I've seen it far too many times, I've done it a few times myself, getting enough people to sign up for a retreat isn't as easy as it seems. We have this dream to lead a yoga retreat and end up with only a couple people who submit a deposit. So many of our lovely students, friends and family express interest and have intentions of going but that's not enough to make this dream a reality.
Here are my top 7 suggestions to help build interest and increase guest registration:
1. Talk about it all the time
Make it known that you offering this amazing trip by mentioning in all your classes, people you meet, connecting with old friends, new friends etc. Be descriptive, be excited! Make sure to mention any discounts such as early bird pricing as well as the end date to that promo. The majority of people that will sign up will be people that know you and want to travel with you, focus on these personal connections.
2. Send out a monthly newsletter
Begin by collecting names/emails of all students that attend your classes, friends, family etc and send them an invitation to receive these newsletters. MailChimp is a great program that has easy-to-use templates and offer a variety of very clean and professional emails.
3. Make it known your legit
Sign up with Mindful Balance Retreats and have a professional plan your trip for you, allowing them to handle all the logistics, financial transactions, legal documents, AND provide your own website where your guests can find all information about the retreat. Not to mention, make a profit!
4. Create promotional material
Having some sort of flyer to hand out with the website address and a great photo is a nice reminder to embrace this amazing opportunity. Inexpensive printed options can be found on Vistaprint or choose a digital version and use an app such as WordSwag to post on Social Media and send as a text.
5. Internet Marketing
Post a couple times a week with a captivating photo of the retreat, including the website link, tag friends and anyone that’s coming or has expressed interest (ask friends if they can share it on their page too). Boosting your post will get you more exposure outside your circle. If you have a website consider using google ad words to direct more traffic to your site. You can also create an event on Facebook, invite everyone and anyone, you never know who will say yes or tell someone else about it. At the very least it's a friendly reminder.
7. Write as a guest blogger on Mindful Balance Retreats website or other relevant sites
Opportunities are endless here but a few ideas are: share the type of experience one would have on your retreat, a sample day, yoga practice or any other specific happenings that you will offer. Providing pictures, links to sign up and easy ways to direct them back to your site.