This is part 5 of 7 from the blog and video series 7 Steps to Attract More Students and Grow Your Violin Studio (What I Wish I Knew When I Started My Studio 10 Years Ago).
The entire series is available as a download in the Music for Young Violinist store.
STEP 5/7: PROFESSIONALISM
When potential students are looking for a teacher they will begin their evaluation process immediately based on the items listed below. Make every effort to present yourself as professionally as possible. Realize your interactions with your local colleagues are a part of your effort to maintain professionalism. Your colleagues may take you off of their referral list if they are not secure in the way you conduct your interactions.
24-48 HOUR RESPONSES - Reply to inquiries within 24-48 hours or prospective students may look elsewhere and spread the word that you are hard to reach. Not replying in a timely manner sends a message that you are not interested in working with someone which is off-putting, to say the least. If you are going to be unavailable (traveling or on break), take 5 minutes and adjust your email settings and voice message to reflect your absence. Approach your colleagues in the same way. When my studio was full, I referred people who contacted me only to my colleagues who had demonstrated integrity in their communications and I was confident could reply in a timely manner.
WELCOME PACKET - Every new inquiry that comes your way should receive a Welcome Packet via email. This includes:
A Welcome Packet gave a professional presentation that attracted the type of student I sought for my business. This also preserved my energy because I was very clear upfront about what I offered in my studio so I was never misleading. My Welcome Packet answered questions such as tuition, lesson scheduling, where to obtain an instrument and expectations of students.
I made this process efficient by using the same packet of materials that I gave to each of my existing studio families at the beginning of each school year. This way it was already a PDF file on my computer I could zip out to all the inquiries that came my way. I also printed out a hard copy of the Welcome Packet and shared the following 3 things:
IMAGES - I use Canva, an online graphic design service for all of the Music for Young Violinists images. It is easy, mostly free (or $1 an image) and has hundreds of templates ready to go for your use with creating images for social media, websites, recital programs, emails, newsletters, etc.
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Hi! It's me, Heather. I absolutely love working on the Music for Young Violinists project and all the many facets: blogging, website, music, teaching materials, freebies, videos, newsletter and giveaway contests. The best part is connecting with you so feel free to drop me a line. You can learn more about me on the "ABOUT" page. Thanks!