Are You Delighted By or Disgruntled With Your Studio’s Current Email Service?
If you’re reading this post, it’s probable you’re already aware of the power of email marketing for dance studios. Here on Dance Studio Breakthrough, you’ll find a number of posts on the topic, including general tactics and also guidance on lead magnets and email welcome sequences.
To make the magic happen, though, you need a user-friendly email service – one that can grow with you & your studio (and won’t cause you to pull your hair out).
What’s your email service situation?
- Are you happily using Mailchimp or another email service? (Keyword “happily”?) Then you’re good to go!
- Are you frustrated with your current email service and looking for a perfect alternative? Then I recommend ConvertKit!
In this post I’ll cover the features, benefits, and pricing of ConvertKit to help you decide if it’s the right email service for your dance studio. If you do decide to use ConvertKit, you’ll find on this blog a lot of specific, nitty-gritty help on setting it up for optimal use, setting up tags, segments, and automations so you can unlock the full power of email marketing.
Why do I focus on ConvertKit? Well, logistically, I don’t have the time to learn a number of different email services in order to post about them all. That’s time better spent on writing about other topics related to dance studio marketing, dance studio branding, and dance studio website strategies. And also, well… I don’t have the desire to spend my time that way. I’m a huge fan of ConvertKit and frankly don’t want to use anything else!
If you’re ready for a move to an email service that’s a better fit for you, regardless of the one you choose, I’d recommend switching at the beginning of your foray into email marketing, so you don’t have to move the whole kit & kaboodle to another service in the future! I learned this lesson the hard way. 🙁
Without further ado, let’s get started!
What Is ConvertKit & Why Should I Care?
If you’re not currently growing a mailing list for your dance studio, I encourage you to begin doing so, stat! To be clear, I’m not talking about your list of current dancers and parents, to whom you may send monthly studio newsletters. Instead, I’m talking about a list you’ll grow to gather fresh leads in your community. This is a method that successful dance studios use to reach out to and connect with their target audience and increase enrollment at an affordable cost.
Why email? Why not double down on social media?
Social media channels can be great for outreach, but email is a more effective sales and communications channel. Email marketing allows you to build relationships with leads and your dance families, both present and past. It’s your opportunity to speak directly to them in their inbox, at a time that is convenient for them. Coupled with the right messaging, email can become one of your dance studio’s most impactful marketing channels.
So if you’re not currently growing a mailing list for your dance studio – it’s a smart next move!!
What is ConvertKit?
ConvertKit is an email service provider (ESP). Essentially, it’s a technology service that lets you send email campaigns to a list of subscribers.
There are so many email service options out there, and each has it’s own advantages and disadvantages. I was a Mailchimp customer for many years and often found myself super frustrated when working in it, but there are people who use & love it.
What’s best for you will really depend on your dance studio and goals, but I now use ConvertKit and am a Big Fan.
Let’s dive in and take a closer look at what you can do with ConvertKit:
Collect New Mailing List Subscribers
- Collect email subscribers anywhere on your dance studio’s website through embeddable forms and/or popups.
- Quickly create a custom, responsive landing page to collect email addresses. ConvertKit automatically formats your landing pages for various devices, such as desktop computers and mobile phones.
- Create rules and visual automations with ConvertKit, so that when a subscriber takes a particular action, you can send them pre-defined emails, assign them a tag, or add them to a segment.
Send Email Sequences and One-Time Emails
- Send a series of prewritten emails automatically to a specific segment of subscribers on your list, triggered by a specific event or action, so you can guide them to take a specific action (ie: registering for your summer programs).
- Send one-time emails such as your studio newsletter to your subscribers on a specific date (you can also exclude groups, such as those who are not yet enrolled in classes).
- Display different text or images in your emails, according to your customer segmentation.
- Use the ready-to-go email designs, or create your own custom templates.
Learn about Your Readers
- Try out different subject lines for your emails using A/B testing. ConvertKit automatically determines the winner based on their respective open rates.
- Learn how often your readers are completing actions such as opening your emails and clicking on links, through ConvertKit’s reporting/analytics/ROI tracking tools.
- Segment your subscribers into different categories (similar to but more powerful than other programs’ “lists”) allowing you to send them emails that are better tailored to their child’s age group and interests.
ConvertKit Pricing (and Discount!🙂)
I am admittedly biased about ConvertKit. Quite frankly, it was a relief to discover the service and to say buh bye to Mailchimp. ConvertKit is so much more USER FRIENDLY than Mailchimp in my experience, which is the #1 most important thing to me (because who has time to waste wrestling with an email service?).
ConvertKit offers two paid plans, Creator and Creator Pro. I recommend the Creator plan (the level just above the free level) for most dance studios.
Why? Mainly, because the Creator level gives you access to sequences and automations, which allow you to easily set up a welcome series to introduce your studio to new subscribers, and/or an email series leading up to summer that will encourage enrollment. The automated funnels and sequences is where the real power of email marketing lies.
The Creator plan starts at $15/month for up to 300 subscribers (if you pay annually, it works out to only $9/month). This is perfect for studios who are just getting up to speed with email marketing, as well as for new studios.
The cost of the plan depends upon the number of subscribers or contacts you have, so the price increases as you grow your mailing list (it’s $29 per month for 1000 subscribers).
All the plans offer free migration to help you switch from your current tool.
Free Trial + Discount!
If you’re wanting to try out ConvertKit, here are two ways to save money with ConvertKit discounts:
- If you use this ConvertKit promotional link, you can fully test out ConvertKit free of charge for up to 14 days. You’ll be asked to answer some quick ‘n easy setup questions first.
- When it’s time to pony up, you’ll get an additional ConvertKit discount by paying annually instead of by month. You’ll get 2 months free by going this route!
You can see detailed ConvertKit pricing on this page.
Get 2 months FREE if you sign up for the annual plan! 🙂
ConvertKit & Email Marketing Resources
Resources to Help You Get Started
I’m creating a series of blogposts and videos to help dance studio owners get started with ConvertKit. You can bookmark this page and check back to see new resource additions (or better yet, sign up for the Dance Studio Breakthrough newsletter below and get all the juicy tips & tricks sent to your inbox).
In the meanwhile, here is a wonderful series of videos to help you get started with ConvertKit.
If you’re wanting to take advantage of email marketing for your dance studio, start by considering which email service will serve you best as you continue to grow your business.
If you need a fresh start and have not yet done so, don’t forget to sign up for your FREE 14 day trial of ConvertKit here.
Best wishes to you & your studio!