Imagine that I give you 20 NEW students TODAY.
No sales calls. No talking them into signing up.
They are 100% ready to go and you just need to get them into your studio.
The more you grow, you HAVE to have an onboarding system in place that isn’t personalized and doesn’t take a lot of thought and effort on your part!
If you don't have these things in place, you will overwork yourself and look unprofessional.
...But it needs to make the students and parents feel awesome, appreciated, heard, and excited to join your studio.
Most studios don’t have this.
You probably get phone calls, emails, texts, Facebook messages, walk-ins, or online forms.
You then probably go through the process of individually calling or emailing all of them.
You go through roughly the same thing with each of them but it takes a LOT of time and effort.
Some will sign up.
Either way it takes TOO MUCH of your time.
Time that you could be using to do other things.
Your Onboarding Process is NOT about closing the sale or having to convince someone to sign up for lessons. That’s the Sales Process.
Your Onboarding Process is about what happens when someone is 100% ready to go.
Let’s start with the low-hanging fruit, shall we?
Do you have a simple and foolproof way to get them easily and quickly signed up?
That is what the Onboarding Process is.
Your Onboarding Process consists of 3 Distinct Parts:
First, you need all of their information into your system. You need their names, contact info, etc. We need an easy way to capture that information.
Then, you need their payment info. You need to get paid and it needs to be effortless.
Lastly, you need to get them on your schedule so you can begin lessons. This goes LAST because you need to make sure to have their information and get paid BEFORE they take up a spot on your schedule.
Let’s talk about them in a little more detail...
First, decide what information that you absolutely NEED.
Keep this part as simple as possible. You probably already know the basic information that you need, but here are a few suggestions:
- Parent’s Name
- Student’s Name
- Age/Grade (you don’t need both)
- Email Address
- Phone Number
Do you need their mailing address? If you plan on sending them something in the mail (postcards to students are fun!), then absolutely. If you don’t plan to mail them something, then it just takes up time and space.
Look at everything on your current registration form and make sure that it is information that you actually need.
Now, how do we collect that information?
You can either have a physical form for them to fill out or an online form. If you use something like My Music Staff, there are widgets that you can install into your website to take care of this.
***QUICK NOTE: A Sign up form and a Registration form ARE NOT THE SAME THING. A Sign Up form is really simple and just gets you some basic info to get in touch with them about lessons. A registration form is what they use to actually register to become a student. Don’t use your Registration Form as the Sign Up form on your website.
The idea is to make this as simple as possible.
You need to accept payment or a deposit for their first lesson.
I recommend doing this BEFORE they show up to their first lesson so that you don’t get flaky students and no-shows.
Our studio had a simple Square checkout setup on our website where people were directed after they filled out the signup form. This took care of their $50 deposit and then we added them to our schedule.
As for getting them setup for recurring payments, I highly recommend autopay. You can send them the login info to add their card info, call them to get their info over the phone, or do it in person at your first lesson.
This can be the hardest part because of the amount of back and forth that inevitably happens.
Here are two things that helped us IMMENSELY.
1. When we still offered Private Lessons we made people give us time RANGES, not time requests.
They couldn’t ask for 4pm on Tuesdays. They had to click a box with a range of 4pm to 6pm on Tuesdays. Everyone wants the most popular spots. Ranges give you an idea of what is available.
We also asked that they select EVERY available time slot. Of course, some of them just pick the ones that work the best for them. But, it still gives you something to work from.
Assuming a fairly regular teacher schedule, I recommend setting your ranges as:
Before 4pm (before school lets out)
4pm-6pm (after school)
6pm-8pm (after work)
Obviously you can tweak those a bit, but most people will fall into one of those general ranges.
2. We changed to only offer Group Lessons for beginning students.
It was the only option to take lessons in our studio. It made things simple. We just listed the available Group Classes on the Sign Up form on our website or sent the link to people who emailed us, or quoted the class times during a phone call or in person. It was all in one simple place that was updated as we signed up students.
This was the simplest because there was no back and forth. It was literally…
”This is all that I have available. What class would you like to sign up for?”
