by Adam Parman
It is said that to succeed at anything you must have a specific intent, clear vision, a plan of action and have the ability to maintain flawless execution. So, start now — don’t wait! — to prepare for summer success and take your martial arts business to a whole new level. Here are a few of the programs we implement to make our summer into some of the most profitable months of the year.
Getting students to attend classes consistently during the summer can be challenging for most school owners and staff. To encourage our students to attend regularly during the summer and boost retention, we’ve created an Attendance Challenge.
We issue points to each student when he or she participates in a special event, attends a class, notifies us of their vacation schedule, sends us a postcard from their vacation destination, and returns to class from vacation. The points are given throughout the summer. Students achieving a certain point value or higher are rewarded a free pizza party at the end of the summer for outstanding attendance.
The points are tracked on several large poster-boards on display in the school. They bear the names of each student and the points they’ve earned. Each week, we update the boards and encourage the students to participate by giving them extra ways to earn additional points.
Summertime creates some unique opportunities to market your school, if you know how to take advantage of them. Start by targeting local summer camps and daycare facilities. Offer your martial arts school as the perfect field-trip destination.
Schedule visits at your school for an hour per group and conduct them as you would a School Talk. Teach each group a basic martial arts class. Then, invite all the children to return with their parents to break a board and earn a white belt.
While the preparation and hours can be intense, the potential revenue and new-member opportunities that result from a summer camp make it all worthwhile.
Having a strong summer camp begins with planning and marketing. The first key to success lies in the Camp themes you choose. We use popular movies, television shows, video games and apps for inspiration to create new themes each year. From our experience, we can make any theme martial arts-related with some creativity and imagination.
Decide if you run half-day camps with martial arts training exclusively or full-day camps. Then, plan your marketing strategy to include spring break preview camps, banners, yard signs, flyers and brochure mailings, to name just a few.
Cool Treats and Specialized Training
Classes decrease in size due to summer distractions. Consequently, during the summer, it’s easy to ignore our responsibility to our students to teach great classes and provide superior customer service. Make a commitment now to ensure this doesn’t happen to your school.
To help, we’ve created a special day each week to encourage class attendance. We offer a special summer treat at the end of class to students doing their best. Treats include ice pops, cotton candy, fruit snacks, watermelon, candy and much more.
In addition, we also focus on teaching a different foam weapon each week in class for the last 15 minutes of each class. We do this regardless of the program or belt level.
At our school, this is very special since the students must otherwise usually be in an advanced-training program to have this opportunity. We do this to give the students an additional reason to attend class during the summer.
This specialized training generates interest in the weapons while also creating upgrade possibilities for lower-level students. In past years, we’ve seen a 5 to 10% increase in upgrades during the summer due to this practice.
While, for many families, the summer brings vacations and distractions, there are other families looking for activities to fill their time during the summer. As a result, consider offering a summer martial arts special that allows students to participate in a one-month trial. We usually charge $99 for any month during the summer, with no contract obligation.
We offer this special only after a regular program has been offered. Anyone in this trial is offered a registration deduction, if they enroll into our regular program by the second week of the summer promotion.
Keep in mind, summer is quickly approaching and now is the time to begin preparing. Turn up the heat and make this an unbelievable summer by planning for success!
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