Take a look at this email I got from a prospective student:
Nothing out of the ordinary.
And in the next paragraph he asked me if we could have lessons in his office.
Again, nothing too unusual.
The only problems was, I was no longer a travelling teacher; to save time, I only accepted students who were willing to travel to my apartment for lessons.
And that’s what I told him.
Here’s his reply:
Although his office was in Pankrac, which meant one transfer and an extra hour travelling during rush hour, he was willing to do it just because of my reviews from students.
And he’s not the exception.
Whenever I meet a new student, I make it a point to ask him or her, Out of all the teachers you could have written to, why did you choose me?
And the answer, most of the time, is because of my testimonials.
The Most Important Part Of Your Profile?
Then I started to wonder, Is this the most important part of a teacher’s profile?
More important than your photo?
So one weekend I typed up a list of what I thought might be the most attractive features to have on a profile.
The list included:
• 5 years experience
• university degree in education or linguistics
• teacher training
• experience teaching in other countries
Then, over the course of the next week, I handed out copies to all my students and asked them to practice the third conditional. “If you were looking for an English teacher, what would be the most important factor?”
And every single one of them (except for one weirdo), told me “references.”
You Are A Product
In a way, you are a product on a shelf.
Your profile is online and right next to other profiles.
Students are looking at those profiles every day and making decisions.
And a hard decision between two equally qualified teachers suddenly becomes a no-brainer when one teacher has reviews and the other doesn’t. (Even one single review can push the decision in your favor when the other teacher has zero reviews.)
Think of your own shopping behavior.
How many times have you gone on Amazon to buy something and looked at the ratings before deciding to buy?
Or how many times have you checked out the reviews before seeing a movie?
Or looked at a hostel’s score on Tripadvisor?
Reviews and testimonials are there for a reason — they work.
In this study, products with reviews outsold products without reviews by 67%
The Easy Way To Get Good Reviews
Unfortunately, students don’t usually voluntarily write reviews for their teachers.
They even get an email from me asking them to leave a review.
But fortunately, the solution to their inertia is simple — you just gotta ask.
Students almost always say “yes.”
They’re usually glad to help.
It’s how I got 90% of my reviews.
Yes, it’s a little extra effort required from you.
But if you wanted the easy life, and the low pay and low freedom, you’d be teaching for the language schools.
So if you want your profile full of five-star reviews, you’re going to have to ask.
That’s the bad news.
The good news is, it doesn’t take much time, students are often glad to help, and I’m going to show you how to make the process even simpler.
Here we go…
The Easy Way To Get Reviews, Part One
First, Teach Good (And use real good grammar!)
That means, sow up on time, dress professionally, and have a plan.
In other words, look like a teacher and act like a teacher.
Second, Wait For The Right Moment
Is your student in a good mood?
Did something good just happen in his life?
Is he happy with his English progress?
Now is the time to strike!
Ask a leading question, such as, “Could you have done that before you started your lessons?” Or, “Can you notice a change in your English?” Or, “Do you feel more confident now that you’re having lessons?”
What you’re looking for is a mini-story with a before and after.
The best reviews give a glimpse of what a nightmare life was like before your lessons and what a dream it is now. And the more specific the better.
Testimonial A: “Bob is a great teacher. His lessons are very professional. I can recommend Bob”
Testimonial B: “I used to be so nervous before meeting my UK client that I would routinely barf out my morning sausage all over my 10,000 kc loafers. But after a few lessons with Bob, not only am I able to keep my breakfast down, I signed up the client for another million-dollar contract. Plus, my cancer went away. Highly recommend.”
Once you get this out of them, write it down, then add, “That’s great. Would you mind if I used that for one of my teacher testimonials?”
You should hear a “yes”, and after that, no need to continue. Your work is done for now.
To recap part one:
- Wait until your student is in a good mood
- Ask a question that gets him to think about and then tell you how his life is better now after your lessons
- Write down his story
- Ask if you can use it for a testimonial
The Easy Way To Get Reviews, Part Two
And Third, Follow Up
In the final part, you want to make it as easy as possible for your student. If you ask him to write the review, it probably won’t happen.
Instead, you want to write it for him. Get him to sign off on it. Then get him to simply copy and paste it onto your profile.
The email exchange can go like this:
Thanks for letting me use your testimonial. This will help other students feel comfortable contacting me so they can get the same results you got.
Here’s what I heard you say during our lesson:
Is that correct?
Let me know if you want to change anything.
(after you get their sign-off)
One more thing, could you please copy and paste it in Teacher Creature?
Here’s how you can do that:
- click on my profile
- click on “write a review”
- copy and paste your testimonial
And that’s it!
P.S. Here’s the testimonial again:…
How To Leave A Review (for students)
Sometimes you need to tell a student how to leave a review.
Here’s how it works, in case you need to explain it to them.
First, he/she needs to login.
Then click on your profile….
Then click on the big, blue “Write Review” button on your profile page.
And then paste the review that he/she said and you wrote and hit “send” and that’s it!
Congratulations! You Now Own An Asset
Have you ever read Rich Dad, Poor Dad?
If you haven’t, I’ll save you a few hours and give you the summary here.
Poor people buy liabilities.
Rich people buy assets.
After a $40,000 bonanza, poor dude will have a new car that he now has to pay insurance on, pay to maintain, and pay to put gas in.
While rich dude now owns a new apartment that brings him profit every month.
Think of your reviews as assets.
Yes, getting them will take a little work.
But once they’re up there on your profile, they’ll continue to work for you… continue to attract new students to your profile… and continue to make you money for months and years to come.
Get enough reviews from students, and you can put new students on autopilot as you consider raising your rates yet again.
Ready To Post Your Teacher Profile And Start Getting Students?
Register on Teacher Creature for $20 a month. Keep 100% of every dollar, euro or peso you earn.
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