It cut down on most of the back and forth and the special snowflake parents that asked for something else received a kind, but canned response that we only had available what was posted and they could choose from those or get added to the wait list.
You already have some version of this for your studio.
I want you to look through and see what causes the most stress and the most time.
Where are the bottlenecks? Meaning..where do things get stuck?
Do you have to call EVERY new student at some point in the process?
Is there a lot of back and forth on scheduling or chasing the initial payments?
Remember, the goal here is to be able to sign up 20 new students instantly...or at least within an afternoon.
So, what part of it will take you the longest?
THAT is what you have to fix and streamline before we open up the floodgates on bringing in new students.
Signing up and paying should be the absolute easiest thing people can do in your studio.
So, If I give you 20 new students today, are you ready?
Get MORE people to see your Studio's Facebook and Instagram Pages!
You can advertise lessons all you want on Facebook, Instagram, and Google.
But are people really seeing your posts?
Here's how to get MORE people to see and interact with your studio online WITHOUT paying for ads...
You can tweak and add YOUR studio info to these templates in a matter of minutes, and Shauna tells you WHERE to promote them for the best results.
Enroll NOW and let your studio GROW while you can focus on teaching and running your school:
"I started Maggie's Music Academy in 2017 to supplement my family's income after stepping down from a decent salaried music teaching job in a neighboring county.
Our rural mountain county has a very poor history of supporting music & arts education which has left our community dry and devoid of arts enrichment.
Having two children under the age of 4, I decided to help change that and see what I could do to help build the music community and advocate for music in our schools."
Maggie said although she had policies and things in place to help her grow, the loss of students also resulted in her losing confidence in herself. She began bending her rules to attempt to please people and keep more students from leaving.
"That first year and a half was super tough...
I almost quit numerous times because I wasn't attracting quality students yet. At the end of the first year, I revised my policies and emphasized a year-long commitment to my private lesson policy and a semester commitment for Musikgarten. This made a huge difference and we immediately started to retain."
Maggie said she had to learn confidence and how to market myself.
"I created scripts in my mind to explain my policies in friendly, accessible terms when I spoke with people. I had to find "my people" that would support me and be loyal to me and recommend me to others.
I also had significant adrenal issues that had developed from working 60-80 hours/week with a newborn and a child under 3 that I had to overcome. I had to get over the fear of losing students (my self worth was so shot that losing even one was terrifying.) And honestly, I had to develop consistency (which simply takes time)."
Four years in, Maggie says she has found her "people," has grown exponentially, AND significantly improved her retention rates... she's had a 100% retention rate this year despite COVID!!!
"They are in my studio, loving it and thriving! I am so grateful that *all* my families that started with me last year ended with me last year, even through Covid. I am honored that even with a price increase, they are still recommending us continuously to their friends and on social media. I just completed a cost analysis for moving to a commercial space and hiring teacher(s). In doing so, we have come to realize that part of what makes us special is our small, authentic community feel where families get to know each other, kids play and perform for each other, and we can have group classes outside on a hillside (Sound of Music anyone?!) by using local community facilities folks are already familiar with.
But we still have goals.
My greatest desire has been to buy a house in the town we claim and work in. My husband and I have thought that this was impossible if I didn't have "a real job." And although I do not know if I will ever teach public school again (I have a killer resume, so that's kind of sad), but *this week* we will put an offer on a very nice house with extra space for an in-home studio in the community we desire! We can finally afford it!
Since our private lessons are full, my goal for this year is to increase enrollment in my group classes and raise private rates to average for my area. (I undercut the market when I first opened and it worked! But now it's time to make it right.) It would be nice to be able to expand and offer more later, but we want to be healthy first and foremost."
I asked Maggie if she could go back in time and give herself ONE piece of advice, what she'd say...
"Give it time, be consistent, and figure out what you do best.
You've absolutely got what it takes, and your people will find you!"
"People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care.
The most valuable part of my business is the relationships.
If my student doesn't learn as much as the next kid but they have a passion for playing/singing and love doing it with us, then I've done my job.
