You’ve probably heard the numbers: 50% of new businesses close their doors within the first 5 years. This staggering stat leads many business owners to lose sleep. It’s common to feel overwhelmed, especially if your business is your passion project. So, how can you ensure success? CycleFierce and Barre & Soul of Portsmouth, NH are doing it by building a community through making strategic connections with other businesses.
These studios came together and discovered that they share some of the same clients, and their core values are aligned, too. Both strive to create a boutique fitness environment that offers the best experience in their industries—and both agree partnerships are key to their recipe for success. We stumbled upon this article about the budding relationship between these businesses, and wanted to find out how things are progressing.
Andrea Isabelle Lucas discovered her niche in the barre fitness industry. She learned about MINDBODY software while managing Exhale Spa, then combined that with her desire to “create a mindful community” for fitness lovers and founded Barre & Soul. Andrea offers her members discounts at local coffee shops and juice bars. She says when customers are “paying for boutique fitness, it’s important to give them perks.” When it comes to finding a partnership, her advice is to “look for partners that are complementary.”
CycleFierce co-founders Kat Moulton and Jennifer Sebeny mirror Andrea’s passion in their own niche—indoor cycling. Jennifer says, “We’re so like-minded; we share the same passions; we have a very tight-knit community.” When she learned that some of her instructors were taking classes at Barre & Soul studio, developing a partnership seemed obvious. She and Kat worked closely with Barre & Soul to identify how they could encourage loyal clients to try Andrea’s classes—and it’s working.
Here’s how they set up their partnership: Both businesses created a promo code in MINDBODY and emailed it to their existing clients. The code gives members a 20% discount on a 10-pack at the partner’s business. Requiring the purchase of a 10-pack means that clients are more likely to see results. Also, they produced co-branded content for their social media that encouraged clients to try their partner, and they co-authored a press release to spread the word quickly.
Both are still collecting data on the success of the promo code, but there’s no question that the relationship is a positive one. Their advice to others who want to start a partnership like theirs: maintain open communication. Know the exact rollout plan for strategies, like the number of social media posts created by each business and the duration of the discount. Andrea, Jennifer and Kat all agree that when you find the right match, it will be easy!
Attending the BOLD conference this year? Ask around to see if you can find a local connection that’s interested in developing a partnership.