As students head back to school this fall, many of them are ready to dive back into afterschool programs and try out new activities. As a martial arts school, you’re ideally positioned to take advantage of this time of year–especially if you use the right marketing opportunities to reach out to elementary school students. Here are four ways to appeal to the back to school crowd and catch their parents’ attention as well.
Promote Bully Prevention
In a recent study, about 49% of children in grades 4-12 reported being bullied by other students at school. Martial arts classes don’t just give kids the ability to defend themselves against bullies, they also:
- Give kids confidence in themselves that can often prevent them from being targeted in the first place
- Raise their situational awareness so that they can decrease their odds of ending up in a bad situation
- Give them the tools they need to be confident in drawing in an adult before they get hurt
Offering self-defense classes as a strategy to help kids avoid being bullied will also appeal to parents who want to keep their kids safe.
Highlight Improved Behavior
Many kids struggle with respect in the classroom. In your school, however, they’ll learn respect in a different way. Experts say the respect kids learn, whether from bowing or standing still and waiting for the next command, carries over into school, helping improve behavior and even grades.Every parent dreads getting a call from a teaching informing them that their kid is being disrespectful or disruptive in class. Use this as an opportunity to promote the life lessons you’ll teach students, in terms of respect, discipline and socialization skills. As an incentive to ensure the lessons you’re teaching are carrying over in each students’ schooling, offer prizes and public recognition throughout the year for good grades, character awards and positive behavior in school.
Host an Event
Kick off the school year with a fun Back to School night at your school. This could be a fun Parent’s Night Out or an evening designed for families who want to spend the time together. Provide demonstrations, offer the chance for kids to try out fun skills and let your school stand out as one of the most fun things kids can do this school year. Choose something that’s a little bit fun and remind even your serious students of just how much they love their martial arts classes–and why they want to commit to taking classes this year.
Offer an Incentive
During back to school season, you have the chance to attract new students–especially if you offer an incentive for joining your school. Work to offer incentives that will get children excited and appeal to their parents as well, such as:
- Offer new students a week of free classes before they commit to signing a student agreement
- Provide a free gi when a new student signs an agreement
- Utilize a referral program to reward current students for each new student they recruit
Keep in mind that back to school time is often expensive for families, especially those who have more than one child in activities. Offering an incentive versus discounting your services is one of the best ways to help them choose your school, and to ensure you’re not devaluing your services.
The back to school season is an excellent time of year to bring in new students from many of your local schools. Start planning your back to school promotions as soon as possible so that you can spread the word on social media, website and throughout your community.
Looking for additional ways to acquire new students this year? Get your copy of our free Insider’s Guide to Student Recruitment.