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Don’t Know Your Per-Student Value? Learn How to Calculate It!

Seems like there are numbers that you need to know for everything that involves making your gym better – and they are all important. But one number that you may have never figured out could really help you in making business decisions – especially when you’re trying to figure out if you’re investing the right amounts in the right things to get the returns that you want.

In marketing, it is critical to know how your per-student value! How much is each new student worth once they sign up to take class? How much do they pay you over the entire course of their time with you?

Once you have this information, you can figure out how much you should reasonably invest (in marketing and advertising) to acquire this new student.

Before you start to calculate, you need to know how much it costs you to acquire a new lead that comes in to take a class or inquire about your gym.

This info will allow you to calculate your lead costs:
“X dollars in advertising can generate X number of leads”

And new student registration conversion:
“X% of the leads that call or walk in become new students”

And the new student average lifetime value:
“For every new student I sign up I can expect to make X dollars of revenue over their life as a client”

The scenario you want to make sure never exists is the one where you’re paying more in advertising than you’re capturing in revenue over time. If your calculations reveal this scenario, change they methods you’re using to market and advertise.

Your goal should be to pay for the cost of your leads as quickly as possible. In fact, the best possible scenario is that you have your cost per lead and cost per acquisition low enough that it is paid off with the new student’s first payment to you.

And then – of course – the rest (minus any other costs) is profit!

Jackrabbit’s Flexible Features Help Music School Owner Get Unique Tasks Done

There are many software systems that music schools could use to manage their businesses, but Melissa Loggins, owner of The Music Authority, believes that Jackrabbit gives her the feature flexibility she needs to operate her school in the ways that set it apart from others in the Atlanta area.

TRACKING IS A CRITICAL TO SCHOOL’S SUCCESS | Tracking skills, as well as several other student details, is very important in Melissa’s world. Tracking of skills provides an understanding of student progress to instructors, to administrators and to parents and through their own individual access points to Jackrabbit, each of these groups can follow what students are doing and how they are progressing. The tracked information helps the school to accurately choose substitute teachers and gives Melissa demographic details that guide her in her marketing investments.

“The data we track has given us great insight and a great foundation for making better decisions. We have more confidence in the marketing decisions we make because we understand more about our existing students and their families. We also can do some powerful geo-targeting. We’ve looked at common schools among students in selecting the schools we’d like to establish relationships with. Without the flexibility of Jackrabbit’s system, we wouldn’t be able to do this in a way that makes sense for actually using the data.” Melissa Loggins, The Music Authority

Loggins_Music Authority_12182014Because skills tracking can also be shared in their portal, parents have a vehicle for watching the learning experience unfold. And it’s obvious from the resulting enthusiasm that parents who have knowledge are more engaged in what their children are doing.

“I can insert any type if student information that I find valuable. I can post tremendous detail in role notes and – again because of Jackrabbit’s flexibility – trim that info back to give parents only what is critical to them so that they are informed.” Melissa Loggins, The Music Authority

EMAIL HELPS SCHOOL STAY CONNECTED | Communication is another critical component in music school success. Jackrabbit’s email capabilities help owners nurture their personal connections with consistently delivered, professional looking emails. Whether the basis of the communications are announcements and notices or content intense newsletters, reaching out keeps parents informed and gets them engaged.

“Doing emails through Jackrabbit helps me to be an engaged owner without sacrificing entire days to the process of creating email after email and distribution lists. In Jackrabbit, I can choose to send to everyone or select groups within my database. It’s a powerful, time-saving feature.” Melissa Loggins, The Music Authority

ORGANIZATION DETAILS | 1 location, 322 students, 44 instructors, Melissa Loggins, Owner

 

Marketing Email Templates Are LIVE!

