How Bach to Rock’s Marketing Attracts Students and Boosts the Bottom Line
Posted on: May 25, 2015
Street-level marketing pays off at the Bach to Rock music franchise
The Bach to Rock music franchise is known for its unique take on music education. Our students receive private instruction, but they also join bands, learn to play sets, record in studios and perform in public. Our approach to marketing is also unique. Franchises typically use paid media to get the word out, but Bach to Rock owners make great use of grassroots marketing in existing community networks. It’s very effective and often free.
Getting the word out with community events
Bach to Rock music franchise owners work with site directors to find places in the community for students and bands to perform — family-friendly local restaurants, community festivals, school events and church bazaars where their student bands and performers find a welcome reception. Our students always play free of charge, and that means Bach to Rock gets a free way to advertise our services. And every time one of our bands plays a public venue, it puts Bach to Rock teachers and students in places where parents are already spending their evenings and weekends.
“Your community wants you at those events,” says Angela Sakell, Vice President of Marketing for Bach to Rock. “They will beg you to come. You’ll get booths for free. You’ll be at every elementary school spring festival, you’ll be at every church fair. It’s an incredible symbiosis. Your community wants you, the kids you’re teaching want to be there, it’s part of your curriculum and it costs you nothing. That’s one of your biggest ways to market.”
“At the same time,” Angela adds, “we are meeting our educational and brand goals of teaching students by having them play together in public.”
Spreading the news about Bach to Rock online
The internet is also a powerful grassroots marketing tool for Bach to Rock franchise owners. We take a three-pronged approach to getting out the word online: We publish content that’s full of specific search phrases, we launch paid-search advertising and we participate in high-profile directory and review websites.
When someone Googles “guitar lessons” and the name of any community where we have a school, we make sure Bach to Rock pops up in as many places as possible. Our corporate staff uses part of the franchisee’s national advertising dollars to handle that organic search, and we teach the franchisee how to raise Bach to Rock’s visibility online. We recommend vendors and local grassroots sites in specific geographic locations.
The Bach to Rock approach also involves listing our events on listservs, sending email blasts and incorporating other online tools that list kid-friendly resources for parents who are always searching for activities.
Bottom line: our marketing really works!
The best thing about the Bach to Rock’s “stealth method” of marketing is that it’s truly effective. It starts a chain reaction in the community that money can’t buy. There are no expensive ad spends, and yet our classes fill up quickly. The Bach to Rock franchise owner and staff can concentrate on tasks that are more directly related to educating the student.
“Most other brands rely on paid media to get the word out,” Angela says. “They usually spend 10% to 20% of their revenue on marketing efforts. We are able to market our schools for around 7% because so much of the marketing is a grassroots effort.”
“It takes a little time to coordinate these events in the community, but it involves virtually no money,” she adds. “It’s a great way to gain visibility. Many people come up to us to tell us how fabulous we are. We collect their contact information, but often they call us first.”