September is National Yoga Month here in the states, and studios everywhere are hosting community events, contests, free classes, and more to celebrate with their students.

Join us in honoring National Yoga Month by running a Facebook photo campaign all around the yoga lifestyle – and your yoga studio’s place in it.

Why host a #NationalYogaMonth campaign

There are several reasons to host a photo campaign on your social channels – especially Facebook.

You’ll get more eyes on your studio

Hosting a Facebook photo campaign allows you to tap into your students’ and followers’ social audiences – for free – meaning that you get more eyes on your brand and your customers' experience.

Plus, testimonials and referrals are the #1 way of bringing in new customers, and most of the time, these recommendations happen through word of mouth or through social media posts.

You’ll be part of a movement

Participating in something as widespread as National Yoga Month not only benefits your business on a marketing side, but it also helps solidfy you in the larger community of yoga studios and yogis out there.

You can tout the benefits of yoga with real-life examples

National Yoga Month is more than just an arbitrary designation – it’s meant to encourage an overall healthy lifestyle and educate people on the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual benefits of yoga. By hosting a photo campaign and showing off real stories and moments from your students, you can showcase the benefits of taking yoga classes at your studio in an accessible, relatable way.

You can run a contest

Want to get as many social posts as possible? Try running a contest for National Yoga Month. Offer a free class or workshop to the student that posts a photo of the most interesting (or most difficult) yoga pose, to the student who posts the most photos in your studio, or to the student whose friends come in during September. You’ll effectively gamify participation in your campaign while reaping the benefits of your students’ posts.

You can offer points for participating

If you have a Perkville rewards program, you can easily create a Facebook photo campaign that automatically rewards points to your students for participating. This will both expand your studio’s social reach and help you develop a library of images that you can use in further marketing campaigns. Plus, since you’re offering points for participating, you’ll incentivize your students to come visit your studio more often and keep their yoga practice front-of-mind.

Learn more about yoga with Perkville

And more...

There’s really no downside to setting up a Facebook photo campaign. You’re putting social control (and time) in your students’ hands – which equals marketing on tap for you.

Image courtesy of Yoga Journal

Starting a National Yoga Month campaign

You only need two things to build a Facebook photo campaign – photos and a hashtag.

A Call for Photos

To kick off your photo campaign, you’ll need to announce that it's happening, its hashtag (more on that later!), and what types of photos you’d like your members to post for the campaign. Some examples include:

  • A photo of their mat and props before starting a class at your studio
  • A photo of them doing a pose in their free time
  • A photo of them with their favorite teacher at your studio
  • A photo of them attending a workshop or event at your studio
  • A photo of them living a yoga lifestyle outside of asana

Once you’ve decided what photos you want your students to post, it’s time to get the word out. Keep fliers or post cards with details on your front desk, and send out a few newsletters to remind your students about the campaign. Here are some templates to get you started.

If you have a rewards program, let them know that they can rack up points each time they post a photo (up to once a day). And, if you really want to amp up the social posts, offer a frequency bonus for students that post photos 4-5 times a week.

Image courtesy of Yoga Journal

Crafting your hashtag

Now that you've figured out the logistics, it's time to set a hashtag.

One of the most important aspects of your National Yoga Month campaign is that it straddles the line of unique and searchable. You have two options for your hashtag: make a single unique hashtag or use a unique hashtag in conjunction with #NationalYogaMonth.

Make a single hashtag

Aligning your studio directly with National Yoga Month is a great way to get your current students involved in your social media. That said, creating a custom hashtag makes it harder for new students to find your studio’s social happenings, since it's not something they'd search naturally.

A single National Yoga Month hashtag is best for those studios focusing on retention and looking to get their students involved with them on social. Try a hashtag like #MyYogaMonthat[your studio name] to showcase your participation in National Yoga Month while still making it applicable to your students. For example, use “My” in the hashtag instead of “Our”, since these hashtags will be coming from your students’ accounts.

Double up

You can also couple the #NationalYogaMonth hashtag with a unique hashtag that applies directly to your studio. This method will help others find you more easily when they search the #NationalYogaMonth hashtag, but it does use up more characters that a single unique hashtag would.

You’ll still need to create a unique hashtag that speaks to your students’ posts, whether that’s #[StudioName]Celebrates, #PoseWithMeAt[StudioName], #[StudioName]Yogi, or anything else that works for your studio.

Ultimately, choose the method that works best with your social goals. If you want to increase participation, loyalty and testimonials, go for a single unique hashtag. If you want your social posts to be easily found by new, prospective students shopping around for studios, double up on your hashtags.

Ready to set up your National Yoga Month photo campaign? Tag us in a post with your hashtag(s), and we’ll share our favorites.