Make it happen
Creating a successful yoga business requires lots of energy, dedication, patience and self-belief…but it can be done! By Eva Kristlova
“None of us know it all. If we want to progress and move towards our goals we cannot forget our own personal and professional development”
It has never been easy running a successful yoga business, but now with everything changing around us, we have all had to adapt to new ways of being, working, teaching and living. Creating a successful yoga business requires lots of energy, dedication, patience and self-belief. If you are like me, you simply want to share your love of yoga with the whole world — and ideally for free!
That would be the best scenario…however, in today’s world we need to consider how we can share yoga and still manage to pay the bills and create a sustainable way of living. Here are 7 things that work for me and my yoga business:
Connect with your local community
What can you offer to your local community and how can you be of service? Here are some ideas:
- Offer free- or donation-based community classes that everyone can attend, especially those who would normally not be able to pay full fee.
- Organise a charity class, where all the proceedings are donated to your chosen local charity. You can select a different charity each time you run this class.
- Donate a free class to a local business for their employees to try.
- Network: get to know other businesses in the area and establish connections. • Look into offering yoga classes in your local schools and clubs.
- Join your town’s events: be seen (I organised a street yoga class during a local festival).
- Offer donation-based classes at local parks and open spaces, available to all.
It’s not one-way traffic though. Make sure you ask for help whenever you need it! I used to think I had to do absolutely everything by myself but when I realised there are plenty of people happily willing to lend a hand, a big weight shifted! You don’t have to do this alone.
Have a long-term goal and many smaller short-term goals
Be clear about the long-term goal of your yoga business. Ask yourself where you want your yoga business to be in five years’ time? Is it achievable? What are your dreams and aspirations for your yoga business and yourself personally? Write it down and then start creating a plan of short-term goals or small steps that will take you towards your dream.
What is your next achievable step? It can be something really small. Ask yourself what does your yoga business need right now to progress and move forward? If you focus just on your end goal that can be overwhelming and you might feel like you will never be able to get there. It is about the journey that will finally take you to where you want to be. So what is your next step?
Personal and professional development
None of us know it all. If we want to progress and move towards our goals we cannot forget our own personal and professional development.
There are so many inspiring and beneficial training programmes and courses these days. In order to progress, we need to keep growing, learning and updating our skills.
If you always wanted to explore a certain area of yoga or feel that your business skills could be upgraded, do it now. Study with someone you know and trust, who inspires you and their teachings are meaningful to you.
Don’t forget to keep filling your cup, as you can’t give to others if you are running on empty! Go to your local teacher’s classes — they will really appreciate your support and will support you in return. If you teach yoga, go and be taught instead. I frequently join my fellow teachers’ classes, even a class for beginners!
We all need to be inspired. Figure out who or what inspires you and how that inspiration might help you in your yoga business. What is it that you like about them? You might want to:
- Connect with a business coach.
- Join inspirational classes, talks and workshops, available globally due to online teaching.
- Listen to inspirational podcasts, maybe from your favourite teacher or someone you admire.
- Read: inspiration is everywhere! In every yoga magazine or book. Mark pages with inspirational quotes and copy them into your journal or your own book of inspiration.
- Find inspiration everywhere you go — people you meet, places you visit. There is always something to be inspired by.
Social media and website
We all know that in today’s world, social media is essential for our yoga businesses to be seen, found and remembered. Even though it can be time consuming it’s worth creating and maintaining business profiles on big platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.
When it comes to your business website, make sure it is clear, up to date, with correct information and easy to navigate. Invest in professional photography and a logo that will be used across all of your platforms and content that is relevant and informative.
List your yoga classes with booking details, teacher profiles, blogs and general information about you and your yoga business. With the current change in teaching there is a steep increase in online classes. If that’s something you want to do, create a section on your website for online classes where your clients can join.
Maintain a really good relationship with your clients — after all, they are your biggest testimony. Ask for feedback, reply to all emails and messages, return missed calls. How often did we try to contact someone with no luck and never got any response?
That’s not a business you will be coming back to. So communicate, connect, listen and try to help. We are creating beautiful communities across the world, so let your clients know they matter and are a part of your tribe.
If we learnt anything in 2020 it was to be adaptable. I personally don’t like big changes but throughout the rollercoaster of last year we had no choice but to adapt quickly. I never wanted to video myself and teach online! But after my studio had to close in lockdown I had a little tantrum then opened a Zoom account. After the initial challenges that come with the online teaching I realised that in today’s world this is the way forward.
Since then, I created an online platform, where over 20 teachers share their classes and wisdom, which our clients really love, enjoy and appreciate. When the going gets tough (and it does with the studios closing) don’t give up!!
Know that you are doing this for a reason; remember your final goal. Remember why you chose this path and what it means to you. Know that sharing what you love with others makes a real difference. Pat yourself on the back and realise how amazing you really are. Embrace all opportunities with open arms and follow those that resonate with you, your values and beliefs. Say ‘yes’ to all that feels good!
Eva Kristlova (yogawitheva.co.uk) is a professional yoga teacher who lives by the sea in East Sussex. She qualified with British Wheel of Yoga and now runs a successful studio in Eastbourne, Yoga Life Studio (yogaeastbourne.com). Find her on Instagram at: @evakristlova and @yogalifestudio