Why do 99.9% of guitar teachers fail to earn a decent income?
Most guitar teachers fall in to the hourly rate trap. This is a dead end and if in doubt look at just about any guitar teacher you can think of. Chances are they are not exactly living on easy street. To escape this hourly rate trap you need to be doing something different. If you teach privately and charge by the hour at best you will earn whatever the highest hourly rate most people are prepared to pay for guitar lessons which is usually not much. Guitar lessons are not highly valued because its viewed as a hobby by most students.
So what does work?
The only strategy that really works (and I have tested many) is to leverage your time through effective group teaching. (Note that I say ‘effective’ group teaching. Most guitar teachers who try teaching in groups are ineffective so they give up and go back to private teaching.) In Australia most guitar teachers charge between $50 to $80 per hour teaching privately. When I started the first G4 Guitar School I knew by charging $20 per 30 minutes I would attract a lot more students because my price was lower than most teachers. I started by giving students a 5 week private intro at a group price which of course was a bargain. Next I put them into 30 min groups of 5 per group allowing me to teach 10 students per hour. I was able to earn $200 per hour opposed to most teachers who were earning 1/3 or less plus I was charging less.
Don’t most students want private lessons?
There is this common belief among guitar teachers that most students want private guitar lessons. When I put this theory to the test I found in rough percentages about 20% wanted only private, about 10% wanted only group but the great majority (70%) had no strong preference either way. I was able to enroll almost everyone I spoke to because even those in the 20% know that $20 per lesson was cheaper than my competition so they may as well take up my offer of 5 private lessons at a low rate. I was in most cases able to convince them of the advantages of group learning and also instill them with confidence that I had a plan that would work for them. After all their goal was to learn guitar and I had a solution that they now understood.
What was the result?
It was this strategy that allowed me to surpass any of my competition. To put this in perspective G4 Guitar went from an unknown new guitar studio to Sydney’s most successful chain of guitar schools in just 2 years. I am confident I could take this same strategy anywhere in the English speaking world and get a similar result. Most guitar teachers are not comfortable with group teaching and this is why 99.9% will never earn very much money and will struggle to find enough students. If you want to be different learn how to be an effective group teacher.
The business of teaching guitar
If you are interested in teaching guitar please visit our website and click on ‘Teach’ at the top. http://www.g4guitarmethod.com