5 Reasons Why Retreats Don’t Sell

There are a lot of challenges that you’ll face when you’re planning a yoga retreat but the biggest, most anxiety-inducing concern, is that you’re retreat doesn’t sell.

I’ve talked to a lot of yoga teachers who want to host a yoga retreat and hands down the question I hear most often is ‘what if nobody comes?’

I’m not going to sugar coat it. It’s a legitimate concern. And, it can dramatically impact how your retreat goes and whether or not you make (or lose) money on the whole thing.

To help you avoid this fate, let me outline the top 5 reasons I think people don’t book a specific yoga retreat.

They Don’t Know About It

It may seem like an obvious reason but far too often yoga teachers spend all of their time planning this amazing retreat and yet only a few people know about it. Or, they just put up a single poster at the studio and expect people to sign up. Retreats are not ‘Field of Dreams’; just because you build it doesn’t mean they’ll come.
Solution: Have a solid marketing plan.


The Location Isn’t Appealing

Location is the number one draw for most yoga retreat participants. This is what they fantasize about. This is what will have them signing up. So, how do you pick a place that everyone wants to go? Start by picking the places that are popular and then, test the waters. Just because you want to go to Iceland doesn’t mean it’s on everyone else’s bucket list. It doesn’t matter how amazing the program is or how much they love you as a teacher – if they don’t want to go (or can’t afford to go) to the location you’ve selected, they’ll opt-out.
Solution: Do market research.


They’re Not Sure What They Get

Everyone’s idea of a yoga retreat is different – especially if they’ve never been on one. So, you need to be super clear about what’s included in the retreat and what the retreat is all about. What’s happening when you’re not doing yoga? When potential participants don’t have enough information, it can be hard to say yes – and especially hard to justify the cost.
Solution: Get clear on your logistics and make sure you’re communicating all of the key details.


It Costs Too Much

This can sometimes be a result of the last reason – you haven’t clarified what’s included. Or, in some cases, you’re guessing at the cost or basing it on what other people charge. Going on retreat generally isn’t cheap so you need to help people see where the value is and why it’s going to be worth it. And, you need to make sure that you’ve done your cost analysis properly so that you don’t price it so inexpensively that you lose money!
Solution: Know your costs (and your break even), be clear about what’s included and look at offering payment plans. Find ways to add value to the experience you’re selling.


You Have a Bad Reputation

Ouch. This one hurts but we have to talk about it because, frankly, people talk. It doesn’t take much these days for word about your past retreats to spread. This can really serve you if you host amazing retreats but it can also work against you if you bombed your last retreat(s). It’s possible to sell-out retreats after a bad retreat, but it’s a lot harder.
Solution: Host retreats that are super dialed in and deal with unhappy guests immediately.

There are a few more reasons that might cause people to give your yoga retreat a miss, but these are the most common ones. I’ve offered solutions because I don’t want to discourage you from chasing your dream of hosting a retreat. Even if you have no experience, you can definitely avoid these mistakes and sell out your first retreat.

If you want a little extra reassurance (and confidence), check out my Create a Profitable Yoga Retreat online program where I share my blueprint to running a successful and fulfilling yoga retreat. 

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