June 27, 2018
How to Grow Your Coworking Membership Before You Open Your Second Location
Optix multi-venue client: The Wheelhouse
Over the last few weeks, we’ve written two blogs on developing your coworking expansion strategy – the first being focused on the questions to ask before expanding your coworking business and the second providing insights into what to consider when developing your coworking location strategy. This week, we are excited to bring you an article focused on growing your coworking membership base!
There are plenty of powerful ways to drum up early interest before you even open your doors. Here are four of the best ways to grow your membership for your second coworking space.
1. Generate hype within your community
It’s time to spread the exciting news about your new coworking location—and the best place to start is with your current community of loyal members. Put the Optix Community Feed feature to work and broadcast the news to your community. They already love what you do, so they will be happy to spread the word about your second location.
You can also harness the power of your website to get the word out. Add a ‘Coming Soon’ banner or start blogging on some of the most valuable, unique and exciting aspects of your new location. Add to the excitement by livening up your social media feeds with ‘sneak peeks’ of the new venue and ask your current community to share your posts.
Lastly, don’t forget about past members that are no longer working in your space – or even people that are part of your community and have been supportive but never signed up for your first location. You already have all of their contact details, so get in touch and let them know that you’re about to open a new location. Your second coworking venue may be more convenient and appealing to them than your first, so let them know all about it.
If you’re looking to do more research on your current members and their perspective on your space, read this blog to better understand their experience and learn how to improve it.
2. Create programs that will entice your current members to invite their friends and colleagues
It’s well worth enticing members of your first coworking space to find new members to sign up for your second. This means taking a little time to create some loyalty programs for your members.
One option would be to offer your current members a deal where they can bring a friend or colleague along to your first coworking space for a day to try it out for free. Your current members will love showing off their workspace, their friend or colleague will get a feel for the kind of services you offer, and then you can then follow up with a discount code if they register for your second coworking space. How could they resist?
Or—to really get some love from your current members—create a simple referral program. Offer them perks or discounts if they get someone to sign up for your second coworking location. You get members for your new coworking space and they get some nice discounts and perks. Everyone’s a winner!
3. Use your first venue to give prospective members a taste of your second venue
Now it’s time to cast the new-member-net a little wider. It’s time to focus on the demographic in your new location.
Everybody loves to get something for free, so start handing out some passes to use at your current coworking venue. Of course, you want to make sure that they get into the hands of potential members for your second coworking location, so contact businesses in your new venue’s neighbourhood and offer them an opportunity to offer this to their clientele. Coffee shops, lunch spots… they’ll all be delighted to offer their clients a freebie at your current coworking space—and that will work as excellent publicity for your new coworking location before it’s even open.
Another great way to utilize your current venue is to invite members of the local press, bloggers and social influencers along to test it out for free. Make them feel welcome, provide them with some great photo ops, and you can bet they’ll want to know all about your second location too. Have all of that info—along with some great imagery—at your fingertips to pass on to them, and then just sit back and watch the word spread.
Optix multi-venue client: The Collective by BDCU
You may also want to use your current coworking location to host a ‘pre-opening’ party for your second location, or host the party in your second location before the furniture arrives! Invite current and prospective members, as well as the local press, bloggers, and social influencers. While everyone is having a great time and getting as excited about your new coworking location as you are, get out there with your camera and record a few personal testimonials. Ask them what they love about the current location and why they’re excited about the new coworking location. Word of mouth is a powerful tool, so don’t waste any time and get these testimonials on the website and social media platforms as part of your new coworking venue buzz. To learn more on collecting member testimonials, read our blog on social proof here.
And if you’re finding it tough to gain the time to host a ‘pre-opening’ party (we’re guessing you’ve got a lot on your plate right now!), ask the members at your current coworking venue if they are interested in holding an event. You can even offer them a limited-time discount, as an event is a great way to get new people into your coworking space and give them a taste of the kind of services you’ll be offering at your new location.
4. Capture Leads and Collect Pre-Registration
Now that you have all of these leads, you need to keep track of them. This is where Optix’s Custom Properties feature can help. This tool allows you to have all the information you have gathered about a lead’s interest in your second location, in one convenient place. From their workspace preference to the industry they work in to even their favorite snack, this tool will keep you on top of all of your leads’ preferences and wishes.
And if you want to create some serious demand for your second coworking location, put your branded Optix app to work and develop a ‘waiting list’ that leads and potential members can sign up to. Optix’s Self-Onboarding feature allows your leads to add a credit card and purchase a starter plan or sign up for their free day-pass. This not only makes it easy for members to sign up, it also creates some real excitement and hype around your new location.
Opening your second location is exciting but also challenging at the same time. Make sure you don’t leave member recruitment until the final hour. Try out some of these tactics to create buzz and grow your membership base — all before you have even opened your doors.