Retention is one of the keys to school growth. The last thing you want is to work hard to get new students, only to have them quit within a few months.
Treat your new students like a “fragile egg.” That is don’t drop them in the school as new students and not handle them with care any further. New students may be afraid to ask questions about how classes are run, tie their belt, or may feel awkward in class and need reassurance.
Retain more students by communicating with them a few times in the first few months so they understand you care. This will help them be more apt to come to you if they have questions or concerns in the future and stay informed as to what’s going on in the school.
Using a 2-4-6 Week Call System
To begin this retention call system, create a spreadsheet or log these calls in your student account software notes.
Each time a new member is enrolled, their name, age if a child, class days, and program are recorded in the log.
This way, the person calling knows a bit about who they’re calling.
This way, you can see notes from the 2-4-6 week calls. This is helpful when someone is making the four-week call and can quickly review what was said on the previous call.
Before each call is made, you’ll need to establish the purpose of each call. Depending on how your school is run, when testing is, etc; your list may vary from the one provided below. Use the list as a guideline, knowing that you’ll customize it for yourself.
Sample Goals of Each Call
The 2-Week Call–This first call can be used to just check in and see how classes are going and if they’re enjoying themselves. Ask if they have any questions that you can help them with about anything from the class material to how to tie their belt, etc; if there is other information that you’d like them to have or school events coming up-be sure to inform them. Let them know that you’ll check in again with them in a few weeks and to feel free to let you know if they need anything.
The 4-Week Call: Students accomplish a lot within the first month of training and the 4-week call is a great time to recognize them for their efforts. Praise them specifically for something they’ve recently accomplished. If you’re school hosts monthly evaluations, then give them a quick rundown on what to expect and how that can benefit them. If they’re happy with the school and progress, it’s a good time to ask for a referral.
The 6-Week Call: This call continues and enhances open communications with parents and students. Use this call to repeat and re-establish rules and guidelines, anchor the benefits to the parents’ or students’ initial goals, invite them to participate in special events, and lay the groundwork for upgrades and renewals. Let them know that the door is always open if they have any concerns, need more gift certificates for friends, etc;
After the 6-Week Call, you can continue calling on a monthly or bimonthly basis. It’s good to stay in touch with all of your students so that they know that the school really cares about their progress and that you are able to hear about and overcome any training obstacles that they may have.
By staying in touch, you’ll be increasing your overall retention and customer satisfaction which equals more referrals.
Action Steps: What to do now
1. Download a copy of the 2-4-6 Week Phone Call Log Sheet from MATA.
2. Decide what topics your calls will include that are custom to your school for each of the calls.
3. Fill in the names of the students that you’ve recently enrolled and begin using the 2-4-6 Week Phone Call System and tracking sheet.
4. Incorporate the 2-4-6 Week Phone Call Log to your enrollment procedures and begin adding each new student onto the tracking sheet.