illustration by @katyauspenskaya

Finding Financial Success In Trying Times

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Even before the pandemic, many yoga teachers and fitness instructors struggled to secure classes, get hired for gigs, and make enough money to be financially independent. Then COVID-19 hit, changing everything. 

Studios closed down—leaving countless people without jobs. Teaching opportunities fell through or were postponed indefinitely. Courses, retreats, and workshops were cancelled. Virtually overnight, people were forced to reinvent their teachings and ways of operating their businesses. This often meant transitioning to the online space in order to keep afloat, put food on the table, and have money in the bank. 

Megan Bowen was one of those individuals. “My world got turned upside down in March 2020,” says Megan, a performer, creator, and entrepreneur in NYC. “I was just running into the unknown like everyone else.” 

At the time, she was predominantly selling drop-in classes and class cards for her dance-inspired fitness, with minor success. Then one day, an Instagram post caught her eye: Talent Hack was offering a course called Six Steps to Six Figures and Megan was intrigued. “During that time no one was really doing what I was doing so I had nowhere to turn or look to take an example from,” she says. 

Seeing that her business was taking a downward plunge, Megan knew she needed help. She decided to take a chance and signed up for the course immediately. 

Megan Bowen, a performer, creator, and entrepreneur

Investing in your business

When you’re just making ends meet, it can be hard to use some of that hard-earned money to invest in a software or product. It means taking a risk, yes, but it can pay off greatly down the road and—in the long run—investing in your business can allow you to reinvigorate what you offer.

Luckily, Megan’s decision to invest in her business paid off—big. “Talent Hack gave me what I like to call, a fitness professional online business blueprint,” she says. During this program, she learned the ways to turn her business into what it is today. She’s never looked back since. Her online company, Dance From Home LLC, helps Broadway lovers reconnect with the joy of live performance through musical theatre-themed fitness, dance, and industry workshops. She now has a team of seven instructors. 

“I listened to what they had to say, took in the statistics they provided, consulted with them a lot, and applied everything to my business,” says Megan. “I went from making less than $2K per month to now owning a six-figure business.” 

Meliza Fernandez, a lifetime dancer and founder of Killer Bodies NYC, was in need of a structured plan, something she admits she never really had. “I’ve had my business since 2015 but was all over the place, paying multiple subscriptions to help, but instead they made my job harder,” she says. 

Meliza Fernandez, a lifetime dancer and founder of Killer Bodies NYC

She decided to join Talent Hack in January 2021. Since then it has helped streamline everything. “I can see what’s coming in clearly,” she adds. “By knowing exactly what’s working and what’s not, I can plan better moving forward. Aside from the software, the Talent Hack team is amazing and so supportive. I am making more than I was making pre-pandemic and working half the amount that I was before.”

Julie Ferrer also invested in Talent Hack in January 2021. When the studio she worked at shut down because of COVID, Julie, a full-time mom of a 2-year old daughter (with a boy on the way!), SoulCycle instructor, and founder of HomeTurf, needed help organizing and refining her business strategy from the ground up. From March to December 2020, she was doing donation-based classes which she says, “worked well, but I wanted things to be a bit more official.” Only, she didn’t know where to start.

A well-formed strategy speaks volumes

Sometimes, a fresh outside perspective can do wonders for a business. 

Take Meliza, for example. Before working with Talent Hack, she was working with her loyal student base, but struggled to grow her community beyond that. Talent Hack was able to help her develop new ways to appeal to different audiences. “By connecting Killer Bodies with other brands, it’s helped me reach out to a completely different crowd.”

Julie Ferrer, a SoulCycle instructor and founder of HomeTurf

For Megan, it was about refining her products and pricing model. This meant implementing memberships into her programming and getting rid of the individual class passes. “I learned how to strategize and put a price reflective of our services to it,” she adds. “Most importantly, I now value my time and what I do.” She launched her pre-commit in January 2021 with the help of Talent Hack’s “pre-commit” memberships complete with auto-booking and recurring billing. She “packed more value into everything my clients received and niched down hard. It has been incredibly successful!”

Having more time to think creatively has allowed Megan to develop new program ideas, something she struggled with when she was working all the time. “I was looking to create a summer program (what is now “The Broadway Bootcamp”) and needed some advice. They were able to schedule a call with me within 24 hours and offer honest and very helpful suggestions on how to make this next big transition. I listened, and it was a success! They always help me strategize when needed. They really care about your success and being a part of the process and that is something I really admire in a company.”

