Keep Your Studio Marketing Fresh with New Branding

This past month, we’ve been talking about celebrating teaching milestones – or teaching “anniversaries”.

If you missed any of the previous posts you can find them here:

Teaching Anniversaries: Celebrating on Social Media and Beyond

Teaching Anniversaries: An Important but Hard Celebration

Teaching Anniversaries: A Time for Reflection

In this fourth and final post in the series, I’ll share how I’m keeping my studio fresh by re-branding and why this is something you should consider for your own studio!

 

Out With the Old – In With the New

When I first opened my studio, like many teachers, money was tight. I knew branding was important though and I wanted to have a logo right away.

Luckily, we had a friend who was artistic and was gracious enough to do one as a favor. I remember sitting at her kitchen table looking over her laptop as we tweaked the shape and style.

I wanted something simple, subtle, and sophisticated. I kind of hate to use that last term because it wasn’t that I wanted to portray my studio as “snooty” or anything, just professional. More specifically, I didn’t want it to be too kiddie-looking with lots of music notes and colors.

I have absolutely adored this logo. It was perfect.

Change is something I thrive on personally so with the move to my new studio two years ago and the turnover of a new decade of running my full-time studio this year, it felt like the perfect time to freshen up my branding for a new start.

This time, I worked with a designer a self-employed small-business owner whom I connected with when I spearheaded a new logo for our state MTACarson Sprunger with Sprunger Design.

 

 

For social media purposes, I also requested that whatever logo we came up with was easy to translate into a small favicon-size version.

 

 

I absolutely love both of them and am thrilled with the results.

Interestingly enough, my goals were the same as the first time around: simple, subtle, and not kiddie-music looking. A few things that I particularly love about it this new logo:

  1. It was a complete font change feel from the previous logo.
  2. The design went from flowy and elegant to a little edgier.
  3. The new splash of color.
  4. The fresh take on using the piano lid rather than the profile from above.

 

Is Re-Branding Really That Important?

Now, you may be thinking this is a nice idea but is it really necessary?

I would say it depends.

What does your logo say about your business? Does it portray it properly? Are you having a hard time attracting adult students? Does your logo look like it’s geared toward preschool children or any type of student?

It’s important that our branding match how we want people to see us and our studios.

Most clients in your studio may not think much about a change in your logo (similar to what Janelle was talking about in the second post on how it’s hard for them to celebrate teaching anniversaries with you).

What they will notice though is your attention to detail in how you present yourself and your business. Consider investing in branding that represents what you want your customers to know about you before they ever meet you.

 

How to Use Your Branding

Logos and branding aren’t just about the logo that goes on your policies document, social media header, or website. Our branding should be part of everything we put out there, most especially on social media.

As soon as I got my new logo, I created a series of social media images in Canva highlighting student and parent testimonials. These will be posted using a scheduling tool for the whole year (I’m currently using Tailwind).

Would you believe me when I say I’m not looking for any new students? I’m full with a waiting list but I still continue to market. Why?

Building a thriving business is not something you do once a year when you need students, it’s something that should be continuous so your brand is at the forefront of your community’s minds.

I’m pretty excited about how these social media testimonials turned out this year. Here are a few examples:

 

 

Every year, in my year-end parent/student questionnaires, I always request (but don’t require) testimonials so I have fresh ones from current students and families every year.

I have to brag a little that my students and parents rocked the testimonials this year!

(If you want to see all of them, they’re in a slide format on my studio’s testimonials page.)

If anything, it can definitely give you a little mental boost once a year. 🙂

 


Subscribe to the Piano Pantry email list to keep up to date!

Besides regular communication on what’s going on here at Piano Pantry, you’ll get my once-a-month “Secret Letter” which includes what’s been going on in my studio that month, books I’m reading, and more. You will also have the option to have new posts delivered to your inbox weekly.

 

Speaker Events for 2021-2022 Including MTNA Minneapolis!

This past week I went to my first in-person workshop since…well, who knows when. It feels like forever, right?!

It was a workshop at Sweetwater Sound in Fort Wayne with Melody Bober. She did a session on practice tips, a feature session on many of her books and resources, and a masterclass.

 


Today I wanted to quickly let you know some of the places I’ll be this upcoming school year.

The first is the MTNA National Conference which will be held in Minneapolis, Minnesota March 26-30, 2022.

I’ll be presenting a 20-minute “One-for-All” session called Reset and Refresh: Tidying Tips for Studio Teachers.

Are you surprised by the topic? I bet not! 🙂

I’ll also be presenting my wildly popular session Taming the Jungle: Digital Management Strategies for the Independent Music Teacher for several groups in Indiana, Ohio, and Virginia.

If your local or state group is still on the lookout for some unique and refreshing sessions, check out my speaking page. I only have one or two spots left for the 2021-2022 season!

Contact me here to chat!

Crossing my fingers I will see you around (in person) sometime in 2021-2022!

 

Update: MTNA Music Study Award fillable form fixed!

Just a quick update!

Two weeks ago I published a post with a printable template to help you print your MTNA Music Study Awards.

The form had always been fillable but this year when I downloaded it, it was not. I have to admit, I convinced myself I was mistaken that it was in the past and just went right ahead and made a printable template so you didn’t have to write in the student’s names by hand.

Thanks to fellow colleague/reader Jan Fulford who was a little more proactive than I was! She contacted me on Facebook and pointed out that yes, they had been fillable in the past but were also not working for her this year either. So, she contacted MTNA and found out it was flux and it was supposed to be fillable.

