Having a video marketing strategy for your dance studio is such a smart idea. There are so many types of dance studio videos that will educate, entertain, and inform members of your community, and (yay!) bring new dancers into your studio.
People love videos, but we live in a very fast paced, frenetic society, and if your videos don’t hold their interest, a whole world of alternate options is just a click away.
How can you make sure your dance studio’s videos stand out above all the clutter of the ol’ interweb?
Here is the top 10 list of tips and strategies to focus on to make sure you create awesome, relevant videos that will resonate with your viewers:
10. Develop your studio’s brand through your videos
Create a pleasing video style for your viewers, one that is consistent with your brand, and you’ll amplify the success of your video marketing. To do this, just be thoughtful about the setup and tone of your videos.
Filming your videos in batches helps enormously in this area. For a few days, set up the most attractive corner of your waiting room as a video testimonial space. Filming a number of testimonials there will create consistency and enhance your dance studio’s brand and message.
Likewise, think of the tone of your studio and make sure your videos reflect it. If yours is a pre-professional academy for serious students, the tone of the content and delivery should be warm, but professional. If your target is very young children who want to dance recreationally, tailor your materials and delivery for them (or more likely their parents).
Your dance studio’s tone and style should be reflected in your videos. This develops a cohesive message that not only pulls in new students/parents, but the “best” students/parents for your particular studio.
9. Make your background work for you, not against you
When setting up to take a video, carefully look at the background you’ll be filming against. You see your dance studio so often you may no longer see a wall with smudges on it or a doorway with chipped paint.
The best scenario would be a clean space with attractive but minimal decor, good lighting, and with your logo or studio name in full view. A light or white background will focus attention on your subject, while a dark background can make the space seem empty or abandoned.
Take a practice video or two in a few different studio locations, and watch them carefully with the eyes of a prospect seeing your space for the first time. Your background is a video element to pay attention to. Make sure it is adding credibility, not distracting viewers from your message.
8. Always provide your studio’s URL
When you post on YouTube, you have the option to write a short description of your video. Always start with the link to your dance studio website, so you don’t miss the opportunity to lead people there. Put it at the front, so when the description is minimized, your URL will still show.
If you’re using a video editor, you can also add a text box to the video itself, in which to display your website address. It’s a great way to encourage prospects to take the next step in becoming part of your dance family.
7. Informal is fine!
You don’t have to have your videos professionally done in order to be successful. In fact, informal videos often have an edge over those that seem slick, because people resist being “sold to”.
The things that matter are things you can control, but without spending a ton of money or time. Maintain a level of professionalism in your studio setting (make sure it’s clean, well lit, and appealing), in your content (outline it beforehand and give it a test run or two), and in how you and your subjects present yourself (poised but personal, speaking clearly and warmly).
Be authentic. Be approachable. Be relatable. These things are much more important than having high production value, high-end editing software, or a professional studio.
So while a professional commercial video for your studio certainly has its place, don’t panic and hire a video production company to write, design, shoot and edit each video effort. Instead, pull out your handheld camera or your smartphone and get to filming. As long as you’re offering content people can use and enjoy, you’ll be fine.
6. Create strong “calls to action”
It’s great when people watch your videos, but if your viewers don’t take action afterwards, you’ve lost an opportunity to add a new dancer to your roster. The fix is simple – Always take the opportunity to ask your viewers to take some type of action at the end of your video.
In addition to asking them to “like & subscribe”, you can ask them to sign up for your newsletter, go to your studio’s website and view your class schedule, leave a comment about your video, or call for information on registering. If they’ve enjoyed your video, you’ll have their full attention; make sure to take advantage of it!
5. Provide valuable, interesting video content
Who will be watching your videos? Moms? Kids? Single dads? Teens? Those who already dance Those who are interested in taking a first class? Those actively shopping for a studio in the area?
Make sure your videos are laser-targeted to your audience and provide for them videos that are both valuable and interesting. This fact is CRUCIAL to your dance studio video marketing success.
Your valuable content could be a 2-minute demonstration on how to execute a proper piqué turn. Or it could be a chuckle-inducing 30 seconds of preschoolers making an adorable mess of their recital number.
There are many types of dance studio videos that can entertain, enlighten, or educate your viewers. Think about what your ideal viewer would find valuable, interesting and fun to watch.