- Send Christmas cards.
- Remember birthdays.
- Send them pictures of their first lesson, and schedule duet videos to be sent to parents on holidays.
Appropriately challenge them and hold them accountable. Focus on proper practice (and equip them to do so). Celebrate & brag on their successes. Create community and give them wonderful reasons to share your name (like when they brag on what their own kids can do!) Help them develop other valuable relationships within your walls. Create accountability. Love on them even when they didn't practice.
Be authentic and prepared.
You've got this!"
Thank you SO MUCH, Maggie, for sharing your story with us. It's inspiring to see your journey and we can't wait to hear more over time about both your success and the lasting impact you are having on your community!
👉 Hey Readers,
We see your passion, and know you want to dive deeper and be a positive influence on your students.
But if you are lacking money, time, and/or resources, aren’t you limiting your ability to impact the lives of your students?
It seems like it would be hard to focus on helping others if your basic needs aren’t being met.
Bottom line: Shane and I believe music and art is more important and valuable than people realize. We want to help YOU because kids of all ages need YOU. Especially right now...
We are looking for 10 studio owners who want help growing and streamlining their studios over the course of 90 days.
We’d be working with you personally to help you fill your studio with more students (if that’s what you need), but also help you fulfill YOUR goals for your studio and prevent burnout.
Click the link below to apply and schedule a free Zoom chat to see if we're a good fit:
***Applications must be submitted by December 5th.***
“Purpose is an essential element of you...
It is the reason you are on the planet at this particular time in history.
Your very existence is wrapped up in the things you are here to fulfill.
Whatever you choose for a career path, remember, the struggles along the way are only meant to shape you for your purpose.”
- Chadwick Boseman
Even though you know you have a purpose, it doesn't always feel like you do.
That's why I LOVE the quote above from Chadwick Boseman.
Your purpose as a music teacher is to positively influence and impact the lives of your students.
But the things that make you DOUBT your purpose are actually the things that make you BETTER at what you do! It fuels the flame...
As you grow, you're going to realize you need to tighten your make up policy, increase tuition rates, etc ... and some parents will try to disrespect you.
Ultimately, the more you stand for yourself, the more you respect yourself, and the more you believe in yourself, you'll receive doubts and pushback DIRECTLY from those whom you put your career's purpose in.
It's going to happen, but it is opposite of what you think...
The pushback and the struggles you will face will SHAPE YOU FOR YOUR PURPOSE.
- You have to refine the boring business side of owning a music business in order to have a BIGGER impact.
- In order to impact MORE STUDENTS, you have to limit your make ups so you have time for MORE Students.
- In order to focus on giving students the BEST lessons possible, you don't have time to worry about how to pay the bills. You HAVE TO charge a reasonable rate for lessons in order to be able to FOCUS and give your students the BEST QUALITY lessons possible.
See the trend?
Believe in yourself. Respect yourself. Your students NEED you.
What's in the way of fulfilling YOUR purpose with your undivided attention?
Before I launched my own studio, I was teaching under the umbrella of two different churches and my own home.
I was easily able to retain 80 - 90% of my students each semester.
When I launched my own studio, 98% of my students who had been taking with me between the churches and my home followed!
But after the first year of being in the new studio, I noticed retention had dropped to 60%.
My studio actually ended our first year of lessons with MORE students than when we started!
But it didn't matter.
Shauna and I were focused on making more money, so naturally, we focused on learning how to advertise and persuade MORE new students to sign up for lessons.
We achieved the goal, but ironically, it cost us more.
Here are 3 reasons why...
1. Our current students were our biggest fans until we put them on auto pilot.
I didn't have a clear path of where I was taking each student, but I also had stopped thinking about it.
They caught on.
Most of them didn't even leave disgruntled.
Most of them gave valid reasons for moving on!
The underlying problem was this:
Because I stopped focusing on making the lesson experience better, they lost interest.
2. If I had kept my current students happy, they would have stayed and brought MORE referrals my way.
I think parents were still happy to refer others to my studio if they were specifically looking for lessons... but when their kids were LOVING lessons, parents would actually START UP conversations with others about how much Billy loved guitar and how Stickandstrum was amazing.
