- The top coworking companies all share some of the same qualities including a commitment to brand building, creating community, and going above and beyond for their members
- Some lessons to take from the best brands in the business include offering multi-location access with a single plan, diversifying your membership offerings, and being intentional with your coworking location strategy
One of the best ways to approach starting a coworking business is to take inspiration from those who have done it before you.
The coworking industry is a small but mighty sector that is rapidly growing. JLL predicts the coworking/flex industry will be 30% of the commercial real estate sector by 2030.
If you’re looking to enter the market or take your business to the next level, it may be helpful to see exactly what has made the brands before you successful.
Take a look at what 7 of the top coworking companies have done to grow their business to hundreds of locations serving millions of members around the world.
Follow Optix on LinkedIn for more daily resources on running a flexible workspace.
What are the top coworking brands?
The list of top coworking companies is always changing as the industry rapidly evolves. Here are some of the largest coworking companies in 2021 according to Coworking Resources:
- Regus (3,000 locations)
- WeWork (800 locations)
- Spaces (400 locations)
- Impact Hub (100 locations)
- Industrious (100 locations)
- Venture X (45 locations)
- TechSpace (6 locations)
What puts these companies at the top is their commitment to brand building, creating a community, and going above and beyond for their members.
Below we’ll unpack the success behind the biggest brands in coworking.
What makes the top coworking companies successful?
The secret to success for coworking businesses is an art and a science. Not every tactic will work for you – it’s up to you to determine the best way to serve your members.
Take some inspiration from the best in the industry to help grow your coworking business to new heights.
1. Create an experience for your members
WeWork, 749 locations in 120+ countries
Everyone in the coworking space knows WeWork.
Although they’ve had a bumpy path, they remain one of the most recognizable top coworking brands in the world.
What made people fall in love with WeWork was not the business, but the experience. WeWork positioned themselves as the workplace of the future, with all of the amenities and services you would expect.
Here’s what they did to create an experience for their members:
- Provided a branded coworking app that simplified the entire member experience
- Outfitted their spaces to make them feel like boutique hotels
- Offered refreshments beyond coffee and tea (think, cucumber water and espresso)
- Expanded their service offerings to include a luxury gym and other amenities
Creating an experience for your members can turn your business from a space to a home away from home.
2. Offer multi-location access with a single plan
Regus, 2.5 million members across 120+ countries
Regus is operated by IWG, the world’s largest workspace network. They’ve been serving millions of members in the flexible work industry for over 20 years.
A huge selling point for Regus members is their multi-location offering. All of their memberships include access to any one of the thousands of Regus locations around the world.
This is especially desirable for those who travel often for work or remote workers who want to live the digital nomad lifestyle.
Consider offering a multi-location coworking membership plan if you have more than one location. You can charge a premium price for the membership and provide your members with more value.
3. Diversify your membership offerings
Spaces, 436 locations around the globe
Spaces is another IWG brand that boasts over 400 locations around the world. They offer flexible memberships designed to fit a variety of business sizes and needs.
Membership options available at Spaces includes:
- Private offices
- Coworking memberships
- Dedicated desks
- Virtual offices
All memberships are all-inclusive, open 24 hours a day year-round, have multi-location access, and flexible terms so members can upgrade or downgrade their space as needed.
Having a wide range of flexible membership options is a great way to attract and retain customers and ensuring that everyone’s needs are met.
4. Build a community of like-minded individuals
Impact Hub, 100+ communities across 60+ countries
At the heart of Impact Hub is the community.
Their mission is to create a sustainable world where business and profit work together to support people and the planet. This mission attracts a group of like-minded entrepreneurs, creators, and innovators who share similar values and interests.
People are attracted to the space because of what it stands for.
Not only does Impact Hub value collaboration, they go the extra mile for their members by connecting them with:
- Large organizations
- The public sector
- Other industry leaders’
When you build your space around the community and support them to do their best work, you attract a rich mix of people who believe in what you do.
This takes your space from being a business to a brand with lasting power.
5. Be intentional with your coworking location strategy
Industrious, 100+ locations across the US with 3 International locations
Where you open your coworking space is one of the most important decisions you’ll make as a new coworking operator.
Industrious took a thoughtful approach with their coworking location strategy, targeting unconventional and underserved markets as they expanded.
Here were some of their coworking location choices:
- A self described “problem child” unit in Chicago as their first space
- Major shopping malls in Scottsdale and New Jersey
- Emerging tech hubs like Atlanta and Dallas
- Innovative international cities like Singapore
Develop a coworking location strategy before opening up your coworking space. Think about up-and-coming cities you can open in and consider creating a space in an unconventional or underserved market.
6. Create a coworking niche for your target market
TechSpace, 3,500+ members across 6 locations
One of the best things you can do for your coworking brand is create a niche.
Niche spaces appeal to members with specific shared interests. TechSpace created a niche for themselves by marketing and appealing specifically to tech startups looking for a space to grow their business.
Here is how they support their tech-focused members:
- Provide networking opportunities with others in the tech industry
- Choose locations that are specifically in tech hubs
- Equip members with best-in-class IT infrastructure
- Hold events designed to promote emerging future leaders
- Bring in tech partnerships to help support existing members
Rather than being a coworking space for everybody, TechSpace became the coworking space for tech startups in Europe.
Consider creating a coworking niche for your brand to grow your community. This article will walk you through how to go about finding a niche in the coworking space.
7. Go premium with your coworking space
Venture X, 10+ locations across the US
For a premium coworking experience, look no further than Venture X.
While most coworking spaces take a casual approach that is geared towards a younger crowd, Venture X looks to appeal to the more upscale business professionals.
Their spaces are a blend of modern office styles and boutique hotels that look to help entrepreneurs grow their business, rather than start it.
Venture X goes beyond the space to offering premium perks including:
- High-tech meeting rooms
- Events and parties including yoga classes and keynote speakers
- Cafe and lounge with food and beverages
- 24/7 keycard access and concierge-level member services
Their positioning as a premium brand helps them appeal to their target audience. We can learn two things from this top coworking company:
- Go premium with your coworking space by elevating the experience for your members and outfitting your space in a modern and innovative way
- Create an experience that speaks directly to the audience you are trying to reach
Take inspiration from these seven coworking businesses when creating a coworking business plan or creating a strategy to grow your business.
Need help with managing your coworking space? Optix can help.