It’s no secret that running a yoga studio can be somewhat difficult. Attracting new students, hiring and retaining teachers, maintaining your studio, and managing payroll can be enough to make your head spin.
Regardless of how busy you are, you’ve got to continue spreading the word about your business, especially with so many other facilities competing for yogis in your area.
A great way to do this is through publicity—better yet, free publicity. Positive media coverage can result in more business than paid advertising.
Invite reporters to a studio event or fundraiser, such as a grand re-opening or a benefit class. You can use this opportunity as a way to get to know journalists, introduce them to yoga, and tell them about the work you are doing in your community.
If a reporter considers your event newsworthy, you could end up with a story in your local newspaper or even on television. If a reporter doesn’t attend your event, your invitation is still a chance to get your studio’s name in front of the media.
Most reporters work on deadlines, so collecting information in a timely manner is important. If a reporter is seeking information about yoga or your studio, the first place they will check is on a “news” or “for the press” page on your website.
This area of your website will become a central place where journalists can go to find information on your studio in a quick and efficient way. This, in return, gives you a better shot of ending up in a feature story.
So you might be wondering, what goes into this page? For starters, a studio overview and fact sheet, bios of you and your teachers, headshots of your team, studio photos, a fun Q&A about you or your yoga business, and basic information about the yoga practice.
Press releases can focus on any type of newsworthy event at your studio, such as a new seasonal class schedule, a workshop featuring a well-known yoga teacher, a contest you are about to launch, or the opening of a second location.
Make sure you know where to send your press releases. In order to do this, get to know which publications and reporters write about yoga, health topics, and small businesses in your area.
From there, you can compile a spreadsheet of phone numbers, names, and email addresses. Once you’ve written your press release, email it to designated reporters with an interesting subject line and pitch letter.
Communicating via email is key, as 93 percent of journalists prefer to receive press releases this way, according to Cision, a global PR and communications firm.
Even if your press release doesn’t lead to a call back or a story, do not get discouraged. That reporter may remember you the next time he or she needs a source for anything yoga related.
Expert tip: Write news releases positioning yourself as an expert on topical health and wellness issues. This can help you build a more diverse audience!
Don’t be afraid to follow reporters, yoga publications, and other news outlets on social media. From here you can actively engage with them by sharing, retweeting, and commenting.
This might not necessarily lead to media coverage, but eventually those reporters and target media outlets will know who you are. When the time is right, you may be a go-to source for a story.
Robyn Parets is a former yoga studio owner, yoga teacher, and business journalist based in Boston. A former writer for Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) and NerdWallet, Robyn is also the founder and owner of Pretzel Kids, a children’s yoga/fitness brand and online training course.You can follow her on Twitter, or reach her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org