Are you looking for a simple way to build your student numbers? This blog walks you through a proven 9-step process for finding - and keeping - new yoga students.
What’s your biggest challenge as a yoga teacher? If you’re like most teachers, you’ll resonate with at least one of these answers:
“Keeping up with marketing”
“Finding new students”
“Creating my own uniqueness or brand”
I heard one yoga teacher say “I just want to stick my head out the door and shout “I’m teaching yoga tonight at 6pm - come join me!!”
So how can you easily build your student numbers? By tapping into new markets and differentiating yourself from other yoga teachers.
Here’s what worked for me.
When I was struggling to get students into my bricks and mortar yoga studio, and then again after COVID-19 shut down, I tried all kinds of advertising and marketing. After some trial and error, I discovered that offering meditation brought in new students.
I realised there was a BIG group of people who were never, ever going to come to my yoga classes. Yoga just wasn’t their thing. They thought they were too old, unfit, big, small or stiff to do it. They just weren’t in the market of yoga.
But meditation is a whole other story.
Thanks to some great media reports, most people know that meditation can reduce stress. And boy, are people looking for stress relief. When I started offering bite-sized, no-strings meditation sessions, I started attracting a whole new student base.
Because I don’t teach a single, one-size fits all type of meditation, I found it easy to adapt the kind of meditation I taught to appeal to different student groups. Some preferred more active meditations (like walking meditation), others preferred to lie down and be guided through a relaxing visualisation.
Crossing over from meditation to yoga
Here’s the really cool thing. Students who came for meditation ended up as yoga students. Even the ones who thought they didn’t like (or couldn’t do) yoga.
After giving it a go, my meditation students discovered that they enjoyed gentle moving meditations. I slowly expanded these gentle movements (such as opening and closing the fingers along with the breath) to incorporate simple asana.
Within weeks, students were mindfully moving in and out of Warrior 1, segueing from focused moving meditation to asana. But of course, isn’t that what asana is supposed to be anyway?
The 9-step magic meditation formula that will build your yoga classes
So how did I fill my yoga classes by offering meditation? Here’s exactly what I did.
- I started teaching regular community meditation classes on FB and Insta live - 15 minute sessions twice per week (same day, same time. Consistency is the key).
- Recorded a sample guided meditation and shared it on social media (collecting student emails as a prerequisite for accessing the recordings).
- Created and promoted a FB group for everyone who wanted to do meditation with me.
- Created a 7 day meditation challenge. Invited people to join me in the FB group for 15 mins meditation every day for 7 days (promoted on social and via email to my new prospects who
gave me their emails in exchange for the recordings).
- Created a 5 week meditation course (5 x 30 mins), delivered via Zoom (you can do it in person, too) for students in the 7 day challenge who wanted to dive a bit deeper.
- Offered it at a special ‘founding members’ price of just $60 if students buy before the end of the 7 day challenge - $75 after that deadline.
- Introduced gentle movements in the 5 week course that, by the end of the course, had my meditation students doing simple asana that they loved!
- Week 3 of the 5 week meditation course, I offered a 5 week ‘Movement and Meditation’ course that gives them more of what they love. Again, I offered a special ‘founding members’ price with a deadline - buy the new course before the end of the current course and save $15.
- Rinse and repeat.
This is an example of joined up marketing. It’s a carefully thought out plan that guides students step-by-step from not knowing who you are (or if they like what you’re offering) to becoming your biggest fans. And for me, meditation was a great way to attract students who would never have responded to an advert for yoga!
Need a hand with some meditation teaching resources? Grab this free mini e-course.
If you want to create a 5 week meditation course that really works, that’s what you’ll get at the end of the online Adore Meditation Teacher Training. Bookings are open now for January 2021 and the Early Bird ends on 29 November.
Nikola Ellis is the founder of Adore Yoga, yoga therapist, counsellor and teacher trainer. She conducts regular trainings that help people of all ages, shapes and abilities enjoy the benefits of yoga and meditation, including Meditation Facilitator Certificate Trainings; Level 1 200hr Teacher Training and Post Graduate Yoga Teacher Training in Mental Health, Adaptive Asana and the Foundations of Yoga Therapy and a highly regarded professional 650hr Graduate Certificate of Yoga Therapy.