In Defense of Summer Lessons Part 2
So, you are convinced that you want to give summer lessons, aren't you? You need the consistent income. You want your students' skills to stay fresh. You want to keep the momentum going in your studio.
But, how do you get students to actually show up for their lessons?
Have student pay ahead of time.
You see, when you have a "bill at the end of the month" structure, it is too easy for students to miss lessons. And in the summer time, the distractions that keep students away from lessons multiply exponentially, am I right?!
The way to mitigate that is to have your clients pay at the beginning of the month for lessons coming up. So, when they are at the swimming pool and glance at the clock, they then do the choosing: keep swimming and lose the lesson they already paid for OR go to the lesson and get their money's worth.
(Please tell me you did NOT read that sentence and think to yourself: "Aw, I don't want them to have to interrupt their swimming . . ." Remember, you're running a business here, piano teacher!)
So, you have students pay ahead of time. Then, they are more likely to come to their lesson.
But what about those students that are genuinely very busy during the summer and here only half of the time?
The secret there is to offer them additional options. Be more flexible with your make up lesson policy. Offer a Saturday group lesson they can attend in lieu of a couple of missed lessons. Provide a Music Camp that they can attend in lieu of a bunch of missed lessons.
You will have to be more flexible in the summer, no doubt about it. BUT you can maintain consistency in your schedule AND your income by offering summer lessons when you do these two things:
1. Charge ahead of time for lessons.
2. Offer additional options.
Summer lessons can happen in your studio. Give it a try -- you'll be glad you did.
For a very clear and easy step by step guide to establishing policies that support paying ahead, charging a monthly tuition, setting up summer lessons, etc. check out the pianolessonmom.com resource: "Crafting Your Piano Lesson Policies: A Step by Step Guide."