Dec 21, 2017
To grow your business, you need to know how to be found by those who have a need for your services. Check out these strategies for getting in front of your future clients.
*This article updates Clark’s earlier post on how to advertise your business.
It’s a basic law of business: every tutor needs clients. You’ve got your material ready and lessons planned – now it’s time to bring in the students and hard-earned dollars.
Save yourself a trip to Madison Avenue by taking to heart Clark’s tips on advertising your fantastic tutoring services to the world at large:
1. Digital. Digital. Digital.
It’s the 21st century and billions of people call the Internet their second home. Facebook alone has 214 million users in the United States and it’s more than just photos of cats and dogs they’re after.
These are your allies in reaching a wide audience of potential clients and referrals.
Savvy tutors will build a digital presence to attract new clients, keep tabs on old clients (who can refer business your way), and network with the wider tutoring community.
Create a unique profile that contains information relevant to you and your tutoring business:
Offer a brief personal biography with the vitals: What’s your academic background? Include any awards and honors you might have received over the years that demonstrates your knowledge and ability. If you have past tutoring experience, share your success stories, like the time you launched a D-student onto the Honor Roll, or improved students’ SAT scores.
What subjects and age ranges do you tutor? What's your availability and general pricing information for a typical session?
Be upfront about any limitations, too. If you’re in Brooklyn, can you take on students in the Bronx? If not, let people know your travel radius.
Remember: parents (and adult students) want to feel comfortable making the choice to retain your services. The more information you offer, and tailor it to client concerns, the more likely clients will reach out. And you’ll save yourself and potential clients bumps further down the road.
For more on the digital game, check out HubSpot’s article on using social media and paid digital advertising.
2. Polish up that resume!
Your resume is one of your first introductions, so make sure every word counts to make the right impression on potential clients.
If tutoring isn’t your full-time gig, consider dedicating a separate resume specifically for your tutoring. That way, you have a resume targeting your intended audience, and one for those other side hustles.
Specify your skills and qualifications. You want potential clients to understand exactly how they translate into your tutoring prowess.
Keep it short and sweet. U.S. resumes tend to be 1 page maximum. When it comes to detailing your professional experience, make every bullet point concise and informative. There’s no space to waste!
3. Business Cards.
Business cards may just be the last little bits of paper anyone cares to handle. They are essential tools in your advertising arsenal and a simple way to provide the basics to potential clients or referrers when you’re out and about. What’s more, they communicate professionalism and may give you that critical edge over the competition.
Go for a simple but eye-catching design and include at least your name, email address, and phone number. Oh, and don’t forget to emphasize you’re a tutor!
4. Market yourself!
Not everything old needs to go the way of carbon copies and cassette tapes (oh wait…) – so make sure to include flyers in your overall marketing strategy.
You can post flyers around your neighborhood and on public bulletin boards. Don’t forget to check out posting boards at any local universities and community colleges.
Consider taking out an ad in your local newspaper’s Classifieds, too. Older clients (like parents and adult learners) still flip through the handy local newspaper when they’re hunting for services.
5. Maintain an email list.
Keeping clients in the loop about your tutoring services is a great way to stay on people’s minds and spread the word. Consider emailing local schools and student centers to let them know about your tutoring: you can send along a brief summary about yourself and links to your social media profiles for more information.
6. Partner up.
Fellow tutors are a tutor’s competition – but also potentially your best opportunity to work and learn together. Not only do you stand to gain a friend, you can share best practices, offer each other feedback about teaching styles and business strategies, and refer eachother if you focus on different subject matter.
Through expanding your network, you’ll have ready access to useful information about schools, tutoring companies, and parent groups in your area that could benefit your long-term business goals.
7. Offer content.
Make a name for yourself through content. Tutors blog, write up articles on Medium and LinkedIn on issues relevant to students and education generally. Some educators even upload YouTube lectures for digital classes.
The more you publish, the more potential clients have at their fingertips a clear demonstration of what you’re capable of.
Some tutors go the extra mile and use swag – decals and school supplies – to get their name out there. That’s one way to literally get your name under people’s noses.
8. Word of Mouth.
OK, this is less a tip and more a timely reminder. Reputation is everything and a parent or student gushing over your fantastic tutoring services remains the best way to get your name and services out there.
Even when the going gets tough – if you're dealing with problem clients or make mistakes along the way (which is OK, too) – remember this simple rule: maintain a professional and amicable relationship with clients old and new, and business is sure to follow.