This week on Marketing Mojo, we sat down with Alicia Sokol, owner of Barre 3 14th Street in DC to discuss how she has adapted her fitness studio to the virtual space to promote fitness and a sense of community We spoke to her about confidence, the importance of diversity and fostering a community through fitness, and more as she explains strategies that have helped her studio, Barre 3, grow despite the pandemic. Plus, hear all about how Alicia’s strategies for using social media to speak up for social justice.
When the episode was recorded, Barre 3 14th St. had been closed in-person for 342 days However, Alicia has had great success maintaining her customer base even though Barre 3 switched to a fully virtual platform. Alicia described how her clients found the transition surprisingly easy, as it made classes much more accessible. She stated that showing up to one’s computer rather than in-person in the studio, and having the option to turn off the camera on Zoom, made Barre 3 classes more appealing to a wider audience. Furthermore, she described how the virtual studio enables people outside of the DC locale to participate, and she said Barre 3 classes have been a great way for family members who live in different locales to connect. Overall, Alicia concluded that the virtual space has enabled her to bring in people who are more hesitant and given the Barre 3 community a way to maintain human connection and accountability.
Alicia discussed confidence with us and how Barre 3 has been particularly impactful and helpful for people during Covid-19. She shared stories of the power of Barre 3, indicating that when people become in-tune with their bodies, they start to make other beneficial life changes such as making career leaps, going back to school, and leaving unhealthy relationships. This was very moving to hear about.
One thing that Alicia makes a priority is trying to recruit all types of people to participate in Barre 3 workouts. As a woman of color, she recalled how she is familiar with feeling lonely in shared spaces, and as a result, it is her goal to make sure others never experience this. So, she tries to recruit people of all different ethnicities, body types, sexualities, fitness levels, goals, and more. Through this, Alicia is trying to change conventional stereotypes and promote the message that boutique fitness is meant for everyone.
Coming from a background of investment banking and corporate communications, Alicia is extremely familiar with social media. She recounted how she’s traditionally witnessed social media used as a highlight reel and explained how she wanted to break out from this. So, especially during the pandemic, Alicia has been utilizing social media to show the rough edges of living through a global pandemic and social justice movements. During the killing of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, Alicia strove to use social media to tell and share her own encounters of racism in America and utilized Barre 3’s platform to drive change. Alicia’s unique way of using social media serves as a great example for other businesses who not only want to build a customer base, but also want to promote beneficial change in the community.
To keep up to date with Barre 3 14th St, follow them @barre3dc14thst . To keep up to date with Market and Grow, follow us on all socials @mktandgrow. In two weeks, tune in to the next episode of Marketing Mojo.
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