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Make your messages work for you!

How a headline can help grow your business and grab attention


A headline does not just mean a snappy opening in a newspaper.

We all tend to skim ads, leaflets or websites, only paying attention to the headlines to see if the offer is worth the investment of our time to read it in full.

On average, 8 out of 10 people will read headline copy, but only 2 out of 10 will read the rest.

What words are you choosing to direct people’s attention to your dance studio or business? Turning a browser into a reader is the first step in increasing your business, and making a great first impression is essential.

Often it just takes a few moments of thought to change a sentence around and make it really stand out. Think about what sort of reaction you want to provoke and the actions you want people to take; you need to convince them to read your ad or leaflet and then come along to an open day, pick up the phone, visit your website or email for more information. That might seem like a lot to ask from one little ad, but the right message can be very powerful.

Headlines can impact your website, local newspaper ad, direct mail postcards, fliers and email newsletters, and even your class or registration sign-up form. Think about what you want this particular piece of marketing to achieve. Do you want to grow your email list? Then be sure to ask people for their email address at every opportunity.

A testimonial or a quote can also make a very effective headline. Give a reader something they can relate to. Including a positive comment from someone you currently work with might convince a potential student more than anything you could ever say. For example: “I had always wanted to learn to dance properly and this ballroom class was so much fun. I made new friends and now I feel fitter and much more confident in social situations.” Incorporating topical news and information or statistics can also create an immediate impression. Perhaps there’s a new Government-led keep-fit initiative at local schools. Think about how you could use that to highlight the health benefits of dance and encourage parents to set a good example to their kids by starting classes themselves. 

Try out some different messages to see what works most effectively. And make sure you keep records of what works and what doesn’t, so that you don’t return to a way of marketing that wasn’t attracting new students to your school. And don’t forget to keep it short and sweet. You can always use a longer sentence as a secondary headline that relates to the opening headline and leads into each other to guide the reader down the page or ad towards an action point. For example: 

Love to dance?

Get fit, have fun and look amazing on the dance floor 

Whether you’re a complete beginner or already have a few moves up your sleeve, we’ve got a dance class to suit all ages and abilities. Come along to our open day on 4th March to have a go and see what we have to offer! Visit www.istd.org or call +44 (0)207 377 1577 for more information. 

For more tips, check out our article on how you can look at the different types of students you might attract to your school and some of the most effective ways to get them in the door – and continue dancing for life!

Sarah O’Hanlon 

this article.