Yoga is a booming industry in Australia. Its popularity has doubled since 2008. According to Roy Morgan research, more than 2 million Aussies now patriciate in yoga or pilate exercises. That’s one in every 10 (14+) Australian.
According to IBIS World, “In line with this stage, industry revenue is expected to grow by an annualised 2.2% over the five years through 2016-17, to $520.6 million. This revenue increase includes a projected rise of 2.8% in 2016-17.”
These figures are pretty attractive and would lead you to believe there is money to be made in the industry. Well, there is. But not before beating the cut-throat competition.
The #1 challenge yoga studios face is competition. There’s this running joke that you don’t have to go too far before you see a fitness studio. Well, it’s quite true especially if you are living in more populated cities of Australia.
To make things even tougher, the competition isn’t just between yoga studios. Now, there are fitness centres and gyms that offer yoga classes. In some areas of Sydney (where I live), it’s literally possible to see competitors nearby from your studio.
If there are other studios within easy driving distance, it becomes hard to generate consistent stream of revenues unless you succeed in attracting and retaining a loyal set of students.
This post talks about some of the strategies that will make your studio stand out from the pack and generate consistent revenues. So, if you’re a studio, here is how you can compete with other yoga studios and speed up your growth. Read on to discover yoga studio marketing strategies to help you stand out and attract more business.
Differentiate Your Studio – how and when to do it?
First thing you have to understand is, you have to create a point of difference where there is huge competition. For example, Surry Hills is a suburb of Sydney chok-a-block of yoga studios and gyms. I think it is vital for each studio there to define their unique value proposition and communicate it to their audience. Unfortunately, not all of them have a clearly defined unique value proposition.
If you are not facing high competition within your target geographic area, I think creating a point of difference could backfire. I am not saying it will but, it potentially could. Here’ why…
Effective differentiation is all about identifying and serving a very specific segment of the market. For example, …
- Classes for mother-daughter
- Classes for people who play specific sports like tennis, golf, footy etc…
- Classes for people struggling with specific health problems – arthritis, fibromyalgia – you get the idea
You can also differ based on prices and number of classes but, to consistently stand out and being identified as a unique studio in a muddled marketplace, you have to find your own audience.
Now, if you are already operating in areas or localities where the demand is not that high, targeting a specific niche would decrease your potential market size and as a result you might experience low student sign-ups.
I had a client who opened a studio in a suburb (Ashfield) where there were no competitors. She started offering generic classes (hatha and vinyasa) and did quite well. I thought, the reason for her success was she did not laser target a sub-set of her market.
Reach Out To Your Audience & Extend Your Reach
Once you have identified your own unique audience, it’s time to get the message out. Don’t restrict yourself to 5 or 10 Kms radius. People will travel a fair distance if your business solve their specific problems. So, you have to increase your reach and see if you get a response from locations that are not near to your studio.
Extending your reach is critical to increasing your revenues especially if you are surrounded by competitors within easy driving distance. But, before you take your message to other localities you should craft a clear marketing message that communicates in no uncertain terms who do you serve and what problems of your market you solve.
Next question is, how do you increase your reach?
Start Adwords & Facebook Campaigns to Test Various Locations
The best strategy to increase reach is to advertise in targeted locations. Both Adwords and Facebook offer localised targeting. Facebook is better when it comes to targeting by specific suburb names whereas, in Adwords you can target keywords that are searched with specific location. For example, yoga classes Bondi.
Keep advertising until you get at least 50 visitors to your website or Facebook fan page from each location. Now, sit down and analyse who signed up and from where. This will give you an idea of the potential locations you can target.
Now, there is more advertising online like the number of sign-ups depends upon how good your message was, whether your website is compelling or not, how well you know Adwords and Facebook platform. So, always consult for a specialist before drawing conclusions.
Opening a yoga studio, getting established and attracting more students in a crowded market can be challenging. By defining your goals upfront and following the above yoga marketing strategies, you’ll be in a strong position to build a thriving yoga business.
If you are struggling to grow your yoga studio, I hope one or more of these yoga marketing ideas will help you compete with other studios.