Do you want a yoga career? If so, you may be wondering how to start a yoga business. Starting a successful yoga business can be challenging, so it’s important to be prepared.
It’s necessary to have yoga teacher training and equally important to understand the business side of being a yoga studio owner. To successfully start a yoga business, you first need to determine your goal. For example:
- Ownership of your yoga studio
- Having a positive impact on your customers’ lives
Guiding Principles On How To Start A Yoga Business
If done right, running a yoga business can be a rewarding experience. This article will help you do just that. It is a collection of guiding principles on how to start a yoga business.
Principle 1: Authenticity
A business owner needs to craft an image that will sell. So, before setting up your yoga business spend some time answering these questions:
- Who am I?
- What’s my story?
- Why am I teaching yoga?
Answering these questions honestly will help you to craft an authentic image. Authenticity sells, and your journey of why you started as a yoga teacher is the heart of your yoga business.
This signature story is your foundation. Be yourself and people will love that. Create a yoga studio environment that aligns with your yoga philosophy and the type of yoga you practice. Your authenticity will attract like-minded clients to your space.
Principle 2: Yoga Teacher Certification
A yoga teacher or studio doesn’t need to be certified, but it is the industry standard. Having certification as a yoga teacher carries many benefits, like:
- Enabling you to charge a fair price
- Boosting the customer influx of your yoga studio,
- Increasing your confidence in your skill
A yoga teacher can acquire yoga certification from a Yoga Alliance affiliate. Yoga Alliance is the body that governs the national standards for yoga. This organization’s website lists the yoga certification requirements for teachers and studios.
You may need to attend yoga teacher training classes to meet the certification requirements. This will help you acquire the skills needed to teach your students.
As your yoga business grows you’ll regularly need to send copies of your credentials and insurance to venues, agencies, and customers. So, create a hard copy and a digital file that contains your:
- Yoga teaching certification
- Insurance documents
- Financial and tax records
Principle 3: The Business Plan
A good business plan is important to the success of any company. It is a clear outline of how to manage the business. A business plan is a comprehensive strategy to help your yoga business grow over the years.
Objectives Of A Yoga Business Plan
A yoga business plan should help you to:
- Understand the yoga market better
- Keep track of your financial numbers
- Focus on effective marketing strategies
What To Include In A Yoga Business Plan?
The yoga business plan should capture everything about your yoga studio. This ranges from the type of yoga you’ll be teaching to the type of proprietorship (e.g. sole proprietor). But, there are 4 key elements to include in a yoga business plan.
Determine the level of interest persons in your area have in yoga. This gives insight into how many potential yoga customers are in your intended area of operation.
Identify the current rates for yoga classes to determine how much you will charge. Yoga fees vary based on the area of operation. In urban areas fees tend to be low due to an abundance of free and donation-only yoga classes. In many towns, there are studios and private teachers that are already in business so choose your location wisely.
This deals with the advertising aspect of your brick-and-mortar business. This may range from word-of-mouth marketing to online ads based on behavioral targeting.
Financial plan and projections
Calculate how much capital you will need to run the yoga studio for the first 6 months of its inception. You will also need to budget money for personal expenses if you want to teach yoga full-time.
Principle 4: Create A Website
Yoga studio owners are brick-and-mortar business owners. But, since the inception of online yoga classes, a website has become a necessary tool.
Benefits Of A Yoga Website
A website offers many advantages to customers and yoga teachers. For example:
- A website enables you to teach classes online
- A website helps potential customers locate your studio
- Customers get unlimited access to view descriptions, pictures, and videos of what you offer
- Interested customers can sign up online instead of having to visit the studio
- Students can use it to schedule in-person and online yoga classes
- It advertises and grows your business via social media links, etc.
- A website helps teachers to track potential students and more…
Use a booking plugin to make the booking process easy for your clients (and for yourself)
The call to action you want is customers booking appointments. Why not make the booking process easier and use a booking form?
WordPress offers a range of appointment booking plugins. They offer something for everyone, and certainly for the needs of your target market.
We suggest using Amelia, which is in our biased opinion, the best out there. Here’s more info about Amelia and you can see for yourself how it can help you.
If you have a WordPress site and are looking for an online booking system, Amelia could be just what you need. It works efficiently across industries. Whether you own a salon, gym, spa, medical practice, or law office, it’ll work beautifully for you.
