February 10, 2022
If you’re looking for a sign to grow your coworking business, this is it.
The number of people using a coworking space will double by 2024, fueled by the widespread adoption of a hybrid work model. This creates a tremendous opportunity for you and your business to thrive.
Below we’ll outline six strategies for growing your coworking space, whether you want to focus on attracting news members or keeping the ones you already have.
Optimizing your growth strategies now will give you the biggest chance of success later down the road as the coworking industry continues to grow.
Grow Your Coworking Business with Your KPIs
Knowing your numbers is key to operating a successful coworking business. You need to understand how your business is performing in order to create an effective strategy to grow.
Start by looking at your coworking business key performance indicators or KPIs to identify opportunities for improvement. You can find this information using a CRM system, Google Analytics, or an analytics tool in your coworking management software.
Important coworking growth KPIs to consider include:
- Tours completed
- New member sign ups
- Member retention rate or member churn
- Revenue per member
- Member satisfaction rate
Once you identify which KPIs are underperforming, you can begin to develop a growth strategy that will deliver the highest rate of return for your business.
How to Grow Your Coworking Space in 2022
1. Double Down on Marketing Your Coworking Space
Track against: tours completed, new member sign ups
Your phone booths are sound-proofed, your tables are sanitized, and your central AC is set to the perfect ambient temperature.
Now all you need are members.
If you’ve just opened your doors this year or you found your traffic is slowing down, it may be time to double down on your marketing efforts.
Here are some low-budget marketing tactics that can drive big results for your business.
Update your website:
Your website is the first point of contact for many potential new members. Create a lasting first impression by optimizing your coworking website and ensuring all information is clear, concise, and accurate.
One tip for optimizing your website is to add a lead capturing tool to your homepage. This could be a branded web widget, a “Book a Tour” button, or a newsletter pop-up that captures an email address upon entering.
Whatever tool you use, make sure it’s easy for interested customers to input their information as soon as they land on your website to optimize conversions.
Create a co-marketing program with local businesses:
Do you have a café next door to you that all your members love? Consider creating a co-marketing program to broaden the reach of both businesses.
Exchange fliers to house at each other’s place of business and set up mutually beneficial discounts that are exclusive to your customer base. You could offer all café customers a free day pass at your coworking space for first-time use, while coworking space members could get 15% off their lunch order.
It can be a powerful way to bring in new members at a relatively low cost to your business.
Offer a free trial:
The key to an effective free trial promotion is to provide immediate value to potential members as soon as they sign up. Here’s what that may look like over a 7-day free trial:
- Offer complimentary access to all services during the trial period
- Run through a detailed tour of the space when they join that speaks specifically to their needs
- Create an email nurture sequence educating them about your coworking space
- Provide complimentary access to any events that are happening during their trial period
- Reach out to them personally to check in on their experience before the trial period ends
Support your leads in obtaining value during the duration of the trial period to increase their chances of becoming members.
Build an online presence:
Social media marketing can be a fruitful way of generating buzz about your coworking space. Figure out where your ideal customers are online and build a community in that space filled with meaningful, engaging content delivered in a variety of formats.
You can incentivize your members to engage with you on social media by creating prizes and giveaways. This is a useful way of amplifying your content, increasing your organic reach, and leveraging the following of existing members.
2. Create a Coworking Referral Program
Track against: new member sign-ups, member retention rate
Word of mouth remains one of the best ways to generate qualified leads and attract new members. You can encourage existing members to market your space for you by creating a compelling referral program.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to creating a referral program for your coworking business.
Define your goals:
Look at your KPIs and determine a reasonable goal that you can achieve with your referral program. For example, if you generate 10 new member sign-ups a month, then your goal may be to increase your average monthly member sign-ups by 20% over the next 90 days.
Choose a structure:
There are two key things to keep in mind when choosing a referral structure:
- It needs to be a win/win for both the referrer and the referee
- It needs to be a large enough incentive to generate interest without being detrimental to the company
Ultimately, you need to ensure that your customer acquisition cost is less than your customer’s lifetime value to make your referral program financially viable long-term.
Promote the program to existing members:
Once you decide on a structure, promote the program to your community. Outline the referral program clearly on your website, send an email to your newsletter list, and post it on a bulletin board in your space.
