Are you looking to fill your dance, gymnastics or activity classes with committed, loyal customers?
Alison Jones, from Alison Jones Coaching, recently hosted a webinar with us here at LoveAdmin, guiding us through her process for attracting and nurturing future clients.
Keep reading to discover how you too can start filling up your classes with devoted and enthusiastic students.
The key to filling your classes successfully
Marketing can seem overwhelming if you don’t know where to start, so Alison has come up with her “…four-step, new student blueprint.”
She’s found it to be really successful in her own dance school and was keen to stress that, “if you miss one of the steps, your attraction of new students will not be anything like as effective as it could be.”
Step one – Attract
If you want to fill up your classes then you need to get your message in front of new people – people who don’t know anything about you yet.
But how? Alison suggests these four methods:
Alison is a big fan of Facebook ads as, “… they can be effective because they can be very targeted.” You can specify what your ad should be, “… within this postcode with children of this age who are interested in this thing.” Alison even admits, “… in the spirit of being open and honest about what’s working really well in my business right now, Facebook is where we’re spending our money and seeing a good return.”
This involves two businesses working together and promoting each other through their own marketing. For example, if your venue is next door to a coffee shop you can send business their way, even work out a discount for your customers. In return, they can display posters advertising your classes or flyers at the till.
If you like writing, then you can post blogs on your website that bring traffic to your site with key search terms. So, if for example you run a street dance class in Enfield and write about it using those terms as keywords in your blog, then it’ll turn up on the results page when someone searches for that type of class.
If you’ve got the gift of the gab, then hosting a podcast can be a fantastic way to raise the profile of your classes. It not only gets the word out about them but also sets you apart as an expert and someone to be trusted in your field.
Step two – Engage
Once you’ve got the attention of your potential customers, you need to start engaging with them.
As Alison says, “If I don’t have any engagement with them, they’re going to go off and strike out again… so this is the only way to get a return on your Ad spend.”
The most important thing is that you get their email address, without that you have no way of engaging.
You can obtain email addresses from enquiry forms or even just phone enquiries and once you have them, use these ideas to engage your future students or their parents.
Offer a fun quiz
People love little quizzes, so creating one all about their child and what sort of dance or gym class would suit them, is really likely to grab their attention.
They’re also a great way to encourage someone to gladly give you their email address.
Ask them to fill out a form
If they want to see a timetable, get them to fill out a form with their or their child’s age, gender and the type of class they’re interested in. You instantly have lots of useful information that’ll help you personalise your engagement.
Offer a freebie
Alison tends to steer clear of offering free classes as everyone does that, instead, she suggests a link to a video tutorial so that the future student can see what classes are like, gauge the atmosphere and see the quality of the teaching.
It’s so important that your engagement emails offer value to your potential students, otherwise, they’ll just delete them and unsubscribe.
Remember to send emails about what your future clients want to hear about, not just what you want to say.
Step three – Nurture
It’s really important that your future students and their parents trust and like you. Alison stresses that “…it’s leading with service, how can we make people feel special and valued and looked after?”
Here are some examples of how you can make coming to your classes as easy as possible and make people feel like they’re being taken care of:
- Let them know what they need to know about the studio: where to park, where to get a coffee while you wait, directions to the studio, a studio tour, and the timetable
- Send out values-based emails that showcase what you as a studio hold dear. For example, body positivity, fitness for all and building confidence
- Provide links to videos of the classes they’re interested in. This gives people the chance to experience the class without having to walk into a room without any idea of what to expect. Also, you can use those videos to demonstrate how much fun your classes are – building up a sense of excitement about coming along
Step four – Invite
Once you’ve taken the time and spent the money to get in front of the right people, you actually have to invite them to your classes.
Alison really believes that you should #marketlikeyoumeanit.
This just means that you shouldn’t be afraid to openly invite people to sign up. Alison advises that it’s, “…best if you have a concentrated two weeks full, on where we invite people to classes.”
This would equate to three emails a week for those two weeks which we openly invite them to enrol.
Outside of that period, send one high-value email a week, to maintain the nurturing element.
Once you’ve completed these four steps, you’re likely to have new students and fuller classes.
Remember though, your best advertising comes from your reputation and the way you build a community with your members.
Word of mouth is so powerful, especially when people share the message that your classes are fantastic.
Let LoveAdmin help
Did you know that LoveAdmin can help you to fill your classes quicker? We’ve built clever features into our powerful software to help you succeed. These features include:
- Easy online registration and invoicing for a better member experience
- Automatic waiting list management to maximise class attendance
- Simple to use communicational tools so that you can promote new classes and spaces with ease
And so many more.
To find out how LoveAdmin can help your club or organisation grow, get in touch today.
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