How do you compete with other guitar teachers on price?

GuitarTeacher question: What do you do? Contacted a potential student who is very interested and motivated to take lessons. The 5 weeks for $99 was offered. He is young early 20s and not making much money. He is looking for lessons at $15. I told him I can’t do that. I don’t think it’s worth it as I can get students to pay the rate I want. I don’t have a group yet to offer. And we had a long discussion on the phone about music and learning classical guitar and he seemed genuinely interested. But the money is an issue. Is it worth the effort to do a follow up call to sell him lessons? What do you do when someone really wants to learn and is dedicated but can’t afford lessons?

My answer: Great question and one that every teacher comes across and your response is really a test for you. The fact is if this guy is so cash poor that $5 a week makes such a difference he shouldn’t be doing guitar lessons at all but my guess is this is not the real reason. He is probably sitting at Starbucks right now drinking his $5 coffee when he could have bought 2 doors down for $2. What makes the difference is perception. Starbucks just feels better to him. To sell your lessons over and above the $15 teacher down the road he needs to justify it to himself. He needs to feel that learning with you is truly a better experience. He needs to get to know you better. To do this find out what is motivating him to learn guitar. What is the emotional driver. Asking these questions shows the student you care about him. People choose Starbucks over the $2 coffee shop because they trust Starbucks. This trust has been built through years of marketing but its still trust. So find out why (emotionally) he wants to learn guitar.

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