 

Email marketing is the glue that holds marketing together. Once you have email addresses, you can focus on customer retention, delivering timely, relevant messages to existing customers, increased involvement, recommendations, etc. By communicating with them appropriately, you can lead them through a cycle or build them into loyal advocates of your brand.email-templates-2-300x240.png

Jackrabbit’s email templates are a great way to get started with your email marketing. Save templates to easily communicate with groups of customers at a time. Or, email the whole customer base with an announcement or closing. To make this easier for you, we have designed templates for you. There are several different options with slick graphics and verbiage ready for you to use. With a little customization to the wording and adding your logo, they’ll be ready to go in a flash.

There are a lot of ways you can use the email templates in Jackrabbit for your marketing. In fact, we believe in our email templates so much that our employees use them to contact you! The sales and billing department have several templates ready to send at the click of a button.

These templates are in your databases! You’ll go to Tools > Email Templates to see them. For more help and information, check out our help guides or training videos. As always, don’t hesitate to ask questions!

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Are You Ready For Fall?

Get ready for the fall by checking off these ways to share your class schedule and registration links to customers. Our customers tell us they love this feature the most because it allows their customers to register and get information online anytime. With technology becoming such a big part of our daily lives, offering online registration is becoming expected from your customers. Offering 24/7 access to sign up, pay bills, and edit their account information is what parents love. Here are three different ways you can get ready for the fall and maximize Jackrabbit to increase registrations.

 

1. Online registration on your website

The online bundle included in your monthly subscription consists of 4 modules as listed below. In order to integrate (display and use) these on your website, Jackrabbit provides links or HTML codes that you (or your webmaster) place into your web editor. The online bundle is designed in such a way that you can choose to use any combination, or all four, of the modules. Remember, each website is unique and it is your webmaster who can add “flair” to your integrations. Also, Jackrabbit has an integration specialist that can assist you or your webmaster with set up on any of these modules – for free! Read more here.

If you don’t have a website, here are some ways to use Jackrabbit’s online modules.

2. Online registration on your Facebook tabs

Delivering your message to your readers efficiently and getting them to your registration page quickly is an important aspect of your overall marketing and Facebook is one of the most powerful tools in your marketing arsenal to help you convert your readers into registered students.

In addition to your newsfeed, Facebook application pages provide you with an opportunity to share important information about your studio — much like pages on your website.

Application tabs are located directly below your cover image. You can display three (in addition to the stationary Photos tab) above the fold and more tabs are available by clicking the blue down arrow. You can add an email newsletter opt-in box, YouTube videos, Pinterest boards, and custom html for your class schedule!

Read more here.

3. Online registration through email templates

Jackrabbit’s email templates are a great way to let your customers know registration is open. Before the chaos, create templates to easily communicate with groups of customers at a time. Or, email the whole customer base with the announcement. To make this easier for you, we have designed templates for you. There are several different options with slick graphics and verbiage ready for you to use. With a little customization to the wording and adding your logo, they’ll be ready to go in a flash. These templates will be in your database soon – read here for more information.

Studio Preparedness for Less Stress and More Success

Recital is over and you feel like you should be able to just kick back and put your feet up. Book a cruise or at least a day at the spa.

Well, that’s not really the best thing to do.

While relaxation is more what you’d like, you should keep your nose to the grindstone and do some preparation for the coming year or you may have less to celebrate after your next recital.

Confucius said, “Success depends upon previous preparation, and without such preparation there is sure to be failure.”
And from Alexander Graham Bell, “Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.”

Prep work now will make a future celebration even sweeter!

Don’t fall into the trap that fewer deadlines and less stress may set for you. This is a very important time for you to set the stage for your coming year. To accomplish these preparedness items, you must organize yourself! Get rid of the clutter in the studio, on your desk and in your mind. Focus is critical! Create policies, plot out a plan and attached a timeline to it. Calendar the timeline and keep it visible so you stay on track. You will have less stress and more success!

