Money Making

How to Start Teaching Piano Lessons Online in 2023

Teaching piano lessons online is a fantastic way to earn income while sharing your musical talents and knowledge with aspiring players globally.

Thanks to technology, it’s now possible to give piano lessons remotely from the comfort of your own home. This guide will cover everything you need to launch and run a successful online piano teaching business in 2023.

Let’s dive in!

Acquire Proper Music Credentials

While not always mandatory, having recognized music credentials like formal training, certifications, performance experience, and prior teaching experience can significantly help attract students initially.

Some credentials worth considering include:

  • A degree in piano performance or music education from an accredited institution
  • Completing exams with grading systems like ABRSM or RCM
  • Earning teaching certifications from organizations like MTNA
  • Gaining Suzuki training credentials
  • Performing professionally even at local venues
  • Teaching piano locally before going online

Highlight your credentials prominently on your website and in online profiles to build credibility.

Obtain Proper Equipment

Ensure you have the proper equipment to deliver a quality learning experience:

  • A weighted 88 key digital piano, or an acoustic piano in a quiet space without background noise
  • A USB microphone and webcam for clear audio and video during lessons
  • A laptop or computer with at least 8GB RAM and a high-speed internet connection
  • Mirroring software like Reflector3 to display your piano keyboard to students
  • Headphones to hear student playback without audio feedback

Having robust equipment improves the lesson experience for both you and students.

Pick Your Teaching Style and Specialties

Determine the style of piano instruction you will offer. Will you follow traditional methods like Suzuki, Orff, or classical conservatory training? Or take a more contemporary approach focused on modern theory and playing by ear?

Also decide any musical specialties like jazz, classical, rock, pop, blues, improvisation, composition, etc. Outline your philosophical approach and areas of expertise so potential students can assess if you match their goals.

Choose Your Online Lesson Platform

Carefully select which platform or combination of platforms you will leverage to conduct and manage your online lessons. Top options include:

Skype

Allows basic video chat lessons. Free to use but limited features.

Zoom

Very popular and functional for online lessons but no built-in payment processing.

TakeLessons

Handles scheduling, payment and marketing but take a commission.

Patreon

Useful for offering exclusive lessons and bonus content to supporters.

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YouTube

Can post free lessons to attract paid students but no integrated scheduling or payment.

Assess the pros and cons of each option for your teaching methodology and business model.

Set Your Pricing and Payment Terms

When first getting started, it’s smart to keep your lesson pricing affordable compared to competitors while you build up credibility and reviews. Consider introductory rates like:

  • $20-25 per 30 minute lesson
  • $35-40 per 45-minute lesson
  • $50-60 per 60-minute lesson

Accept payment via Venmo, PayPal, Google/Apple Pay, bank transfer, or integrate payment buttons into your website. Be very clear upfront about pricing, lesson lengths, and cancellation policies.

Create A Website To Showcase Your Services

A professional website that outlines your teaching philosophy, credentials, lesson options, pricing, and contact info is essential. Make sure your domain name contains keywords like your name and “piano lessons”.

Some top website builders include Wix, Squarespace, and WordPress. Keep site design clean and avoid overwhelming with too much content. Include:

  • Bio describing your musical background and achievements
  • Types of piano lessons you offer
  • Scheduling and pricing details
  • Testimonials from current and past students
  • An email sign-up form to build your mailing list
  • Answers to FAQs about your teaching approach

This gives prospective students a transparent view of your offerings.

Leverage Social Media

Promote your online piano lessons across platforms like:

YouTube – Post lessons, practice tips, and recital footage.

Facebook – Engage with piano and music teacher groups.

Instagram – Share short playing clips and behind-the-scenes of your practice.

TikTok – Upload short tutorials and compositions for a younger demographic.

Twitter – Follow and interact with prominent musicians and teachers.

Social media allows you to organically demonstrate your abilities and personality as a teacher to gain new students.

Create Promotional Materials

Design promotional assets like digital ads, flyers, and pamphlets outlining your piano lesson services and contact info.

Distribute these via:

  • Local music stores’ bulletin boards
  • Community centers
  • Local parenting and family resource centers
  • Assisted living facilities
  • Apartment lobbies
  • Music stores
  • Cafes frequented by creative types and parents

This provides localized promotion to attract students beyond just digital marketing.

Network with Local Music Teachers

Connect with other music teachers in your area, both online and offline. Discuss opportunities to cross-promote each other’s services and share student leads when specialty needs arise.

Forming positive local professional relationships avoids competing unnecessarily and benefits all instructors.

Offer Intro Lessons at a Discount

Encourage hesitant students by offering discounted rates for initial lessons and promising satisfaction or they don’t pay. This gives you a chance to demonstrate your teaching abilities.

