Done properly, your newsletter has the potential to be one of your most effective communication tools to speak with your current dance families – but have you thought about using them as a way to maintain contact with potential new families, followers of your studio and families who may have left?
Yes. . . Two newsletters for two groups, and here’s how you are going to do it.
The first is the newsletter that you probably already have in place, whether it’s once a term, once a month, once a week or whenever you have the energy. This one should be a great mix of sharing big news (student achievements, competition results etc), upcoming events at the studio, some lighthearted news or acknowledgements and is basically just a way of keeping your dance family in the loop.
Keep in mind that with your newsletter you’ll never get a 100% read-rate, so can’t-be-missed information is better sent as its own email or notification.
Your main newsletter is upbeat and light so give it a unique name or tagline (you could even run a competition at your studio for your students to name your newsletter!)
It has two objectives: to inform and to retain.
Give information and reminders that your families need while at the same time informing them about all the great things that are happening at your studio like community events, partner offers from local businesses, student success stories or your referral program that they can benefit from if they introduce a friend or family member to the studio.
The second newsletter (the one most studios don’t have in place) is one that goes to potential customers whose contact details you have on file from a previous enquiry, and customers who have left for one reason or another. This should be sent no more than once a month with the same upbeat and proud content that you have in your studio newsletter.
You’ll need to take out studio specific details like important dates or class changes, and the most important inclusion for this is a strong ‘call to action’ about starting class with you. You can lead them to a free or discounted class pass, or encourage them to call the studio directly.
People from this list will unsubscribe – don’t let it get to you.
The whole idea around sending this second newsletter is for you to keep your studio and your brand at the forefront of their minds so that whenever the words “local dance studio” come up it is YOUR ‘go-to’ studio that springs to mind.
Here are our top tips to writing perfect newsletters for your studio.
1/ Consistency is Key
Choose a frequency and commit to it. No matter how busy or uninspired you may feel and even if it seems like hardly anyone is reading your newsletter, stick to your guns. Your newsletter needs to go out at the exact same time and day every week/fortnight/month.
No ifs, no buts, no coconuts.
Use an automated system (we love Convertkit, but you can also use your studio software or a simple program like MailChimp to do the job) to create your contact lists and build an great looking template, as well as schedule your newsletters for the same time every week.
And don’t rush it – make sure your content is planned and ready at least 3 days prior so that you can set and forget without the worry.
2/ Easy on the Eye
Having an visually appealing newsletter is the first and most important step in getting people to actually read it. Some tips to remember in designing your gorgeous newsletter:
- Invest in a professionally designed header and footer for your template (remember, you’ll be using this all the time so contracting a professional to get it perfect is money well spent!)
- Vary the length of your sentences and paragraphs
- Use bullet points or numbered lists occasionally
- Bold, italics and underlines are a great way to highlight important bits of info when used sparingly
- Always include photos of smiling dancers, featuring different faces each week/month. It’s great to have a mix of candid and professional photos in your catalogue to choose from
- Vary your subject headlines for each edition to highlight the exciting content
3/ Don’t Be Tone Deaf
Newsletters need to be fun, engaging and easy to read so be conscious of the tone in your writing. It’s not the time or place to berate your late-paying clients or threaten that overdue fees are kicking in next week.
Not everyone needs to see that, so save it for a phone call or personal email.
Instead keep your tone light, casual and above all it needs to reflect the culture of your studio. Think about your studio’s values and how those are being conveyed in every piece you write.
4/ Get Yourself a ‘Wobble-Watcher’
Do you ever play musical statues in your classes and let the students pick out who wobbles first?
I can guarantee that no wobble (or blink for that matter) goes unnoticed.
This is the kind of diligence you need from another team member or family member who proofreads your written work. The last thing you want is to send your families (or potential families) is an email titled “All Of Your Rectal Information Is Inside” because of a dreaded ‘recital’ typo.
Always get your grammar, punctuation and spelling double-checked before hitting send.
5/ Plan Ahead
Of course there will be times that you are completely stuck for inspiration and have no idea what to include. This is where it’s a great idea to keep a list handy of all the possible things you could throw into your newsletter to make it pop.
Some ideas for your content may include
- Teacher feature
- Student spotlight
- Important dates
- Upcoming changes
- Blog article
- Partnership offers
- Highlights from the last week
- Sneak peek inside a class
- Birthday shout outs
- Motivational quotes
- Social Media links
- Reminders of important numbers and pages
- Flashback story And there you have it – a recipe for the perfect dance studio newsletter!
If you’d love more tips and templates for turning your studio into the business you’ve always dreamed of, join us in the Dance Studio Owners Association.