January 10, 2023

When is the right time to franchise your boutique studio?

Here are a few clear common signs that your fitness studio is in a great position to start franchising.

Franchising is one of the most exciting, but terrifying, decisions a business owner can make. On one hand, it’s a way to get your brand exposure to a wider audience. On the other hand, it can be a complicated process that comes with risk. We’re here to make the process less scary, and more rewarding.

When should you franchise your fitness studio?

There is no universal definition of the exact right time you should franchise. Every business is different, and what may be right for one studio could be wrong for another. But there are a few clear common signs that you’re in a great position to start franchising.

1. You have multiple fitness studio locations

A strong first step in considering the franchise model is to have a few fitness studios performing well already. This will give you a better understanding of how your business models functions in multiple different markets over time.  

This seems like a given, but it’s best to err on the side of caution rather than bite off more than you can chew. Having a business model that can generate enough revenue for franchisees to profit, while still being able to send you a royalty, is at the foundation of franchising. Successful franchises are ones that offer an experience that members can expect to have regardless of what franchise location they visit. So, you need to think about anything in your local market that could impact this.

Athletic woman jumping


Thinking about starting a fitness franchise? Big business decisions are scary, and we’re here to make sense of it all. Using our guide, Franchising Checklist: Is Your Studio Ready to Take the Leap?, determine whether your studio should stay small for the time being, or take a great leap forward into becoming a franchise.

2. Your fitness studio has clear branding

Next, your studio needs a brand that is fully realized and understandable to future franchisees. Your brand needs to be strong enough to be recognized across different markets and recognized through operations, as well as company culture.  

With that in mind, think about how your studio’s culture would translate across several different fitness franchise locations, and be understood by a new franchisee. Just as you would with your members, franchising will mean that you are finding a community of like-minded business operators who have the same goals and interests as you.  

Cultivating a brand that is easy to understand will help you find the right fitness studio franchisee profile for future franchise locations. Build a brand guideline book that covers visual branding parameters, but also how team members should communicate with members to build the same environment.  

3. You’re ready to take on new responsibilities

Finally, being a fitness studio franchisor means that you have a new set of responsibilities and have more to answer to. It's a completely different business than being an owner of a small business, and you need to be ready to oversee more teams of people.  

You will also find that you are now competing with bigger and stronger businesses at this level. Not just other boutique fitness studios, but franchises with huge presences around the world. And your customer will transform into other potential franchisees, instead of members.  

With this change, you probably won’t have the capacity to oversee daily operations in your fitness franchise locations. Appoint a general manager at each location who you trust to make decisions to keep each location operating smoothly. Then, set yourself up with a software solution such as Mariana Tek that can help you quickly see what’s going on at each franchise.

Don’t forget your free download of our checklist! Use this to determine whether your studio should stay small for the time being or take a great leap forward into becoming a franchise. Get it here.

Ready for the next step?

Choosing to franchise your business is a big decision but can pay off if you choose the right time. With the right software partner, you can scale up quicker than ever before. By moving to Mariana Tek, our client Sweat440 has been able to grow and franchise with ease—they doubled their number of studios in just one year!

“As the owner operator, I can check in and see what's going on in almost in real time seeing the transactions that are happening. In the studios it's really cool, because it's much easier to check people in swap spots.  

They take a lot of the work out of onboarding a new franchisee. They essentially can do it for me with very little impact on my corporate team, so the training the support all those pieces are already in place.”  

- Cody Patrick Owner/CEO, Sweat440

See why franchises trust Mariana Tek to scale their operations while staying true to their brand. Request your demo today!