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How To Start A Yoga Business

Myth : The Yoga Market Is Too Impacted Already


In my free webinar, 5 Mistakes to Avoid as a Yoga Teacher, I cover some pretty impressive stats about the growing yoga industry today. Yet, it can be easy to look around and wonder if the world needs another yoga teacher.

If you buy into the myth that the yoga market is too impacted, youll likely kill your dream of starting a yoga business before even giving it a chance.So Id rather ask you this question:

Has yoga transformed your life for the better?

Likely the answer is yes, which means two things. First, you have an incredible story and experience to share with others. This can be a great source of hope and possibility for those who might be struggling or in discomfort.

Second, you can relate to people in an authentic way. This ability to connect on a deep and meaningful level is an essential attribute of yoga professionals. When students hear your story, and know you understand them, they trust you more. And because you have a very clear insight about what clients might be going through, your unique yoga business can genuinely uplift others.

Theres no shortage of opportunity in the world to make this kind of change!

A Marketing Tip

Music For Your Yoga Class

Whether you prefer yoga classes with or without music, you must understand the licensing requirements for the music you play in your yoga studio. Playing music in your yoga studio without the proper music license can lead to significant fines.

Review my guide on music in yoga studios. I have provided detailed information on the music licensing requirements and explored the pros and cons of conducting yoga classes with or without music.

Are Private Yoga Lessons Worth It

A private yoga class allows you to participate in poses and stretches that you find very comfortable working out at your pace on a daily basis. If you are interested in trying yoga for the first time, private sessions can provide you with the proper alignment and a plan to bring your goals and desires to the fore.

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Get Involved In The Local Community

Digital marketing brings great results, but being an active part of the local community is equally important. Most of the new students thatâll sign up for your hip new yoga studio will live or work near your studio, so you want to do what you can to connect with them.

As a yoga business youâre not just another business. Youâre a part of the physical, mental and spiritual well being of your clients. No matter what type of yoga you teach, most yogis arenât just looking for a place to do yoga – theyâre looking for a community of like-minded people to share the experience with.

âPeople no longer want brands to be faceless entities that they have no involvement with. They want to deal with real people, especially in the health and fitness industry. The more real things you can do to grow your business the better. Go and do a free class in the park. Reach out to local businesses and see how they align with what you offer. Do your customers go to a spa? The hairdresser? You could have a draw where people win a free month at your studio, then you could do something to promote them too.Show up in ways like that. Itâs about building and nurturing those relationships and helping other people grow at the same time. Itâs an amazing strategy really, itâs the most powerful thing that you can do.â

Take Us Through The Process Of Launching The Business

How to Start Your Own Yoga Studio

I got my first client about five years ago. They found me by searching for yoga in Los Angeles. We did still have a strong web presence and our site said that we could offer corporate yoga.

It wasnt something I was aggressively marketing quite yet, as I was still recovering from shutting down the physical location and reintegrating into the tech workforce.

Get yourself healthy and happy first and foremost.

As far as the launch, I had already launched a blog about yoga in 2010.

Having some content and SEO out there to incubate for a while was very helpful in getting a strong online presence.

There is so much more I could be doing in that realm! Since the website to support marketing the physical studio was more or less a good basis to start with, I just updated everything to describe how we would do business in a mobile capacity once we shut our doors and pivoted to being a mobile team.

I really tried to think about everything from the clients point of view. Not everyone can afford to do a full hour of yoga. How could I make class options more modular to work for different situations? How much do I need to charge in order to make our prices competitive but also compensate the teachers properly and make them want to stay on the team?

Again, as we began to grow our client base through SEO, content marketing, PR and general word of mouth, I perfected more and more of the details of how we do business and expanded beyond yoga into also offering healthy cooking classes.

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Myth : Developing A Yoga Business Plan Is Complicated

Most professionals will recommend that you develop a plan when starting a yoga business. This makes sense, right? Professionals have plans. Doctors follow a treatment plan and soldiers follow a military operation plan.

And, as a yoga professional, you want to be efficient and organized with a good system, too. The good news is that youre not performing surgery and youre not going into battle. And the scope of your business plan doesnt have to be vast or complicated. It just needs to cover some basic points when youre getting started.

Select a Location

There are endless venues in which you can teach yoga today . Churches, community centers, assisted living facilities, alternative medicine offices, chiropractic offices, and city parks are just a few ideas to consider. You can always rent a small retail space of your own or meet clients at their private homes, too. Just make sure you have clarity about where you will teach as part of your business plan.

