MTH has the wonderful option to send Lesson Notes after each lesson. Although designed to simply let parents know what’s assigned or happening at lessons, this is an opportunity to save yourself time and keep your customers informed!

Answering ten unnecessary emails = wasted time!

How many emails do you get asking  questions about schedules or upcoming events, even though you previously sent emails or other correspondence with that exact information? Read more…

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Posted in MTH 101, Music & Technology, Professional Development, Promoting Your Studio, Studio Management, Using Music Teacher's Helper

 

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When I first began teaching piano lessons I had no idea what my pricing should be. I didn’t understand the economics of it all, I honestly was just looking to make some money on the side while I was going to school. I started off at $30 for an hour lesson. I was in college, and most of my friends were working some retail job for a little above minimum wage, so I thought $30 was really good, and it probably was. But what I didn’t realize was I was leaving a lot of money on the table.

As self employed teachers, the single most valuable asset we have is our time. If you price your lessons low, you may get more students, but you will be working more and making less. Before we start thinking about what we should be charging for lessons, we need to understand how the market works.

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Posted in Financial Business, MTH 101, Promoting Your Studio, Studio Management

Happy students don’t quit piano lessons!image

What is more  important than keeping your current customers?

Use Music Teacher Helper to have happy students by communicating on a regular basis.

The lesson notes feature of Music Teachers Helper is helpful in that you can send any message after each lesson.

Use lesson notes to retain students!

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Posted in MTH 101, Practicing, Promoting Your Studio, Studio Management, Using Music Teacher's Helper

Your musical knowledge, teaching ability, and marketing skills all play central roles in allowing you the opportunity to teach music. Without them, there would be no students, and no personal reward in working with them.

However, scheduling is the center of making a teaching business function smoothly.  Whether you work with kids or adults, everybody these days has full schedules — work, family, school, sports, and more.  Below are six elements to consider when thinking about scheduling lessons and classes in your studio.

1. Eminderscalendar2
2. Open slots
3. Clear policy
4. Flexibility
5. Firmness
6. Accessibility

Now, for the details!
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Posted in Financial Business, MTH 101, Studio Management, Using Music Teacher's Helper

EXPIRED

I remember it well. Waking up with coffee in hand, I hurried to my laptop to open the Music Teachers Helper tab. Yes, I could have read the Daily Summary email that appears in my inbox which lists all the students arriving for lessons that day, but I wanted to access my calendar to double check the lessons scheduled for the entire week.

You can imagine my surprise when I logged in and I received a message that my account had expired. I logged in again assuming that in my haste, I had incorrectly entered my password.

Uggh…again the message: your account has expired.

You know that feeling when your stomach drops right after the roller coaster has crested the top of the ramp and begins its descent? Suddenly my coffee wasn’t sitting so well with me any more.

My anxiety grew as I had a list of items to complete on my Music Teachers Helper site before students arrived. I was planning to

  • Update a wait-listed registrant to active so I could create and send an invoice to the new student
  • Edit a lesson as a student needed to switch a time from Monday to Tuesday morning
  • Begin a draft of next month’s newsletter
  • Ensure that parents would receive the correct lesson day and time in their notification email by checking the week’s schedule
  • Email a new student family and inform them about the convenience of paying online with a credit card. I worried—would this handy feature be available to my new clients because of my expired account?
  • And more…

Insecurities crept in. Were my blog posts no longer appreciated? Perhaps I posted one too late which triggered the shut-off valve of my MTH account?

I figured there was a reason behind the MTH lockout and I knew Ronnie Curry and his timely MTH support team would have the answer.

Ronnie to the rescue! He promptly responded to my email plea and reopened my account that had been closed due to a small glitch. Breathing became easier and I brewed myself a fresh cup of Keuirg coffee.

Music Teachers Helper is the on-demand assistant that I’ve come to value even more than I knew.  With my current student load, the $49 a month, unlimited Music Teachers Helper account averages out to 92 cents a month per student. The peace of mind this system has offered me through the years is worth EVERY penny.

NOTE: Some of you may know that I also have my own blog at 88PianoKeys.me. Results from a recent MusicTeachersHelper survey revealed 88pianokeys.me is appreciated by MTH readers. I’m honored and thankful for your readership! Keep this list handy as it includes many relevant and helpful resources you’ll visit (as I will) on a regular basis.  Resources Music Teachers Love

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Posted in MTH 101, Studio Management, Using Music Teacher's Helper

In a series of blogs called ‘Getting Innovative with MTH’, I am sharing some of my favourite workarounds.  My previous two posts were: creating a To Do List and keeping track of my Inventory.  These workarounds help me be even more efficient within Music Teacher’s Helper with a ‘One Stop’ approach for all my studio needs.

Weekly Calendar

Monthly Calendar View: Week 3

Innovative Calendar of Events (combining all events in your life)

I really do love the flexibility of MTH and the powerful features within the Calendar for scheduling all my students.

I have now also created a way which works well for me to combine most, if not all, of the events in my life! Within the MTH Calendar for my student schedule, I am able to remember much more as I combine several calendar schedules together:

(1) for my personal appointments,

(2) for another teacher using my studio and

(3) my own piano/violin students both at my studio and offsite at students’ homes. Some of this logic might also help YOU if you have two teachers sharing the same studio space.   Read more…

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Posted in MTH 101, Studio Management, Using Music Teacher's Helper

Pat Shelby teaching a group lesson for beginning guitar.

