The back-to-school season is your single biggest make-or-break opportunity with music lessons. What you do to prepare during this period will ultimately affect your store’s lesson program for the entire year. Are you ready? At Summer NAMM 2013, music lessons guru Pete Gamber shared an easy plan for building your lesson program during the busy time.
Highlights from the video.
Phone shop your store: "All of you are so concerned with getting people to find you on Facebook and Twitter. I'm gonna tell you the No. 1 thing to do: Phone shop your store, and find out how bad you sound on the phone.
"You're going to spend all this energy driving people into your store, and you're going to blow them off at the phone."
Test your searchability: "Search on the Internet, in Google, for what your store does.
"Put in 'clarinet lessons, hendersonville, tn.' See if you pop up.
"I discovered that in the whole 100-mile area of Los Angeles three years ago, I was the only guy in Southern California that offered ukulele lessons. I wasn't, but I was the only person that had posted for 'ukulele lessons, rancho cucamonga.'
"Put in every zip code from your database, and search to see if you pop up."
Take advantage of instrument rental nights: "How many of you go to rental parent nights? The rest of you, why not? Even if you don't rent band instruments, why don't you go and hand out lesson information?"
Call back summer dropouts: "How many people had kids that dropped for the summer? Call them all back. Say, 'Hey, we're calling you back before school goes in to give you the first chance to get signed back up.'"
Promote lessons with in-store video: "When people come into your store, how many of you have video running? How many of you have video on YouTube? Why isn't the video on YouTube running in your store?"
Hold an all-staff meeting: "You need to have a meeting with your teachers and your staff. You've got to get everyone on the same team about back to school.
"Your sales staff has to know your teachers. Pull out a blank sheet of paper when you get back to the store. [Give it] to every employee and say, 'List every teacher that comes in here and why they're a great teacher.' See what answers you get.
"You're going to be amazed at what your staff does not know about your teachers.
"You can't be pushing forward if everybody's going five different directions. You know what you need to do. Let's get everybody and make them feel like family. Make them feel like they're a big part of your success—because they are. Your staff's a big part. Your lesson teachers are a big part."