Amelia works perfectly with all the latest WordPress themes out there. No matter how complex your demands are, you can easily customize and automate the booking process for your small, medium, or enterprise company, or even for your personal WordPress site.
The Amelia booking system has all the tools you would need for managing events and appointments. It won’t require much effort from you at all. Just set up the events and watch this WordPress reservation plugin do its magic.
And on the user side, it’s even better. Its easy-to-use booking form makes it a breeze for users to book an appointment.
Here are some of this booking plugin’s features:
- SMS notifications
- WooCommerce integration
- Google Calendar sync
- Custom fields for your booking forms
- Calendar and list view
- Email notifications
- Payment gateways
- And a lot more which you can check out here.
Optimize Your Website
These days consumers have grown accustomed to high-tech tools. So, if a fitness or yoga site doesn’t include the latest technology like social media links, etc. a potential customer may bypass your business.
Your website is often the first point of contact a customer has with your yoga business. So, ensure the site is impressive and attractive. Give attention to your use of images, colors, typefaces, and content.
This optimizes your yoga website and increases the chance of it being seen when people google search for yoga studios in your vicinity.
You can hire a marketing company to handle the technology and content that will be displayed on your site. If you can’t afford a marketing team right now, try trading yoga classes for their marketing and web design skills.
Principle 5: Build A Customer Base
As you gather information on how to start a yoga business, attention must be given to establishing a loyal customer base.
Build Customer Loyalty
People tend to loyally support those with whom they feel connected. Connections/ bonds are formed and strengthened when people feel that they are cared for. So, starting with your current pool of yoga students, treat them in the best possible way. Here are few tips:
Treat them as individuals
If they have difficulty learning the yoga asanas, give them personal help in a friendly way.
Memorize their names and build rapport with them
Talk to your yoga students individually. Feel free to check on them outside of class time.
Let them know how proud you are of their progress.
Your yoga students will be drawn to you and this will increase the word-of-mouth advertisement of your studio.
Attract New Clients
To do this, you will need to invest in promoting your yoga classes. To choose the most effective marketing tool for your yoga studio, take the time to consider your target group. Try to answer these questions:
- Who is my target group? E.g. Retired or elderly ones, women only, housewives, etc.
- How do they spend their leisure time?
- Where do they tend to look for news and updates?
- What are their areas of interest?
Answering these questions will give you insight into how to reach the clients that you are targeting. You will understand what marketing channels to choose, and how to position your ads in a way that gets you seen.
A best practice is to try a variety of lead generation channels and see what works for your studio.
Principle 6: Practice One Type Of Yoga
There are many forms of yoga, each with its own spiritual and physical objectives. Your studio will have greater success if you practice one type of yoga, rather than focusing on various forms.
Before you open a studio, determine what type of yoga you’re going to teach. Keep in mind that some forms are more popular and therefore more lucrative than others. Here are a few types of yoga you can choose from:
This is the most popular type of ‘Hot Yoga‘ founded by yogi Bikram Choudhury. Hot Yoga is the most popular form of modern yoga.
This type of yoga focuses on breathing techniques and energy points on the body (chakras).
Iyengar, Ashtanga, and Vinyasa Yoga
These are popular fitness workout choices for clients who are less interested in the spiritual side of yoga classes.
Principle 7: Choose The Perfect Location For The Yoga Studio
The success of your yoga studio depends largely on its location. The location should be pleasant and welcoming to your clients. Try to find an area in the community that will get your business noticed and has sufficient parking nearby.
If there’s a problem with parking or no transport links, then the location isn’t ideal.
You need to ensure the environment is quiet so that your students won’t be distracted by nearby traffic. Remember, your clients seek out your services so that they can relax, so make sure they are comfortable.
Your yoga space should neither be too cold nor too hot. It is best to choose a location that has a practice space tucked away from the lobby. It’s even better if the location includes a meeting space for events like a movie or music night or a seminar.
Finding a suitable location can be challenging. It will be one of the greatest expenses you will face when starting your yoga practice. But, if you invest enough time and money into acquiring the perfect yoga space, the revenue will outshine the costs.
Whether you buy, lease, or rent a space, failing to acquire a good location will lead to losses.
What If Your Budget Is Small?
There is no problem with starting small. Start with one room with a small reception space. As your yoga business grows, you will have the option of moving to a location with bigger rooms or expanding where you are.
