Chances are, you already understand that the summer is the slowest season for being contacted by potential guitar students. This makes earning a good living teaching guitar very challenging for most teachers. However, unlike most guitar teachers, you will be filling up your teaching schedule during the summertime. To do it, you just need to understand the right approaches to take.
If you are failing to keep students during the summer you are doing so for the same reasons as other guitar teachers. Here are those reasons and what you must do to get completely different results so you can build your student base:
In my previous articles about teaching guitar, I discussed in detail why so many guitar teachers are unable to market themselves effectively. This prevents them from making a lot more money and helping their students in a much greater capacity. When you are unable to promote your guitar lessons very well, you will struggle even more during the summertime when you are being contacted by less people. This will make it extremely hard to sustain your guitar teaching business for a long period of time.
To make sure your guitar teaching business doesn't suffer during the summer, get guitar teacher success training so you can attract students all year long.
Because most guitar teachers understand that there are less student inquiries in the summer, they often give up on their promotional efforts during this time. This opens the door for you to market yourself to all the students that everyone else is ignoring. There are always students seeking teachers regardless of the time of year (even if there are 'less' in the summer). By being one of the only teachers to increase marketing efforts in the summer, you will effectively raise the percentage of students you are able to attract. This will essentially transform the summer months from your 'worst' time for attracting students to your 'best'.
You will lose your guitar students fast by implementing a weak guitar teaching policy (or not even having one to begin with). Most guitar teachers do this and their students take advantage of them by doing things like quitting without notice, showing up late, not paying on time or taking time away from lessons for summer vacation (while the teacher doesn't get paid). One of the reasons why this happens so much is guitar teachers create a policy of charging students on a lesson by lesson basis.
Guitar teachers who earn a lot of money do not do this! Instead they charge their students for lessons on a monthly basis to ensure that they always get paid on time and 'never' get taken advantage of... and you should too! Also, to get yourself ready for any situation where you may lose students for the summer, think of creative ways to teach your students from a distance (not in person). This will help remove any 'distance-based' objections from your student's mind. In fact, it's easy to set this up. Find out how by reading about it in this free resource about making good money as a guitar teacher.
Your guitar students don't inherently understand the value of taking guitar lessons during the summer and will often choose to do other summer activities (like sports or taking vacations) in their place. It's up to you to step up and make the value of guitar lessons known so they choose 'lessons with you' rather than any other summer activity. They must understand:
A) The real reasons why becoming a great guitarist is much more valuable than doing other less important activities.
B) Why stopping guitar lessons for the summer will have very negative consequences on your student's guitar playing progress. When your students stop playing guitar for the summer, they will have to waste tons of time and money just to 'catch up' whenever they come back to work with you. This is precisely what happens to students when they come back from summer break to go to school, so it is easy for them to understand this when you explain it to them.
C) How taking lessons with you during the summer will be a very unique experience that they must be a part of. Here is one way (of many) you can give them this realization:
Put together several killer programs/events that are exclusive to the summertime only. This could be a specialized metal guitar soloing training course, studio recording training or even a cool trip to see a huge band play live (that you use as inspiration for a unique course based on that band's playing style). You can put together countless ideas if you simply sit down for a little bit and think about it. Just make sure that you tell your students about your programs many months in advance in order to 'build them up'. After doing this, your students will be dying to get started once the summer starts.
[Warning: Just make sure not to do the absolute worst thing possible (what most guitar teachers do): Reducing your lessons rates in a pathetic attempt to keep your students longer. This will backfire and cause you to lose most of your students when the summer arrives (and in general), because it lowers the value of your lessons in their eyes - they will simply choose to spend their time on other things.]
Now that you know what you must do to keep your students during the summer, learn how to attract guitar students during any time of the year.
Tom Hess is a professional touring guitarist and recording artist. He teaches, trains and mentors musicians from around the world.
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