Forget what you think you know about boutique fitness.
The events of the previous year have certainly had a profound effect on many, if not all, industries globally. The fact of the matter is that not all businesses will survive the COVID-19 pandemic and sadly, some operators have been forced to close their doors as a result of this vast commercial pressure.
One operator bucking this trend is TRIB3. The boutique fitness brand has continued to open stores in the very midst of the pandemic, with a third franchised location opened in Madrid and a 42-spot studio opening its doors in the heart of Bristol in September 2020. TRIB3 also has several more planned openings on the horizon including a sixth international territory with a first store in the Netherlands, two stores in Manchester, a city with a clear appetite for boutique fitness, and its first site in Scotland on the grounds of the historic Edinburgh Academicals rugby club. So how, with a model known for its more intimate, class-based formats and close-knit communities, is TRIB3 powering forward?
SIGNATURE THREE-ZONE WORKOUT
The answer, says chief development officer Karl Dietrich, lies in TRIB3’s unique studio design and highly- curated brand.
“Since TRIB3 was launched in 2016, with our signature three-zoned workout, which sees customers train across Treadmills, Resistance and Intensity, what we call our TRI training system, we’ve been augmenting and evolving the experience to what you’ll now see today if you step foot in any TRIB3 studio,” explains Dietrich.
“It was our vision to take the fundamentally powerful elements of the boutique fitness proposition – such as the strong relationships forged in the group setting and the experience-led design this type of offering demands – but make it highly accessible. Our one studio, one workout model is carefully and uniquely designed so that each studio will typically feature more than 48 spots-per-session.
“We term it the ‘volume boutique’ model because we’re able to scale up the power of the group, the power of the community, to something that’s really commercially exciting.”
This volume boutique model means that each new TRIB3 studio can break even at prudent and highly achievable occupancy levels through peak-usage loading. As well as enhanced cleaning measures, TRIB3 also adjusted the layout of its studios, adding dividers and creating distanced training lanes, but also adapted the timetable based on feedback from customers around their changed consumption habits.
“All you need is a passion for bringing people together and providing exceptional customer experience”
This ensured that while distancing would mean reduced capacity, as the model is built on a prudent occupancy rate even with reduced session capacity, occupancy only has to increase marginally per session to keep the store profitable. TRIB3 saw over an 80 per cent return rate in its U.K. stores just one month after the lifting of the first of the country’s national lockdowns, with an average 78 net promoter score (NPS).
Dietrich continues: “These results highlight how exciting boutique fitness is and the huge opportunity for TRIB3 as we continue our global expansion. Our NPS scores are consistently over 60 and were even higher after lockdown – there is such power and loyalty in the communities we are creating.
“This is also evident in the longer-term results the TRIB3 business model offers for franchise partners; as a store matures, 80 per cent of your revenue will come as repeat purchases from your existing customer base and a huge proportion of your new leads will be generated by referrals from this highly engaged base.
“Naturally, with such a resilient and exciting business model, we’re always thrilled to welcome both new franchisees and new master franchise partners into our family and to grow our network in new and existing markets, globally – but now more than ever, we see how important it is to keep growing the sector and get more and more people physically active.”
GROWTH, DESPITE CHALLENGES
TRIB3’s highly resilient model, which delivers fast results even with COVID-19 safety measures in place, means the group has continued to grow its global family even through lockdowns and restrictions.
The highly curated design and commercially-effective business model means that as a master franchise partner with TRIB3 you’ll quickly recruit store owners into your network; all with the guidance and backing of a highly experienced support team and a proven operational blueprint. Likewise, the nature of the programming and workout experience means the TRIB3 concept has strong consumer appeal across the largest possible audience to drive great results for each store.
Designed to be intensive but accessible and underpinned by custom heart rate tracking and proprietary metrics of effort level, TRIB3 is arguably the most inclusive workout in the world. It is also complemented by TRIB3 Live, the brand’s virtual platform, which offers the option for customers to train on and offline. This grows the brand’s reach at scale and comes with a financial kickback to the franchisee when customers at their store also utilize virtual workouts. Plus, with digital fitness here to stay, it takes away the effort and production from store owners and offers another stream of revenue.
“The fitness industry is such an exciting and in-focus sector with a hugely bright future ahead. My key message would be that you don’t actually need to be from the fitness industry to start franchising with TRIB3” says Dietrich. “The wider support team and I have decades of experience in the sector to support you through the process and set you up for success. In fact, our CEO and founder Kevin Yates was one of the pioneers of the U.K. boutique fitness market. All you need is a passion for bringing people together and providing exceptional customer experience; fuse that with our proven concept and an amazing journey will follow. If that excites you, get in touch – your future could start today.”
AT A GLANCE
Number of franchised outlets: Six franchised of 13 outlets
Location of units: Sheffield, Leeds, Helsinki, Moscow, Madrid; Cuzco, Basilica, Goya; Guangzhou, Bristol, Edinburgh (opening Q1 2021), 2x Manchester (opening Q2 2021), Amsterdam (opening Q2 2021)
Franchise investment: Enquire for more information