A common complaint of wellness entrepreneurs is keeping up with the behind-the-scenes management of virtual classes and offerings.

Julie was drowning in these day-to-day tasks and needed help with back-end organization like scheduling and setting up classes. “Talent Hack helped me by giving me an official booking platform for a brand I didn’t realize I was creating at the time,” she admits. 

She now has a “one stop shop” for herself and her clients, which has saved her an incredible amount of time. “I can now focus more on how I can build my community and bring them the best experience I can. The fact that Talent Hack took care of so much for me on the back-end allowed me to think about the little things, which in the end makes me and my team happier.”

Much-needed ongoing support

It’s one thing to invest in a course or workshop only for that offering to end, leaving you on your own again. But it’s another thing entirely to know that you have ongoing support with learning opportunities that you can take advantage of whenever you want.

“When you decide to go off on your own and be your own brand, it can feel lonely and at times defeating,” says Meliza. “Although my strengths are in what I do daily physically, I’ve always felt there was so much I didn’t know on the back-end. The support isn’t only that it’s 1,000 times easier now, but the spaces Talent Hack provides to teach and educate us on how we can become bigger, better, and work smarter is invaluable.”

The classes and monthly “MasterHacks” that are built into Talent Hack’s services give Julie the resources to learn more about how to build out her business, narrow down her targets, create community, use social media, and connect with other instructors. She also admits to taking advantage of their 24/7 customer support. 

“You could message them at the most random time of day,” she adds. “I’m pretty sure I did that at like 2pm on a Sunday and someone answered within a few minutes. I don’t know any other company that is that responsive!”

Megan agrees. “I’ve felt supported through every step of the process with Talent Hack. They are always in my corner, supporting me or helping me with anything that I need. I am constantly connected to their team where I essentially have 24-hour support!”

This constant support can be a game-changer for entrepreneurs. Talent Hack doesn’t just help with the logistics of running an online business, but also connects wellness professionals with fellow entrepreneurs who are in the same boat. 

“I love that we have a community channel for all of the fit pros to exchange ideas and questions that are also facilitated through Talent Hack,” adds Megan.

“I love to be in a community filled with people in the same field,” says Meliza. “For me personally, it’s motivating and it’s forced me to look at how I can run my company in a better, more effective way.”

The payoff

All three instructors have financial success that they never experienced before. Their relationship with money has changed dramatically too, and in some pretty surprising ways. 

Pre-pandemic, Megan felt frazzled—running around NYC with five different jobs, piling on more work and more gigs to make ends meet. Gaining back her time was her first indicator of financial success, and an aspect of life she realized she’d missed greatly. “To me, time is the biggest value we have on this planet and being able to streamline my business to yes, pay me well, but also give me more time and freedom has been incredible.”

To me, time is the biggest value we have on this planet and being able to streamline my business to yes, pay me well, but also give me more time and freedom has been incredible.

For Julie, she can actually see how much money she’s making on a regular basis, something she wasn’t able to track when she offered donation-based classes. This inside view of the back-end of her business allows her to see the value she brings to her clients. “It’s really nice to feel confident in the fact that I know what I bring to the ‘table,’ as well as to my clients. Just because I had to pivot during COVID, didn’t mean I shouldn’t be paid for my efforts. I’ve been in fitness for a long time and I am confident that I am good at what I do. Understanding your value isn’t something that happens overnight, but to have a team who believes in you, supports you, and pushes you to always put your value first is huge,” says Julie.

Just because I had to pivot during COVID, didn’t mean I shouldn’t be paid for my efforts. I’ve been in fitness for a long time and I am confident that I am good at what I do.

“Thankfully, my relationship with money has changed for the better,” Meliza chimes in. “Talent Hack has made me switch my mindset and really view myself not as a brand but as a business. My only regret is not having joined Talent Hack earlier!”

Talent Hack’s signature course, Six Steps to Six Figures, returns this August. Learn more and join here.

Talent Hack exists to radically redefine how the world consumes wellness by empowering the next generation of wellness practitioners. Providing access to jobs, gigs, partnerships, education, and community, Talent Hack serves as your business partner and coach, administrative assistant, and community all in one. To learn more about how they can help you with your business needs, visit them at www.thetalenthack.com.

Written by Jordan Reed.

Edited by Ely Bakouche

Illustration by Katya Uspenskaya

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