Gymboree Play and Music is a place where children get to interact with other children their age and play together to build creativity, confidence and lifelong friendships. The classes and programs at Gymboree are specifically designed to help young children learn and develop as they play together. These classes also help parents learn more about their children and encourage their child’s development while being able to spend quality time with the child. The target market is a mix of stay-at-home parents as well as working parents. The company caters to children aged 0 to 5 and they are most well-known for the programs that cater to younger children aged 0 to 3. They offer classes such as Play & Learn, Music, Arts, Sports, Family and School Skills. Gymboree also provides space for personalized birthday parties and these are open to members and non-members. They specialize in parties for children aged 1 to 5, with various themes including Farmyard Fun, Ocean Adventure, Construction Zone, Princess Playhouse, Little Super Heros and many more.
Devina Bhojwani owns three Gymboree Play and Music outlets in Houston, Texas, she bought this franchise three years ago and today she has a strong team of almost 35 teachers at her organization. Within the last three years, the company has managed to exceed customer satisfaction and now has a solid customer base and is considered one of the best in the area. In the past, most customers were acquired through advertisements on print media and a significant amount of the marketing budget was spent on advertisements through print media. However, when Devina did an in-depth analysis she realized that print media was not as effective as before. She then decided to focus more on online marketing campaigns. She now concentrates on using Google ad words, garnering more online presence on local event pages etc., and very little on print media. Nowadays, only a small portion of her marketing budget is used on print media and even then she is very choosy about where she advertises. Also, when she chooses to advertise on magazines, she prefers to use their online websites for advertisements.
Gymboree still heavily believes in acquiring new customers through word of mouth. When good quality service is provided to customers, they are more than happy to spread the word and talk positively about the company and the services offered. They also offer free class passes, with which parents can experience the quality of services offered in the classes and then chose to sign up for membership. There are always promotions available on the company website which are specifically target towards new members.
She believes in offering the highest quality of service to customers and believes that is the best method to retain customers. Therefore, as the children grow older, Gymboree assures that they are moved up into classes that are age appropriate for them and their development. The company also focuses on providing additional benefits to its members. Gymboree often has events in the facility which are open only to members. For example a few months back they invited a pediatric dentist to come give a talk to the parents and children to promote dental hygiene. These events are announced to the members via email marketing, Facebook, Twitter and in-class announcements. The also participate in community events and fairs and often volunteer for outdoor classes in the area.
Finally, the company also focuses on working with new mothers and helping them with some of the basic knowledge on certain topics of their child’s growth. Due to these reasons, mothers have strong confidence in the services provided by the company and in turn, they think of Gymboree as the first place to take their babies for building their creativity, confidence and social skills. They also strongly work with and support various organizations in the area and make frequent visits to nearby hospitals to work with groups such as breastfeeding support groups etc. Overall, I think Devina has made good use of online and word of mouth marketing as well as provided the highest quality services in order to gain new customers and retain old ones.