How to scale your Martial Arts Business in the summer
After the year we’ve had, wouldn’t it be nice to have a break, relax with loved ones and enjoy some down time? Yes, but I’ve got a business to run I hear you say. Well let’s put together a plan to help you carry on throughout the summer when your students are also taking their break.
Now, during a normal summer period we usually see a big drop off in new joins and an increase in attrition (people that leave). But this is no usual year. We may not see this big drop off as many people are holding back going away on their usual 2 week get away. But if you teach children, they’ll still have their summer holidays and they’ll still need something to keep them entertained.
New business in the summer, that’s unheard of
It can be done. Now is great time to start planning for the summer months – all you need to do is to understand what lies ahead, set your goals and work out what you’re going to do to achieve them. I’ve set out a couple of examples to help you get started.
Using industry standard averages*, and adding in seasonal variation** if you had 100 students at the end of June, and you had a goal to reach 150 students at the end of the year, your summer goals would be:
However, if you expect a bigger attrition rate over summer your leads and sign ups could change dramatically – just to fill the gap your lost students have made but still only reach 150 at the end of the year.
*75% lead to intro rate, 80% intro to sign up, 4.7% attrition rate vs 8% inthe comparison. **seasonal variation is an adjustment given during ‘normal’ market behaviour.
These are just for illustration purposes, but you can see that planning ahead can make all the difference – you will have a clear vision of what’s ahead. Let’s look at your options
- Plan for a summer break and hope your students will still be there when you get back
- Plan for a summer break but put in place a plan to make sure your leads are still coming in and your students are engaged and coming back
Number 2 would be the choice, in my opinion! So what’s the plan?
Getting more leads (trial lessons booked)
I really believe that the demand for classes will continue into the summer this year, so keep on with your advertising, lead nurturing (using automation in myMA), referrals and social media content, school relationships. We also have a huge back catalogue of campaign material that you can use (remember, even if it’s familiar to you – it won’t be for new prospects)
Keeping students engaged
Communication is still key – mark when they go on holiday, so you can give them a welcome back message. But not only that, we have made big waves with our online resources – there’s no getting away now! Keep them focused by pre-recording a session or two for them to watch whilst they are away. Give them something to work on for their return in September – a grading or competition perhaps?
Giving parents more options
Holiday clubs, summer camps, fun days, extra lessons…. during the summer months, giving parents more options is a real benefit. These can be great for many things, extra revenue, lead generators for normal lessons (remember to put them into a new summer > normal lesson lead funnel) and
also be great retention tools too.
Delegate & schedule
If you are going to take some time off, don’t be afraid to delegate to a staff member to keep things ticking over. There’s no need to close the business – your business still exists if you’re not there and so does things like advertising and content. Use one of our monthly planners to schedule in posts (you can also schedule posts and adverts on social media), give one of the team responsibilities for ‘taking over your social media’ for the time you’re away. If say, you lead the trial lessons, you can close availability for the week you’re away, but still continue to take bookings for when you get back. It’s so important that your visibility and business doesn’t have a break whilst you’re on yours.
How we can help
We have a full package solution to help martial arts school owners run their business. Here are just some of the solutions we have that can help you with the things I have spoken about in this article:
- Planning forecast tool
- Automation (email communications based on triggers and tags)
- Campaign materials – print and online
- Prospect database
- Online booking forms
- Student management
- Communications – email and text messaging (including HTML texts)
- myMA Members – an online training portal for your school
- Holiday club materials
- Event management and bookings
- Monthly marketing plans and guides
- Lesson management