Our Key Preparedness Items

Promotions & Marketing – Continue to be create about how you promote classes. Use theme that are popular with kids so you can leverage the marketing that those folks are doing. You can use email, social media, website updates and newsletters to keep your themes in front of parents. Give parents enough information in promotions to make an immediate purchase decision. You should have a graphic designer working on ads so that your studio has a professional, branded appeal. Your insertion orders should be submitted and your artwork ready and created to specs – note ALL deadlines for submission on your calendar so you don’t miss them!  To do all of these things, you will have to KNOW what you’re going to teach, when and for how much. (See Curriculum & Choreography and Pricing & Special Offers)

Curriculum & Choreography – Do you create new curriculum every year? There are proven curriculum programs out there that are very successful for your students and for your bottom line. Similarly, there are options for choreography that help organize and inspire you and share with you some proven successful ideas. Take advantage of this information and build off of what others have tested.

Pricing & Special Offers – Curriculum feeds directly into your Pricing & Special Offers because what you’re teaching and how you’re teaching it may impact your pricing and inspire interesting special offers. If you’ve not examined your pricing structure and levels and planned your special discounts and offers, you’re surely not going to be able to include them in the Promotions and Marketing you should be using to fill your classes.

Next Year’s Logistics – Whatever you do, don’t wait until you’ve run out of time and options to book your venue. Do it early. Everyone wants to book on the same prime nights in recital season. Your area probably has far more studios that want bookings than they have prime days to offer so don’t end up with the only option left. Any details that you must confirm with outside services, you must do as early as possible. Even if you want to book a clubhouse or restaurant for an after recital party or dinner. Do it as soon as you nail down your dates. And speaking of dates. You will need to target these first and then book your venues around your target dates. But if you don’t do this early, it will be a struggle to make it all work.

Additional Revenue Streams – Needless to say, you have to stay on your toes to be competitive so every cent of profit is critical. Look at your business (and the business models of others) to see where else you could be making money. Can you offer additional classes with the same curriculum and teachers or use your facility for “extra-curricular activities” like Mothers’ Night Out or Birthday Parties? Can you add a Winter show with a popular seasonal theme that would increase your revenues, generate excitement with your students and perhaps even give your studio a competitive edge? Can you use technology you already have to organize and inventory a store to sell branded merchandise? Can you put policies in place (like dress codes) that drive sales of your store merchandise and brand your studio? Now is the time to plan this – not when you’re in the midst of costume deadlines and extra rehearsals.

Keep Improving Your “Product” – Always be on the lookout for quality, cost-effective learning experiences. You will not be innovative and exciting if you are continuously learning. And you must be innovative and exciting to remain competitive. There are exciting events for dance teachers and owners and the best ones are not cheap! It is worthwhile to invest in those that keep you improving your “product”, engaged in your industry and connected to your peers.

Image Credit: Enterprise NCC-1701-E

8 Reasons Email Marketing Is Important

 

Hundreds of billions of emails are sent out every single day. Using this form of communication in the technology driven world we live in is vital. Here are 8 reasons you should be using email marketing for your business.

1. Affordable

Dare I say cheap? Well, maybe it isn’t “cheap” but is sure is a very low cost internet marketing channel to implement and it has a great return for your business. It remains the leader in return on investment. One comparison shows direct mail with a 7% ROI versus email marketing at 28.5%. That’s a huge difference whether you are a small business with a limited amount of resources or a large corporation with many internet marketing options to choose from. No wonder businesses should be using email strategically!

2. Simple and Quick

Think about how many emails you write in a day. How easy is it to do?!  Most everyone can quickly write an email and hit ‘send.’  It doesn’t take a lot of your business’ resources or time to put together an email and send it off. You may already be doing more email marketing than you think.

3. Personal and Customizable

With email marketing, you can easily choose who receives it and who doesn’t – allowing you to target the population you want to be in front of – you know, the people who want to hear from you and want what you have to offer. You can also easily customize your emails to a segment of the population, to a buyer persona, or even for the current season of the year. You are not locked into one thing!

