Starting a guitar school? What questions should you ask?

Here are some questions I received from a teacher inquiring about setting up his own guitar school as a G4 Guitar Franchisee. Great questions and I have included my answers.

  1. Setup and running expenses (average)
·         What marketing expenses should I expect (advertising in local media, website, posters, flyers etc)? The main marketing will be done via flyers and the costs is very low. You can generally print off 10,000 flyers for $200 and this will result in 10 new student.
·         Should I consider renting premises (for group teaching)?Renting a premise like a low cost office is definitely a good option if you can budget for it. I would pay no more than $300 per week. I would only consider this option if you are able to devote 20 hours or more per week to marketing flyers.
·         Do I have to buy/rent any equipment (chairs, foot chairs, visual aids etc)? You just need the basics. Folding chairs, foot stools and music stands. All up will be $200 to $300.
·         Anything else? You should have a spare guitar or two on hand for students. If you rent a premise you will want some basic signage and a brochure holder. Again it won’t cost much.
 
What weekly income should I expect within 3, 6, 12 months? Income is largely determined by the amount of time you invest into marketing in your local area. We will be doing some online marketing but its effect depends on a combination of online and offline. In short, every 20 hours you spend marketing will bring you 5 new students. 
 
Do you offer any kind of guarantee?
We now offer a 30 day money back guarantee rather than the offer you mentioned above. It works better because you can join and within 30 days if you follow the plan you will see results. In 30 days you could deliver 10,000 flyers which will result in 10 students. 
 
  1. Lessons
·         What is the length of a lesson (group and single)?In both cases I recommend 30 minutes.
·         What is the frequency of lessons per week/month (group and single)? One lesson a week.
·         What are charges per lesson (group and single)?  I recommend you charge $25 for group and $35 for private (but I don’t recommend teaching privately).
·         Does it (length/freq/price) depend on student’s age or level? No. Every age group does 30 mins.
·         What is min/max number of students in a group? Groups should ideally be 5 but you can go to 7 if you are comfortable but I only recommend after a few years of experience.
·         Does this number depend on age or level? Age doesn’t matter. With level your more advanced students will usually be smaller groups.
·         Should group lessons be paid in advance? I strongly recommend only teaching groups and put them on monthly subscriptions at $99 per month. This is important because it automates the process so you are not chasing students for money.
 
  1. Students
·         Can I teach/enroll students living in other areas as G4GM instructor? Your students can come from anywhere if they so choose but you cannot promote yourself in another area as a G4 Guitar Teacher. Very few people will want to travel anyway unless you are offering some specific style. Your area should provide you with plenty of students.
·         Can I promote myself in those areas? No not as a G4 teacher.
 
Please note that if you do teach a particular style just let me know because other G4 teachers sometimes get students who inquire about a style they are not confident with so can refer on to you.
 
  1. Subscription

·         Can I switch between MENTOR/FRANCHISE options at any time? Yes you are free to cancel or change at anytime. My aim with all members is to ensure your success so I have made our memberships flexible.

Have I missed anything else I should consider?

You have covered the important points. Building a successful G4 Guitar Franchise is really about following the business and marketing plan that has been laid out. Our best teachers are the ones who follow the plan, communicate regularly and ask lots of questions. The formula is the result of 30 years of experience and works every time when applied but there will be an initial learning curve so I have simplified everything down as much as possible.

Thank you and please let me know if you have anymore questions.

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

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