The success of a blog for clients …

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For those of you who maybe follow Jane Thomas Pilates you will know that I send out a free weekly Newsletter. This Newsletter is aimed at my clients who attend our matwork classes, our Reformer classes and our one-to-one studio sessions. However, I also have a lot of people who subscribe to the Newsletter but who haven’t as yet signed up to a class, so they haven’t actually bought anything from us.

For those of you who love a statistic, we have 1018 who subscribe to the Newsletter, and around 50% of those subscribers actually buy from us in one way or another, either matwork, Reformer classes, or one-to-one studio sessions.
It’s not a bad statistic, but I always feel it could be improved. What can I do for the other 50% to make them want to buy? Because although it is great to do things for free, we do need to make a living. So I am always asking myself the following:

  1. What aren’t we offering yet that will make them want to buy from us?
  2. What’s missing from our timetable?
  3. What can I do to change the statistics?

I understand that when you put effort into producing a weekly Newsletter it can feel sometimes that you are talking to a wall of silence … is anyone actually reading the Newsletter? Or is it just not of interest, am I boring people, are they sick of seeing my Newsletters landing in their inbox week in and week out … do they just ‘junk’ it? Three things happened recently that made me realise the worth of our Newsletter, plus provide information for me to move forwards and be able to offer more or different to our current timetable.

Firstly I held a Wellbeing day. I planned it for a Saturday and I broke the day into two parts, morning and afternoon, and we timetabled some taster sessions with a different emphasis to our regular Pilates sessions. Our timetable repeated itself, so we ran 4 sessions in the morning, and then repeated them in the afternoon to enable more people to attend and experience them. Alongside this we had a Pilates Reformer available for people to try, and we had our team of Coaches available throughout the day to answer questions, to informally chat about other areas of health and wellbeing. We also obviously provided refreshments to ensure that everyone felt relaxed and able to interact easily in a friendly environment.

We made the day free to everyone, not only free to people who currently attended our classes, but also free to those who subscribed but had not yet joined a class.

We had a lot of people attend the day who had not yet started Pilates with us. They joined in with our sessions, and stayed and chatted and we had new people sign up to classes with us that day. We also had people who already attended matwork classes, but were able to try out the Reformer, and as a result then wanted to add this to their matwork sessions — so they bought more from us.

Secondly, I organised a Mindful Movement Workshop — again this was held on a Saturday morning, and was open to those who already attend sessions, but also to anyone who subscribes to the Newsletter. The Mindful Movement was based in and around Pilates, but with a very different emphasis. I wanted to get an idea of whether this kind of class would be of interest to our clients and so could we add some diversity to our timetable. But again the morning was available for those who have not yet bought anything from us. Again we had refreshments available so that after the physical session, we could chat freely, in a relaxed atmosphere. Those who already attend our sessions chatted to those who had not yet decided, and again as a result we were able to start three new Absolute Beginners Classes.

Thirdly, I received a phone call this week. The phone call was from a lady who has been subscribing to my Newsletter but didn’t currently attend classes. She felt she wanted to phone me to tell me how wonderful my Newsletter was, and although she wasn’t currently able to attend classes, she felt the content of the newsletter was inspiring and had helped her on so many other levels. This lady doesn’t live close enough to any of our venues at the moment, but she loved everything that I offered in the Newsletter, and had felt compelled to phone me and give me this positive feedback. At some point in the future she may/may not buy anything from us, but her feedback felt brilliant and gave me added confirmation about why I need to continue to write them.

Everything about what I have shared above is about giving something for free. The Newsletter is free, the Wellbeing Day and the Mindful Movement Workshop were free. They all come from a place of me wanting to show gratitude and appreciation to those people who already trust me and what we offer at JTP by buying into our classes. I believe that if things come from a good place, good things happen, so we all benefit from it. And of course by offering things for free I am hoping that people will see what JTP is about, what JTP offers, how much JTP cares, and how much effort JTP is prepared to invest in the JTP family.

And I end this blog with how I started, the free weekly Newsletter. Yes, it is worth it, people are reading it, people are taking note of the content, and it may not be an instant, quick fix for getting people to buy your products, but it is definitely a slow burner, but one that will keep giving you warmth and comfort for a long time.

Written by: Jane M Thomas of Jane Thomas Pilates, as featured on the BBC.

First Class Pilates — Pilates Done Right!
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First Class Pilates — 9 Great Central Road — Loughborough — LE11 1RW