Workshops and camps are always a huge hit for students, but often can be a nightmare for studio owners to plan, market and budget for. But it doesn’t need to be that way! With solid planning in place, offering workshops or dance camps to your students can turn a huge profit for your business while also giving your students something to rave (and refer) about!
Like everything in your studio, there are countless ways to run your workshops to best suit your students and your team, but if you’re feeling a bit stale or want to mix things up a bit it’s a great idea to consider your various options.
This is when you run an exclusive workshop or camp for an hour or two for your current students, which would be led by one of your existing faculty members. You could even schedule a variety of lessons back to back – almost like a dance-athon. As a fun event you could charge for students to take part, and really hype it up before and after on your social media channels. It’s not the world’s most profitable way of running a workshop but it certainly keeps your students interested in their classes and helps with retention.
Internal Guest Teacher Workshop
This is where you will employ a teacher or group of teachers who are not normally members of your teaching staff, and may choose to run a variety of age group and levels in a workshop setting. This is a unique and exciting opportunity for your students, so ensuring you have a marketing plan surrounding the event is a great idea. You may choose to host your guest teacher workshop during your off-season or school holidays, or as a special class to replace regularly timetabled lessons. Students would pay extra for this special guest teaching opportunity, so ensure you budget to cover the expenses of of paying your teacher as well as admin costs so you can also turn a profit. Ordering some exclusive merchandise is another great opportunity for you to build hype and up-sell around the event, and your students will LOVE it! They are the ones who will be raving about it on social media, so think outside the box and get a ‘selfie station’ set up, create a hashtag and get the word out there. This is a great way to increase your brand awareness and retention of current students. Stuck for workshop ideas and guest teachers? We are loving what our DSOA Partners at Stage Door Workshops have on offer for outsourcing your workshop needs, so make sure to check them out!
Internal Teacher Camps
These multi-day workshops are loads of fun and education for your students, and run more like an off-season dance camp. Spread over 2-3 days, you may consider putting on a number of classes daily with your existing faculty for different age groups and levels. During these days you could also provide lunch for the students and include the catering in the cost which your parents will also love for convenience. This is also an awesome opportunity to reach out to local businesses to build a relationship and start a conversation around strategic partnerships. Pricing for these multiple days could be a per-day cost, and you can get more students through the doors by implementing an ‘Earlybird’ pre-enrollment rate and/or a discounted rate if they do all of the days you are offering.
Guest Teacher Camps
Similar to the above, but add in the excitement and scarcity of special guest teachers and choreographers! Here you will be employing special guest teachers to run your classes across a variety of ages, styles and levels. This of course creates a bigger ‘wow factor’ for your students as the teachers and styles are new and exciting. You’re able to charge more for these workshops but make sure to carefully budget for your staff expenses, and again can include catering in the price. It’s also a great idea to get a photographer in for the day or even a talented friend of your studio who can take some candid shots for you to share through the day on social media or through your studio’s communication channels. Use Facebook Live and Instagram Stories to build your brand – you don’t want to miss these unique opportunities to get your name and brand out there while your students are having the time of their lives!
External Guest Teacher Workshops and Camps
These are the workshops that will typically require the most time and energy when it comes to planning and marketing, but can pay off in dividends! There’s one component here that will set you apart from the crowd, and it’s the word ‘external’. This is a very important difference and a whole new ball game, but when done well it can make a huge impact on your workshop revenue, student retention, and even new student enrollments from dancers who attend your workshop from outside of your studio. This is most effectively run as a unique and one-time-only event with guest teachers or teacher and the gamechanger here is that your workshop is open to the general public. The power is in how you advertise this workshop. Give this workshop a name or if you’re using just one high profile guest teacher simply use their name. Your studio branding doesn’t need to be all over this; instead you create an individual brand for you workshop. The venue is your studio but it’s about bringing dancers from all over your area and beyond to this workshop. This is certainly not an exercise in poaching students from other studios but simply a way for you to give back, provide an awesome experience for local dancers and earn additional revenue. If you find it a challenge to find the perfect teacher for this event, then outsource it! Again, we love Stage Door Workshops who go above and beyond to offer fully customized workshop experiences tailored to your studio and boast a faculty of top industry professionals. You can also use your jump online to search and find a number of other businesses who take care of all the hard work when it comes to organizing your dance and theatre workshops for you.
This is a new concept that has a huge novelty appeal to your students, who are given unprecedented access to world-leading choreographers no matter where they live in the world. CLI Studios are the innovative team who are bringing the virtual world into your studio with choreographers like tWitch, Teddy Forence, Allison Holker and more. DSOA Partners CLI are doing amazing things with their online courses and are committed to working with studio owners to keep the highest quality of dance education within your studio walls. Check them out and just imagine your student’s faces when they hear that they’ll be taking HipHop class from tWitch next month!
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