10 Ways To Keep Your Martial Arts Students
So you’ve gained a new student who has come along to their first trial lesson, showed a keen interest and signed up for a weekly lesson. Now it’s time to put your focus on keeping them coming back… but how?
Keeping in contact with students is an essential part of your martial arts business, and not just about updates to lesson times or changes. Sending out emails or texts to your students wishing them a happy birthday or a congratulations for grading, can really help to show you care.
You may question if you have the spare time for this sort of thing, especially as you grow your business. Thanks to the new Automation Section of myMA, you can set certain sorts of communications up just the once, and let the system handle the rest! No excuse not to stay in touch with your students and keep them engaged and coming to class.
2) Special Offers
While we are all familiar with the ‘new customer’ offers, not too many businesses promote offers to existing customers. This is not only a great way to help keep your existing students, but can also get new ones as well, for an added bonus.
By utilising offers such as ‘refer a friend’ and ‘family training weekend’ you can not only encourage your students to keep training, but also attract new business. There are a lot of great ideas and templates for things like this in the Marketing Toolkit on myMA. Should you want something a little more specific, you can always give the Marketing Team at NEST a call or email and they will be more than happy to help.
A great way to show you are doing well at something is when someone gives you a trophy, award or certificate. You will probably have your own trophies that you proudly display for people to see, so why not let your students have the same experience?
You can give your students awards for lots of things, and these don’t even have to be directly related to their gradings or competitions. A certificate for extra effort made in class or helping out other students can not only help nurture better retention, but also encourage continued positive behaviour.
4) Star Student
This idea builds on the concept of giving your students awards by having a constant ‘goal’ that all students are aware of and can aspire toward. Just be sure to let all of your students, especially the younger ones, have a turn at being the ‘star student’ as it helps keep them motivated equally.
For an added bonus, you could look to add a fun element by having your ‘star pupil’ lead the warmups at the beginning of each lesson. For your younger students, you could even be their sparring opponent and let them win. This will do wonders for their confidence and give you a chance to have a little fun.
5) Party Time
A great way to end a lesson on a high is to have a party! This doesn’t have to be an all singing, all dancing party by any means, but singing and dancing certainly can be encouraged! The main idea for this approach is helping your students to bond, strengthen friendships and keep coming back to class.
For additional options, you could look to have activity days for your students, inviting their friends and family along. Going bowling for an hour or so is a great example of this and can be a great way to hang out after class for your students. By allowing their friends and family to come along as well, you could potentially find yourself with a few new students!
6) Don’t Run A Club, Run A Community
Although you run a martial arts business, at the end of the day it’s important to realise that people are there because of a shared passion for martial arts. Sharing something you are passionate about with other like minded people is in fact the essence of a community. A place where people can come together, feel like they belong and share their interest for martial art with one another.
7) Make Time For You
It’s important you relax and recharge your batteries on a regular basis, not only for your own benefit, but for your students benefit as well. No student wants a tired teacher stumbling through a lesson and forgetting what to do, so make sure you’re not one of them. By having an energetic and enthusiastic teacher, students can be more engaged and encouraged to do the same. Your retention should improve, as well as your own energy levels… win win!
In last week’s blog we discussed the importance of your time, which can help give you more insight into this.
8) Be The Best You Can Be
When it comes to your students, they want to know that their membership fee is getting them the best possible results. Although part of this is down to them, the rest falls onto you as their martial arts instructor. By ensuring you are being the best you can possibly be, your students will see this and should be reassured that their money is being well spent. As a result, you should hopefully find that your students are happy to stay and work towards their black belts and beyond!
9) Show Them You Care
This one might seem like a given, but by showing your students that you care about them it helps them to feel valued. It is this feeling of being valued by your students that can really help to encourage them to keep coming to class and attending lessons.
Showing you care can be as simple as asking how their day was or even using some of the tips mentioned above. It can be a small step towards a big and positive change… especially towards your retention.
So, if you’ve tried all of the tips above or the things you are trying don’t seem to be working as you would of hoped, then why not ask your students ‘why?’. By asking your students for feedback, it helps you to actually understand how your students see things and what (if any) improvements can be made.
You can ask students to fill in anonymous feedback forms, provide verbal feedback or leave a suggestions box for them to place ideas in. This approach not only helps you shape and improve your business, but also shows you value your students and their opinion. Both of which are great ways to help with improving retention.
For any additional help, you can give the team at NEST a call on 0115 945 5030 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org