Hello and welcome to our series of blog posts on how to start a piano studio! This is our second post on the topic of the piano studio website and we would like to say thank you for following along. From the previous posts, you know now about the importance of a good catchy name for your piano studio, domain name and its very own branded email address. You have learned what the World Wide Web is made of and how to plan and put together an information architecture for your very own piano studio website. All along you have been doing a great job! In this post, we would like to help you with another important aspect of a successful piano studio website which is the content itself.
Muscles and skin of your piano studio website
Do you remember how planning the website helped you to think in terms of the information you would like to share with your existing and prospective customers? If the information architecture is skeleton then the content is its muscles and the skin. The content plays an important role and it must be simple and attractive at the same time to make the visitors stay and explore. The information you convey will trigger the first impression about your piano studio and you as a teacher. You do not want to miss this opportunity as the first impression does matter. What role is the content playing in all of this? It is huge, but let’s start with why the client came in the first place.
You would agree that the main reason people search and navigate to your piano studio website is their interest in piano lessons for themselves or their kids. Unfortunately, not all of them are interested in piano lessons with you and that’s OK as there are different teachers for different students, just like there are different students for different teachers. Your clients will be contacting you via different channels. For some of them, the process of matchmaking will start at your piano studio website and will continue on through the introduction to the actual lessons.
You have to remember that the selection process is always bi-directional, and letting the prospective student go may sometimes be a plausible outcome too. Remember that your own mental health is way more important than any amount of extra cash. All-in-all it is as much your choice as theirs. Why you?
It all starts with WHY you teach the piano and WHY you started the piano studio in the first place. The story is connecting with the teacher on a very different level and since we teach piano to humans the story is everything. Take your time and write down your story in the text editor of your choice as you will be re-purposing the pieces all over your website. Write about your life journey and the path which led you to this piano studio goes to the About page.
Things and emergencies do happen and your piano studio must be prepared for these scenarios too. Starting with the student who didn’t show up to the lesson and ending with the available parking space everything should be described and information clearly provided on this page. A good example might be a sick student policy. If she comes to your lesson sick you have all the right to turn her back as any sick student appearing at your piano studio is potentially two more students who come before and after her lesson as well as you as a teacher getting sick, your responsibility as a teacher is to prevent this from happening. Another example is payment-related policies, and those warrant their own page. You can read a more detailed post about the piano studio policies here.
There are two very different philosophies when it comes to posting your fees online. We do respect both sides, but we have our own opinion about fees. In our opinion, the fees and the payment policies warrant their own page and they serve as a good filter to deter the customers you don’t want to deal with in the first place, you are a piano teacher after all and not a collection agency. Use this page for financial information only. List the payment options you accept at your piano studio to simplify matchmaking for prospective customers. Don’t forget to list the pricing options for the different lesson lengths like 30 min, 45 min, 60 min, etc. Remember that for some parents an important decision-making factor might be the frequency of payments e.g. monthly, seasonally or yearly, and of course, the method of payment e.g. cash, check, e-transfer, etc. Last, but not least the money-back policy whatever you choose must go to this page too.
Your unique approach to piano teaching, your unusual method, your philosophy, and what influenced you to teach goes to the Philosophy page. This is the page where you describe your ways of teaching the piano. The major books and programs you use in your piano studio would be listed here.
Your piano studio surely may have a beneficial location or free and accessible parking and those are important and the Contact page may have a section about that. The story is everything! Meanwhile, we continue with what you may want to put above the fold!
Above the fold
The term is coming from the publishing industry. And it is the upper half of the front page of a newspaper or tabloid where an important news story or photograph is often located. On the web, it is where we put Banner, Hero Image, Carousel Banner, Slider or similar kinds of components. The image or the message you place at the very top of your home page is above the fold and this information will immediately jump to the eyes of each and every visitor to your piano studio website. Take your time and make this message strong and authentic. Make it clear to the visitors what is your piano studio goal and list the most important benefits of joining. You write two-three sentences here and provide the links to the other pages. Important: to capture the attention use a real-life photo!
“A picture is worth a thousand words”
Do you like taking pictures with your phone or camera? Then it is your time to shine as the fastest and most affordable photos are the ones taken by you. Alternatively, there are plenty of Internet sites where stock photos are available for sale. Many of them may be too costly for your newly born piano studio website. But thanks to the open source community of photographers there are free stock photos too and the sites like PEXELS or Unsplash might be a good place to start.
One warning for you before you use any photo on your website. Although the Internet is open to everybody and any photos can be downloaded for free, you have to be aware that with tools like Google image search photos are very easy to trace back to their origin. If you end up using somebody else’s photos without their permission or license the author may ask you to take them down later or even request your piano studio to pay photo copyright infringement penalties. To be good citizens of the Internet always check the license agreement of the photo you are about to use as it will save you from possible legal troubles later.
Start piano studio and enjoy teaching the piano!