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3 secrets of efficient operations for multi-location expansion

Chelsea Erieau-Larkin
March 18, 2024

Taking your business to new places is as thrilling as it is daunting. It's all about striking the perfect balance between consistency and flexibility, making sure each new spot is a well-oiled part of the bigger machine. Here’s how you can ace the scaling game, drawing from a blend of insights and practical strategies.

1. Get the local vibe

First, it's crucial to get to grips with the local scene. Every new postcode brings its own flavor—from what clicks with customers to the nitty-gritty of regulations. Dive deep into market research to tweak your approach. By aligning what you offer and how you operate with local tastes and rules, you'll win over the market and prevent excessive hurdles. Multi-location expansion just about selling; it's about embedding your brand into the fabric of the community. That's what Orangetheory Fitness did. They didn't just open new locations - they tailored their high-intensity workout experiences to fit local needs. This strategy wasn't just about fitness; it was about fostering a local vibe that resonated well with their clientele.

Orangetheory's approach is a masterclass in localization. Their tech-savvy, heart rate-monitored workouts and community-driven ethos have made them a standout in the fitness industry. They've shown that understanding your market isn't just about demographics; it's about diving into the culture, preferences, and the very essence that makes each location unique.This emphasis on localization, paired with strategic use of technology, not only helped Orangetheory Fitness scale efficiently but also ensured that each new location maintained the high standards and unique culture that they're known for. It’s about striking that delicate balance between consistency across all locations and the flexibility to adapt to local tastes and preferences.

2. Find a local partner 

Finding local partners can supercharge your studio's expansion efforts, making the process smoother and more connected to each community you enter. Here's the thing: scaling isn't just about growing in numbers; it's about smart growth that taps into local insights, resources, and networks to create a seamless integration of your brand into new territories.

Local partners, be they other businesses, community organizations, or influencers, can offer a wealth of knowledge about what works (and what doesn’t) in their specific area. They know the local market dynamics, consumer behavior, and even the bureaucratic hurdles you might face. By teaming up, you get a shortcut to understanding these factors, saving you time, money, and a whole lot of trial and error.

3. Culture is king

The real secret sauce to expansion? Cultivating a vibrant, shared culture in every corner of your empire. A collective sense of what you stand for keeps everyone rowing in the same direction, no matter the distance. Invest in training that brings your core values to life and fosters a spirit of cooperation and camaraderie. A strong culture not only lifts team spirits but also guarantees that your customers enjoy the same stellar experience, wherever they find you.Jetts Fitness, an Australian fitness franchise, shows the power of a strong company culture in fueling expansion. They even won 2nd best company to work for in 2021, proving that investing in a positive, inclusive, and supportive culture pays off.

“Over the past 15 years, we’ve dedicated our time and energy into being an employer of choice so that we attract and keep the best talent – our culture, the Jetts Way, has always been ingrained in everything we do, and motivated, happy team members is at the core of this,” says the CEO of Jetts Fitness, Elaine Jobson.

What Jetts Fitness gets right is creating an environment where both the team and members know they're valued. This isn't about slapping your values on the wall and calling it a day. It's about living those values, making sure they're a big part of everything you do, from Brisbane to Perth and beyond. That's how you keep your team aligned and motivated, no matter how many miles apart they are. It's also how you make sure your customers get the same top-notch experience, no matter which location they walk into. This culture-first approach isn't just a nice idea; it's essential. If you want to grow, you've got to put your people first. It’s a powerful reminder for any business looking to scale without losing what makes it special.

The result? An ecosystem where contribution and improvement are not just encouraged—they're embedded in the culture. Such an inclusive and open environment has been pivotal for Slack, enabling smooth transitions and scaling operations with minimal friction. It's a testament to how a culture anchored in inclusivity and transparency isn't just nice to have—it's essential for seamless growth and enduring success.

How Hapana can help make multi-location expansion seamless and efficient 

Hapana can you help your studio streamline operations, from member management to booking systems, engagement tools, and beyond. The platform offers a seamless integration of operations across multiple locations, ensuring consistency in customer experience and operational efficiency. By providing a comprehensive overview of business health through analytics and reporting, Hapana empowers businesses to make data-driven decisions, mirroring the success strategies of companies like Slack and IKEA but tailored to the unique demands of the fitness industry.

Hapana champions robust company culture through its collaborative and intuitive tools, facilitating seamless communication and operational transparency.

Expanding your fitness business across multiple locations requires a blend of strategic localization, technology adoption, and cultural cohesion. Hapana can provide the technological infrastructure needed while embodying the principles of community and culture that are pivotal to sustained success.

Do you want to explore how Hapana can transform your multi-location expansion strategy with efficiency and insight?

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