8 items tagged "music business"

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Getting Started with Social Media: Does your Facebook page reflect your brand?

Category: ThePianoMag Blog
Created on Thursday, 09 May 2013 13:58

In 2012, the average attention span of a human was 8 seconds, down from 12 seconds in the year 2000. Even more disconcerting was the average attention span of a goldfish—9 seconds.

So here’s the challenge: If a potential student (or that student’s parent) stumbled upon your studio page on Facebook, would the images and content that individual sees reflect what your teaching is about? And even more than that, would that content make a favorable impression in just 8 seconds?

Here are some tips we consider as we continue developing our Facebook persona—

Reader Discussion: Balancing life and career

Category: ThePianoMag Blog
Created on Tuesday, 30 April 2013 18:59

The May/June 2013 Clavier Companion issue contained several articles concerning balancing our careers as music teachers with the other important aspects of our lives. We invite you to join the conversation ­and share your experiences regarding how you manage the many demands placed on music teachers. Below are some questions to consider:

How do you manage your daily, weekly, and seasonal schedules?

Do you have a time saving tip not included in one of the articles?

How has technology assisted your teaching life?

How do you help students learn to manage their time?

How do you decide what to include in your schedule as a music teacher?

Speed Up Your Studio Website by Optimizing Your Images

Category: ThePianoMag Blog
Created on Tuesday, 19 March 2013 18:28

In the previous articles we talked about how to start building a website for your studio or for yourself as a professional musician.  We also spoke about the complicated issue of choosing a web hosting provider and what you can expect from different vendors.  A third, equally important issue is for webmasters to create pages that are user friendly and that load using a minimum of resources.  Although the majority of people today have access to high speed Internet you, as a webmaster, still have to pay for the bandwidth and storage space on your server.  Learning some simple ways to improve the speed and reduce bandwidth costs is a very good thing to know.

No one likes to wait on a slow web page so when creating your website it is important to make sure you optimize your pages to load as fast as possible.  With almost any hosting plan you will be limited by your available bandwidth, and one of the ways many people waste that bandwidth is by uploading images that are either too big or have not been downsampled.  

To fix the first problem always edit your images before inserting them into a web page.  Use an image editor to manually resize them to the same size they will appear in the document.  On most pages this is probably less than 600x600 pixels but can be any size you choose that will fit well with your page.

Putting Your Studio Website on the Web

Category: ThePianoMag Blog
Created on Tuesday, 05 March 2013 13:25

So you have decided to build a studio web site, you have a template in mind for it, and you know what kind of information you want to include.  The next step is to decide where to host it.  A web hosting company provides you with storage space on a computer that is constantly connected to the Internet.  You can find hundreds of free web hosting providers, but the majority of these services are often slow, provide limited capabilities, and will most likely insert advertising into your pages to help them cover their costs.  

The next tier of web hosting providers would be a website builder such as Squarespace or any of the hundreds of other companies that provide website building utilities.  With these companies, for a monthly fee of five dollars or more, you will receive a set amount of storage space and access to a set of templates that you can quickly fill in with information about your studio.  They are easy to use, and fairly economical.  The downside to using these kinds of services is that if you later find you want to move to a different host you may have to start over from scratch.  Always check before investing too much of your time to see if your newly created site can be easily moved if you decide to switch providers.

Building Your Website: Your Own Online Virtual Studio

Category: ThePianoMag Blog
Created on Friday, 15 February 2013 13:41

Creating and Updating Your Online Persona

We live in a time when it is almost expected that every business have a web site or online storefront to compliment their brick and mortar store.  The same goes for music educators.  Those musicians and private studios that do not have their own website are missing out on getting leads from potential students as well simply making it easier for people to find and request your services.  Think about it a second, when was the last time you actually used a phone book to find something?  The majority of people now go straight to Google or another search engine when they want to research something.  If someone searches for “piano lessons in River City” the only way you will wind up there is if you have a well designed and optimized website in place.  So what do you need to do to not only get your studio online but also make it as fast and user friendly as possible?  Here are some suggestions.


Are You a Workaholic Piano Teacher?

Category: ThePianoMag Blog
Created on Thursday, 27 December 2012 14:22

As I reflect on changes I would like to make in the new year (aka New years resolutions), I’d like to share something I’ve noticed about piano teachers. At the risk of ruffling a few feathers, I’m just going to say it:

Piano teachers tend to be workaholics.

Perhaps that’s too much of a generalization and perhaps I think this because I tend to be one myself. But I think it’s safe to say that anyone who works from home has a tendency to be a workaholic. It’s just difficult to separate ourselves from our work when we work from home. Take a moment to do some inventory:

  • Do you frequently find yourself thinking about piano related things on the days you are not teaching?
  • Do you teach more than 5 days a week?
  • Do you have any large blocks of time during the week in which you are not thinking of music related matters?
  • Do you have any free evenings when you can go out with friends who are not self-employed?
  • Does your family complain that you work too much?

Thirty Thanksgiving Blessings

Category: ThePianoMag Blog
Created on Thursday, 22 November 2012 01:54

In the daily grind of teaching, planning recitals, selecting repertoire, dealing with communication, figuring out policies, and more, it’s helpful to take a step back and remember all the tremendous blessings we experience as independent music teachers. It didn’t take long to come up with a collection of thirty things I’m thankful I get to do as an independent music teacher. I hope you find renewed enthusiasm in your calling as a teacher as you read this list – and perhaps you will want to create your own, as well!

Getting Started with Social Media: 4 reasons to use it for your music business

Category: ThePianoMag Blog
Created on Friday, 26 October 2012 14:07

When I was working on my business degree, social media did not exist—AOL Instant Messenger was the latest craze, and there was a rumor that a device was on its way that would allow you to talk, surf the web, and organize your life all in one. Now, less than 10 years later, social media sites like Facebook and Twitter have changed the way we connect to each other, which has in turn changed the way businesses market to consumers.

Why is this important for pianists and piano teachers? I think of social media as a 21st century version of word-of-mouth advertising, and if you can use it effectively, social media can be a powerful way to increase your audience, whether your audience includes prospective students, prospective participants for an upcoming pedagogy workshop, or an actual audience of concert-goers for your next recital.