I’ve been on a bit of a yoga kick these days.
If you caught the last two newsletters, you know I’ve been using examples of yoga related businesses as a way to get your own creative juices going.
And I’m going to do it one last time.
It’s worth repeating…
This is NOT an article about starting a yoga business.
Namely… I’m going to show you three more examples and ways you can “steal” what makes these businesses successful in order to jumpstart your own!
Idea #1 Organize a conference
If you’re good at throwing a party or planning a move, then you can organize a conference.
Conferences or training events can be highly profitable.
Of course, one source of revenue is the registration fees.
Fees are all over the map. I’d attended training events that cost $3,000-5,000 and others that charged $199.
Generally speaking, if the point of the event is to show people how they can make money by say blogging or investing in real estate or making money online, the more you can charge.
When I produced the Making Dreams Happen workshop featuring Barbara Sher, Barbara Winter and myself, I charged $1700 for the four-day event.
We capped it at 55. So, that event grossed $93,000.
But when I put on the popular 3-day Work at What You Love workshops around the country, we only charged $399-$499 but we also brought in 100-150 people.
For some, the real money comes in the form of fees from sponsors and vendors who pay for things like:
- space at a tradeshow
- ads in the conference brochure
- company-branded items in the swag bag
- the opportunity to present to your audience that ends with an offer to purchase their product or service (with this model the event host typically receives 50 percent of all sales)
I know entrepreneurs who regularly bring in a quarter of a million dollars on sponsor and vendor fees alone.
Every single month there are dozens of yoga conferences happening around the world.
And not all vendors at these events are selling yoga gear.
Sponsors at Canada’s big Yoga Conference included coffee brewers, kale chips makers, and dozens of other small businesses targeting health-conscious consumers.
Even regional conferences can pull in big numbers.
The Northwest Yoga Conference attracts 1,000 participants from Oregon, Washington, Idaho, British Columbia, and elsewhere.
A booth costs vendors $800.
The more participants you have the more vendors you can attract.
You don’t have to fill a huge exhibit hall.
If you had five rows with 20 vendors per row (10 on each side), at $800 that would be $80,000 in fees.
A conference can also be a way for a company to expand its reach.
Yo Kid organization teaches yoga instructors how to work with children.
But by hosting the 2017 National Kids Yoga Conference, the Alexandria, Virginia-based company is able to attract a national audience and position itself as a leader in its field.
How You Can Steal This Idea
If you love organizing events, look for opportunities to host niche-specific conferences.
If you don’t know where to start, begin by researching entrepreneurial trends.
For inspiration read up on the many YouTube conferences.
Many were started by regular people who saw an opportunity and grabbed it.
You can also make money on the back-end by selling recordings of the live event to people who couldn’t be there.
To have the entire Making Dreams Happen workshop recorded and then turned into a product cost around $15,000.
But we made that back 10 times over.
A big part of the initial costs was the production and packaging of a 24 CD set.
However, since most people today just want to download Mp3s it will cost you a lot less to steal this idea.
(Converting to a downloadable product also allowed me to knock off $100 and pass the savings along to customers.)
Finally, you can always do what Yoga Festival did and capitalize on conferences by charging hosts a fee to be listed.
Idea #2 Sell to other businesses within a specific niche
Businesses that cater to the needs of other businesses are known as B2B.
Services like event planning or senior day-care can benefit a wide range of businesses.
But a B2B business can also be aimed at a single market.
Obviously the bigger the market – the greater the opportunity.
It’s worth repeating…
Yoga is more popular in Canada than in India.
And third on the list is the United States where a whopping 20.4 million Americans partake in the ancient practice.
Which means there are lots of other yoga-related businesses in need of solutions too. Like…
- independent yoga instructors
- studio owners
- retreat centers
- businesses that make yoga gear
Take for example, the Black Yoga Teachers Alliance,
The non-profit business was created to provide community support and networking among a specific demographic group with a shared interest.
With 100 people attending their first major event, I’d say the organizations’ two founders tapped into a very real need.
Then there’s a company called International Yoga.
Most of their revenue comes from individuals who sign up for a yoga retreat.
But the company also saw an opportunity to help instructors wanting to host their own retreats internationally.
Planning and running a retreat are the easy parts.
The challenge for instructors (like all business owners) is the marketing.
But remember, problem = opportunity.
Wisely, International Yoga also offers instructors full retreat management and logistical services “so teachers can focus on what they do best.”
To qualify for these services, however, instructors must already have some international retreat experience under their belt.
The easiest way to gain experience is to teach at someone else’s event.
The problem, of course, is finding one.
For Yoga Trade it’s also an opportunity since they match travel-loving instructors looking for adventure with yoga centers seeking instructors.
How You Can Steal This Idea
Think of a group you’d love to work with.
Then make a list of the problems, complaints, or threats that are unique to that demographic.
Next, brainstorm ways you can address these issues.
Have a knack for videotaping or marketing? Find a niche market who needs marketing help and pursue them.
Love to teach? Compile a list of resources like the ones listed here and teach a class on how to grow a yoga – or other niche – business for fun and profit.
Like doing research and writing? Put together an ebook on 101 Cool Ways to Cash in On the Yoga Craze.
Have a winning personality? Create a YouTube channel on this or any number of niche topics.
Love connecting people? Start your own association or matching service.
Idea #3 Make money by making a difference
For most, yoga people is a form of exercise.
But for others, it’s a means to serve the greater good.
In 2003 nurse practitioner and yoga instructor Mary Lynn Fitton decided to pilot a program to teach yoga to under-served, exploited, and incarcerated girls who had experienced trauma.
Today, Fitton’s California-based 501C3 nonprofit organization The Art of Yoga Project has served over 6,000 girls.
There are other initiatives using yoga to help underserved and incarcerated youth and adults of both genders.
Like Uprising Yoga in Los Angeles.
And the inspiring Africa Yoga Project (be sure to watch the video!) which is making yoga accessible to even impoverished communities.
How You Can Steal This Idea
If you think you’d like to start a non-profit, take a year or so to pilot your idea like Mary did.
If the initiative has legs, figure out how you’ll serve your audience and what grants, fundraising efforts, and other revenue models you’ll need to cover basic expenses moving forward.
Figure out too who your natural partners and potentially paying customers will be.
For example, Uprising Yoga works directly with the Los Angeles County Probation Department, mental health facilities, group homes, and social work agencies.
You might also partner with a local hospital, center for cancer survivors, substance abuse treatment program, or senior center.
The Bottom Line
When it comes to coming up with viable ways to generate income, there are endless ways to take a single idea and build on it.
And remember, changing course starts with a great idea – and the willingness to act on it.
Ready to find your perfect business idea?
Learn more about my laser focused idea generation and planning consultation here.
Life is short my change seeking friend.
And I can only take a few clients a month.
Whether you work with me or not — please don’t let your dream wait another day.