5 Tips for Encouraging Today’s Music Students

Today’s kids take ballet, soccer, and gymnastics, always do the work there. They are conditioned to complete their goal while they’re with the teacher. Music lessons require a completely different conditioning for the student – and the parent. A conditioning that requires daily work at home.

So what can be done to point our kids in the right direction?

1) Get to Know Students. Start by getting to know the interests of your students. Ask them about what’s going on at school, what they are interested in, and what movies they’ve seen recently. The last question can often give teachers ideas as to what they might be interested in playing. The music from those movies can be found on MusicNotes.com.

2) Mark Mistakes. Make mistakes with a colored pencil to show students what to practice – and what mistakes shouldn’t be mistakes by next week. Use a new colored pencil next week.

3) Ask Students What They Want. Ask students what they want to play. Some students will practice every song in the book and be faithful to practice every week. Others won’t. That’s when you ned to find out what motivates them. What song is so great that they wouldn’t want to miss practicing it. Then find it.

4) Use a Point System. Award a point every time something is played well. At the end of the lesson, they get a treat from mom or dad. I find that 25 point goal works well.

5) Educate the Parents. Keep parents informed about how things are going. They can often help keep your students remembering to practice and remembering what they’re supposed to practice.



Marketing Tips for Music Teachers

Ever wanted to know how to make a splash on the web – or at least a little bigger wave than what you have going now? Below are a few tips for teachers who want to build more traffic for their studio website.

Website Traffic Basics
Here are a few tips on how to make your music teacher website more effective in attracting new students.

1) Make It Pretty – People like pretty. If your site is pretty they’ll stay longer, and be more engaged by what you have to say. The temptation among many teachers is to put up a free site, and hope for the best. Unfortunately, free sites don’t usually look great, and your visitors will be gone as fast as they came. If you’re a music teacher that’s in it for the long haul, it’s best to launch a custom designed website.

2) Make It Bigger – Google favors large and well established websites. You don’t have to go crazy, but a 10 page website will perform far better than a 3 page website. Consider adding a blog. Even if people are visiting your site from some far off land, it’s still traffic. When Google sees that you’re site is getting visited more often, they’ll put your site higher in the search results. That will mean even more traffic for you – and potential students.

3) Go Pinterest/Facebook – Social networks are a great way to spread the news about your site, and get traffic moving in your direction. Make yourself a business Facebook page and post away. Make a page on your website for your favorite music books and products. Pin these products to a board on Pinterest. Repin those product pins with TrafficWonker.com – it’s FREE!


Best Practices for Professional Piano Teachers

The perfect thing to do doesn’t always occur to us. Hopefully this post will provide piano teachers with a few tips to make sure we’re always doing the right thing.

Here goes…

  • Don’t copy sheet music. It’s illegal. The only exception to this rule is if the sheet music is provided free of charge by a website the expressly allows reprinting. Even then, make sure they own the copyright.
  • Return parent phone call and emails promptly.
  • Return parent/student inquiries promptly, even if you don’t have room for them.
  • Establish and maintain fair lesson policies and rates.
  • Be supportive of other teachers even if your don’t agree with everything they teach. After all, you’re hoping for the same treatment.
  • Support younger teachers. You were young once.
  • When serving as an adjudicator focus on providing the student with positive and helpful comments, rather than critical comments about the teacher.
  • Allow students to complete lessons with a teacher before accepting them into your studio.
  • Thank fellow teachers for referrals. You would appreciate it if they did the same.

That’s all I’ve got. As always, your comments are encouraged.



How to Increase the Success of Your Music Teacher Directory Profiles

How to Increase Student Contacts
It’s hard to say what parents are looking for all the time. But here are a few basic rules for success:

1) Include a Picture – It helps people warm up to you ever so much.

2) Share the Benefits – Student/parents want to know what the benefits are to them. Include stuff that you’ve accomplished, but spend most of the time telling them how you will meet their needs.

3) Include a Link – Include a link to your website or a YouTube video so potential students/parents can get to know you a little better… or see you in action!

4) List Instruments – List all the instruments that you feel comfortable teaching. Many directories limit the number of instruments that you can included for on-site search. Adding all of them in your profile will still help those folks searching for with a search engine.

5) List All Surrounding Cites – Adding all surrounding cities to your profile will again still help those folks searching for with a search engine.





Music Teacher Directories | Review/Comparison

Interested in finding new music students? The following online directories represent value-driven ways to find that next great student. Each will be reviewed and ranked on a 1-5 scale (5 represents best value).

PrivateLessons.com – 5
Perhaps the oldest music teacher directory, PrivateLessons.com attracts 300,000+ visitors each month. Teacher profiles allow you to provide a “snapshot” of your information, and then click links to see additional details.

Subscription Fee: $99.95 per year

GetLessonsNow.com – 4
Launched in 2006, this music teacher directory is one of the largest and most useful online resources for music teachers. GetLessonsNow.com lets you to link to your own studio website or YouTube videos as well as letting potential music students contact you by telephone. This choice doesn’t always help them, because teachers don’t know where the referral came from, and therefore don’t appreciate the value of this service at times. It is, however, a wonderfully appreciated advantage for teachers.

Subscription Fee: $49.95 per year subscription fee – Also supported by ads

Craigslist.org – 5
Craigslist, a classified listing service,  has proven to be a terrific resource for letting prospective students know that you have a few openings. Almost every ad that I place it worth the investment of my time.

Subscription Fee: Select Paid Ads

LessonMaestro.com – 3
Launched in 2009, this music teacher directory offers visitors the ability to search for teachers in USA and Canada. Actually traffic is not known, though the alexa ranking and the age of this website indicate that traffic to the website is still fairly low. At the date of this post they are offering a one year trail membership. In the future memberships will cost 39.00 per year. They do seem like they are a web-based service to keep your eye on.

Subscription Fee: Free Trial/39.00 per year subscription fee

I hope you find some fantastic new music students!


Careers in Music: K-12 Music Teacher

Music teachers bring to their profession an excitement for music and education, Hoping that they will be able to excite the next generation about music. The requirements will vary depending on what level of education you are interested in.

Elementary level music teachers choose between band, orchestra or general music. In some instances they may teach a combination of these discipline. The general music teacher instructs students in a wide spectrum of music topics including reading music, music history and its composers, singing, and musical terms. The general music teacher may also offer a choral opportunity to students as an after school program. The instrumental music teacher offers instruction to students on how to play band or orchestral instruments.

Middle school and high school music teachers typically offer classes such as band, orchestra, or choir, and may also offer a theory class. Secondary music teachers also offer extra-curricular activities which may include working with specialty groups including jazz band, marching band, and pep band, and show choir. Traveling to events becomes a routine part of the teachers role, including away games for the marching band, and festivals for all performing ensembles.


Careers in Music

There are many career opportunities for the professional musician. Below are a few that you may be interested in reading more about.

Music Therapist

Copyright Lawyer
Music Store Owner
Event Coordinator