3. I wasn't able to keep the NEW students walking in my studio!
I had also hired a lot of teachers who were brand new to teaching.
Though I don't regret hiring beginner teachers, I do regret not training them well enough to teach.
A lot of our teachers were flailing.
Most of them overwhelmed or underwhelmed their students.
Kids left our studio either bored, or thinking they weren't good enough to play since they were over-challenged.
Trying to fill our teachers' schedules was like trying to fill a styrofoam cup with a hole in the bottom.
We were working our BUTTS off advertising, but all of it was wasted because we weren't able to keep them!
At The Studio Challenge, we talk aggressively about getting new students...
We all want a full schedule of happy students!
We don't want to worry about money.
Our dream is to sustain ourselves and make a living doing what we LOVE!
NONE of it matters if we can't keep our current students invested!
I learned how to improve my student retention, but it took a few years to figure it out HOW to grow and keep students engaged without having to consume my time worrying about them!
As studio owners, we have MANY things we have to worry about.
Let's get the necessary systems in place to improve retention and the lesson experience so we can keep students happy and keep growing...
Let's make sure your studio is set up to both ATTRACT and KEEP students in your door so you don't end up over-working like I was...
We're going to talk and work through 4 things next month:
We'll focus on one of these areas each week. A workbook and lesson videos are included.
We all know first impressions matter.
It's a one time shot and there are no do overs.
So, what is the first impression that your students and families get for you?
It should start BEFORE their first lesson.
Here are some simple things you can do that make a HUGE impression on students and parents after they've signed up for lessons...
Send them a Greeting
Email, Phone Call, Text, Postcard...Video?
Before students begin their first lesson, you have the chance to really make a great impression on them.
Chances are that you've been talking to the parent this whole time.
Not a lot of 9 year olds sign themselves up for lessons, ya know?
Now is your chance to make an impression with the student.
While an email, phone call, or text would be a great way to reach out we want to take it up a notch.
A postcard is a solid option.
NO ONE gets anything good in the mail anymore. But kids never get mail.
How awesome would it be for mom to head to the mailbox and for your student to hear,
"Hey Jonah! You've got some mail!"
What? That has likely never happened before. I mean, maybe a card from grandma but even she is just sending a birthday text these days.
He runs over to the mailbox to see a postcard with a handwritten greeting from you introducing yourself and saying that you can't wait to meet him and start lessons next week. Awesome!
But, how about we take it a step further?
What if you sent a personalized video to him?
Take a quick video in your studio introducing yourself, calling him by name, and saying how excited you are to meet him and get started.
How cool is that?
LessonMate is a great and simple option for this. You can quickly record a video DIRECTLY into your browser and send a link over to his parent's email. No awkward download/upload process. No waiting. No having the parents sign up for some confusing new software that they'll never understand. Just a quick way for you to send a video and put a smile on a kid's face.
Walking in for their First Lesson...
Make sure that you, the teacher, or the desk staff is there to meet the student and family at the front door and greet them BY NAME as soon as they open the door.
Their first moment is everything.
They are in a new and unsure location and looking for a sense of belonging. Give it to them.
One of our members, Emily, has a GREAT way to do this. She has a board welcoming in new members. She calls it her VIP Board, or something like that. Basically, it's a board welcoming in new students and they can see their names and feel like rock stars as soon as they walk through the front door.
But it doesn't stop there. Expand on it with a full VIP package. Give them a backstage pass to wear with their name on it. Give them a Swag Bag filled with studio merch like a t-shirt, stickers, pencils, headphones, and anything else you can think of or get your brand on.
The idea here is to completely overwhelm them with awesomeness from the first time they step in the door.
This is going to help to boost confidence and help them feel like they are part of the community from their first step into the door.
The Actual Lesson
No matter the instrument, the first lesson can be a little intense.
We have to go over posture, music reading, how to hold the instrument, and a hundred other insanely boring tasks that zap the enthusiasm out of your young and eager student.
