By Yogi Aaron
So you are thinking about having a yoga retreat at Blue Osa. Or, like me, you are thinking about taking a group of your students to the Himalayas.
That is fantastic!
Have you even asked any of your students if they want to go with you?
Do your students want to travel with you?
Many yoga teachers book yoga retreats just assuming that their students will want sign up and go with them. Just recently, we had two well-known yoga teachers book their retreats with us at Blue Osa. They had signed a contract for 20 people each. Two months before the retreats were supposed to begin, the retreat leaders canceled because NO one had signed up.
Because they had not properly asked the right questions of themselves or their students.
Below is a checklist you need to go through before you plan your next yoga retreat to see if your students want to travel.
- Do you even have yoga students? I have seen new yoga teachers consider holding yoga retreats, and they don’t even have any students.
- Have you asked if your students want to travel with you? For every new location where I held a yoga retreat, I always asked my students if they wanted to go there. A few years ago, I was in Cambodia on vacation in Angkor Wat. Half way through my trip, I could see myself coming back with a group of people. That evening, I sent out 20 emails to some of my closest students telling them about my vision for a retreat in Cambodia. Almost all of them emailed back saying that it was a fantastic idea. Eight of them asked me when they could put a deposit down to hold their space and I had not even started promoting the yoga retreat.
- Have you posted a teaser campaign on your Facebook page? Last year I made the decision to return to the Himalayas with a yoga group. So almost a year ago, I started putting up pictures of the Himalayas from my previous trips asking people if they would be interested in joining me. I did this once a month. I generated a lot of interest after four months and knew I would be able to attract a group. Then I posted a picture every two weeks. Just from this, I had a list of 30 people who basically said, “Where do I send my deposit?”
- Have you sent out an email blast polling your students? Frame the email in a way that asks them to help you, so you can be a better teacher for them. In taking two minutes to answer some questions over their coffee break, they would be of great service to you. Some important questions you might want to ask are:
- Have you thought about going on a yoga retreat to deepen your yoga practice?
- Would you like to join me on a yoga retreat in Costa Rica?
- What other places would you be interested in going to on a yoga retreat?
- What is your current travel budget for a yoga retreat?
- What time of year would you like to take a yoga retreat?
- How many weeks of vacation are you able to take every year?
- Have you held an open house or thrown little party to let people know what you are wanting to do and to solicited feedback and support?
I use all of these steps whenever I have hosted a yoga retreat to see where my students want to travel. It may seem like a lot of work, but the truth is, if you don’t take these steps, you probably won’t have anyone showing up.
Asking these questions is a crucial first step in the marketing process that not only will lead to greater success for your yoga retreats but, more than likely, will help sell out your yoga retreat months in advance.
And when that happens you can start dreaming about your next adventure!
About Yogi Aaron
Yogi Aaron brings passion and a spirit of adventure to his teaching. Thus inspired, he guides students to secret, far-flung locales, which not only empowers them to realize their own limitless potential but also makes yoga relevant and accessible for the modern world. Since 2002 he has been traveling and leading retreats worldwide. He currently serves as the Yoga Director at Blue Osa Yoga Retreat + Spa in Costa Rica
Photos were taken from the Elise Joan Bliss Yoga Retreat at Blue Osa, May 17 – 24. Elise has an amazing ability to draw fantastic students and craft the most amazing yoga retreats. We can’t wait to have her come back.