Long before Mighty Pilates’ inception, future founder Cricket Wardein was already busy honing her leadership skills. Her career took her from Yahoo to Edelman, with 650 people reporting to her. But it was about 12 years ago while working in Australia that she discovered something she would end up falling in love with: Pilates.
Pilates hadn’t truly hit the United States yet, and Cricket was fascinated by the reformers, the classes, and how amazing it made her feel. Whatever this was, she needed to bring it back home. Just one year later, she opened the original Mighty Pilates location.
“I kept my corporate job…because, as everyone knows, it's hard to make it the first couple years after you start a studio,” she says. But it was only five years later that she opened up a second location and quit her corporate job.
In total, Mighty Pilates currently operates at three different locations in California.
Cricket was committed to creating a one-of-a-kind experience for her clients, so she put a spin on classic Pilates. “It’s high-energy, high music. But everybody is classically trained. So, it’s a mix of classical Pilates with high-energy fitness.”
The goal was simple: Make people feel so good that they’d keep coming back for more. “We always say it's not just about fitness, but we want everyone to walk out and feel wonderful about themselves and feel like they escaped the world's challenges by being there,” Cricket shares.
To accomplish this, Mighty Pilates has made a point of keeping classes small—only nine people at a time. This has made it possible for the instructor to give plenty of personal, one-on-one time to each client. Even though the pandemic, Mighty Pilates was steadfast in maintaining the intimate community that they’ve built.
Conquering customer retention alongside Mindbody
People were dropping in daily to experience Mighty Pilates, but the studio still ran into some rather common issues—namely, shaky customer retention.
Cricket knew that to some degree, this was to be expected. After all, people want to try different things when it comes to their fitness journey. But she knew that there had to be something she could do in order to improve these relationships. “I think it's important to stay in touch with those clients because most of them end up coming back.”
The answer came in Mindbody’s advanced set of client engagement tools: Marketing Suite.
Cricket used our auto-renew program to better understand how to price it for her clients and how to communicate with them around what they could expect. As result, Mighty Pilates could spend far less time chasing down clients asking them to renew their membership. Time saved, revenue gained.
Cost per client is another one of their major goals. “How can we get someone to do one more visit or take one more private?” she questioned. That’s where Marketing Suite came in.
With the client engagement tools, Mighty Pilates automated their email marketing strategy using over 100 emails that will go out to specific clients based on how often they come in and how much they spend. Each individual ends up experiencing something unique and customized to their habits, echoing the personalized experience they get in the studio.
Getting people to come back is only part of the equation. Cricket knows that communication is key, and feedback is everything. “The other thing that I love is just that rating tool,” she explains of another one of Mindbody’s features. “I can get on there and look every day at ratings for clients. And we can also address issues right away.” If a client leaves a less-than-thrilling rating or review, Cricket and her team will spot it immediately and act accordingly.
Having such a quick and painless way to connect with clients who want to offer constructive feedback has allowed Mighty Pilates to better serve their community.
Monitoring their metrics and KPIs has been pivotal for Mighty Pilates, and Cricket is able to see everything she needs with only her phone. “I look at the desktop tool probably once every couple of days. But I just do a quick scan to look at sales and how we're tracking on things every single day,” she says of the app.
With the information she gathers through the app, she seamlessly keeps her locations updated with how they’re performing. “I do a huge brand scorecard spreadsheet once a month for each studio, and I use Mindbody to pull all my data. So, it's everything from what the ratings are to how many people were in the studio. One of the most important things for us is the cost per customer. We also look at average class size, we look at attendance revenue, we look at overall sales. I use all of [Mindbody’s] tools and don't really need anything else.”
Connecting to a larger audience through the Mindbody app
The fitness industry is a crowded one, without a doubt. To get ahead of the competition and in front of more people, Mighty Pilates turns to the Mindbody app. Through this network of over a million users, more potential customers are finding these studios and ultimately booking classes with them.
Mighty Pilates has come a long way with Mindbody, using our software to enhance studios that are in the business of changing people’s lives for the better.
“I think Mindbody has come such a long way in adding features and functionality. But I've never even considered switching.”
Our partners are important. The various tools and features matter. But what’s it all for? The client.
It’s all about providing the client with a better experience so that they’ll continue coming through the front door of their neighborhood Mighty Pilates.
The thing that energizes me as a business owner is when people say it's their happy place,” Cricket says. That is the foundation of a thriving business.