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Once they see the value you provide, students will be more willing to pay your regular rates for ongoing lessons. Just be sure to over-deliver early on.

Provide Ongoing Value to Current Students

The key to maximizing student retention and recurring lesson sign-ups is providing phenomenal value well beyond the core lessons. Offer:

  • Targeted lesson plans tailored to their goals and current abilities
  • Additional practice resource guides, videos, and tools to bolster atat-home practicing
  • Ongoing feedback and encouragement on practice videos they submit
  • Options to enter recitals and performances to motivate practicing
  • Bonus group lesson events on special techniques and topics
  • Periodic student challenges, contests, and games related to lessons
  • Rewards for benchmark lesson milestones like certificates

This engages students, reinforces practicing, and boosts lesson enjoyment and continuity.

Develop a Referral Program

Satisfied students who achieve progress make ideal brand ambassadors. Create a formal referral program to incentivize referrals with rewards like:

– Discounted lesson bundles
– Free lessons
– Recital participation
– Entry into prize contests
– Piano learning swag like t-shirts and sheet music

This mutually benefits new student acquisition while making existing students feel valued.

Guest Post on Relevant Sites

Secure opportunities to publish articles or videos on popular music education blogs, lesson directories, and piano websites as guest contributors.

Provide useful, non-promotional tips focused on student success. Subtly reference your teaching expertise and include a bio blurb with your website link.

This allows you to demonstrate thought leadership while directing ideal prospective students your way.

Give Free Lessons to Build Case Studies

Much like offering introductory discounts, consider giving a few free lessons to select new students in exchange for testimonials, video recordings, and results they achieve.

You can use these case studies on your website, in advertisements, and across social media to inspire potential customers with real-world success stories.

Publish Helpful YouTube Videos

Posting free educational YouTube videos on topics like practice techniques, playing posture, music reading, and simplified song tutorials is a great way to showcase your abilities to prospective students seeking self-guided learning content.

Videos also help boost your authority and trust, while enabling your channel to rank for valuable student keyword searches. Just provide a light pitch for your paid offerings at the end.

Run Targeted Paid Ads

Allocate part of your lesson revenue to small paid advertising campaigns on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Google to attract local students.

Target ads geographically and based on interests like piano, music lessons, keyboards, and classical music. This expands your reach beyond just organic methods.

Offer Bonus Group Classes

In addition to standard individual lessons, consider holding occasional group classes on special topics students would benefit from like music reading, ear training, and performance techniques.

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Charge per student or offer as a bonus to existing pupils. This provides added value while generating incremental revenue from new students that may convert to private lessons.

Create Free Printable Practice Resources

Compose free downloadable PDFs and printable sheets with chord charts, finger position diagrams, practice logs, blank music staff paper, and more.

Make these available on your site in exchange for an email address. This provides useful tools for students while growing your subscriber list to market future paid offerings and events.

Partner with Local Music Stores

Propose cross-promotional partnerships with nearby piano retailers and music stores. They could display your flyers and recommend you as a teacher to customers who purchased keyboards.

In return, you can refer students to their stores for piano purchases and sheet music. This establishes an ongoing win-win relationship.

Cultivate an Email List

Building a permission-based email list should be a top priority. Use your website, free lessons/resources, contests, and social channels to capture emails and grow your subscriber list.

Send regular value-packed emails with lessons, tips, resources, and special deals. Email is much more effective for student retention than social media alone.

Set Up Automated Systems

Streamline administrative tasks through automation and tools like:

  • Online calendar booking for students to schedule lessons 24/7
  • Email marketing and CRM to manage outreach
  • Payment bots like PayPal.me to collect lesson fees
  • Video hosting to easily deliver lesson replays

This allows you to focus energy on delivering exceptional lessons rather than logistics.

Consider Teaching Niche Music Styles

While classical piano instruction has broad appeal, offering specialized lessons in niche music styles can differentiate you.

Explore teaching pop, rock, jazz, blues, gospel, or modern techniques like improvisation and playing by ear. Niche specialization attracts ideal students.

Follow Industry Best Practices

Stay up to date on music education trends and standards to ensure your teaching methods reflect industry best practices. Join professional organizations, continue taking courses, attend conferences, and connect with other successful online piano teachers to keep your ills sharp.

Remain Flexible and Adaptable

Be open to continually tweaking your lesson style, offerings, and platforms based on student feedback and results. The online teaching market evolves fast. So remaining flexible and quickly adapting to student needs and technical innovations is key.

There you have it – the complete guide to launching a profitable online piano teaching business from scratch in 2023! Follow these tips to successfully share your musical passion while monetizing your skills.

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