So, how can we improve this experience?
There are too many instruments in here for me to get into specifics but here are a few suggestions. I also tread lightly here because you're here for business advice, not pedagogical advice.
This first lesson should be experiential, more than educational.
Do NOT overwhelm with information.
Overwhelm with the power of music and let them experience it!
For drum students, that means we're playing We Will Rock You at the first lesson. I don't go overboard on stick grip or proper posture, though I mention it. I just want them to get in and have an awesome time. I want to inspire them so that they can't wait to come back for more.
Take time to get to know the student. It's easy for us to just switch into full on teacher mode.
After the First Lesson
Typically this is where it ends, right?
"Well, start practicing and I'll see you next week! "
But that's not where you end.
First, make sure you have time to go and talk to the parents even if you have to cut the lesson short by a minute or two.
Go over what you learned, but don't overwhelm.
This is a chance to talk about how awesome their kid is.
Find something that you connected over and brag about their kid!
When they Get Home
Within 24 hours you need to follow up.
Like before, this can be call/text/email or you could also send another video.
Just depends on your style.
But it's important to follow up after the lesson is over to help them to realize that they are getting more than just a 30 minute lesson every week.
It also helps to remind and reinforce what they should be working on in between the lessons:
"Hey! Enjoyed our first lesson today.
"You did great! Remember to work on blah blah blah and I look forward to seeing you again next week!"
A postcard or email later in the week before their next lesson will also go a LONG way towards making them feel like they are already an important part of your studio.
What are some ways you make new students feel welcome at your studio?
Let us know in the Facebook group!
Join us for November's Challenge:
Starting next month, Studio Challenge Members are going to work on improving the lesson experience at their studios!
When you are done with this month's challenge:
Join TSC's Silver Membership NOW to take part in November's challenge.
(You can cancel anytime.)
Growing your studio takes time, but sometimes you cannot focus on the long term growth.
If rent is due next week and you need money ASAP, here's a quick way you can get some new students in the door this week...
Nothing will EVER beat word of mouth in our business.
If you have a studio full of happy and engaged students, you have a network of people ready to help you.
Your students have:
So, it’s time to use this!
On the simplest level you can just send an email letting them know that you are looking to grow your studio and wanted to see if they knew of anyone interested in lessons. Make it easy by extending an offer or flyer for them to give to friends.
Emails to Current Students Quick Tips:
Which one grabs you more...
"Come take lessons with me! I am open every day, and you can sign up whenever."
"I only have 4 spots left for guitar lessons on Monday! If you enroll today, you can begin next week!"
Using scarcity marketing not only prompts people to sign up for lessons, but it also gives them comfort in knowing:
1. You have students taking who trust you, and
2. You run a legit business and your time is valuable.
When you flaunt being open all the time for anyone to take, well, you look sketchy like this guy.
That's why Shauna create ads for YOU that are designed attract students to sign up, and do it NOW.
Subscribe today, and get your first scarcity marketing template immediately.👇
Meet one of TSC's founding members, Kaylah! She's awesome...
Kaylah is the owner of Harmony Project Music Learning Center in Wyoming. Her studio has two locations in Wyoming, the first of which she opened in the small town of Wheatland.
Though Kaylah's studio is growing and she's done amazing things for her community, her journey has been ANYTHING but easy.
Here's her story...
My parents made the decision to start driving.
Every week for the next decade we drove 140-160 miles each week for my lessons."
Kaylah said the sacrifice her parents had made for her sparked her desire to give kids in her hometown, Wheatland, the same opportunities given to her without having to make the same kind of sacrifices.
"So, I decided to pursue a music education degree and start teaching private lessons," she said.
Kaylah said when she decided to officially launch her studio, her biggest struggle was transitioning teaching into a full time job.
"There was a lot of stress the first year that I moved the studio out of our house because of the fear of the unknown and the potential instability of being completely dependent on lessons for my primary income — especially since I had no formal business training and my husband was constantly in and out of being employed! There was a lot of pressure that I HAD TO succeed!"
Kaylah has come a long way in the past few years!
