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Do You Understand Your Studio-Program Demographics?

With registration season over now for many in the studio dance industry and a mid-year registration beginning, how well did you do in increasing your enrollment? Some studios register in the spring with discount incentives for the next year, others wait until mid-July to begin seasonal registration based on a public school calendar. Have you ever thought “where do my students live”? Checking out the school district in which you live can enable you to begin to project how to structure your classes whether you are just starting out or if you have been in business 20 year plus.

School districts are mandated by federal funding to project class sizes for a specific time frame, usually three to five years depending on state mandates. How can that benefit you? Using the information for the town I live in where I had a dance studio for over 25-years and opened in virtually only again, Canton MA. Going to the website and then to DISTRICT PROFILES I researched how to find the following information.

Canton MA currently has six schools, PK-12, three labeled elementary K-5, one early childhood, one middle grades 6-8, one high school 9-12, an overall student enrollment of 3,228, 1620 of those students are female, the gender of the pool of students a studio could draw from. What grades are those students in, or where can one expect studio and fall advertising to draw from theoretically as 50.1% of the school population is female. How many of them dance? How many of them are involved in other activities? Canton, like many other towns, has a very large enrollment in soccer, no dance team presently at the high school.

A further research revealed that school enrollment dropped in the last three years in the district. Currently there are two dance studios in the town, there were five (three recently closed, one due to COVID). How can you attract enough of the available female students to support your overhead, and pay yourself a salary?

There is no ONE method for success, just time available, dance subject genre offered, location accessibility, and can your published schedule meet a working parents’ needs. How many parents perceive dance for PK-2, and not through high school? How many parents are looking for activities in seasons, fall, winter, spring as a sport? How are you going to meet their needs and stay financially afloat? How many parents will now work remotely post COVID, permanently, and move from the district? How many will relocate to the district? Food for thought.

Meet The 44-Week Dance Studio in our next blog/podcast. What is it, and how can you design a similar approach to teaching dance in your area.


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©Jann Davis, December 1, 2022, All rights Reserved

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