Fine Tune your Frequency

Frequency refers to how often you will provide your yoga services. This will definitely be affected by any other job or career you have in place already. And youll have to consider your other responsibilities, like that of parenting or coordinating the local softball league. So ask yourself:

Craft a Marketing Plan

Determine your Price Point

Photo Credit: Ember and Earth Photography

Explain Why Private Yoga Lessons Can Be Helpful

Dont just tell others that you offer private instruction. Show them why one-on-one time is such a good idea by listing ways that one-on-one lessons help and then draw on this when you are promoting your private practice. Offer examples that feel authentic to you and your teaching.

If you teach group classes that are for beginners and are familiar with their needs, market yourself to those who are curious to try yoga. If you have a nuanced understanding of anatomy and how it relates to practicing yoga poses, mention that you can help those with physical limitations or who have their doctors approval to begin yoga after an injury. Or perhaps you can help someone create their own home practice. If you teach poses not commonly included in all vinyasa classes, you can instruct someone on the nuances of learning a particular type of pose, such as arm balances or inversions.

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The Secret Sauce Of Successful Yoga Teachers

All successful yoga teachers have these three things in common

  • Have a website acts as their home base for everything yoga and business related. When used effectively, websites are 24/7 marketing machines.
  • Think outside the studio aka they have multiple revenue streams. Theyre focused on serving their niche with premium offerings teach outside the studio, lead retreats, trainings, privates, workshops, etc
  • Never stop learning consistently attending workshops and trainings to learn, devouring books, podcasts, and online courses. As an entrepreneur, its important to learn new skills to compliment your business and life!
  • We understand that not all yogis are created equal and that technology will come more naturally to some than to others. Weve developed lots of content to help you get over the technology hump in an effort to make you feel more comfortable as you accelerate your yoga business.

    Whether You Aspire To Open A Studio Or Teach Yoga Online These Insights From Biz

    How to Start an Online Yoga Business

    For exclusive access to all our stories, including sequences, teacher tips, video classes, and more, join Outside+ today.

    Wanting to be successful is as American as pie, but we tend to forget that success comes in many flavors. In order to have a successful yoga career, you first need to determine what that means to youwhether its owning your own studio or positively impacting the lives of your students. Whatever your goals, the reality is teaching yoga is a challenging career path. Thats why weve asked some of the business-savviest yogis we know for their best tips for new teachers.

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    Step : Obtain Necessary Permits And Licenses

    Failure to acquire necessary permits and licenses can result in hefty fines, or even cause your business to be shut down.

    State & Local Business Licensing Requirements

    Certain state permits and licenses may be needed to operate a yoga studio business. Learn more about licensing requirements in your state by visiting SBAs reference to state licenses and permits.

    Most businesses are required to collect sales tax on the goods or services they provide. To learn more about how sales tax will affect your business, read our article, Sales Tax for Small Businesses.

    For information about local licenses and permits:

    Liability Waivers

    To avoid liability and potential lawsuits, studios should have their clients sign waivers before participating in classes.

    • An example of an appropriate waiver can be found here.

    Certificate of Occupancy

    Yoga studios, like all businesses run out of a physical location, typically require a Certificate of Occupancy . A CO confirms that all building codes, zoning laws and government regulations have been met.

    If you plan to lease space for your yoga studio:

    Establish Your Business Plan Vision And Strategy

    When starting a yoga business, you need a business plan and strategy that encompasses your vision. In this initial phase, youll discover the working capital that you will need to establish and run the studio, especially in the first few months where you will need financial cushioning. Your business plan will include everything from the type of yoga youll be teaching to how much yoga classes will cost. Key elements you need to include in your business plan include:

    • Customer analysis
    • Financial plan and projections

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    Enter Your Business Information

    As you develop your business plan for a Yoga Studio with the free business plan template, its important to answer the questions about your business such as what your business is, what your products/services are, who your customers are and what your goals are.

    A clear explanation of the products/services the Yoga Studio business offers and what you intend on charging to make revenue is very important to ensuring a properly developed business plan. The free business plan builder tool helps you do exactly that by guiding you step by step.

    Cost Of Opening A Yoga Studio

    How to Start a Yoga Business from Scratch

    The cost of starting a yoga studio ranges from $15,000 to $1,000,000. The key factors affecting the cost of starting a yoga studio are the size, the location, and the customer segment of the yoga studio.

    I have written a guide on the cost of opening a yoga studio. In this guide, I break down the exact costs that are involved in starting a yoga studio. You can use this guide to project the cost of starting your yoga studio.

