Starting a business

How to start a business teaching art and dance classes for kids

Dreaming of turning your passions into a business? You’re in the right place! Starting a kid’s art business or dance studio can be a fulfilling way to live your dream. Whether you’re a visual or performing artist, we’ll help you get started. 

Discover what you’ll need to teach dance and art in-person and online — opening your teaching opportunities up to limitless possibilities. 

1. Create a business plan

Once you’re ready to launch your business, you’ll need a plan. There is no right or wrong way to write a business plan; however, following a template may help you stay organized if you’re starting from scratch. 

A traditional business plan should have the following pieces: 

  • Executive Summary: A simple summary of your business and its mission
  • Company Description: A longer description of your company and who and how you serve your community
  • Market Analysis: Research and findings focused on the demand for your business as well as competitors in your community and online. 
  • Organization and Management: Explain who you employ, their role in your company, and who is responsible for what. If you don’t have employees yet, you can explain your many roles here.
  • Services and products you offer: This section is for considerations like what do you teach? Do you sell any products like art supplies or dancewear? 
  • Marketing and sales plan: Add details on how you plan to market your business here. You can evolve this section over time, but we suggest using it to organize your marketing efforts. 
  • Financial projections: This section is for considerations like: how much money did you save or borrow to start this business? How much money do you expect to make? 

When your business plan is complete, you’ll have a concrete path to starting your business! This business plan can also be helpful if you are taking out a small business loan, or having outside investment. It shows that you are serious, have professional experience in your field, and a path to profitability. 

2. Prepare to multitask

Owning a business requires wearing many hats. To get ready, make sure you have skills in the following areas:

  • Teacher: If you’re a teaching artist already, this role will probably come the most naturally. Be prepared to create your studio schedule, step in to lead classes, and inspire passion in children. If you are looking for guidance on teaching art to children, including how to write a lesson plan and examples of lessons, check out our guides! Likewise, if you are interested in teaching dance to children, we have a guide for you with dance lesson plans and activities.
  • Business Manager: Put on your business hat! You’ll need to be prepared to work in every department of your studio, including accounting, scheduling, communications, customer service, and — yes — teacher. 
  • IT Professional: Whether your digital journey involves having a beautiful website or teaching online, you’ll need to get comfortable with technology. Make sure you have enrollment software and feel comfortable using technology like Zoom to teach a class. 
  • Role Model: You’re about to start nurturing little hearts and minds through the arts! Remember that the children who take class at your future studio will look up to you as a role model! Make sure to set a good example, always!

If you feel like you need practice in these areas, you can investigate taking classes on professional development websites like edX and Lynda

3. Find a location and hire a team

Whether you’re looking to learn how to launch a children’s dance business or art business, you’ll need to decide what sort of location you’ll want to teach in and who your teachers will be. When thinking about the kind of space you need for a studio, consider if you’re teaching online, in-person, or a combination of both. In-person classes will require more space and online classes will require strong wifi! 

Some examples of locations you could use are standard commercial real estate, building lobbies, parks and recreation facilities like classrooms and outdoor parks, schools, and shared spaces with other businesses like gyms or YMCAs. 

When you begin to hire a team, you need to write down a job description to help you find the perfect teachers for your business. Once you’re ready to start hiring, you can advertise open roles in your community and online

4. Get a payment processing and registration system

Once you’ve written a business plan and decided on a location, you’ll need a way to collect student registrations and payments in-person and online. Partnering with good registration software allows you to break up with manual processes, cumbersome forms, or outdated links on your website. Good registration software also makes it easy for parents to discover and book activities with your business again and again. 

If you’re starting a children’s activity business — whether that be in art, dance, music, or any other subject — Sawyer Tools has everything you need to make registration easy for your team and your customers. See why thousands of businesses love Sawyer Tools and why you will too. 

5. Connect with your community

Once you have a business plan, location, a team, and powerful registration software, you’ll be ready to start teaching. Our best advice is to connect with your community whenever and however you can. Consider joining local parent Facebook groups, partnering with your local business bureau, offering free trials, and consider hosting free events to get the word out. Connecting with your community is key to unlocking success for years to come! 

Think of the person who inspired your love of the arts. What did you love about them? Do they live in your community? If not, is there a business in your community that you admire? The best way to learn the ins-and-outs of running a business is by learning from someone who is doing the job that you want. 

If and when you pursue finding a business mentor, make sure to take good notes on how they structure their business, how they streamline business operations, how money flows in-and-out of their company, who they employ, how they reach new customers, and how they build relationships within their community. You’ll need to think about how you’ll accomplish these many tasks. 

We can’t wait to see how your business grows! To get more information on launching your art or dance business for kids, connect with a member of our team today

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