The Dubai Yoga Studio Owner’s Guide to Growing Devoted Fans
Living in Dubai, frankly, we’ve never been more spoilt for choice. There is no one way to do something, and there is certainly no one place to be to do something. With the explosion of recreational and well-being businesses in Dubai, we have found that studio owners are challenged not just to continue growing their members base of devoted fans, but also to retain their existing members.
We obssessed over this topic, did some research, and came across some insights of what the working-professional yogi seeks in her or his life, and demands from her studio.
1. They Want Meaningful Stories
Beyond the bread & butter of being present and doing the activity, millennials working professionals in Dubai are no longer mere followers, they are mini-influencers in their own right.
Connected on social, they use their channels of communication as a way to continue expressing themselves, their life.
They want every photo, every caption, and every story to be a memento of the essence of what their life is about.
Doing the same thing over and over does not create for stories worth sharing, especially if they may have already taken a photo one of themselves in gear at your studio or a smoothie after practice.
What you can do:
Idea 1: Plan a guest experience journey once they set foot. What do they see first, how are they greeted? Where do they go to next, what will they experience next when they walk in. Take the time to think deeper about every customer touch point, what they come into interaction with, and how best we can make it story-worthy, and memorable enough for them to share on to their friends and be an advocate for. Obsess over the small details, as much as the overall experience and atmosphere that your guests receive.
Idea 2: Think about the props and authentic memorabilia you can set up to inspire photo occasions. Many of your members are well read, and some may even be hoping to start a profession in teaching wellbeing. Books, trinkets, and other story-worthy items may help to give these content-creators ideas on how they may feature in their next post.
2. They Want Tribal Experiences
You bet. People want to feel like they are part of a community, but it’s easier said than done.
With our families, with our friends, with our work communities, and most certainly in our passion circles. The reality is, while we may be “attributed” to several communities, we may not necessarily feel that connection. Just because an individual contributor is part of a team, doesn’t mean she is connected to her peers or greater organization deeply.
Guests should come to your studio feeling like it is an escape, a haven that awaits them on mornings, evenings and weekends depending on the schedule they’ve set for themselves. Let us make sure that we instill several cues and triggers that make them feel involved.
After all, communities define us and enable us to find others that we can relate to, share stories with, and grow through.
While there may always be a few self-starters in your group that are more chatty and engaged than others, do not lose sight of the overall goal of making sure everyone feels included.
What you can do:
Idea 1: Identify your most loyal members who have a knack for making others feel comfortable and involved, and nudge them to help you welcome newer guests and help foster the community.
Idea 2: Think about arranging off-sites and special events (even if outside the studio, such as going for a dinner or renting a yacht) to help further strengthen the community.
The best way to prove that this works is to think of the last time you were saw a colleague in Dubai Mall or JBR that you are not necessarily close with at work, but the fact that you are both outside your regular environment you develop an instant bond.
3. They Crave Recognition
They may not say it, or may shyly accept, but a key reason why people keep coming back time and time again is because they feel recognized in the progress they are making.
People come to your haven to disconnect from everything else and to inject their days with enlightenment all the while getting better at developing their craft.
It keeps them centered and working towards something meaningful that positively impacts others aspects of their lives.
By treating regulars to a reward or other form of recognition (not because they are regulars) but because they have come so far as individuals furthering their own abilities, is authentic and special.
Not only is it deeply gratifying for them, but it will inspire this positivity to carry on (the rule of reciprocation) and enable them to sing your praises to others — often citing how a professional (that’s you) thinks they’re on their way and that they’re doing a great job.
What you can do:
Idea 1:Did you think about creating a 6 month anniversary or 12 month anniversary gathering for members who hit those thresholds? By speaking about it ahead of time, you help visualize a milestone for your members to hit.
Idea 2:Consider creating a series of badges or titles that are unique to your club and help people track their progress. It also acts as a bonding mechanism when looking to build a tribe out of your community.
Yoga x Boatide. Lets Collab.
If you are a yoga studio owner looking to truly make a statement that lives on and do something special for your community, why not throw a workshop or class on a yacht? Get in touch with us.
We frequently collaborate with yoga studios to help them show their members they are appreciated, attract new ones, and generate more long-term word of mouth by running a Boatide X event on one of our 43 yachts.
Afterall, many Boatiders are Yogis too :)