Remind your existing members about it often in the early phases of the program and mention it to new members upon signing up to ensure wide-spread adoption.
Look at your results after 90 days:
Evaluate your KPIs after 90 days and make necessary changes. Did you miss your target? Consider adjusting your offering to make it more compelling or promoting it more heavily to existing members.
3. Launch a Virtual Coworking Program
Track against: new member sign ups, member retention rate, revenue per member
Virtual coworking gives members access to a set of digital services, tools, and/or community all without ever leaving their home. Member offerings can include:
- Member portal with access to an internal community feed
- Access to online events
- Digital tools like Slack or Adobe Creative Suite
- Business address and mail forwarding
- Receptionist services and live phone answering
- Conference or meeting rooms as needed
The wonderful thing about virtual coworking is its ability to scale at a very low cost. It’s a great option for those looking to increase their revenue without increasing overhead.
Virtual coworking is not meant to replace your coworking space. Rather, it serves as an addition to your current coworking service offerings.
Check out our ultimate guide to virtual coworking to learn more about how to implement it at your coworking space.
4. Explore Additional Revenue Streams for your Coworking Space
Track against: revenue per member
The number one way of generating revenue as a coworking business is often by renting out the physical space. This could be in the form of a meeting room, conference room, hot desk, or flex space that members pay for on a daily, monthly, or annual basis.
Most coworking businesses expand upon these offerings by charging for resources, food or drinks, lockers, workshops, events, and everything in between. When it comes to coworking revenue growth models, the sky really is the limit.
If you’re feeling stuck on what to offer, consider some of the examples below:
- Software: Zoom, Adobe Creative Suite, Microsoft 365, and Slack are all valuable tools that you can charge members to access.
- Marketplace Offerings: A marketplace can serve as a way for members to sell their services, as well as for you to offer office supplies or food items at an additional cost. Learn all about setting up a marketplace at your business with our in-depth guide to product offerings.
- Daycare services: Offering on-site childcare services is a valuable way to support your work-from-home members. If you’re in the early stages of developing your coworking space business plan, consider the cost and value add of providing daycare services.
5. Strengthen Your Coworking Community
Track against: new member sign ups, member churn, member satisfaction rate
Don’t forget what’s at the heart of coworking: the community.
Attract new members and keep the ones you have by focusing on the intangible aspects of a coworking space that only you can provide. A sense of community, personal belonging, and the opportunity to network go a long way in providing value to your members.
4 Tips for Building a Coworking Community
Organize a member survey: Gathering member feedback from the community and acting upon it goes a long way in creating a space that people love and enjoy. It sets the precedence that you are here for them, rather than the other way around.
Figure out your why: Each of us has a story, including your coworking space. What is the mission and value of the company? What does your space represent? By clearly defining your story and sharing it with the world in a meaningful way, you’ll naturally attract a community of people who believe in what you do.
Provide excellent service: Your staff is the heart and soul of your coworking space. Get to know your members personally, send out an engaging weekly email newsletter, and ensure you and your team are providing an enriching experience for your members at every opportunity.
Create opportunities for networking: One of the most popular reasons why people join a coworking space is to build relationships with like-minded individuals. Create opportunities for members to connect with each other by building an online community, highlighting member stories in your newsletter, organizing virtual events, or hosting an open house.
6. Target Hybrid/Remote Workers
Track against: new member sign-ups
The growth of the coworking industry over the next five years will be largely driven by remote workers. People who work from home will be looking to coworking spaces to provide a comfortable environment to quell their social isolation.
This creates is a tremendous opportunity for you to target these customers by tailoring your space to their unique needs. Below are four tips to make your space more appealing to remote workers:
- Create more single occupancy spaces: perfect for taking Zoom calls or hosting a meeting with a team member
- Offer flexible membership plans and daily pricing: remote workers prefer the flexibility of being able to come in when they so choose as opposed to committing to a monthly membership
- Host networking events: organize a virtual or in-person networking event that is specialized for hybrid workers
- Streamline your sign-up process: make it easy for someone new to come in on the fly with a streamlined and efficient sign-up process
Set your business up for success in 2022
It is forecasted that 30% of the office market will be flexible by 2030. Set your coworking space up for success by nailing your marketing, expanding your revenue streams, and investing in your community building efforts today.
Ready to grow? We can help make managing your coworking space easier.