Identify your unique selling points
In a competitive market where consumers have several options and advertisers have about the same, it's important to find a way to separate yourself from the heard of advertising platforms companies can utilize when trying to get their message out. They want it to be memorable and they want it to hit a specific target audience.
In Florida, Orange County Public Schools (Orlando, FL) has identified their unique selling points very well.
Here's a fairly easy exercise we used with Orange County Public Schools that I recommend be done to help explain to advertisers why they have to work with your district.
Your unique selling point is whatever it is that you want to use to distinguish yourself to advertisers. Whatever you think would make your school district more attractive than the next.
First, all school districts have unique selling points when talking to potential advertisers that should convince your advertiser that you are a better option than radio advertising, billboards, direct mailings, etc. You should have a pretty solid list, but is should include:
Ability to reach a targeted (and often hard-to-reach) audience of parents, educators, and students.
Ability to segment these groups (by school, grade, zip code, etc)
Ability to create an emotional connection with the community through the advertising sponsorship.
It pays off though to highlight your school district in more specific ways. For example, Orange County uses past athletes who have gone professional in their respective sports to highlight the history and pride in the county. Last year, they had the ability to boast that they had the NFL MVP and the MLB Cy Young Award winner (Chris Johnson, Olympia grad) and Zach Greinke (Apopka grad).
The next step is to push that information out to the public. Here's what the ridiculously good video that theOrange County Public Schools Video Services team came up with to promote their athletic programs. It shows a history, a rabid fan base, some big names, and opportunities that exist for advertisers:
If your school district has done anything similar, send them my way to firstname.lastname@example.org . I'd enjoy the chance to see them.