An extremely important defense your martial arts business can have right now during the COVID-19 pandemic is a strong student retention rate. Right now, school owners are struggling to keep their doors open and classes going. One of the primary focuses right now is to give your students and families the best customer service experience possible and to give them something positive to do while stuck in isolation from others.
Here are four ways of keeping student retention strong and actions you can consider taking today.
- Handle Difficult Conversations. Your school has changed vastly in the past months. It’s important that you check-in on ALL of your families and let them know that you doing whatever it takes to provide the best value. Remind them that policies and rules might keep changing, but you want to keep teaching martial arts no matter what because you know how important it is to KEEP training.
Also remember, they don’t want to quit, so do not go into those conversations expecting a quit. Yes there will be some who have lost jobs or are unable to keep training, some more serious than most and should be respected, but make sure they understand the value of the training fully before making any move to cancel their memberships or put them on hold.
- Over-communicate. At the start of the pandemic you probably let them know everything, but don't stop communicating as you pivot! Email, phone, text, social media messenger, etc. Keep reaching out to your students. Not everyone will open their email, not everyone will answer a call. Keep reaching out, and of course, be sure to listen to their needs and concerns.
- Keep Connected. Classes alone are not enough right now. In some cases, you are replacing human interactions in a very limited world right now. Keep encouraging your team to reach out with private lessons, social media live events, Facebook group interactions. A community that is present will remain present.
- Hold on to the Value of Your Program. Remember the call where they try to quit? Here’s a reason why not to quit. You are a valuable program right now, you are offering a social distanced or virtual activity that will keep them and their children busy and fit. What are they going to do otherwise? Plus you are keeping a sense of normalcy for their child. Do not downplay the value you are bringing to them and keep adding more value to help them understand through communication, rapport, and good customer service.
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Our mission is to enable school operators to improve all aspects of school operation.
We provide integrity-based coaching and resources to busy school owners that save you time and grow your business, including COVID-19 specific resources. You can count on Kovar Systems to deliver effective and affordable solutions that will help you when you need them. We are here to guide you through these difficult times!