Today, her studio Harmony Project has 2 growing locations, over 100 students and 6 teachers between them.
Kaylah has not only fulfilled her dream of providing the kids in her small town the opportunity to take violin, but thanks to her, they can now also take lessons in multiple instruments (everything from piano and guitar, to violin, harp, flute, etc)!
The last 2 years have been the most challenging for Kaylah...
Since 2018, Kaylah has had to work through:
(Kaylah said she was actually in the middle of launching her second location when her brother passed!)
"The fact that I am still standing and still have my business . . . and honestly, any sanity left . . . is nothing short of miraculous!
However, I have to say that I WOULD NOT trade any of the events of the last 2 years because they have ALL caused me to grow!
Spiritually, physically, emotionally, as a business owner, as a friend, as a musician, as a person in general, I've grown all across the board! I am so thankful to have a faithful core of students who have never given up on my studio because they know me and they trust me, but I am also thankful for our numbers starting to climb again after a pretty dramatic drop due to Covid!
All in all, I am incredibly blessed to get to do what I love every single day and to share that love of music and of people with a pretty spectacular #MusicFam as a way to make a living!
Things can only go up from here, and I am really excited to see what God does next!"
"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything." - James 1: 2 - 4
We want to send a HUGE thanks to Kaylah for sharing her story with us this week!
We are truly inspired by her grit, and cannot wait to see what awesome things the future holds for her. Kaylah is a fighter and bound for success.
If Kaylah's story resonated with you and you'd like some help and support with your music school, check out TSC's Silver Membership.
No matter what you teach or where you're from, we're here to help you achieve YOUR studio goals.
Your website has ONE purpose:
Get people to contact you and sign up for lessons.
Anything not serving this one purpose needs to go.
Most websites have WAY too many pages.
Or too few.
It’s a total Goldilocks syndrome.
Let’s talk about the main pages that your website should have.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t have additional pages.
Just that they shouldn’t be prominently displayed.
Also, you probably shouldn’t have a need for much else than these.
Ready? Here we go.
The 5 Essential Pages for a Music School Website:
Let’s break them down, shall we?
Your about page is NOT about you.
Read that again and really let it sink in.
Here’s the hard truth about teaching and life in general.
For the most part, people do not care about you.
They care about what you can do for them.
Almost every private music teacher website looks the same:
“My name is John Smith and I have a BA in Tuba Performance from Really Good Tuba School. I also have an MA from Even Better Tuba School. I studied with Dr. Frank Furter, Julius Caesar, and Dr. Tuba McGee. I have been teaching for 8 years and I enjoy teaching students of all ages and strive to make tuba a fun and enjoyable experience.”
Sounds a little ridiculous written out like that, right? But that’s what most parents will read because they don’t know any of the people that you studied under and don’t really care what your degrees are or what school that you went to.
They already assumption is that you are skilled in trained in what you do.
You don’t have to lay it out for them.
At least not in explicit detail.
Instead, you need to talk about your studio and your students.
Talk about how happy and engaged your students are and how your studio helps them to get there. This is where you get to quietly brag about yourself and your studio through telling people how awesome that your students are.
The entire point of this page is to help parents to picture their kids in your studio.
Don’t talk specifically about lessons (that comes next), but about what makes your overall studio unique and why students and families should want to be part of it.
Make sure to include testimonials and lots of pictures.
[ONE NOTABLE EXCEPTION: If you are only trying to attract the highest quality students, then you should talk about your pedigree and what separates you from other highly skilled teachers. But this will be a VERY small percentage of teachers. This is only for the teachers that are working with students that are winning national competitions and getting into top music schools. For the rest of us, focus on the students and families.]
This is your information page that talks about what you offer.
Do you offer private lessons?
Talk about them here, but keep it brief and include lots of pictures and a testimonial or two.
Use bullet points, not paragraphs.
Most teachers do well on this page because it’s where we get to talk about what we DO.
Don’t go into crazy amounts of detail but go for a sales pitch.
What makes your lessons unique?
What do you do better in your lessons than ANY other studio in town?
This is one of the first questions that people will ask.
