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Studio AdministrationSo you have a beautiful dance or music studio website, and now all you need is visitors. You have set up your pages for the search engines, but still the traffic is disappointing, so you need to give it a boost.

All the hype these days tells us that print ads and Yellow Pages are no longer effective, and that the top dog in the advertising arena is online ads - with Pay Per Click (PPC)Google Adwords PPC as the leader, and the easiest to get into, thanks to Google's Adwords.

My recommendation to you is DON'T...

...Unless you can spend the time and effort to do it right.

To give you an idea of how easy it is to waste money, let me share a couple of the most serious mistakes I have seen made by music and dance studios in their online marketing:

  1. Location Targeting: When you set up your advertising campaign, Google allows you to define a geographic area, and it will do its best to only show your ad to users in that location. This may look like one of the other thousand options you have, most of which Google can take care of automatically for you, but this one is critical. You do not want to be competing with every music or dance studio in the world because, firstly you will have to pay much more per click to get a good position on the page, and secondly the few clicks you win will probably be from searchers who cannot physically get to your studio anyway. Wasted money for zero-value leads.
  2. Landing Pages: Let's assume you have now paid a reasonable price for a click. Where are you going to send that click? Many are just sent to the main home page, and that is just fine (despite the protests of SEO experts who will advocate a different "landing" page for every keyword you want). The problem is what happens next. Many dance studio websites, and music teacher websites, are built to look beautiful and show lovely pictures of students and teachers, but they fail to deliver on their fundamental objective - growing your business. If you are going to pay for online advertising, you better be sure the web page your "clicks" go to can convert them into leads and customers. As your anonymous "click" starts browsing around the website, you need to take every opportunity to have them provide contact information (becoming a lead for future email marketing), or best of all, have them become a customer by including online registration features.
  3. Specific Keywords: It is very tempting to take a "more the merrier" approach to keyword selection in your PPC campaigns. You only pay for clicks after all, and Google makes it easy with the tools they provide. But remember Google is not in business to save your advertising dollars. For example, let's say you provide only ballet classes at the studio in question. If you try to find customers searching for "dance classes" as well as "ballet classes" you will be paying more for each click, AND more than half the clicks you pay for will probably be customers who wanted some other type of dance. You have just wasted your money! Keyword selection is a very tricky business, and if you don't stay very specific you can end up with a very inefficient campaign.

Still want to advertise online? Well, I am not going to tell you it is a waste of money, but it certainly can be. Please take it slowly and carefully, and test and measure its effectiveness at every step.

By the way, YourVirtuoso will not solve this one for you, but at least it will take care of #2 above, and help out with the unpaid search engine optimization for you (organic traffic). Contact us for more details.

Topics: Dance Studio, Music Studio, Websites, Marketing

Gerry Cobley

Written by Gerry Cobley

Music School Management Guru!