Start strong, weed out anything unnecessary (long pauses, “ummms” and “uhhhhs”, blank screens, etc), and hook them in the first 30 seconds. This ensures videos that will appeal to your audience and will keep them watching.
4. Leave them thirsty for more
It’s great if people in your community watch your videos, but if the only watch your videos, it doesn’t do you much good. The goal with your videos should be to offer valuable content that gives viewers a small taste of what they want and leaves them thirsty for more.
If you create a video on executing a proper piqué turn, as mentioned above, your video can and should end with an invitation for the viewer to consider taking a ballet class at your studio to learn the fundamentals of ballet in a warm and welcoming environment.
Trying a dance move or two in the safety of their own living room is great, but it’s just the tip of the iceberg – demonstrate through your videos that you can help them to become the real dancer they want to be.
If your video was shot in your studio (smart move), panning around the studio space at the end of the video will help newbies to get comfortable with the space. They’ve now seen an instructor in action, experienced a few minutes of a class in video form, and can imagine themselves dancing in your studio space. Directing them to your website or to give the studio a call at the end of your video will be met with much less resistance.
Try, “For more instructional videos and to view our studio’s class schedule, visit our website now!”. Their next logical step will be to click your link.
3. Video length
In this age of information and entertainment overload, viewers have short attention spans. If there is a solid reason for your video to be over a few minutes long, then by all means make it so. Otherwise, keep each video under a few minutes, and the shorter the better. Keep it entertaining and get to the core of your message.
If your video is too long, you’re in danger of losing your viewer’s attention. Practice brevity!
NOTE: If your focus is on monetizing your YouTube channel, videos that are at least 10 minutes long will take best advantage of YouTube’s monetization policy. Most dance studios won’t be able to draw the large numbers of viewers needed to monetize, however. The goal that makes more sense is to draw local viewers into your studio through your videos.
2. Get the most out of your videos
In addition to posting your videos on your dance studio’s YouTube channel (link this to the
YouTube channel post), make sure to always embed them on your studio’s website. If your website designer hasn’t set you up with a content management system, send her/him the video link or embed code, as you’ll need them to do it for you.
Embedding videos onto your dance studio website will:
a) increase the amount of time people spend on your site and
b) help turn viewers into customers by giving them prompts and easy access to registration
But don’t stop there! On Facebook, you can easily share your video with friends, students, and your community. You can tweet out a link to your video, post short versions to Instagram, and pin a video on Pinterest. Ask people to comment on your videos. Mention new videos in the studio after class and tell people how to find them.
People love to share videos, so ask them to do the so! Word-of-mouth and recommendations from friends and family are trusted by consumers more than any other source, and the sharing of your videos will be seen by others as a vote of confidence in your dance studio.
Using these strategies will help you create a buzz and get the most out of your videos.
And the Numero Uno secret for creating amazing dance studio videos?
1. Action, not perfection, is the goal
It’s fine to do a few takes to get a video version you like, but don’t try to be perfect! It will drive you crazy, take forever, and never be exactly the way you want it.
Instead, embrace the imperfections and laugh off the minor goofs. If your tangue gets tungled, you will be that much more relatable. If a 5-year-old in tap shoes runs by while you are recording, it will just showcase a delightful normal moment at the studio.
Of course glaring mistakes or problems should be corrected. Do your best, of course, and put out quality content, but that’s all you need to do. No one expects you to be Martin Scorsese when it comes to producing videos. Those minor ‘whoops’ can actually connect you with your audience, while also ensuring that video creation doesn’t become a major time investment.
So the #1 tip on creating dance studio videos is… Be thoughtful, but not obsessive! Action, not perfection, is the goal.
There is no time like the present!
Take up the challenge, and create a video plan for your dance studio. Schedule your first video session into your calendar. And then go for it! Waiting any longer gives the studio five blocks away that much more time to add and post their own videos.
Adding a video component to your dance studio’s web presence strengthens your brand, makes you seem more professional and trustworthy, and makes your information more digestible. It’s a great way to convey the power of your dance program and gives prospects more confidence to sign up for classes.
Take a deep breath and give it a go!
Best wishes to you & your studio,
P.S. This post is a part of the Dance Studio Video Marketing Handbook. Check it out for lots more juicy content & actionable tips!