If you want to become a go-to dance studio in your local area, the best way to grow your business may still be via good old-fashioned word of mouth—and these days, that happens not only through direct person-to-person interaction, but also over social media. To raise your profile, focus your energy toward what you, specifically, have to offer your clients.
Outreach activities will teach young dancers the importance of doing good for others—while also introducing your studio to prospective customers. Students could visit nursing homes to perform for residents. You could create a lecture-demonstration program that tours elementary schools. Every year, Artistic Fusion Dance Academy in Thornton, Colorado, performs at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation's Walk for a Cure. "We have a company member with juvenile diabetes, and we do that to support him," says Jennifer Jarnot, the school's owner.
If you've been around long enough to have alumni who perform professionally, highlight them. Artistic Fusion Dance Academy has an alumni page on its site, with photos and bios of former students. Seeing that you've helped other dancers make it in the biz can entice up-and-comers who hope to achieve those same dreams.
A Strong Vision
Having a distinct viewpoint can help you stand out in a crowded dance-training market. Know what kind of business you want to run and what kind of student you're trying to reach. Is your goal to produce well-rounded performers, or to be the best in one genre? Do you cater to recreational dancers, serious competitors or both? "Figure out the culture of your studio, and stick to it," Jarnot says. If people know what you stand for, they can feel confident recommending your services.