5 Questions to Ask About Marketing Your Barre Studio With or Without a Barre Franchise!
Are you considering opening a barre studio? Have you decided if you are going to pay to join a barre franchise or try to do it without the barre franchise?
If you know me, you know that I am very against investing in a barre franchise. The first and main reason is the up front fee. Most barre franchises have an initial fee of $30,000 – $50,000. But honestly, the real kicker is the ongoing royalty fees. Just imagine paying 7% of your GROSS annual revenue. That means if you have a studio that grosses $300,000, you have an annual fee of $21,000. If you have a studio that grosses $500,000, you have an annual fee of $35,000. That’s a lot of money to use someone’s name!
I have spent the past five years building systems to help someone open their own barre studio without the fees and rules of a barre franchise.
But before anyone opens, they need to have a marketing plan. The marketing plan will be the roadmap for how you will grow, promote, and market your studio. So if you are considering opening a barre studio, ask yourself:
Do I have a marketing plan?
This is a simple question. Some people have a marketing plan that is as simple as one to two pages. Some people literally have a 20 page marketing plan. I think you probably need something in between. But our sample marketing plan is about 10 – 15 pages and focus on your target client, where they spend their time, what they enjoy, and how to speak to them to encourage them to come to your barre studio.
What key steps/activities does my marketing plan involve?
What will you be doing to market your studio before you open, when you open, and then in your ongoing years. As barre becomes more popular, you will likely have more competition. It becomes increasingly important that you have a cohesive marketing plan that helps you continue to retain and grow your client base!
What is the best way to launch?
When I opened my first studio I thought a successful launch was opening my doors. I think that I literally believed that with my fabulous product, that I would have a line at my door! But I didn’t really think enough about how I would let them all know I was there! Even if they loved me, they had to know about me before they could ever come to my class! So, it is imperative to have a strategy to find your ideal client and let them know that you are open for business! This can be through social media. It can be through print ads. It can be through PR. And there are pros and cons to each. In order to allocate time and money to the things that will have the biggest impact, we suggest you make a list of your marketing opportunities and rank them based on time and money involved and where you want to spend your resources.
I learned between opening my first studio and my second studio that one of the most important things that you can do is pre-market your business and have a very comprehensive marketing strategy for before you ever open your doors. When I opened my first studio, I got the doors open and THEN really focused on marketing the studio. I literally would teach classes of one for the first month or so. It took almost a month to really ever even get rolling.
When I opened the second studio, we had done a TON of pre-marketing and we literally had waitlists in our first month of class. The difference in our marketing strategy PRIOR to opening our barre studio made all the difference in the world.
What can I do to prepare for a successful grand opening?
When we opened our first studio, we did a fun grand opening party. It was a blast and was a great opportunity for our staff and clients to get together and get to know each other. But we never really thought of it as a huge marketing opportunity. When we opened the second time, we created a very different event. We had a very specific grand opening strategy. We hired a PR firm, created press releases, had tons of cross promotions, and had a very different result. Our grand opening of the Carmel Valley studio was a party – but it was a COMPLETE marketing event!! We were busy selling packages, apparel, and meeting press and referrals all because of the strategy for the event. And oh by the way – the two events cost about the same thing – except for the PR firm.
If you are serious about opening a barre studio, you need to seriously consider your marketing strategy. Do you have a well defined marketing plan that is going to help you reach your target clients without breaking the bank?
If you are interested in knowing more about opening a successful barre studio without the barre franchise, contact me to schedule a free consultation.