I’m in my 3rd year of using Music Teachers Helper to schedule my guitar students.  I started with a 5 student basic account (which is free!) and have grown to 20 students! (You can have up to 20 students for $14/mo.)

3 years ago, my music lesson business wasn’t doing so well.  I needed help in keeping my teaching schedule organized.  It’s not a good feeling when you’re out running errands and you get a call from a student/parent telling you they’re at your studio for their lesson and they’re wondering where the heck you are!  I had trouble remembering what I taught each student from week to week.  I needed a way to step it up and keep myself organized!  Then I found Music Teacher’s Helper!  One reason I chose MTH is because every account includes a super-easy way to design your own studio website!  Check out my studio website.  It’s very functional and definitely helped me attract new students.  Another reason I signed up with MTH is because of the lesson notes feature – I can easily keep a log of each lesson so I can monitor every student’s progress.  It also helps me remember what I taught them last week!  MTH keeps track of all the administrative stuff, too: scheduling, automatic lesson reminders, makeup lessons, mileage, income, expenses, invoicing, etc.  My MTH calendar syncs with my google calendar and there’s even an iOS app!  (BTW, I hear rumors of a major iOS app update and a new Android app coming soon!)  Every time I’ve needed tech support it has been fast and courteous.

MTH isn’t all about the teacher, though.  You can give parents and students their own login to your website.  Students can check their calendars and log their practice time.  Parents (and adult students) can keep tabs on their account balance and they can even book lessons online!  MTH supports online payment via PayPal, too!

Still not convinced Music Teachers Helper could help you grow your music lesson business?  Prior to using MTH, my studio income was stagnant.  In 2013, my studio income increased 53% from 2012!  In the first 4 months of this year, I’m experiencing an 88% increase in studio income compared to the same period last year!  This year, for the first time ever, I’ve had to turn down students!  

MTH helps me use my time more efficiently.  I can spend more time doing the things I like/need to do instead slogging through all the administrative tasks that come along with running your own business.  For example, a few weeks ago I set up a series of “open slots” on my MTH website for my “summer session.”  With a couple of mouse clicks, I sent out an email to my parents/students inviting them to go online and select their own lesson slots!   Instead of my time being eaten up by scheduling phone calls and emails, I can get other projects done while my students schedule themselves!  Where else can you do that?

This is my honest, shoot-from-the-hip testimony of what I think of Music Teacher’s Helper and how it’s helped me to get organized and grow my studio business. For the music teacher, I can’t recommend their service enough!  Feel free to contact me through my studio website as a resource if you have any questions about how I use MTH.  CLICK HERE to try MTH for FREE for 30 days and get a 20% discount off of your first month with Music Teacher’s Helper for reading this post.

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Posted in Affiliate Program, MTH 101, Using Music Teacher's Helper

If Music Teachers Helper (MTH) allows you to gain or retain just ONE student, the way I figure it, you will earn double the cost of the service.   In addition, if MTH helps you avoid losing money through better payments and accounting, you might actually be saving the equivalent of MTH‘s cost each month you use it.

MTHLogo_400x100

But let’s take a look at the details.  Read on for 10 reasons why I think MTH pays for itself–

 

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Posted in Financial Business, MTH 101, Promoting Your Studio, Studio Management, Using Music Teacher's Helper

We are excited to announce the new Blog Feature for your music studio website. Also, your last five blog posts will show up on the dashboard of your parents and students after they log in. To begin using the new blog feature, you will need to first activate the blog.

Activating Your Blog

  1. Hover over “Website”, and click on “Website Pages”.
  2. Scroll down to “Blog”, and click on “Edit”.
  3. Change the page status from “Inactive” to “Active”.
  4. Scroll down to the bottom and click “SAVE”.

Creating Your Post

If you select “Create a New Post”, a new page will open, presented with an editor, in which you write up your very first post. After writing your article, you can select “Enable The Post”, or “Disable The Post”. You can also choose to allow comments on posts. Select your choices at the bottom and then select “Save Post”.

New Music Studio Blog Post

To create a post, hover over “Website”, and click on “Blog”. On this page you will see a list of posts you have already created, and two buttons at the top to “Create A New Post” or “Categories”.

Creating Categories

Before you begin creating posts, you will first need to create categories to assign your posts. Click on “Categories” and create a few categories that you know you will be using for your posts. Examples for categories you could use are “Recitals”, “Practice Tips”,  “Announcements”, or “Instrument Care”.

Music Blog Categories

You are now ready to create your first post.

  1. Click on “New Post” in the “Blog” section.
  2. You will be taken to a page where you can give your new post a title, and begin writing your post.
  3. You will also see a text editor for formatting your post.
  4. After completing your article, scroll to the bottom of the screen and set the new post status to “Public” or “Hidden”.
  5. Designate if you want to enable or disable comments from your readers.
  6. When you are finished, select “Preview” or “Save Post”.

Your posts can now be viewed by your parents, students, and anyone else who has been provided with the link to your blog (your_name.musicteachershelper.com/posts).

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Posted in Customer Support, MTH 101, Site Announcements, Using Music Teacher's Helper

settings rev

The Settings Menu is one of the most important areas of your website, and new users should first go to the Settings Menu before beginning to enter new students or scheduling events on the calendar. The Settings tab is located at the top right corner of your website.

The Settings Menu has six tabs: Studio Settings, Contact Information, Website Preferences, Email Notifications, SMS Notifications, and Calendar. When you click on Settings, the  Studio Settings will be the first tab to open. Below is an overview of Studio Settings.

studio settings 1

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Posted in MTH 101, Using Music Teacher's Helper