It has been fixed now – YEA!

Don’t worry, it doesn’t print the fillable area in purple. 🙂

Plus, we noticed that the centering of the words “present the” was off so they fixed that as well!

Thanks to Jan for her help in getting this all fixed!

P.S. Even though it’s basically not necessary anymore, I’m going to leave the printable template post active just in case since I’ve already put the work into it.

 

Piano Explorer Magazine Discontinued

This a month of new discoveries and unfortunately, not great ones!

Last week I shared that The Royal Conservatory had removed its theory apps from the app store.

Today, I’ve learned that Piano Explorer Magazine, published by The Instrumentalist is no longer taking any new subscriptions.

Unfortunately, their subscriptions significantly decreased during the pandemic and they will no longer be able to continue the print magazine after the May/June issue.

 

It’s Piano Pantry’s Birthday!

Celebrating 5 years with a discount

This month marks a big milestone here at Piano Pantry as I’m celebrating 5 years of blogging!

This platform has been such a wonderful creative outlet and way to “dump” my brain of all the ideas that swirl around. Thanks for being here and for sticking with me!

Today I thought I would share a little about how I got started and highlight some of the milestones along the way (including the release of a new Happy Birthday by-ear teaching resource!).

We’ll also be celebrating with a discount in the Piano Pantry Shop and a giveaway later in the month in Friday Finds #211.

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Recent and Upcoming Guest Speaker Appearances

Hey, just a couple of quick announcements!

 

Career Development and Entrepreneurship

Last week I was a guest speaker for one of Butler University’s Career Development and Entrepreneurship graduate classes.

Some of the things we talked about included:

  1. The story of opening my new business and how it changed and developed over the years.
  2. Acquiring and retaining students
  3. Marketing and studio policies
  4. Rates, billing, and payment options
  5. Lesson material organization

If you are looking for someone to talk about this topic with your college class or local or state association, you can contact me here.

Feel free to also check out my speaking page that shows a list of sessions I’ve done in recent years.

 

Turboboost

If you haven’t heard yet, Nicola Cantan from Vibrant Music Studio is hosting an online event called “Teacher Turboboost” from March 29th – April 2.

I’m happy to be a guest speaker along with several other awesome ladies.

It’s a 5-day event designed to help give a refresh before gearing into the final weeks of the school term. Each day will have a very focused and yet broad topic such as: connect, open, explore, grown, balance.

What you will find unique about this event is that it will only be 3 hours a day (10 am-1 pm EST) and the guest speaker sessions are 15-minutes so they will be easy to absorb.

My session will be on the final day. It’s called:

Reset and Refresh: Tiding Tips for Studio Teachers

Enjoy a workspace that is always fresh and orderly by implementing a simple, consistent, and sustainable tidying routine. Four specific time points, a small checklist, and an incremental (but minimal) time commitment will be your steps for a well-kept studio.

 


Read more details and SIGN UP for the event here!*

Use the code PANTRY to get a $10 discount ($59 instead of $69)

*Disclosure: I will also get a very small affiliate percentage back but it doesn’t cost you any extra.


 

 

Winners of Waay app Giveaway

Thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway for the two new courses in the Waay music theory app – there was 72 entries total!

Using Rafflepress’s random winner generator, the following five people are our winners. Congratulations to each of you!

Check your inbox for details on redemption.

 

Waay Music Theory App

New courses, a giveaway, and an updated music lab tracking sheet

Back in August 2019, I introduced you to two of my favorite high-quality music theory apps for the iPad.

One of those, Waay, has added two new courses.

In this post, I’ll share a little about the new courses and introduce you to the updated music lab tracking sheet available in the Piano Pantry Shop that’s designed to go along with the app.

As an extra bonus, thanks to Waay’s founder and developer, Alex Andrews, I have FIVE promo codes to give away for the new courses!

 

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40% off Evernote Premium

Just a quick note here to let you know that Evernote Premium is on sale at 40% off until 2/4/2021.

Click this link to sign up!

 


Interested in learning more about how to use Evernote in an effective way in your independent studio and daily life? Visit these articles on Piano Pantry to learn more:

 

Your Questions Answered: Evernote – Basic or Premium?

Organizing Piano Games with Evernote

Writing Student Evaluations Using Evernote

Conference Management 101: Tips for Managing Evernote Plus a Resource

Evernote for the Independent Music Teacher: Part 1 – Studio Organization

Evernote for the Independent Music Teacher: Part 2 – Web Clipper

Evernote for the Independent Music Teacher: Part 3 – Account Features, Tagging and More

Friday Finds #193: Evernote Updates

Evernote for Gmail: A Review

 

 


Affiliate Disclaimer: Please note that Piano Pantry is part of the Evernote Community affiliate program which simply means I get a very small percentage from Evernote sign-ups (or upgrades) that come via my website (at no extra cost to you). Since I provide free content, this small amount means a lot. Thank you for your support!

 

Giveaway Winner – Friday Finds #200

Just a quick announcement to let you know that using a random number generator, the winner of the Friday Finds #200 giveaway was:

Janelle Bracken (check your email for details!)

Her comment on the post was:

I have enjoyed your Friday Finds for a long time now, Amy, and my husband (he’s a foodie) has now downloaded the Paprika app and is enjoying it! Thanks for having this drawing. If I win, they are going to Larry, my husband. He would love receiving them.

Congratulations, Janelle, and I hope Larry enjoys the magazines! 🙂