Whenever we market our business we are always striving for one thing and one thing alone, to build our client base and to do so by getting people to come in to our business. If you can get interested individuals to walk in the door and you have something good to offer them as far as product you stand a good chance of converting them into clients. Years ago we did a survey with our clients and I can tell you it was quite an eye opener! We were sure that the most important thing to our clients was the quality of the education that we were able to give them. So we were quite amazed when we got the surveys back to discover that the quality of the education was not even in the top 5 and that other things were far more important to them especially initially. They wanted it to be convenient, for the kids to have fun, to make friends and the closer it was to schools the better because then the children could walk right to the studio. These were just a few of the things that were mentioned but it really helped us to change our marketing strategy.

Whenever we market our business we are always striving for one thing and one thing alone, to build our client base and to do so by getting people to come in to our business. If you can get interested individuals to walk in the door and you have something good to offer them as far as product you stand a good chance of converting them into clients. Years ago we did a survey with our clients and I can tell you it was quite an eye opener! We were sure that the most important thing to our clients was the quality of the education that we were able to give them. So we were quite amazed when we got the surveys back to discover that the quality of the education was not even in the top 5 and that other things were far more important to them especially initially. They wanted it to be convenient, for the kids to have fun, to make friends and the closer it was to schools the better because then the children could walk right to the studio. These were just a few of the things that were mentioned but it really helped us to change our marketing strategy.

We started to offer some fun events at our studio: An ice cream social, a Halloween party, a holiday get together, a summer barbecue. All of these events were well attended and we did and still do attract a lot of new people with them. The key was to make all of these events a fun time for children and parents so that they would feel at ease about choosing our school over others in the area. We want our students to feel happy about coming to our studio and not to feel intimidated. It is much easier to teach children if they feel happy to be there. I’m sure you have experienced from time to time a student who just does not want to be there. Maybe their parents are making them attend, whatever the reason you don’t want that type of negativity in your class because it is pervasive and spreads like wildfire. It is also important that the parents feel welcomed and that they see that their child enjoys being there because they are much more likely to keep adding classes to their child’s schedule which adds more income to your business.

Free trial classes are a great way to attract new students or for current students to try another type of dance and perhaps add it on for the new semester. We set our trial class schedule by giving all age groups a chance to try two or three different classes. For example for our pre-school students we offer a Ballet class and Tap and Hip Hop. Of course pre-school Hip Hop is really just Jazz basics and movement to current music suitable for that age group but since it is called 'Hip Hop' it seems to attract bigger crowds! For our 8-9 age groups we offer a Ballet class, Jazz, Tap and Hip Hop. Our pre teens and teens can try Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Hip Hop and either Musical Theater or Modern/Contemporary. We only offer one class of each genre for each age group. The classes are usually well attended and we do 30 minute classes for pre-school and 45 minute ones for everyone else, the reason for this is so that the instructor and us directors can have an opportunity to talk to each child’s parents and make good recommendations for the classes that we feel would benefit the students the most. It is also a wonderful opportunity to get to know the parents of prospective students and for us to make them feel welcome. Offering slightly shorter classes for the trial class day helps us also keep things moving along.

We also have an arrangement with our local dancewear store to come up to our studio on that day so that they can sell leotards, tights, shoes and all the other things dancers need. The parents love this because they can get everything they need right then and there and if anything needs to be ordered it can be taken care of without them having to drive to another location. Again, it is a convenience and tells your customers or potential customers that you care about them. Perhaps you already have a dancewear store as part of your business but if you don’t I can heartily recommend you trying this out with a store near you; the store will be thrilled because not only will they be selling their product but they will also be capturing their own client list from it.

This year we plan to combine our free trial class day with our ice cream social so it will give people a reason to visit our studio not only for the classes but also to have a fun time with their friends and family and people who are having a good time are easier to sell to and easier to convince that their child would definitely benefit from registering at your studio. The bottom line is to get as creative as possible and remember that people just love something that is Free!