Create Your Marketing Strategy in Minutes
Having a marketing strategy provides you with an additional perspective, allowing you to take a step back and think strategically.
Marketing is more effective when approached strategically rather than solely relying on tactics. If you’re thinking purely in tactics, you’re quite often deploying one marketing tactic at a time. But when you think strategically, you can have multiple tactics moving at the same time.
1. Define Your Objective or Goal
The first thing you want to do when putting your marketing strategy together is to establish a specific objective or goal for yourself.
For example, you may aim to enroll 30 new students in your school by January 15th. Setting this goal serves as a motivating factor as the January 15th deadline approaches.
If you’re concerned that you’re not going to reach that goal, it might be important that you turn the heat up on some of your different tactics.
Identify Your Biggest Revenue Driver
Additionally, identifying the specific services you want to focus on can be beneficial in this process.
For example, you could assess all your music lesson offerings and identify the instrument that generates the most revenue—perhaps it’s the piano. In that case, consider investing additional effort into marketing piano lessons, such as running targeted ads.
Do you have marketing campaigns devoted to your school as a whole or just music lessons? Achieving greater traction and growth is possible by focusing on your lesson offering that consistently proves to be your biggest revenue driver.
2. Explore Potential Marketing Tactics
Next, you want to identify all the potential tactics that you could implement. You’ll likely have more options than you’ll actually use, but you want to kind of put all your cards on the table.
For instance, consider posters, Facebook ads, email marketing, organic social media, phone or text outreach, community events, and camp fairs. Create a comprehensive list of your marketing tactics. For each tactic, outline two to three or more bullet points detailing the necessary steps you would need to take.
Research Best Practices for Each Tactic
Quite often, the first step involves researching on YouTube or Google. Many music schools overlook the crucial step of acquiring knowledge about best practices before diving into marketing efforts.
For instance, suppose you decide to create a poster to market your music school. In this case, you should create a bullet-point list outlining all the necessary tasks, along with estimated timeframes for completing each step.
For example, I suggest spending 15 to 30 minutes researching how to design a promotional poster—utilize Google and YouTube for this. Next, determine the text you want on the poster. Connect with a graphic designer, and identify suitable locations in the community where you can hang these posters.
I was really into posters, by the way. Consider coffee shops and locally owned mom-and-pop stores for placement. You can even explore cross-promotions, saying, “We’ll mention you in our email marketing efforts” or offering our current students a discount if they visit and your store displays our poster. Then, proceed to hang the posters with this coordinated effort.
But, you know, it might take two to three hours, so you might opt for Facebook ads instead. Maybe you’ve tried them before, and they didn’t work out well, but you realize it’s something you need to improve.
Consider dedicating an hour or 45 minutes to watching YouTube and Google videos and researching best practices for Facebook ads. Outline the steps: write the ad, gather media (whether it’s an image or video), and create your ad on Ads Manager. Simply jot down bullet points for each step.
3. Set Achievable Timeframes
Now, you’ve got these five or six different tactics defined and mapped out. The next step is you need to piece together the puzzle by determining how much time you have daily to work on this.
Which of these different tactics can I realistically implement in this limited time frame? Perhaps only three are feasible, considering you have realistically an hour a day for this marketing strategy. Go ahead and map it out.
Map Out a Plan to Overcome Overwhelm
Say you’re going to focus on posters, Facebook ads, and an email marketing campaign with a promotion. Suppose the email marketing campaign takes three hours to design and implement. Since you can’t do it all in one day, stretch it out over time. Create a calendar and a plan to determine which tactics you’ll implement and when.
By simply doing this, the once overwhelming thought of having to market and implement some sort of marketing tactic becomes significantly less daunting.
Outsource Additional Tasks to Devote Sole Attention to Your Marketing
I believe one of the most important questions to ask yourself is how you can delegate most of these tasks to your office staff, assuming you have one. If you don’t have an office staff, consider hiring a virtual assistant. Anything beyond the scope of vision and creativity can and should be delegated. It’s going to be a huge time-saver for you.
Not every music school owner is in a situation where they have a staff they can delegate to. Perhaps you have a teacher or staff member who could assist you. When selecting the three tactics to implement, carefully consider which of these tactics is most likely to get the results you’re looking for.
Consider Running a Cold Call Sales Campaign
Thirty students by January 15th. You know what? Maybe posters aren’t the way to go. Consider opting for a cold call phone campaign, where you get on the phone daily to call inactive students or leads that have gone cold.
Ensure you have a reason for calling, such as running a promotion. Take some time to research how to effectively cold call prospects. One common mistake music school owners make is neglecting their research. If you skip this step, you may have to learn the hard way.
For instance, if you run a Facebook ad campaign without investing 30 minutes to watch some YouTube videos on best practices, you might experience a very different outcome.
4. Establish Metrics for Your Success
Key performance indicators, or KPIs, help you define success and understand the impact of each strategy. These are crucial for every marketing tactic you implement.
How do you define success with each tactic? Sales could be an important key performance indicator. However, with your Facebook ads, you may also want to track the number of clicks and the traffic to your landing page. The overarching idea is to develop a method for measuring success.
Measuring your marketing allows you to identify the effectiveness of each deployed tactic. By outlining bullet points for each tactic, you start forming a foundational game plan that will evolve over time. However, it’s essential to note that any marketing strategy is only as effective as its message.
Shape Your Message for Your Target Audience
Often, the biggest challenge or the most likely reason for ineffective marketing lies in the message itself, particularly if it fails to resonate with people.
The better you address the core desires of your targeted audience with a marketing message that speaks to their top-of-mind thoughts regarding music lessons—acknowledging their concerns, fears, and hopes—the better results you will achieve in your marketing efforts.
Craft Your Marketing Strategy Now
In summary, you’re much more likely to get better results with a marketing strategy that has a clear goal, a defined timeframe for implementation, a few specific tactics with detailed plans for each (represented as a bullet point list specifying the necessary steps), and a method for measuring the success of each implemented tactic.
Secure an Accountability Partner or Go Solo in Your Endeavor
This is great to do, especially if you have a business partner. However, since most music school owners don’t, consider scheduling a meeting with yourself. Go out for coffee, take out a notebook, and when you’re working alone, discipline becomes even more crucial in these efforts. If you have a business mentor, they would be an excellent person to share your marketing game plan with.
A music school entering the marketplace without a game plan is equivalent to a football team entering a big game without a strategy or an army going off to war without a battle plan.
Tactics without a marketing strategy are akin to a shot in the dark, but tactics within the framework of a strategy always lead to better outcomes.