4 steps to survive the “Winter Pilates Studio slump”
How’s winter going for you and your Pilates Studio?
Are you teaching full classes that are booked out for days ahead?
Or are you experiencing that deep, gnawing worry that rises up when your Pilates class numbers drop off?
Winter can bring up a lot of shadowy feelings that not many Pilates Studio owners really feel like confronting:
• Feelings of betrayal may arise for you. You’ve spent the first part of the year, working hard to get your clients interested and committed to your Pilates classes. And then, they don’t come in because it’s cold!
• You may feel angry. Angry that you’re in the same position as you were this time last year.
• You may even feel embarrassed. Embarrassed that you’ve allowed this situation to manifest again!
And let’s face it, these feelings aren’t doing you, your Studio or your family any good, unless you acknowledge them and learn how to change.
So what can you do to prepare for this?
1. Step back from your Studio for a day and get perspective so you can plan. Find your last 12-months of class bookings and with a current 12-month calendar, look at what may happen again. What trends can you see with your Studio bookings and what does this tell you about your clients’ behaviour?
2. With the trends worked out, now figure out what cash flow you ultimately need to: cover all your expenses (including rent, electricity, wages, superannuation) and what profit you want to create.
3. Look at what marketing has been successful for your Studio in the last 3, 6 and 12 months in terms of how many clients you attracted, and how many you retained.
4. What gaps are you seeing? Has your marketing been “stop-start” where you go hard for a few weeks, generate some enquiries, get busy and then stop marketing? Or do you market your Studio on a daily basis to keep your Studio’s presence high in your community?
With the above information on hand, you may need to confront the very scary reality that there will be times when your Studio is extremely busy and extremely quiet.
So how can you “smooth out” these busy and quiet times? Make sure that you’re doing everything you can to keep your clients coming back to your classes by:
1. Standing out from the other Studios while being true to your values and passions,
2. Showing your clients the “real you”. Your clients want to know that they’ve connected with a like-minded person who is like them. Revealing your personality and “quirks” allows them to connect with and commit to your Studio,
3. Creating a life-affirming atmosphere in your Studio for all your clients. Are all your Instructors and classes creating an environment that’s positive and leaves your clients bursting to come back for more?
4. Imparting your insights and knowledge to your clients from your personal experiences with the exercises allows them to connect to and commit to you easily.
5. Creating a Studio that’s for your “tribe”. Your clients want to have a space to feel comfortable in, week after week. If they don’t return, they’re either not your “tribe” or you haven’t yet worked out who your tribe is and how you can connect with them deeply.
In short, see your “Seasonal Studio Slump” as an opportunity to realign your Pilates business and to reconnect with whom you want to impact in your community.
Kylie Saunder of PilatesYogaBiz works specifically with Pilates & Yoga business owners. She helps them:
• Develop and expand their business,
• Get out of survival mode, and
• Helps them step into a proven business model that thrives effortlessly.
Her latest FREE eBook, reveals the “7 key steps Pilates business owners must take to create a successful and thriving Pilates studio”
Download at http://pilatesyogabiz.com