There are many resources at your disposal when searching for information on how to start a tutoring business; We have discussed in a previous article the pros and cons of a small-town tutoring business versus a turnkey franchise operation .
If you are interested in a franchise opportunity there are some great resources on franchiseclique, and most quality franchisors will assist you through the following steps.
We have not discussed, to date, the opportunities there are for a ‘sole provider’ or a home based business working with a few key tutors. The fundamental decisions you will need to make regarding formulating your ideas into action are covered in a post submitted by one of our regular contributors, SK Tilton in the post 9 Easy Steps on how to start a tutoring business.
Tutoring is in high demand, it is possibly the most visible indicator that parents have lost faith in the public school system, be it the fault of the individual school or central government is almost irrelevant in this situation, parents are looking for tutoring in their droves. NCLB and the SES tutoring program does allow, in my opinion, certain students to fall through the cracks and I’m not talking about ‘at risk’ students.
I’m talking about students who are on grade or just below and attend a school that does not meet Title 1 criteria. I’m also referring to gifted students and the children of parents whom have very high expectations of their kids; all of these programs have been forgotten or deliberately ignored in a school’s push to meet Adequate Yearly Progress. These are the students whose parents cannot afford private school, but do have disposable income for additional help.
But this is a post on how to start a tutoring business not why to start one and the single most important message of how to start a tutoring business is marketing. If you are thinking of setting up a home based business you will need to pay more attention to marketing your business and yourself to find those parents, as you will not have a visible operation that will create familiarity and trust. A home based business will surely save you a lot of capital expenditure on property and equipment but you will spend more time on ‘getting out there’ and don’t forget to check your insurance to make sure you are covered to tutor in your or your student’s home.
Back to marketing, obviously creating a website is a ‘no brainer’ these days, but it is USELESS unless you are able to drive the right people to it. By the right people I mean parents who require tutoring for their children.
Produce a hybrid resume type brochure for yourself if you will be a sole provider or an attractive brochure if you will be hiring tutors and approach your local school counselors and make sure they have plenty of them to give out to interested parents and make sure your website address is on there.
Likewise try to display your brochures in locations frequented by children and parents; clubs, sports & park facilities etc. Sound obvious? You would be amazed how many tutors do not do this. Think about having this brochure designed and printed professionally, it is 2012 and we do judge on appearance.
Once at the website make sure you feature everything your prospective customers need to decide on ‘you’, including general pricing and the ability to book a first session. Most parents will do this late at night after the kids have gone to bed, possibly after a bad homework session and they will not call you at that time, unless of course you tell them they can. By the next day, it is too late. Catch them in the middle of the night by giving them everything they need to commit to you.
Use the ‘If you need a reason’ posts on The Tutor Report (find them under Monthly Promotional Ideas in the Categories menu on the right hand side) for additional ideas for monthly marketing campaigns; yes you should be doing marketing that often. You should be doing marketing every day!
Check back soon for more articles in this series of ‘How to Start a Tutoring Business’.
Oases Online Data Management Software for your new Tutoring Business: Find Out More