Top Ten Reasons Why You Aren’t Making Good Money Teaching Guitar
by Tom Hess
Do you feel like you should be making a lot more money as a guitar teacher? Have you ever thought about how different your life would be if you made a lot more money in your guitar teaching business? Do you ever wonder whether or not it is really possible to make a good living teaching guitar?
Most guitar teachers would respond “Yes” to these questions and would admit that they don’t believe it is possible to build a guitar teaching business that makes an annual income of $100k or more. The truth is that it is actually very realistic to want to make 6 figures or more per year in your guitar teaching business.
Unfortunately, the majority of guitar teachers do not reach high levels of financial success; however everyone (including you) has the potential to do so if you know the right steps to take to expand your own guitar teaching business. In order to help you better understand what you must do to start making more money as a guitar teacher, I have put together 10 of the biggest reasons why most guitar teachers have a hard time making money. By reading through the rest of this article, you will be able to learn from the mistakes of other guitar teachers. The more information you gain on what NOT to do, the faster you can begin to move toward achieving your financial goals.
You are not charging enough money for your guitar lessons.
One of the biggest misunderstandings made by beginning guitar teachers is thinking that lower teaching rates means more new guitar students. Fact is, lowering the costs of your lessons not only decreases the amount of money you make from each lesson, but it also does the following:
- If you are charging a higher price for guitar lessons, your guitar students will naturally feel a need to get the most out of their investment. Your students will feel more motivated to practice, listen during lessons, and become great guitar players. If you charge less for guitar lessons, you are taking away a huge natural advantage from your students that can help them get all they can while working together with you.
- There are many potential guitar students who believe in the saying ‘you get what you pay for’. By lowering the costs of your guitar lessons, you create the perception that you are a lower quality guitar teacher.
You exclusively teach private guitar lessons in a 1 on 1 format.
A big myth among guitar teachers is that guitar lessons in a 1 on 1 format are the best way to teach (and learn) guitar. Although this format can be good in some cases, it is certainly not the only way to get good results for you students. On top of that, it is an extremely limiting format in terms of making money as a guitar teacher. A better approach is to combine various different group teaching formats together with your current 1 on 1 format. This will not only make you more money, but will also help your guitar students to reach their goals much faster than if they were taking one on one lessons only. To find out more about how to teach guitar lessons in a variety of unique formats, make sure to watch this video on how to make money teaching guitar.
You are not sure how to promote your guitar teaching business and get students on a consistent basis.
The majority of guitar teachers are only aware of a few ways to get the attention of potential guitar students. On top of that, these teachers almost always go about marketing their guitar lessons in very inefficient ways. Guitar teachers who make a lot of money in their guitar teaching businesses use many different strategies to gain new students all throughout the year. One of the major factors for their success is the fact that they do not rely on any single method to build their student base. This way, if one method turns out to not be particularly effective, they still have many others to draw from. Find out how you can become more effective at attracting students by taking this short survey about how to attract new guitar students.
You don’t know how to consistently turn your guitar students into really great guitar players.
Fact is, guitar students come to you in order to make progress and reach their musical goals. The better you are at helping them accomplish their highest guitar goals, the more new guitar students you will get through word of mouth and referrals to friends. Any highly successful guitar teacher who makes $100k+per year has a strong reputation for transforming average guitar players into great guitar players (in short periods of time). This is what helps them to build and expand their guitar teaching business. If you have a hard time getting great results for your guitar students, check out this program about how to teach guitar for a living.
You don’t make money from guitar lessons for every week of the year.
Many guitar players experience great frustration due to the fact that they do not get paid for every single week of the year…whether their guitar students show up or not. In most cases, guitar teachers think that they must either take unpaid time off or teach guitar lessons more often. However, these two options are NOT the only choices you have. In fact, it is possible to take PAID time off while also delivering great guitar teaching material to your guitar students. If done right, your students will be more than willing to pay you good money for days when you are not even there teaching them in person (yes, you read that right!). To get several ideas to help you do this in your guitar teaching business, download this free eBook for making a lot of money teaching guitar.
You are not currently implementing a solid teaching policy.
One of the biggest problems for most guitar teachers is that they do not have a solid teaching policy in place for their guitar teaching business (or they do not enforce the one they have). This has various negative side effects, including the following:
- It makes you seem as if you do not take your guitar teaching business seriously. Your guitar students will quickly notice this, and will respect you much less as a guitar teacher. Some students will show up late (or not at all) for lessons, re-schedule, or miss payments.
- Since your guitar students do not respect you as a guitar teacher, they will feel less motivated to practice the things you show them during lessons. As a result, they will make much less progress on guitar.
- You will need to put out a great deal of extra effort to contact students, ask for late payments and teach make-up lessons (on your own, unpaid time). This will become frustrating very quickly.
You are not able to make a strong connection with your guitar students.
Most guitar teachers do not understand that teaching guitar is based around meeting the emotional needs of your students first. In order to reach high levels of success as a guitar teacher, it is essential that you learn how to directly communicate the following points with your guitar students:
- You are totally COMMITTED to helping your students reach their highest goals on guitar.
- You understand the struggles that they are experiencing with guitar and have had to deal with them yourself.
- You can identify with their current struggles on guitar and have been through them yourself.
You get in the way of your own progress.
Most guitar teachers only consider 3 different things when thinking of ways to make more money with guitar lessons:
- The price of their guitar lessons.
- How many hours they spend teaching each week.
- How many guitar students they have.
You do not have a specific strategy that will get you from your current financial situation to earning $100k+ with guitar teaching.
The most successful guitar teachers build their guitar teaching business through extensive planning and strategy. These teachers do not rely on any form of luck, instead they work hard to implement new ideas until they manifest their own success. Unfortunately, the majority of guitar teachers simply copy what other teachers are doing in hopes that it ‘might’ work for them too. The main problem with this is that most other guitar teachers are unsuccessful, and do not make a lot of money teaching guitar. By doing the same things these teachers do, you will only be working toward mediocre results (if any). If you want to build a highly successful guitar teaching business while making a lot of money, it is necessary to seek the advice of someone who knows what you need to do to become the most successful guitar teacher in your local area.
You aren’t sure how to keep your current guitar students coming back.
The primary focus of most guitar teachers is on ‘how to find new guitar students’. In their efforts to get new students, these teachers often lose focus of keeping the students they already have. If your students are not staying with you for two years or more, this is a sign that you are struggling to keep students.
The key to maintaining your guitar teaching business is to increase your student ‘retention rate’ (how long students continue taking lessons with you). Once you know how to keep your students for longer periods of time, you will not need to keep finding new students just to replace the ones who have left in order to return to the same level of income. This will allow you to grow your guitar teaching business steadily without having to constantly worry about losing money due to decreasing student numbers.
If you identified with some of the problems I have discussed, you have become aware of some of the biggest areas you need to improve in order to earn more money as a guitar teacher. Once you have taken the time to implement the points talked about in this article, you will experience significant growth in your guitar teaching business.
Get help to expand your guitar business and make more money as a guitar teacher with these free guitar teacher resources:
- eBook about making a lot of money teaching guitar.
- Video about how to make money teaching guitar.
- Guitar teaching test to help you attract new guitar students.
Tom Hess is a successful professional guitar teacher, composer and the guitarist of the band Rhapsody Of Fire. He also trains guitar teachers how to improve their guitar teaching methods. Visit his website, tomhess.net to read more articles about guitar teaching, get free guitar teacher skill assessments and guitar teaching tips.