The secret to finding guitar students?

In a word. Marketing. Many if not most guitar teachers spend next to nothing on marketing and wonder why they only have a handful of students. There seems to be this fear that they will spend money on advertising, get no result and will have wasted their money. I can assure you that when it comes to paid advertising nothing is ever wasted. Every time you advertise you learn something. Each action brings you one step closer to your goal of being fully booked. Doing nothing is perhaps the worst thing you can do.
Marketing is about taking ‘small’ risks
You need to find what works on a small scale and then scale up. Begin by calculating how much a new student will be worth to you. Let us say there was a website that allowed you to advertise for one month for $300. Your initial thought might be that its expensive but what if the ad resulted in 3 new students who spent collectively $5000 in fees over the duration of their enrolment? Suddenly the $300 looks like a bargain.
People’s behaviour is largely predictable.
You can’t know ahead of time whether an ad will work but if you spent $3000 on 10 different ads in different places you would soon discover what worked and what did not. Testing allows you to see how people respond. We are all different of course but we are also predictable. If you run an ad in one place and pick up a new student keeping running the ad and see if it was just luck or predictable behaviour. I have found several sources of predictable behaviour which basically guarantees me a certain return on my investment.  Is the guarantee 100%? No but its right enough to be well worth the investment.
Can’t afford to advertise?
My answers is simple. If you can’t afford to advertise then you really need to advertise. Money spent on advertising should not be viewed as an expense but an investment. You are in business and to grow you need more students and that requires marketing. You might be concerned that you spend say $3000 (that you don’t have) and the result turns out to be zero students leaving you with a $3000 debt. Its a very real possibility especially if you have no experience. This is where it pays to do some research and if possible get some professional advice. Its always best to learn from those who have already achieved the results you seek. As they say you paid either way. That is you pay up front via a coach or you pay via your costly mistakes. The coach is almost always the cheaper option.
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