Here at Digital Yoga Academy we have recently celebrated hitting over one million dollars in online course sales! It wasn’t an overnight success, many lessons have been learned along the way and our programs have evolved over time to the world class ones you see today. No matter where you are in your journey, let our journey inspire you to take action on your dreams and build a sustainable online yoga business.
What did the journey look like for Digital Yoga Academy?
A career in digital marketing
Kelly spent 15 years climbing the ladder in the corporate world in a demanding marketing career managing big teams and big budgets. The things that had driven her for many years, the success that she thought she wanted actually resulted in burnout and a feeling of misalignment. Realising this misalignment was a strong desire to work for herself but unsure what that looked like, yoga held the key.
Yoga teacher training to successful retreat business owner
In 2015, Kelly joined a teacher training to “deepen her practice” and soon discovered her desire to share yoga with others. Within a few months, she quit her well paid job as a Marketing Director to pursue her dream of building her own business. Within a year her brand was well known in the London yoga space, a testament to her marketing background and focus on collaborations. Within a matter of years, she had sold out 25 retreats from Ibiza to Bali, taught hundreds of classes in London and hosted dozens of unique events that captured the attention of international media and global brands. Kelly had transformed from a hustling yoga teacher to a thriving Yogipreneur, living life on her own terms with a loyal community, earning around 80k a year from classes, events and retreats. However, she was at capacity running 10 retreats in a year plus sold out events and classes.
The transition to online yogipreneur
In 2017 Kelly started working on Digital Yoga Academy, an idea she had right back on her teacher training when she was presented with an hour long marketing lesson – not enough to prepare you for starting a business! After sitting on the idea for two years, the time had come to set it into motion – building an online business that would support yoga teachers to bulid their own online businesses. Digital Yoga Academy was born. “I knew the potential of the online space – the yoga teachers online who were making it big were those with online memberships, courses and apps. As a digital marketer, I knew the space, the strategies and how to create a community.” The niche was clear: Yoga teachers who were at capacity, giving them the online tools so that they could move out of the constraint of studios and classes in local community halls and instead start to reach students all over the world.
Let your course evolve over time (but get started now!)
Before our signature program, The Profitable Yoga Teacher was born, there were smaller courses and lessons learned. Knowing the idea was a great one, Kelly got into action straight away, building her website in January 2017 whilst simultaneously recording content for her first online course: Build your yoga website with WordPress. The first lesson came at launch – nobody bought it! The course had been created before building a community.
The key thing to becoming a successful yogipreneur
“The biggest reason entrepreneurs fail to reach their goals is giving up too soon and not understanding how success really works.” Rather than giving up after what might be considered a “failed launch”, Kelly’s focus shifted onto growing a community, opening a Facebook Group: Yoga Teacher Marketing Community, which currently has 18K members and growing.
A winning formula for growing community and sales
In July 207, Kelly hosted her first challenge inside the FB group and used this to launch a new course on growing your email list with Mailchimp. Around 350 people joined my challenge, converting 14 to course sales and made $1300. It’s a formula that has grown the Digital Yoga Academy Community and made sales over and over again, being refined over time. By the end of the first year, multiple courses had been launched for yoga teachers on:
- Building your website
- Growing your email list
It became clear that to become the market leader for business education in the yoga space, we needed a signature course that took students through the framework that Kelly herself had been refining. This program would solve the main problem faced by yoga teachers – struggling to make money teaching yoga and lacking the skills and knowledge to build a profitable business. The Profitable Yoga Teacher was launched in July 2018 to provide these solutions to struggling yoga teachers and hit a $30k launch.
Experimentation leads to yogipreneur success
To be successful, you have to be willing to experiment, try things and refine as you go. For example:
- Trying different launch methods: Live launching vs Evergreen
- Launching various mini courses
- Running online challenges
- Understanding the space & your niche
- Building a network
- Being consistent and showing up online
- Listen to your customer – understand how students behave inside your program, where improvements can be made and how to support them to the finish line and their transformation.
Let it evolve, get into creation mode – because whatever you create today might not be the same course you’re launching next year. That’s ok – you’ll only get to that if you start today. “Taking action is always the answer.”
Building an online community for any yoga niche
The strategies used to grow our community are relevant to any niche:
- Being active online and sharing content
- Creating connections and expanding your network
- Offering free training with partners
- Hanging out online where ideal clients are and having conversations – No matter what your niche, your ideal students are online and active in online communities, you just need to find them.
A yogipreneur mindset hack
Mindset is essential to growing a successful online yoga business, you have to believe that your business is growing and thriving. Decide that it’s true, trust that it’s true and embody it. Any yoga teacher can build a thriving business with the right mindset, processes, resilience and consistency. Everyone starts at zero. Everything you need to know is available to you. You can learn how to grow your community, we can learn about marketing, you can learn what it takes to launch successfully. Building an online yoga course business IS possible for you, decide that it’s true for you and get started!
Become a profitable yoga teacher
The Profitable Yoga Teacher has become our signature program, one that’s resulted in many student successes.
- Dani who was struggling to create offers and a business that truly reflected the message she wanted to share.
- Claire Eli who, like many of you, was starting her journey at ZERO! She didn’t have a community and yet, within one year, she had made over $22k in income from her online offerings.
- Queen who hosted an online summit for 1,600 attendees, attracting a panel of experts including Dianne Bondy, Susanna Barkataki and Sean Corne on how to step away from injustice and towards diversity, inclusion, growth and empowerment.
- Maria Jones, founder of Yuva Yoga. When she launched her online course, she made over $30k in sales in the first year – and she even secured a partnership with Yoga Alliance.
Timeline to success summary
- Before digital Yoga Academy: A successful 15-year career in Digital Marketing
- 2015 – Kelly joined a teacher training to “deepen her practice” but instead left her career to start her own yoga business.
- Jan 2017 – Kelly started working on Digital Yoga Academy, building her website and recording content for her first course as she went.
- April 2017 – The Digital Yoga Academy Facebook group opened (now at 18k members)
- July 2017 – Kelly hosted her first challenge inside the FB group and used this to launch a new course on growing your email list with MailChimp 350 poeple joined the challenge which led to 14 x course sales and made $1300.
- Our signature program, The Profitable Yoga Teacher launched to a $30K launch.
- Focussed on refining and re-launching the signature program. The second round of The Profitable Yoga Teacher: $60K, Third round: $130K, Fourth: $200K