For 5 months or more, we’ve been dealing with the pandemic. Every Pilates studio owner has been pivoting and re-pivoting so that I’m sure you’re feeling like you have been going down the most crooked street in the world! There have been orders to close, then opening again, new guidelines to implement and then dealing with the changes when pandemic numbers go up or down.
Staying in touch with your clients and potential new clients has never been so important. Helping them thru these uncertain times will build loyalty and trust like never before.
Here are my recommendations for marketing during this time.
- Continue to grow your email list. Email is much more efficient marketing tool than you might think.
• 94% of people say they get online to check email. It’s the #1 activity on the internet (Marketo).
• The average office worker checks their email 30 times an hour (B2B Marketing Insider).
• People spend on average 2.6 hours a day checking, reading, and sending email (McKinsey Global Institute).
• 66% of online consumers have made a purchase as a result of an email (Direct Marketing Association).
Set monthly goals for growing your list. Ask your clients if they have a friend who might enjoy Pilates as much as they do. If you have the budget, you can use Facebook ads to assist with this, but make sure you have options on your website for people to get more information. A pop up box with an offer for a free class or video might be a great way to get a “window shopper” to leave their email for your list.
- Regular Emails to the people on your list. You can start out with monthly newsletters, but if your studio is only open for privates, and you’re not seeing over 75% of your regular clients – I’d recommend weekly or bi-weekly.
These emails should be relevant to your clients, giving them updates from the studio, and addressing their pain points during this time. For example, a lot of people are working from home. Tips for stretch breaks, or short videos that they can do during their day to take a break from computers (especially if they are working from the kitchen table, or a couch) will be timely. Sell without selling.
For example, I work for a friend’s boutique occasionally. We were working one day at a rodeo and a group of customers had found things to purchase, and I was talking to a couple of them as they were waiting for others to make their purchases. I can’t remember what they asked me — but I grabbed a top that I loved — just because of how soft the fabric was. One customer said, — “oh you’re a really good sales person.” I replied that I never asked her to purchase the top, I just let them feel the fabric She said — that’s why it’s good. We can tell that you love the top, and that makes us want to touch it!
- A weekly blog — A blog drives traffic to your website, and let’s potential clients learn about you and your business before they make purchase decisions. A blog answers questions that people might not even know they have. Each blog should have a call to action at the end to ask the client to join your email list for more information, or read more somewhere else on your website. If you want to learn more about starting a blog, considerations — read this.
- Daily Facebook Posts. Always speak to the pain points of your ideal client. What can you do for them? If they see you as a trusted expert, and you present a solution they are looking for that resonates with them – they’ll buy without you ever having to “sell” them something.
- Daily Instagram Posts. Give people a “look” inside your business. Let them see if they feel like they’d fit in. Build your brand awareness, and if possible, let them see some of your clients. They need to feel like they will fit in at your studio.
NOTE: I understand the urge to cross post, and post these to Facebook at the same time, but I would urge you to use that carefully. Think of your clients. If they see the same post twice as they’re checking their social media feeds — they may get annoyed, and that’s not what you want. If you do decide to cross post — you will want to put your hashtags in the first comment on Instagram — so they are not fed to Facebook as that diminishes engagement.
- Use Instagram & Facebook Stories to raise awareness, show your sense of humor and keep people engaged. These stories are shown to people that aren’t following you, so they tend to be effective at expanding your following! Be creative, be authentic, and use the stickers to make your posts fun!
If you’d like to make an appointment to talk about how you can automate some of these tasks so that you can prepare a week or month’s worth of tasks at once, make an appointment on my website. It’s free — and I love to brainstorm with Pilates Studio Owners!