Nowadays many people are looking for music lessons online. This guide provides great tips of you are an artist hoping to start providing lessons in your spare time.
There is a demand for music lessons online because not everyone has the time or money to take in-person music classes even if they want to learn. Because of this, this an excellent avenue for a musician to earn some money on the side, or, as a primary source of income. If you already offer in-person music lessons, you can expand online and reach an audience outside your geographical area. It does not have to be that time-consuming – pre-recorded lessons mean you will not have to spend one-on- one time with each student. If this sounds like something that might interest you, here is how to get started.
The Basics of Starting Your Own Online Business
Starting a purely online business is like starting a regular business in many ways. One thing you need to remember is that any income you earn this way will likely be subject to taxation. It is therefore important to understand your tax burden so you do not get any nasty surprises come tax time. You also have to consider the logistics of what you will offer in your lessons. For example, piano and guitar are popular and easy to learn online via pre-recorded videos, but something like singing requires one-on- one interaction.
Pre-Recorded or Live Music Lessons Online?
You will have to decide at the beginning whether you will offer pre-recorded music lessons for a fee, or live, one-on- one instruction. It is also possible to offer both. For example, you may have a video lecture series where your students can learn at their own pace and without fear of judgment. This is the preferred learning method of shyer individuals who may be uncomfortable making the mistakes that come along with learning in front of a stranger. You can also offer live, remote, one-on- one lessons over Skype or a similar program.
Creating Learning Resources
Like any teacher, you will have to create lesson plans. This is true whether you wish to offer pre- recorded video lessons or one-on- one sessions. This means you will have to consider how music is usually taught and figure out how that process can be improved. For online learning, you will want to supplement these plans with downloadable sheet music. There are plenty of music programs, including free ones, that allow you to write your own sheet music and save it in easily downloadable .pdf documents. Other documents you can offer include practice time tracking sheets, helpful notes or tips on different lessons or concepts, games and more.
Setting Up Your Website
For an entirely online business, it is no exaggeration that your website is the single most important part of your digital presence. For that reason, it is generally recommended that you seek out a professional web developer to design it. Make sure all relevant information is front and center, such as your experience as a musician, your contact information, who you cater to and the services you offer. It also needs to be visually attractive and easy to navigate. Multimedia, such as images and videos, can be used to enhance the site and show what you do.
Marketing Music Lessons Online
In essence, you are running a small business. And that means you are going to need a strategy for getting your name out there and finding customers. No matter how small your business, you will need a marketing plan and a marketing budget. Online advertising, such as Google AdWords or Facebook Advertising, can be helpful, as can content marketing. Content marketing can include running a blog that has interesting and helpful information on the topic of learning music. This content can demonstrate your professional knowledge, drive more traffic to your site and hopefully result in more students.
Collecting payments is one of the most gratifying, and frustrating, parts of owning a business. Most of the time, your customers will pay without issue. In other cases, there may be problems. Decide on what payment methods you will accept. For a purely online business, credit cards and third-party payment options, such as PayPal, are usually your best option. You will want a good accounting software that can send invoices and reminders to your clients as well. Be willing to offer payment plans for clients who are having a difficult time paying, and consider requiring partial payment upfront.
British Solomon is a contributing writer and media specialist for FreeJazzLessons. She regularly produces
content for a variety of music and lifestyle blogs.