4. Relationship Focused

Email does not have to be SPAM – and it should never be! It can be used thoughtfully to build loyalty and trust in your brand. Email marketing is important for building relationships with prospects, leads, current customers, and even past customers because it gives you a chance to speak directly to them, in their inbox, at a time that is convenient for them. Be friendly and personable. You are not invading their space if you have chosen your message and your recipient wisely.

5. Action Oriented

Whether they realize it or not, email recipients have been trained well to do something with an email – reply, forward, click-through, sign-up, or buy. Think about it! Email has become transactional in nature and you can use it to direct traffic to your website and ultimately drives sales. As you develop your small business internet marketing strategy as a whole, using email will allow you to see results and that is a great reason why email marketing is important.

6. Measureable

When you choose to use an email service, one of the benefits is the tracking ability you gain. There are many measurable actions you can track such as bounce rates, delivery rates, open rates, click through rates, and unsubscribe rates. You can easily get a picture of how your email campaigns are performing, make adjustments and improve your effectiveness. Email marketing metrics are important to remember as you monitor and measure your internet marketing strategy as a whole.

7. More popular than Social Media

Some people think that with the growing popularity of social media platforms, email may be pushed to the side, but if you think about it almost every social media account requires an email to be set-up. Hmmm…that’s a lot of emails! The Huffington Post reported that worldwide 85% of people online send and receive emails and 62% communicate through social media. So if you are not using email as part of your internet marketing strategy, you are missing out on a channel that a majority of the world uses!

 8. Mobile and Global

Just as email is at the core of social media, email has also gone mobile. Email is the most popular activity on smart phones and mobile devices with 78% of 18-44 year olds using their devices for email, 73% for web browsing and 70% for Facebook.  We are taking our email with us everywhere we go! And with the internet accessible all over the world, email marketing can have a global reach.

So, what are you waiting for? Get started with email marketing today!

Add the Power of Social Media to your Studio Website by Displaying Your Facebook Fanpage Posts

Integrating your Facebook Fanpage to your studio website is a great way to keep your website content fresh and promote likes and interactivity between you and your students.

And in this post I’m going to show you how to add the Facebook “Like” Box to your website and customize it to show your Facebook posts.

Check out how The Dance Warehouse has setup their Facebook Like Box setup on their studio website:
You’ll notice that not only does this box show the people who have liked their facebook fanpage, but it also shows their most recent fanpage posts. This is a great way to add the power of social media to your studio website by displaying your ongoing posts interactively on your site.

The like box serves as a valuable addition to your website because it lets you conveniently retain activity and an ongoing connection with your visitors through your Facebook page.

Basic Like Box Setup

You can easily add this to your website by going to this link for Facebook’s Like Box Plugin:

https://developers.facebook.com/docs/reference/plugins/like-box/

 

Facebook Page URL – Enter your facebook fanpage web address

Width and Height – Enter the width that fits your like box on your website

Checkboxes – Be sure to check all 4 checkboxes, including “Show Posts”.

You will see a preview of your like box display as you adjust your settings. When you have it looking the way you want, click on the “Get Code” button and follow the instructions on how to add the code to your website.  If  you are familiar with HTML, you can add this to your website yourself. Or you can contact your website developer to get professional level assistance.

Customizing Your Like Box Posts

By default, you may notice that your facebook posts only show recent activity by your facebook friends.  This is a problem because you want to be able to show all your fanpage posts regardless of who posted them or without having to be logged into a facebook account at all.

So, here is my special tip on how to display all of your posts in your like box.

At the bottom of the like box plugin page you will see a list of parameters that can be customized within your like box code.  In that list you will see “FORCE_WALL”. By default, this setting is set to FALSE, but if you modify your like box code to include “FORCE_WALL=TRUE” this will fix your problem so all of your fanpage posts will display regardless of who posted them.

 


Betty Walker is a technology consultant that specializes in helping studio owners and small businesses “take it to the web” through custom website development, social media marketing, and innovative online solutions. You can contact Betty at http://www.wiseweblady.com

Facebook’s New Contest Rules

Last week, Facebook released a new version of the page terms. The biggest change they have announced is no longer requiring you to use a third party app to run a contest on a Facebook fan page.This means that you can run a promotion right on your fan page instead of having to use a third party app [like ShortStack.com].

