Week after week, you show up to teach your class, only to have 3 students attend. Or worse, a no-show. Sound familiar? Don’t worry – I’ve been there – all yoga teachers have at some point. Regardless if you’re an amazing teacher, are teaching at a great studio, or have the best time slot, realize you cannot control who shows up to your classes.
Try not to lose your self-confidence just yet.
Here’s what you can do: encourage family and friends to try out your classes. Use social media strategically to reach new people. Ask your studio owner if you can co-teach with a well-known teacher. And above all, keep those 3 students coming back week after week by giving a little extra at your classes.
4 Ways to Fill Your Yoga Classes (That You Haven’t Thought of Yet)
Lean on your people (friends, family, coworkers)
Your family and friends supported you through your yoga teacher training, and they’ll support you during your teaching journey! Utilize them – see if your studio will allow you to give your friends, family, and “people” a special discount on a studio pass. Have them agree to one month of yoga at your studio and ask them to come to your classes.
The best part? These are the people that will give you the most honest feedback on your class. After a few weeks, ask them to come up with 3 things you did well and 3 things you can improve upon.
The better teacher you are, the more likely your students will return to your classes. Simple.
Extra Credit: hold a free class in a public place for your family, friends, significant other, co-workers, etc. Ask them to come prepared to give you some positive and critical feedback. Teach the same type of class you teach in the studio, and learn from their notes!
Utilize your other connections via social networks
Are you on social media? (I’m guessing yes). Be creative on your social platforms and advertise your classes!
Pro Tip: don’t overdo it. If you overwhelm your followers, they’ll stop following.
Here’s how: pick 1 (maybe 2) social platform(s) to use for promotion. Keep in mind a successful post on Instagram will perform differently than a successful post on Facebook (for instance, Instagram is 100% visual, Facebook can support a little bit of text).
Post about your classes in moderation – 1x a month. Make sure you vary how you post, as well: one month you post a picture of you at the studio, the next month post a quote you love with your class details in the caption. Another, post a photo of you in the posture you’ll be teaching in class. You get the picture.
Here’s a fun idea: make a Facebook event. Theme your class, something like “arm balancing class with Kim” or “learn to do a headstand: yoga class with Kim” and create an event. Have your close friends share the event and it should grow in popularity!
Extra Credit: post something using Facebook Live. Facebook has a new(ish) feature that lets users post live videos to their feed. These videos get more attention than previously-recorded ones (aka Facebook will show your live video to more people). Do a demonstration in the studio or show a sneak peek of your sequence!
Above all, make your social media strategy authentic and real. You can do it!
Co-Teach With Your Fellow Teacher/Mentor/Yoga Idol
Have you ever thought of co-teaching with another yoga teacher? When I was asked to do this for the first time, I thought it was going to be terrifying. I was paired with one of the most-loved teachers at my studio. In the end, it was the BEST thing my studio helped me with!
When you teach with a seasoned yoga teacher, they will likely have a dedicated following. Their regular students will get to learn your name, your teaching style, and will begin to trust you with your own class. I can speak from experience in saying co-teaching is the best thing I’ve done to grow my yoga classes (thus far).
Look at it this way: why try to get new students to come to your studio when you can get regulars to add your class to their favorites? Essentially, you are taking the students that are already coming to the studio and convincing them to attend your class as well. Viola!
Go Above and Beyond In Class
Building on the point above, keep the students who are already attending your class coming. Make one element of your class unique so you stand out in their catalog of teachers.
Find your niche. For example, maybe you always use essential oils at the end of class. Or, perhaps you focus on giving really thoughtful hands-on adjustments.
For me, it’s teaching some sort of fun arm balance/out-of-the-box posture in each class with a demonstration and “play time.”
Over time, your students will remember you for always reading a quote at the end of class, or having the most relatable themes, or igniting their practice with a killer playlist. Choose what you naturally do well, and let your niche flourish.
It may sound like a lot of work, but trying new ways to grow your class can be fun and will definitely be rewarding!
Step out of your comfort zone, move away from your usual patterns, and you’ll start filling up your classes!
Have you tried different ways of growing your yoga classes? If so, what worked and didn’t work? I’d love to hear in the comments below!
Love + Light,