Being a qualified driving instructor is no longer as easy as it used to be. Back in the day all you needed to do was submit your driving school to Yellow Pages and run a regular advert in your local newspaper and the voilà – new pupils arrive.
However, that is no longer the case if you want regular enquiries for driving lessons.
The quality of driving instructors has dropped and the effort required to gain the trust of potential pupils has risen dramatically. This is how you can market yourself and get new pupils for your driving school:
What’s Required to Gain New Pupils for Your Driving School
First things first.
You need to understand that not everything on this list will work. Every instructor is different and each recommendation is certainly a case of trial and error – finding out what works best for you.
If you really want to get more pupils for your driving school, then you need to be willing to ditch the prehistoric advertising ideas and come to terms with exactly what is happening in 2017 and beyond.
Step 1 – Who is the most common pupil and where are they searching for lessons?
If you want new pupils – you need to understand your target audience. Ask yourself a few of these questions to help you get started:
- What is the typical age of a new driver?
- How will my pupil be looking for driving lessons?
- What is going to convince my potential new pupils to join?
There are so many more questions that you could be asking, however, we have found that these tend to provide a lot of really useful information.
If you’re unable to find the answers that you are looking for, consider a market research campaign. Test your audience and understand exactly what they are after.
We have found that new drivers tend to be:
- Between 17 and 23 years old
- Referred to us via social media, friend recommendations and Google
- Looking for the best value for money and the quickest pass rate
With these results we are able to take action and start gaining new pupils for our driving school.
If you haven’t already, create a business Facebook page for your driving school. Make sure that you complete all of the details to the highest possible standard – filling in details such as your website address, teaching times, lessons prices, any offers and reviews from previous students.
Once you have that set up – consider running a paid advertisement. Make sure that you set up the ad to target your coverage area(s) and account that fall into your driving schools demographic.
Step 2 – The importance of your website
If you don’t have an up to date website in 2017, then I’m afraid that you are destined to fail – simple.
Your website is your shop window and if pupils happen to stumble across it and think that your not up to the job, then they will never make an enquiry.
To make sure that your site is up to date and operating well, make sure that you have done the following:
- Make your website responsive (works on mobiles, desktops & tablets)
- Ensure that the information is easy to find and clear
- Provide relevant call to actions (make your visitors make a decision)
- Provide the right information, with prices on lessons
- Create content that your pupils will want to share
Being on page one of Google is a must if you want to get enquiries and new pupils for your driving school. We have a number of instructors offering driving lessons in Slough that constantly get new pupils on a weekly basis simply because our website is well maintained and performing well.
Step 3 – Consider joining a franchise
A driving school franchise is the quickest route to gaining new pupils for your driving school.
There’s no need to worry about advertising as it’s all completed for you, saving you a considerable amount of money before you even get started.
With a franchise, everything is exactly the same as it would be with your own driving school – the only difference being you may have to use a roof sign when taking on one of the franchise pupils.
There are so many options available to you if you want to go down this route.
If you do want to join a franchise, just make sure that they can provide the following:
- Regular volume of pupils for your areas
- No contract
- Optional trial
- The option to use your own car
- Affordable payment options that suit you
Many of the driving lessons in Burnley that are completed by our instructors have come to us through the franchise and we are consistently providing them with pupils weekly.
Are You Ready for More Pupils?
If you’re still completing your driving instructor training – are you even ready to start taking on more pupils?
Unfortunately, a lot of driving schools try to operate on a trainee instructor licence in a bid to offer cheaper lessons. Not only is this wrong, but it effects the quality of the driving lesson for the pupil.
If they feel they’re not getting their monies worth, then they are going to start looking elsewhere for better lessons and may even consider paying a little more to guarantee it.