Now, promotions may be administered on page timelines and in apps on Facebook.” Be sure to check out the new Promotion Guidelines.

Here are the new terms:

Promotions

If you use Facebook to communicate or administer a promotion (ex: a contest or sweepstakes), you are responsible for the lawful operation of that promotion, including:a. The official rules;
b. Offer terms and eligibility requirements (ex: age and residency restrictions); and

c. Compliance with applicable rules and regulations governing the promotion and all prizes offered (ex: registration and obtaining necessary regulatory approvals)

Promotions on Facebook must include the following:a. A complete release of Facebook by each entrant or participant.
b. Acknowledgement that the promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.

Promotions may be administered on Pages or within apps on Facebook. Personal Timelines must not be used to administer promotions (ex: “share on your Timeline to enter” or “share on your friend’s Timeline to get additional entries” is not permitted).
We will not assist you in the administration of your promotion, and you agree that if you use our service to administer your promotion, you do so at your own risk.
Read the full list of Facebook Page Terms here.

How do you think this will change the Facebook fan pages? What contests are you thinking about running? Maybe something for a tuition exchange?

Jackrabbit Keeps Registration Process from Disrupting Daily Operations

SwimKids

www.swimkids.us

8 locations, 4000 swimmers, 100 instructors

CEO, Cindy Tonnesen

THE CHALLENGE

SwimKids needed to promote a new location and the availability of classes there. Using Groupon as a promotional tool could drive many potential customers to the new location. However, her staff would not be able to handle the number of phone calls that would pour in if Groupon worked as proposed.

THE SOLUTION

Cindy decided to use Jackrabbit’s online registration to handle the processing for the new location classes. This would circumvent phone calls into the office and help them track the Groupon offers and register the students. SwimKids’ staff could continue with their daily tasks and watch as registrations came in. The entire promotion went off without a hitch. SwimKids sold more than 200 Groupons in one day and more than half were redeemed online by new Groupon customers who clicked the link on their Groupon where they registered and redeemed the Groupon in one easy step.

The online registration processes that SwimKids was already using for existing locations makes parents ecstatic. Class registration is simple to complete and available day or night. Staff members can pull up Jackrabbit’s dashboard each morning and check the new registrations that took place through the automated process.

JACKRABBIT ADDED VALUE

The Jackrabbit provides flexibility that makes running special promotions possible with little impact to day-to-day operations and automation that frees staff from mundane redundant tasks to do amazing things for students.

“Jackrabbit worked perfectly as the engine behind our Groupon promotion, completely quelling our fears of being overwhelmed. It was incredibly simple to offer our classes at a new location without consuming the energy of our staff.”  — Cindy Tonnesen, SwimKids

See what Cindy has to say about Jackrabbit on YouTube.

 

The New Facebook Rules

Have you heard about the new Facebook cover photo rules? The team released a few weeks ago that you can put calls to action or your website on your business’ page. There are still text restrictions – the biggest being that cover photos may not contain more than 20% text. 

Clipped straight from Facebook’s Page Guidelines:

“All covers are public. This means that anyone who visits your Page will be able to see your cover. Covers can’t be deceptive, misleading, or infringe on anyone else’s copyright. You may not encourage people to upload your cover to their personal timelines. Covers may not include images with more than 20% text.”

Since this rule is relatively new, most people have not changed their cover photos. Jump ahead of the competition now and start thinking of ways that you can change up your photo to boost your business.

Keep in mind that this 20% rule applies to advertisements, promoted posts, and sponsored stories.

Facebook provided an in depth explanation of this rule and included photos. Here is an example of a photo that is acceptable and one that is unacceptable:

So, how can you tell how much of your photo is text? This free tool – paavo!

How are you going to use this new rule to your advantage? Share here!