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Growing Enrollment

4 Keys to Growing Enrollment in the Spring Semester

Growing enrollment seems to be a hot topic at almost ANY dance studio seminar I speak at or attend! It seems like even studios who have maxed out many of their classes are still looking to increase their leads and prospects for future enrollment, which I think is super smart. My studio itself, like so many others, is actually in a growth phase … one of our goals is to optimize our programming to attract even more dance families who believe in our mission.

Whether your studio is jam-packed already or has room to grow, you can’t go wrong with continuing to build relationships and involve more kids in your programs. Relationships lead to trust, and when you build trust, you build your business! By offering a variety of ways that parents can experience your studio, you are opening up more than one “door” of opportunity for their kids.

Even though the fall enrollment rush is over, the momentum at your studio doesn’t have to stop! Enrollment can keep going all year long if you can find the sweet spot of what works best at your business. Tap into your studio’s strengths by using my 4 Keys to Growing Enrollment in the Spring Semester!

Here are my 4 Keys to Growing Enrollment in the Spring Semester:

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  1. “Closing the gaps”
Your studio, like mine, probably has classes where there is a gap between current enrollment and maximum enrollment.  Between now and February (our recital cutoff date), I prefer to focus on closing the gaps for specific classes that I know will be great for newcomers, like beginning hip hop or a preschool ballet class.  I notify my team of these classes to target, and they direct prospects there. I believe the key to a successful “closing of the gap” is finding just the right dance families … have your team identify prospective parents and children who are eager to start class right away and have expressed strong interest in participating in the recital.


  1. Hosting dance camps
Camps aren’t just for summer!  That’s my philosophy anyway. We offer one-time, themed camps that parents can sign their children up for throughout the year.  You could easily come up with a series of themes for camps like this and have a weekly or monthly offering. With a nominal fee or no cost at all, dance camps let folks “try before they buy” in a low-pressure, fun way.  For us, this bite-size way of trying dance often leads parents to enroll their children in other programs, since they’ve formed a relationship with us and learned to trust our interactions with their kids.

  1. Creating mini-mesters
Mini-mesters are a series of regular classes offered in short sessions, usually anywhere from four to eight weeks.  For us, they allow families to try out our dance classes without a school-year commitment, and without needing to invest in the recital.  I’ve even seen some studio owners package mini-mesters with all-inclusive pricing, where you might include the classes, dancewear, shoes, and a summer dance coupon in one affordable bundle.  At my studio, we’ve also seen great success with our mini-mester students “graduating” to a school-year class the following year. Mini-mesters are an awesome stepping stone for the commitment-shy parent.


  1. Adding brand new classes
Does your schedule have an opening here or there?  Adding a brand new class to your schedule can seem risky mid-year, but it won’t be if you do your homework.  Look at your enrollment numbers to see which ages and/or class styles are most popular. Then comb through your class schedule to see where you have classroom and teacher availability for a new class and determine your break-even enrollment number.  Reach out to your current clientele for referrals and advertise the class’s start date to your existing waitlist. Bonus: if you can still fit the class into your recital, do it! Find an in-stock costume and promote the picture of it along with the class information … sometimes a sparkly tutu is all it takes!

PS Don’t forget the adults. We just added an Adult Tap class and it’s going like hot cakes!  It’ might help that my sister has been recruiting in the lobby, but it really goes to show that students can come from all places.

Looking for more great ideas to help with growing enrollment? Check out the following articles:

The “Expert Advice from Misty Lown” series is brought to you by More Than Just Great Dancing™ and TutuTix.

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