Whatever your business, you need customers. But how do you win those first customers and build an excited customer base? We chat to Carine Moffett, founder of Nubodi Pilates, about tripling her customer base and winning loyal customers.
I am Carine, owner of Nubodi Pilates, a dynamic exercise class based in the riverside town of Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire. I started Nubodi Pilates in 2016 following a successful career instructing classic mat Pilates, yoga, barre and personal training. I turned to the discipline after suffering a back injury teaching a gym class. I explored many options to improve my core strength and flexibility and after one reformer class I was hooked! The rest they say, is history…
What is reformer Pilates?
Those who frequent gyms and fitness studios will be familiar with the Pilates reformer machine even if they’ve never used one before. The reformer - a large piece of apparatus which consists of a sliding carriage equipped with straps and springs - is where you perform various strength building exercises either lying down, kneeling, standing or sitting.
I offer classes which cater to all levels of fitness, from beginner to intermediate, with ‘Power Classes’ for those who are experienced on the reformer. I also run reformer workshops for those who want to try before they commit to buying a block of classes, as well as dynamic classes for those who like high-octane exercise, plus stretch, barre and cardio versions of the same discipline.
Back in 2014, I began my business journey using one reformer in a hired room at a local studio. At the time, this arrangement suited the needs of my small client base. The advantage of working within a tightly knit community meant that word soon spread of the fantastic results my clients were experiencing. This rise in demand for more reformer classes meant I took a leap of faith and decided to buy four reformer machines. With the help of a Virgin Start Up Loan I relocated to an even bigger studio and purchased three more reformers to build up a comprehensive class timetable to accommodate my growing list of over 40 clients. Fast forward to today: I now have 120 active clients at my studio and have grown my timetable from 15 classes a week over 5 days, to 24 classes per week over 7 days. So, how did I do it?
Starting a new venture is an exciting but scary process. It took strength and commitment to turn my dream into a reality. It hasn’t always been plain sailing; many small business owners suffer from the same stumbling blocks, but the strength I have acquired from my loving family and devoted clients has made me overcome these pitfalls. I have grown in strength both mentally and physically over the past year, making me happier and healthier than ever before.
Like the advice I offer all clients looking for results – be it for improving strength or body appearance – consistency is the key to success! I was consistent with marketing efforts throughout my first year which included a social media advertising campaign, targeted advertising in local press, and all-inclusive events like workshops and open days. I continue these efforts and tailor them throughout the year.
In my first year of trading, I turned to friends and family for support and also to Virgin StartUp, who offered an unparalleled service getting my business off the ground. I have discovered limitless motivation and support from my Pilates hero Courtney Miller, a STOTT Pilates instructor who I have followed around the globe to attend her workshops and seminars, as well as keeping a close eye on her social media activity. Finding support in those who inspire me has boosted my confidence remarkably.
So, what have been the results?
Nothing motivates me more than results. To see the sparkle in the eyes of a man or woman who has transformed their body shape, to see confidence grow in a client who has overcome injury, to motivate and lead a room of awesome people in a high-energy, powerful and sweaty workout with great music pumping is what I live for! Forming a community of supportive and fun-loving clients has let me progress and build my business into what it is today. I love what I do, and that is the most important thing.
If you are looking to triple your customer base in the next year I highly recommend researching the benefits of a Virgin Start Up loan and bear in mind my three steps to success. If you’re interested in learning more about Nubodi Pilates, you can visit my website or find me on Facebook.
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