This is a quick shout out to all you studio owners and managers out there who are looking for some simple and savvy solutions to improve your yoga studio*.

Now, I am sure January is one of the busiest times of the year as newbies roll into the studio with their New Year’s resolutions, but that doesn’t mean you can’t continuously work towards improving your client intake and retention. In fact, a friend of mine was asking me to condense my top three recommendations for levelling up a studio operation just the other day.

Now of course every studio set up will have its own quirks, particular circumstances regarding venue/location and a whole host of other variables that make it difficult to generalise. As someone in our private mastermind group commented the other day – “There is so much to think about!

And there is!

From scheduling, pricing and promotion, to marketing and operations, the amount of information could add up to a 6 month course all by itself.

Aside from the nitty gritty, I want to throw out three key things to bear in mind if you’re looking to get better results from your studio. And if you’ve been running a studio for a while, it might just be worth getting a quick refresher!

*plus it’s great info for those of you who aspire to having a yoga space to call your own one day

My 3 Strategic Solutions to Improve Your Yoga Studio

1. Have a ‘cunning plan’ (otherwise known as strategy)

I think when most people step into the role of studio owner it comes with a fair bit of idealism. The idea of having a sanctuary with your name above the door where you get to choose the incense can be extremely seductive.

When asked what’s your strategy for the studio most people would say, ‘I just want it to be successful’.

Simply having a successful studio is not a strategy thought — it’s an outcome.

And to get to that outcome you need to go back to and think through a whole load of basics. For example:

  • Will you offer a range of classes with lots of choice or will you specialise, becoming known in a specific niche with a particular audience?
  • What’s going to be so special or compelling about your space? How will you make people want to return more and more often?
  • How will you take your students on a journey with you, thus realising their ‘lifetime value’ – special events, workshops, trainings?
  • Will you be one studio and maximize your brand, income and community via that one location, or look to scale quickly and open a second or third in a particular timeframe?

Without some kind of wider strategy in place, you lose touch with your ‘why’, and it becomes difficult to see what your weekly, monthly and quarterly planning should entail. What’s more, it becomes almost impossible to create a brand that aligns with your strategy and infuses every level of your business. Strategy helps your team pull in the same direction (see point 3 down below!)

2. Let’s talk funnels (or working out your ideal bottom line)

Money.

It can certainly be sticky subject amongst yogis (or indeed health and wellness professionals in general), but this isn’t a ‘money mindset’ post. In fact, contrary to most business coaches, I don’t think that yoga teachers have some childish emotional/spiritual aversion to money. I think it’s a sticky subject simply because they don’t know how or haven’t had the experience of working with figures on a practical level.

And I am not just talking about figures from an accounting perspective. I’m talking about all the metrics involved in your studio operation.

You should know your numbers inside out, from the size of your email list to the number of people that need to buy a class pass to get you into the black every month.

If you have any kind of marketing experience at all you will understand the concept of a sales funnel. Just because we work in the field of physical and spiritual growth as yoga teachers doesn’t mean this funnel can be ignored (it might just be rainbow coloured or glittery 😉

At the bottom of this funnel sits your Ideal Bottom Line. Within the funnel you have categories of customers: drop in students, class pass students, monthly memberships. The idea is that you need the right number of people at every stage in order to achieve your ideal bottom line.

Broadly, your marketing strategy puts more people into the top of the funnel, and your customer service/quality of classes/studio experience influence retention and conversion of your customer base.

So the question is — do you know what your strategy is for each stage of the funnel? ie . what needs to be put in place to get to your ideal bottom line?

[p.s. If this is all sounding quite new and interesting to you, the Business Plan and Marketing Plan Templates that come as part of the Yoginomics 101 Training Package should be able to help]

3. Man is not an island (ie. look after your people)

As a former corporate headhunter with lots of experience building and developing teams, this is a subject very close to my heart.

If you are just starting your studio or are within your first year of operation it can feel like a lonely place to be at times. Like most entrepreneurs you will feel that it’s your baby, you will be protective and highly emotionally invested in the project.

However, you simply cannot do everything yourself. You will burn out.

My strong recommendation as you grow, build your class schedule and your teaching team, is to find, train and develop some strong deputies.

In my experience this means you need a senior teacher and a key administrative person. Of course you can have more individuals on the team, but these people should be inner circle types; the ones who are privy to a greater level of information about the workings of the studio.

Why is this important?

It goes without saying that you want a happy and healthy team with motivated and talented teachers, but let’s go back to our funnel. Once your customers are in the studio, this is the best time to move them down that funnel, or convert them.

Say they currently only attend class twice a week. The welcome they get at your studio, the messaging they receive (think future events or special deals) and the quality of teaching experience can be crucial in terms of turning them from mere students into FANS.

Your people are the engine of your business. I’ve written a ton more about this here [read this post] but if this is your particular pain point then let’s schedule a call and see if I can help you in the right direction.

Not everything I cover here will apply in every situation! I’d love to hear more input from Studio Managers and Owners. But for now, that’s all folks.

OM!
Jules x

Need help thinking through and unpacking some of the particulars of YOUR studio operation? I can offer a fresh perspective, tips and tricks to help you plan effectively and tools to help ensure you grow both your community and your revenues. Click here to schedule a FREE consultation call.

About The Author

Jules Barber

Jules Barber is the Founder & Creator of Yoginomics. Having worked in a golden cage in London for 15 years she sold out of her business to become a yoga teacher, corporate wellness specialist and location independent entrepreneur, on a mission to mentor and coach the next generation of amazing yogis - teachers and students alike.

Leave A Response