We don’t have to tell you that attracting new students is more difficult during a pandemic. But does it have to be?
“We held an open house last year and we got 2 students from it,” says Mr. Anibal Cruz, of USTKDI in Florida. “This summer we held another open house. Only this time we used 2020 Armor to promote the event in special flyers and we let prospective students use the equipment at the event. During a pandemic we got 9 students to sign up from one event. It’s sort of incredible.”
The average student pays $140 a month for martial arts training. For each student that stays a year is $1680 in yearly income from just monthly fees. But that doesn’t include special events, gear, testing, lab fees, seminars, summer camps which can make the total around $2,800 per student per year. For nine sign up that adds up to $25,200.
That’s a pretty big win from one event. In this article you are going to learn how he did it and you can too.
Step#1: Attract More Students By Grabbing Attention With An Exciting Flyer
Mr. Cruz advertised to his community with this flyer. Not only was it visually exciting but it discussed what would make the experience special for potential students.
He highlighted the 2020 Armor so that kids knew that they would have a chance to use the equipment and be able to measure their own speed at the open house. This gets the kids excited to attend.
Mr. Cruz also offered a great special where if you signed up during the Open House you’d get 50% off your first three months. This creates urgency for the parents.
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Step#2: Attract More Students By Reaching Out To Your Community
Publicizing the event began with posting on his blog. Then the school’s Facebook group then Facebook groups he knew local parents frequented. Local parents shared it on their own pages. He reached out to a service that emailed four local schools in his areas. He created a landing page for the event to provide more details on his website.
Landing pages for your event are a great idea. Because you can tease people’s interest and get them excited about the event with your poster but then answer their more detailed questions on your landing page. You can also get them to book spots to go to your open house to make sure that you can properly physically distance during the event.
Mr. Cruz promoted the event without paying for digital advertisements relying on his strong ties to the community and knowledge of where local parents spent their time online. But you could also promote your event using Facebook advertisements as well as creating an event which you could target to your ideal customers.
3) Attract More Students by Making Your Open House Special
Getting people to the event is only half the battle. You have to get them excited about taking classes so that they convert and become your customers. For some of these kids it’s one of the most important moments of their life. When they discover what they love.
“Before they even entered the school they saw the 2020 Armor,” says Mr. Cruz. “They instantly understood how it worked because it was like the video games they played. We had two set up on B.O.B.S and two on Bully B.O.B.S for the small kids. We had it set up with the app so they could play Reflex and test their speed. They were so excited to play with the armor!”
After that they met the senior team members from the dojang and did a small class with half the students doing drills inside and the other half doing it outside. The kids got warmed up. Then they let them play Reflex. It served as both a reward for their attendance and a promise of what they’d one day be able to achieve.
“They went crazy for it,” says Mr. Cruz. “But the great thing is you can give them a little instruction and improve their scores. That way their confidence gets raised. They believe they can do it. You forget how intimidating martial arts can be when you’ve never done it before. This really gets them over that hurdle.”
How Real Metrics Dramatically Increase Retention
But that baseline score isn’t just important for students. It’s important for parents.
“Every school says they’ll help your kids get better,” says Mr. Cruz. “But at my school we prove we actually have. I can show how much faster your student got over a period of time with 2020 Armor’s technology. I can talk to parents about it. Give their kids advice for how they can reach their goals. We take it seriously. If you show up and you put in the work you deserve to know that your effort matters. Offering these metrics makes us accountable and able to hold our students accountable. The results have been pretty incredible. We were already known for being fast. But now people don’t want to fight our colour belts at tournaments. They are too fast!”