The smart way to reopen your yoga studio after social distancing.

Transitioning your studio to online has been a big test for your business. You’ve overcome a lot to be there for your community. You didn’t know those changes were coming, but you’ve made it through. Now reopening is on the horizon. It’s time to prepare. 

Start planning your comeback. You don’t want to get caught off guard when your local stay at home order ends. You want a strong marketing campaign, best practices for cleanliness and social distancing in the studio, and a plan to implement it all.

STEP 1: SOLIDIFY YOUR VISION

Now is the time to lock in your vision for the studio. It may have shifted some in recent months. We’ve experienced a lot of change and upheaval. The world looks a little different, your members are different and you’re different. It makes sense that your yoga studio may be different too.

STEP 2: CREATE A PLAN FOR ONLINE

Wanted or not, you have a virtual studio now. You’ve been offering online classes through live streams and videos on demand for months. With the studio reopening what will happen to your online options?

Are you going to keep live streaming? Making new video on demand content? Will your online content stay put or move? To learn more about pros and cons stay tuned for our next blog post “What will happen to your online yoga classes once the studio reopens?”

STEP 3: DECIDE ON PRICING AND SCHEDULE

Decision fatigue is off the charts right now. Complicated pricing is the last thing anyone wants to think about. Emphasize your value and keep it simple. A very expensive single day pass and memberships on annual or monthly are all you really need. You’re either in or your out. Easy. Done.

It’ll take time to ramp up to a full schedule, so it’s the perfect time to make changes. Most of us started with a pretty arbitrary schedule and we’ve got a straggler class or two. You know… the one you tried to cut, but the seven people who always go threatened to burn the studio down and never come back, so you just left it. Now’s the time to cut it without the push back.

STEP 4: SCHEDULE CONTENT CREATION

Your virtual library will probably be a priority even after you reopen. Make a plan and schedule time to work on videos on demand or livestream classes. Once it’s GO time you’ll be busy and distracted. Scheduling time now will save you stress later.

Take some time and review your existing content. Where can it improve? What’s missing? Make a list of any supplies you might need – lights, back drop, branded apparel, whatever it is. Planning ahead is key. Later you won’t have to think about it. You can just take action!

STEP 5: CONTACT YOUR LOCAL AUTHORITIES

Nearly every community will be issuing guidelines for businesses and the public as they begin the slow return to normal. Reach out to your mayor, city council or local chamber of commerce authority to find out what’s going on. You’d hate to accidentally violate a regulation or need to delay. Every place will be different – make sure you know the local guidelines.

STEP 6: COLLECT EVERYTHING YOU NEED FOR REOPENING

Remember when the stay at home orders started going into effect? Grocery stores looked like the apocalypse had hit and there was no toilet paper to be found. The same thing will probably happen as more businesses open.

If you need more toilet paper, masks, plexiglass shields, hand sanitizer, more soap or anything else to reopen now is the time to get it. There may be shortages, and you might have trouble figuring out where to source something like plexiglass in the first place. Get started now.

STEP 7: PREP COMMUNICATIONS

You will almost certainly have social distancing requirements when you reopen, meaning restricted access. It will go a long way to show preference to members who have been paying you through this time. Publicly advertise that you’re open, but it’s members only to start. Give them some love for supporting you.

Once you’ve got a plan for opening, you’ll need to prep communications. Emails, texts, social media posts and new branding will be necessary to let everyone know your studio’s reopening. Take this time to knock out your rough drafts.

STEP 8: GET YOUR TEAM ON BOARD

Be proactive and preemptive with your team. This has been a challenging time for everyone. Small business owners and contractors have especially felt the stress of financial uncertainty. Your team may need some encouragement to get all in for the studio again.

Have a conversation with them. Share your excitement about the studio reopening and help them see the opportunities for positive change. Let them know of any updates to your vision, pricing, scheduling or marketing materials. Make sure everyone is on the same page.

Reopening is an exciting time! There is a lot to do, and it can be stressful, but ultimately it’s nice to be moving toward a new normal. 

For more super relevant information, join us for The How to Re-Open your Studio Strong Bootcamp Webinars, included in the Yogapreneur Collective. Get these lives webinars, plus the huge online resource library, private Facebook Group, and access to 1:1 coaching all for just $125.

➡️ To access the Bootcamp Webinars and so much more, sign up here.

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2 Comments

  1. Hi Josh,
    It’s been awhile since we have spoke.
    Alison from Missoula MT. The Pilates studio gal.
    I am trying to apply for a grant to do a more polished online classes platform.
    I can’t seem to find a good example of a price breakdown to make this happen.
    Do you have any suggestions?
    Video equipment?
    Back drop?
    Apparel?
    Lighting?
    Videographer?
    Music rights?
    Sound engineer?
    Blue tooth mic for fitness?
    Web developer for online link/purchases etc?
    Obviously, I got a lot of questions…
    Everywhere I look, no real break down of potential costs.

    1. Hey Alison, nice to hear from you! These are great questions. For answers to all of them, I highly recommend that you join the Yogapreneur Collective to access our online video library, including the video course The Ultimate Studio Survival Guide during Social Distancing. There are entire lessons all about the best options for virtual studio tech. This course is available through the YC membership or as a pay what you can option. We also have a weekly webinar bootcamp series called How to Re-Open your Studio Strong Post-COVID available through the Yogapreneur Collective. Next Tuesday we’re going through the exact checklist you need to re-open and have recordings available on the best tech for online classes.

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