Always ensure that your studio is located in an area that has enough interested people that can easily reach you.
Principle 8: Put Together A Great Logo
Image source: Canva
A logo is usually the first thing clients notice about a business. Your yoga logo will be a symbol that identifies your studio. So ensure it is designed to attract potential customers to your brand. Your logo should be recognizable and memorable.
Try to get ideas by looking at the logos of other yoga studios. Ensure your logo stands out so that people won’t confuse your band with others. A marketing company can help you put together the perfect logo for your brand.
Launch your brand by positioning your yoga logo everywhere. Sell branded products in your yoga studio. For example, branded:
- Yoga mats
- Water bottles
- Hand creams
- Health and beauty products, etc.
Think of ways to saturate the community with your logo. A logo may seem unimportant to some, but a great yoga logo will help you grow your brand.
Principle 9: Market And Expand Your Brand
As more and more students acquire yoga teacher training the market is becoming saturated with yoga studios. So, how can you get your yoga class to stand out from other yoga businesses in the market?
Here are a few marketing tools to promote your yoga brand:
Outings and community outreach
- Arrange days to take your yoga class out of the studio. Integrate these classes with popular or fun activities. Reach out to the people in your locality, such as schools, community centers, and programs. The key is to get your class involved in enjoyable activities that succeed in setting you apart from other yoga studios.
The internet and social media
Use the internet to promote your brand. Try creating a yoga website and using content marketing. Behavioral targeting ads are most effective for online advertising. Promote special events on your site.
Use social media marketing. Create and post fresh yoga content and invite viewers to like, follow, and share. Share your journey and accomplishments in your posts. As viewers notice your activities, they will be motivated to join or recommend your services to others.
Television and news media
Call a local TV station and ask to do a yoga demonstration on their morning show. This will get you seen and bring in new business. Offer to write a free yoga article for natural-themed magazines and local newspapers.
Ask a local radio station for an interview. Although you won’t be able to demonstrate your yoga, it’s a good way to promote your business.
Principle 10: Networking
Remember to include networking as you gather information on how to start a yoga business. This is an essential part of the life of a yoga studio owner. Developing the right connections is key to having a successful yoga career.
The most successful yoga businesses have a few things in common. Such as:
- A great team of teachers that connect with students.
- A yoga studio that connects with the community by hosting charity fundraisers
- Officially attending vegan, yoga, and music festivals to:
- Offer free clinics
- Sell branded merch
- All-around market themselves to gain business
A powerful way to grow your business is to partner with product companies, yoga teachers, students, and other professionals. Make sure to learn how to treat your yoga teachers, such as settling a salary rate and working hours of your team with a help of a certified accountant. Make your yoga studio a home base for like-minded yogis by hosting vegan potlucks, and other events.
To increase your visibility, focus on creating a network with people and businesses that you align with.
Principle 11: Ask And Negotiate
Owning a yoga studio or starting a yoga business is different from practicing yoga. A yoga business has its expenses and negotiating the price of goods and services, is key to saving money for the business. When closing deals, get all negotiated costs confirmed in writing.
You may be naturally gifted when it comes to teaching but lack corporate skills. So, ask for help. Nobody expects you to be a top-class business guru in the beginning.
Don’t try to do everything on your own. Regardless of the challenges, there will be people to support and direct you. You may be surprised at how many of your friends and family members are willing to help you:
- Become a yoga instructor
- Manage your studio
- Organize events
There will be people you meet that will want to share their knowledge and experience in accounting, marketing, etc.
Ending thoughts on how to start a yoga business
A successful yoga studio is a place where people come together to work on their health, inside and out. Your business helps the community as people teach their bodies and minds to be healthy. Teaching yoga is a time-consuming but rewarding experience.
Starting a yoga business and becoming a success involves a lot of hard work. It is a journey of self-discovery and perseverance. So, use the principles in this article to plan and prepare for the emotional and financial investment of starting your yoga business.
If you enjoyed reading this article on how to start a yoga business, you should check out this one with yoga business names.
We also wrote about other yoga-related subjects like starting a career in yoga, yoga colors to use in the studio, yoga franchises, teaching yoga without certification, yoga studio software, yoga studio owner salary (curious?), and yoga marketing ideas you could use
We also have articles on yoga websites and creating a yoga studio business plan.