    The direct costs of starting a yoga studio are:

    • Lease/rent deposit
    • Launch Event

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    How To Retain Customers For Your Mobile Yoga Business

    Retaining customers is one of the most effective ways to grow your mobile yoga business.

    Oftentimes, it’s easy to find yourself focusing on generating new customers, vs retaining your current ones.

    Look at it this way – you are 60-70% more likely to sell a new product to an existing customer than you are a new customer.

    That’s not to say that finding new customers and revenue streams is not important, however, the easiest source of new revenue is right there in front of you.

    Here are some ways you can retain customers for your mobile yoga business:

    • Responding to comments on social media
    • Send discounts to loyal customers
    • Provide valuable content, for free
    • Write a hand written thank you note
    • Provide awesome customer service and build relationships with customers

    To find out more tips and tricks on retaining customers, check out this article here

    McKenna Rowe, founder of Chakra 5 Yoga dives deep into the process of attracting and retaining customers:

    For retaining customers, I follow up with them a lot to find out what is working or not working.

    We send out surveys. We brainstorm different ideas and fun approaches to wellness…or even different times of day or days of the week than what was originally scheduled end up working better for the employees. For example, one of our clients promotes April as a wellness month.

    Spending Too Much Money On The Wrong Location

    Finding a suitable location within your budget in the right place will be one of the biggest challenges you face. Are there enough people in the area that can visit your studio easily, and is it easy to reach? If theres a problem with parking or no transport links, then the location isnt ideal. The location will be one of the most expensive parts of your business. Whether you buy it or rent, if the area isnt right, it could lead to a problem very early on in your business.

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    Hone Your Personal Message

    Whats your story? Why are you teaching? We believe your personal journey behind why started your career is the most authentic part of you, says Karen Mozes, co-leader of Yoga Journals online Business of Yoga course. Once you have crafted your signature story, that should be the foundation of your message in every thing you do. Right now, authenticity sells better than anything, says J Brown, yoga teacher, writer, and host of the podcast Yoga Talks. I made a practice of being entirely transparent and showing the sides of myself as yoga teacher that are conventionally sides you dont show because it was thought to be bad business. And people resonate with what I do. With highly successful yoga teachers of all ethnicities, shapes, genders, and personalities, know that you too can be yourself and people will love you for it. Its what will attract clients who truly align with you and keep them coming back.

    See also Yoga Teachers, Make Money Outside the Studio

    Learn To Create A Website For Your Yoga Business

    How to start a yoga business as an independent teacher: 16 Tips

    Word of caution: Dont put all your eggs in the social media basket social media algorithms change constantly which means one day your strategy is working and the next all you hear is crickets. Read more about the downfalls of social media here.

    Pro-Tip: Video is hot on social media right now, especially live video. I know its scary to start, but youll be rewarded with a serious boost in engagement. Make a plan and test it out. Go LIVE, create a story, shoot a timelapse.

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    Create Additional Streams Of Revenue

    Selling retail items like yoga mats or water bottles is a great way to create additional streams of revenue to your business. Part of what fuels the yoga industry is yoga apparel and accessories. Selling yoga clothes, books, or jewelry from your studio is an easy way to add more revenue. All you need is a small shelf to start with if youre limited on space. This is really helpful when one of your students have forgotten their water bottle or simply want to invest in a new yoga mat.

    Hire Employees For Your Technical And Manpower Needs

    Even though the yoga studio business might not be a capital intensive business like others, it requires some sort of capital all the same with which to start up. This is why as an entrepreneur starting this business, you must have the necessary plans in place that will enable you know the right places to source for funds for your business.

    It is also important that you get the necessary equipment in place that will make you run your business efficiently and successfully. You should know that most of the equipment you would need for your yoga studio are ones that can be gotten for fairly used, bought cheap from online stores or from an existing business.

    Therefore, the equipment and tools you would require in order to be able to run your yoga studio business successfully in the United States of America are yoga mats, yoga bars, yoga blocks, resistance bands, computers, phones, and printers.

    In getting people to come and work for your yoga studio, you would need a chief executive officer, an admin and human resources manager, front desk officer, marketing executives, accountant, yoga instructors and security. This would mean that you would need at least 8 key people in order to start and run your yoga studio effectively in the United States of America.

    The Service Delivery Process of the Business

    The yoga studio business is a business that is service oriented and so there is not much of a process involved except getting the necessary training and certification.

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