As a ProMAC coach, I am often asked about ways you can grow your school. There are dozens of proven strategies that may work to bring people in, but what school owners often overlook is their class schedule and the role it play in recruiting/retaining new students.
For example, our academy is located in a growing suburb with families that have younger kids. Most schools I know tend to have one class per day geared towards 4-7 year olds. We were the same way, but several years ago we had a problem: our classes for that group were bigger than we could support, often 30 or more at once! Classes were crazy, and were not making the desired impression for new prospects. Enrollments went down, way down. It was time to make a change.
One of the best strategies that we ever implemented for those young 4-7 year olds was the move from one 45 min class per day to two 30 minute classes. While it seems simple looking back, at the time having two 4-7 year classes in a day felt like madness. But something needed to change. Suddenly, instead of having one chaotic class with 30 young kids (and the worst retention rate out of all of our programs) we had two classes with about 15 each. These were more manageable, and allowed us to improve student service and grow our team to accommodate that age group. Enrollments went back up, retention improved dramatically.
Originally, we started with 8 classes a week (twice a day, Mon-Thurs). 15 kids per class went up to 20-25 per class. As the program continued to grow we then added two more classes on Friday, another two on Saturday morning and, most recently, a third option on Tuesdays and Thursday at 2:45! These are now full-sized classes averaging 15-18 kids. Now, our total number of classes available for 4-7 year olds is 14 a week! Today, we have over 100 students in our program who are under 7 years old. The only way for us to service them all is to have multiple class times available.
This may or may not be the right number of 4-7 year old classes for your demographics, but the point is before you get into the tactics of acquiring new students, you need make sure you have the flexibility in your calendar for beginner students to attend and that you are set up to deliver the outstanding level of service they expect. Make sure your schedule is working for you, not against you.
For you reference, here's a link to our schedule: https://students.kovars.com/truxel-class-schedule/
Today’s blog is written by one of our success coaches, Ilya Mir. He works as program director at our Natomas location. He trains both in kenpo (2nd Degree Black) and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (Blue Belt).
Did you know? We have a FREE eBook about student retention available for you to download! "Creating Special Moments: A Retention Case Study." CLICK HERE to download now.