If you put your pricing on your website, I bet you'll stand out from the competition simply because your competitors probably don’t list their pricing!
We want to be transparent and give all of the information that we can so that people will want to contact us and sign up.
I have had a commercial studio for 5 years and I still don’t know how much some of my competitors charge. And it’s not for lack of trying.
Short of sending over a spy, I’m not sure how I could ever find that information.
It’s not on their website.
It’s not on their Facebook or social media pages or any other directories.
People want to know how much things cost.
Make it simple for them.
Lay out your pricing simply but this page isn’t just about pricing...
This page is about VALUE.
Not only do we proudly display our pricing information, but we get to brag about what an incredible value it is.
What is included in your pricing?
Access to apps and games?
Free student concerts?
Swag bag on signup?
Access to the teacher to ask questions during the week?
It may seem odd but, as an exercise, write down EVERYTHING that you do for a student that isn’t physically teaching them the lesson:
Lesson prep, student concerts, communication through the week, access to music apps, lending library, videos for students to watch, etc.
When it’s all written out it looks pretty impressive, doesn’t it?
That’s the point.
We want to drive home the value that they are getting for the price.
Can you believe that you get ALL of THIS for only this small amount of money each month?? Wow!
State your pricing cleanly and then drive home the value.
Make sure you include pictures and testimonials, even on the “boring” pricing page.
Make sure that they can see why they want to be part of your studio while they read over the business stuff.
Put all of your contact info on this page: phone number, email address, physical address.
Put a Google map.
Include a simple contact form with 3 fields:
You can personalize that a bit if you like but keep it extremely simple and don’t ask for extra information. You want them to send you a message and you want to make it as easy for them as you possibly can. Don’t complicate it.
Also, you guessed it...include some pictures and testimonials here.
Let them look at pictures of happy, smiling kids and read about how much Kate LOVES piano lessons as their finger is hovering over the ‘send’ button.
Keep this page simple and uncluttered.
Just the form...and maybe a picture and testimonial.
Make it very easy for them to Sign Up here and get the information that you need without getting too much extra.
I like to get information like student name, age, instrument, and experience so that I can have an informed conversation with the parents about signing up their kid for lessons.
I don’t like to go in blind, so this gives me a little bit of information.
One of your goals should be to run the most efficient studio as possible.
Similar to the Call To Action, you need to teach people how to contact you and what information you want them to give you.
If your main type of contact on your website is an email address or a phone number you are missing out on a great way to save yourself time and get more inquiries. Most emails or phone calls are either generic requests for information (“I’d like some more information on guitar lessons”) or woefully lacking in information (“I have a nine year old that would like to take piano lessons. How do we get started?”)
The first request means that that your website is probably a bit confusing or lacking information because they couldn’t find the information they needed. Or, that they just don’t read and want someone else to do the work for them. Let’s be real. That definitely happens.
The second request gives you more to go on but still leaves so many unanswered questions. Is the nine year old a beginner? Any prior experience? What style of music do they like? What days and times are they available? What kind of piano lessons are they looking for? You are going to have to ask all of these questions and more through emails, phone calls, or in person. Unless it’s through email, you probably won’t have a written record of the information either.
All of your pages should have a Call to Action!
Throughout the page and at the bottom tell them EXACTLY what you want them to do.
Pages You Should Never Have On Your Website
Those five pages are sufficient for most music teacher’s websites. But what about all of the other pages that you may be thinking of? Let’s look at a few…
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As always, success is a journey and growth takes time.
However, sometimes you CANNOT wait for that growth.
You need to pay bills NOW and if you can't pay rent this month, your studio's future success and growth is irrelevant.
Here are my go-to ways to get new students in the door ASAP:
1. Contact your current students and ask if they know if anyone that would like to take lessons.
Your students love you and want to help! Just ask them.
Your reach is only so big, no matter how much you market and advertise. However, if you tell 10 students to spread the word, and then they each tell 5 of their friends, then you’ve reached 50 PEOPLE by only sending a quick email to 5.
