When you’re aiming to boost student numbers, who are you targeting with your marketing? It’s not a trick question, I promise. But I do know your answer already: most Studio Owners would say that they’re looking to get their studio in front of new students. Some of you might say that you’re promoting your referral program to existing students (you get a gold star); very few of you will say that you’re marketing to PAST students.
The tendency is to think about our past students as we do ex-lovers or ex-partners. We put all of our time and energy into them, gave them everything we could, and one day they just got up, walked out and never came back. So why should we contact them? Let me explain.
Take a moment to think about how many students have come and gone over the time you’ve been running your studio. Depending on how long you’ve been in operation, it could be hundreds! Now ask yourself this: did all of them leave because of a blowup or disagreement? Simply put, no. The majority of students left because they wanted to try something else—or maybe they’ve moved out of the area. This is especially true for recreational students. This stream of students can really help you become a “GO-TO” studio, as they’re low maintenance and help fill your class capacities quickly.
So they leave for no crazy reason—yet you stop talking to them. You no longer send them a newsletter. You give them no love whatsoever. It’s a huge mistake!
Imagine if your past students and dance families received a value-packed newsletter each week. And what if they still received a birthday card from you? Would that keep you top-of-mind? YES! Would that ensure that you’re the first studio they mention when referral opportunities arise? YES!
The next time you’re planning your marketing campaign, don’t forget to show a little love to your PAST students.
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