Why can't they find you?

Does it ever feel like your studio is invisible? You see other studios in your area seemingly drawing students through the doors by the busload, but for some reason getting seen is an uphill battle?

You’re definitely not alone, but here’s the thing you need to know. New students aren’t going to come looking for you. You need to go looking for them. 

While the dance studio industry is becoming more and more competitive with a new local studio opening up almost every week it seems, it’s also never been easier to find and engage with your potential dancers. Of course, I’m talking about digital and social media marketing.

The easy way. 

New Student Blitz Tip: Once we know which platforms to use (Facebook, Instagram, your Website offer etc) we need to discuss why we’re posting on these platforms. What’s our objective? This is one of the most important questions you should be asking yourself each time you implement a marketing strategy.

Now of course, you know that these you don’t need to go looking too far for your students and their families – Social Media has done the  hard work for you, and placed them right in front of your nose (yay!). Now it’s up to you to engage with them, and keep them interested.

Most studios think that Social Media all about “getting more students” but truth be told, creating solid social media platforms is about building awareness of your studio and boosting your retention. If someone gains awareness of your studio through seeing a post or a student shares something through social media, that’s the first step. You then need to get them across to your website to opt in for your Hit Hook , or to contact the studio directly for more information.

So that’s the objective – to connect with our current students and parents online to keep them engaged, informed and inspired around the clock. The action we want them to be taking is liking, sharing, commenting and clicking on the links within our posts so that more people will see you online, along with the ‘social proof’ that other dancers and families are loving your studio.

So, What Should You Post?

To keep your studio at the front of client’s minds, you’ll see great results by posting to your main social media channels 2 – 3 times a day. If you can’t always go with the once daily minimum until you build up confidence with your content. Here are a great social media checklist full of ideas for when you get stuck:

• Branded quotes
• Social photos – picnics, theatre, discos
• Photos from competitions and events
• Videos from class
• Photos from class
• Inspiring videos from YouTube/Vimeo
• Audio recordings – interviews with dancers
• Infographics
• Graphs
• SlideShare presentations
• Articles
• Blogs
• Podcasts
• Webinars
• Competitions
• Newsletters
• Press release
• Questions – get opinions
• Special offers
• Online video training

You can use this for both Facebook and Instagram – which are kind of the ‘big 2’ for dance studio owners, and can get super creative by coming up with your studio’s very own hashtag. 

Once you have your brand awareness and exposure plans in place, it’s time to step into your front-and-centre position and really wow them with Paid Facebook Advertising. Yes, it is very daunting at first but if you can remember these 3 simple steps you’ll be well on your way to success.

Step 1. Bull’s-Eye Targeting
The studios that are blowing it out of the water are the ones creating super-targeted adverts. Potential dance parents and students want to see relevant advertisements, which means you need to step it up. For example, you might create an advert to enroll more preschool-age children. This would be very different from the advert that you’d create for your 8-10-year-old hip-hop class. The first step is to clearly define what age groups and styles you want to target.

Get specific!

Facebook allows you to target locations, so make sure you’re not wasting money targeting an area that you know people won’t travel to your studio from.

Step 2. Perfect Match
Once you know exactly who your advert is targeting, ensure that your image and copy (text) are aligned. For example, if you want to fill adult jazz classes, use an image of an adult doing jazz. You’ll also want to look at the copy you’re placing in the advert. Facebook’s power editor gives you a lot of freedom and flexibility in creating high-performing adverts so make sure you’re speaking exactly to the person the advert was created for.

Remember: images can only contain up to 20% text.

3. Test & Measure
The most important step in Facebook advertising is to test and measure. There’s no magic pill when it comes to figuring out what’s going to knock it out of the park for you, which is why you need to test (with a small budget). Post your ad. Look at the results and then decide whether to scale your advert up or down. After 24 hours, check the advert to see what your conversions are costing; then, after two days, decide whether to adjust it or leave it.

For more studio growth tips, support and resources, we’d love you to join us inside the Dance Studio Owners Association, and find out exactly where to find, engage and convert hundreds of new students for 2018.

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