2. Think about siblings AND parents as potential students.
Having a whole family taking lessons with you is amazing! Especially if you have a multi-teacher school or groups, see if you can add a family member at the same day/time or into a current group.
If they’re already at your studio, they may as well take lessons! Just ask them. You can send them an email that says something like,
"Hey! Would Jason's brother be interested in taking drum lessons?" I think he'd really enjoy it, and we can get him scheduled at the same lesson time as Jason!"
Even if they initially say, "no," they might surprise you and say, "No, but what spots do you have open for piano lessons?"
3. Contact your Old Inquiries and Former Students.
Try the Nine Word Email. It is GOLD.
“Hey [Student]! Are you still interested in lessons?”
That’s it. Done. You will get more responses from an email like this than most finely crafted emails with tons of information. Seriously, try it!
4. Scarcity Marketing.
If you are advertising generic lessons it’s hard to have any urgency for people to sign up.
“Only 3 spots left!”
“Registration closes in 4 days!”
If you want them to sign up NOW, you have to give them a reason to sign up NOW and not push it off.
5. Post on Social Media and Facebook Community Groups.
Facebook, Instagram, Google My Business. Post there. Post regularly and frequently. Be specific with what you’re looking for but get the word out.
All out media blitz.
6. Open Day.
Take a Saturday or evening and do Free Intro Lessons.
Get them started and excited and then be ready to close the deal and sign up students on the spot.
SC Member Paul Andrews has some great stuff in the Membership group and on our Podcast about his Open Days. Hear more about his success through his podcast episode here.
You have enough to worry about as a music teacher and studio owner.
Let us worry about the marketing!
When you enroll NOW for Music School Marketing for $9 (offer expires THURSDAY, 9/24!), you get the Music School Facebook Calendar ($59) for FREE!
This is your chance to STOP wasting time worrying about what, how, and where to post to get new students and student inquiries.
We've all been there!
Whether it's the car salesman that tried to manipulate you into buying an overpriced lemon, or the guy that came to your house trying to scare you into buying a security system for your new home...
You know you have to "sell" music lessons, but you don't know how to go about doing it because all you know is this:
You don't want to be THAT guy.
Is it even possible to sell without coming across as a slimy, greedy salesman?
I feel like most of us music teachers HATE selling lessons and here's why:
We CARE about people, and we want the BEST for them.
When I get my feelings hurt I try to convince myself that I hate people. But the truth is at the end of the day, I find myself constantly concerned about being a genuine person, doing the right things, and wanting to not wreck the lives of those around me.... ESPECIALLY kids.
We know how slimy salesman make us feel, and we DO NOT wish that on any student or parent that comes in our door.
I was listening to someone talk about sales this morning, and something the guy said really struck me.
“When you sell from the heart, it becomes serving. It’s about inviting people to join you so you can serve them at the HIGHEST level.”
Thank about that for a minute!
So... what's the difference between YOU and those slimy salesman that wrecked your perception of sales?
You CARE about serving YOUR students at the HIGHEST level. You want nothing but the BEST for them.
Slimy salesman don't care about anything but themselves and making money.
You care about making money too, but NOT at the risk of hurting someone else!
Sales has nothing to do with you.
It has everything to do with helping others.
- Helping your students make progress in learning to play.
- Helping them become better musicians.
- Helping them become BETTER.
So, how can you sell music lessons without sounding slimy?
Speak from your heart!
Share stories of success.
- Of students who achieved results.
- Of students who you love to teach.
- Of Students who love to come to lessons!
Here's the cool thing:
When we share stories, we generate more students!
Those who love lessons with you tell their friends.
You share through email or social media something awesome they did or said.
Then other people see that and come to you for lessons.
THEN, your new students have new stories to share and bring in MORE new students!
It's a wonderful cycle.
Start by sharing reviews from your students. If you don't have reviews (or students) yet, share YOUR story! Tell the world WHY you love teaching. Let everyone see your heart.
When they do, they won't think you're slimy in the least.
They'll see YOU and want to support YOU.
You've got this!
If you need help with your marketing, check out Music School Marketing for $9!
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