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Sloan School of Music 1

A Full-Service Local SEO Campaign For a New Music School in Maryland

The Story of Sloan School of Music

Sloan School of Music approached us in its most nascent phase. They had a team, a business plan and outline of how their company would be, but they lacked a logo, visual brand, and subsequently any sort of online presence. We were happy to contribute our skills to help establish their business, build a strong visual identity and market their new music school throughout Maryland.

Branding & Web Design

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The Challenge

SSoM was aiming to be a competitor in the music sphere — a space that is already populated with dozens of other small-scale businesses and a couple of large-scale ones with locations all across the country. They had a business plan and a vision for their stores that would make them stand out. Now, they needed an identity and web presence to match. 

Since SSoM came to us with no visual identity, we had to start with their most basic visual marker: their logo.

The Solution

Led by our creative director, our designers implemented a theoretical approach to the new brand and applied the Swiss-style design approach to both the logo and the website. There is an entire theoretical logic behind the Swiss principles of design, but they boil down to this: objective typographic that supports readability. 

Sloan School of Music 2

Determining the brand’s voice to be friendly, fun, and bold, we spiced up the sterility of the Swiss approach by exaggerating the typography and making it large and loud. We then juxtaposed the heavy, bold structure of the typography with a series of loose line drawing illustrations to visually convey the open and friendly learning style of the brand. 

Upon seeing the logo and landing on the website, there’s no doubt about where you are; the typography and visual style leap out at you and beckon you to take part in a unique learning experience.

Mobile, Tablet, and User Friendly

Our lead developers stepped in to put on the finishing touches after the design process was complete. An interactive calendar, and live updated social media page makes this website user friendly and transparent across all platforms. With their newly developed, SEO-friendly website in place, we were positioned to unfold their Local SEO campaign — a strategy that would help Sloan School of Music secure a major portion of market share in Hagerstown, Maryland, and later establish a second location in Urbana.

Local SEO Campaign

Local Search Relevancy

Our Local SEO campaign strategy revolved around building authority for high-intent local keywords by means of regular content publishing and aggressive backlink acquisition. 

Our content production ranged from service area pages, instructor bios, and authoritative blog topics on equipment and instrumental guidance. In most instances, we included geographic mentions to further develop influence in our target locations.

This content strategy delivered great results, most notably page 1 rankings for branded keywords and high-intent local searches, such as “music store hagerstown md,” “guitar store hagerstown md,” and “music lessons md.”

Sloan School of Music GMB Profile on Mobile
Sloan School of Music DIrection Local Stats

Direction Local

To further establish Sloan School of Music as the choice resource for instruments and music lessons, we optimized their location listings in our local SEO software, Direction Local

We used Direction Local to sync their Google My Business information with a network of local business directories, maps apps, reviews sites, and voice search tools most commonly used by consumers.

This dramatically increased the amount of accurate business information displayed across the web, which has resulted in 77.5k Google Search and Google Maps impressions for their Hagerstown location since signing up in February 2021, 6.8k total actions taken on their Google My Business profile in the form of calls, website visits, and requests for directions, and 64.8k appearances in direct, discovery, and branded searches. 

The Impact

The near-immediate success we generated for Sloan School of Music’s Hagerstown location had such massive ROI that they were able to open a second location in Urbana, MD. When they established their second location in March 2021, we immediately optimized a second location profile in Direction Local to facilitate brand awareness and engagement. Since March, they have generated 20.7k Google Maps and Google Search impressions, appeared in 16.7k search queries, and generated 1.1k actions on their local business profile. 

Here’s what Sloan School of Music’s Co-Founder, Anthony Sloan, had to say on Clutch [read full review]:

“Direction’s work has enabled the company to secure more than 500 leads through our site. They’ve also been able to integrate the logo in all of the branding materials. Thorough and patient, their ability to translate our ideas and vision enables them to establish a strong partnership.”

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