10 PM
Childcare.co.uk and local pre school ad - both came in the same week!

10-02-2015, 01:45 PM
My first mindee was signed up with me before he was even a bump, but then I used to share a house with his parents when we were at uni, so we were all fairly unconcerned about me being a newly registered minder! :laughing:

After that, recommendations through friends, and through using childcare.co.uk and my own website.

10-02-2015, 03:54 PM
For those of you who got your customers through your websites, how did they come about your website in the first place? Did you advertise your website anywhere?

10-02-2015, 04:35 PM
For those of you who got your customers through your websites, how did they come about your website in the first place? Did you advertise your website anywhere?

I have a link to my website on all my listings on childcare-finding-websites. Often parents will get in touch through the 'contact me' form on my website, but they will have seen the website link on childcare.co.uk, mumsnet or wherever.

10-02-2015, 05:05 PM
I got another lo thru selling her mum something on fb local selling page. She happened to be collecting the item as an lo arrived and she liked the way i greeted a child and the lo's reaction back. She came back to see me 'properly', but decided i was too far away so looked for a cm closer to her. But came back to me as i was the only cm that got down and played with her lo.
Shows that business for us can come from anywhere!

25-02-2015, 10:13 PM
Just revisiting this, as well as how you got them, how long did it take to get your first customer? I'm scared of not getting any! :-(

25-02-2015, 11:00 PM
I was always going to have my baby Nephew and his Sister after school 2 days a week so I had a starting point. My next family was a mum from school, and after that 3 children from childcare.co.uk, get gold membership and message literally everyone within a 5 mile radius that suits your requirements. Good luck :-)

25-02-2015, 11:04 PM
I registered last March and my first none family clients started in April and on my 6 month inspection I had 12 children on my books (all part time) :-)

26-02-2015, 07:40 AM
Just revisiting this, as well as how you got them, how long did it take to get your first customer? I'm scared of not getting any! :-(

You're right to be concerned, but don't let any worries take over or you'll never 'go for it'

I think I was horrendously long - just over 6 months before getting my first mindee, but 2 others quickly followed, and 3 more shortly after that. Been 'full' ever since
Mine came from the FIS and childcare site initially.

For me the biggest obstacle was not knowing anyone in my area so I wasn't really able to spread the word before I became registered to anyone :laughing:, so the FIS and childcare.co.uk site were invaluable to me. I did the usual flyers etc and they did generate lots of enquiries, but nothing ever came from them, well, apart from me wondering if I should change my deodorant :D

26-02-2015, 07:57 AM
My first family were newcomers to the village. Been with me for 6 years. Others have come via Childcare.co.uk. :)

26-02-2015, 08:01 AM
When I first started minding, I had children almost immediately, but when I started up again after moving ...

it took ages to get ' known ' ... first mindee took 4 months, and then another couple of months till I got my next mindees ( and they all turned up at once ... 4 of them! ) then another few months and another 3 turned up! that was me full of EY children. it was almost another year before any schoolies turned up!

since then I have generally had a steady stream! since January I've had a couple of spaces ( one I'm not looking to fill, as I like my quieter day! ) and despite lots of people enquiring, no one has followed through with a visit. yesterday a mum came to visit and subject to contracts being sorted at work, will take one space, and possibly the 2nd!

it is always a scary moment when you have a space and no one to fill it.

but just tell everyone what you do, and that you have vacancies and slowly slowly children turn up!

26-02-2015, 09:36 AM
My first "mindee" was a friend's son, just an hour or two after school, then I had to decide whether to go full time to take on her younger daughter, so thought if I was going to do that I should also take the plunge and advertise. My first "proper" mindees (where I didn't already know the family already) were a bit of an eye opener. When I asked Mum when she would like the children to start and she said "Now - bye", I should have smelled a rat! She also told me they had never had a childminder or any sort of childcare, and a short while later I met her previous CM in the street. Still, you live and learn, and I think it is much easier to get mindees if you have some already, so maybe it is worth taking on a few you maybe ideally wouldn't to help get some bums on seats as they say.