Diary of a yoga teacher faced with Covid 19; Phase 2: Choosing your strategy: Why going online may NOT be right for you.
Since Covid hit, I remember the avalanche of advice for yoga teachers coming out about going online. About how this had to be THE thing you now focused on in order to survive and thrive.
To a large extent I absolutely agree with that perspective – but there’s a “but”….and it’s a BIG one.
Offering online yoga can absolutely save your life in terms of bringing in cash to pay your bills…
But ONLY if you already have ONE thing well and truly in place…
What is that one thing?
A list of existing students; a COMMUNITY who already know, like and trust you.
If you have that, and you have not gone online…then I have to ask you…what the heck is stopping you? (Some mindset work needed right there methinks!)
And if you haven’t got an existing community of students who already know, like and trust you – then you’re probably going to find it’s a real struggle to generate interest and income from teaching online.
Sorry to burst your bubble, but selling online to people who don’t know
you from Adam is going to be one of the most dispiriting things you’re
ever likely to do…
And that’s when you’re a reasonably knowledgeable marketer!
If marketing isn’t one of your strong points; if you’ve not invested in learning those skills, let me tell you you’re in for one of the toughest (and sometimes costliest) rides of your life.
If you read my previous 2 entries to this Covid diary, you’ll know I had over a hundred students sign up for my online courses and programmes once I pulled myself out of my “funk” and created an offer for my community.
Even I was surprised – and humbled by the response.But what doesn’t surprise me is that these students knew, liked and trusted me as their teacher. They loved the community feel of the classes. They knew the style and approach I took to teaching, and they didn’t want to lose that. They had been bitten by the yoga bug and wanted it to continue with someone they knew.
So they signed up.
If what you need is actual cash in the bank to help you pay your bills, going online with no existing list or community is NOT going to do it for you.
Online is a LONG term goal – not a short term goal in those circumstances.
That’s like deciding you can’t be bothered to train and go through the camping stations to climb Mount Everest – so you pay someone to helicopter you in straight to the top!
Be prepared for collapse!
There is NO shortcut to making a SUSTAINABLE income online as a yoga teacher unless you have built your tribe first…..
And building your tribe takes time.
That might be a luxury you don’t have right now.
Not only that, with little understanding of what you’re really doing, without guidance from someone who actually knows what they’re doing to help you learn what you don’t know and avoid the pitfalls, then it’s one hell of a rabbit warren and time sucker too – mostly with little or no money to show for all that effort.
So, whilst my advice to you in the first two articles about dealing with the Covid crisis have been take action and do something quickly – understand that not all actions are equal!
Some are better suited to where YOU are in YOUR business right now – and no matter what that other “guru” expert tells you about how lucrative online yoga teaching is, (and it can be, I’m not disputing that), going online may not be the right time or the right strategy for YOU just yet. Maybe that needs to be a mid term focus when you have some other things in place.
Think of building a successful yoga business, online or off, a bit like baking a cake. You don’t just need the right ingredients – you need to understand how to put those ingredients together in the right order to get a delicious cake!
So, if you don’t have the right ingredients in place to make money quickly online, does that mean there is nothing you can do to work on building your yoga business?
It just means where you focus will be different.
If there is one thing this pandemic has given many of us it’s a little extra time we didn’t have before.
Whether you were teaching yoga at a gym or studio or running your own classes or studio, all of a sudden you have some time free you can utilise to your advantage – so you’re in a better position once we come out of this crisis to achieve your yoga teacher aspirations.
Use that time wisely. If you’re serious about making teaching yoga a real career for you, you have to treat this like you would any other career – seriously.
Covid presents you with a ton of opportunities to develop that career – IF you’re willing to take them and do the work.
Not everyone is ready to hit the ground running and make REGULAR and CONSISTENT income online from teaching yoga.
In the next article in this special series: Diary of a Yoga Teacher coping with Covid 19, I’m going to share with you my checklist for determining whether you’re ready….or not!
If you want to join a community of like-minded yoga teachers, determined NOT to let the Covid-19 define or destroy them, make sure you’re part of the Yoginiors Facebook group, where, over the next few weeks I’ll be sharing what works and what doesn’t at a time like this.
Actions you can take
Join our FB group; and tell us your story of how you’ve coped with the Covid -19 crisis. Whether you’ve successfully transitioned online or struggled, I’d love to hear your stories. They will help others either realise they are not alone or help inspire them to take some positive action to move them forward.