Who is Neighborhood Barre Studios?

Founded by Katy Richardson in 2011 in Knoxville, Tennessee, Neighborhood Barre specializes in providing an inviting space to take barre classes, regardless of fitness level and experience. Just like their name implies, they place a major focus on community and being a warm and welcoming space for their clients.

“What makes Neighborhood Barre unique, aside from our signature classes, is that we are very community focused, and not just in the sense of being an inviting and welcoming place for our clients, but also from the top down by instilling that sense of community with our studio owners. It’s kind of in our namesake, Neighborhood.”

In addition to creating a welcoming environment, Neighborhood Barre also works with their franchise owners to ensure that they are offering classes and a studio that feel authentic to the community around them. 

“We do try to have our franchisees really immerse themselves in their communities so that their business feels more local and not as corporate.”

After opening their first location in 2011, they have since opened 25 franchise locations throughout the southeast and have roughly 200 employees. Despite this impressive growth, Katy knew there were things that they could improve upon to elevate their clients’ experience, while also helping the brand to grow even more and decided to welcome Xplor’s solutions into the mix!

The Challenges

With everyone just starting to come back out into the world after the pandemic, Katy knew that people were going to be interested in joining boutique fitness studios again, but needed to make sure they were choosing Neighborhood Barre as their go-to studio instead of one of the thousands of other options that were available to them. Combined with a shift in consumer behaviors, there needed to be a way to stay on peoples’ radar. 

“I do feel like people coming back out into society again is causing their interest to peak once again towards all of the different fitness options that might be in their market. So, differentiation and staying on people’s radar is definitely something that’s important to us.”

In the past, Neighborhood Barre has had success with their client retention rates and they wanted to ensure that they were able to maintain those rates and work towards increasing them. Their steady growth over the years was comforting for them to see but they really wanted to work towards accelerated levels of growth as well.

“We see pretty steady numbers across the board, month to month, across our locations, but we don’t currently see huge pops of accelerated growth since coming out of the pandemic. So, we see more slow steady growth versus big pops of growth or drops from lack of retaining, which is a blessing and a curse at the same time.” 

Between a need to stand out and capture the interest of potential clients to maintaining their high level of client retention, Neighborhood Barre needed a system that could do it all. 

Enter Mariana Tek.

Xplor’s Solutions

One of the most important aspects of a fitness studio management software platform for Katy was its ability to do it all – especially when it comes to marketing automation functionality.

From marketing to potential new clients, to maintaining client retention and winning back old clients, to effectively utilizing marketing to increase overall revenue, Katy wanted something that would allow her to effortlessly manage all these aspects from one platform.

“The best marketing solution is something that can suit all of those needs versus having to sign up for multiple services to hit all of those different touch points. So being able to utilize forms, landing pages, texting and emails under one platform versus having to get multiple platforms to solve the same solution was critical to us.”

After looking into Xplor’s Mariana Tek’s all-in-one capabilities, they were impressed by the overall functionality of the platform and its marketing automation functionality. 

With Xplor Marketing Automation, they are now able to:

  • Control every step of the client journey from one easy-to-use platform
  • Leverage built-in automation functionality to drive more revenue and increase retention
  • Save time and money by not having to use multiple software tools to manage all their needs

Neighborhood Barre’s use of the integrated marketing automation system also allows them to stay in touch with their clients through simple texts and emails, which were previously done manually through a third-party tool. 

The time and money saved through the simplicity of this automation has allowed their studios to streamline their operations and gain back the time they needed to focus on the bigger picture tasks of their studio operations.

“Marketing Automation has improved our operations and overall processes. We’re now able to focus on our processes at a broad scale and see what tweaks we need to make to improve. It has increased our sales or at least allowed our franchisees to make informed decisions based on the studio reporting insights from the platform.”

Through the use of Xplor’s Marketing Automation, they’ve even found ways to stay connected to clients with texts and emails beyond the typical studio promotions. 

In addition to sending their clients updates on in-studio events and quarterly fitness challenges, Neighborhood Barre utilizes the SMS text functionality to give their clients a heads up in case of class cancellations.

“To be able to just pull a segment of people who are booked for a specific class and shoot a text and say, hey, there’s ice on the roads like no one is safe, stay in bed, that’s a huge value add.”

From these quick messages, Neighborhood Barre also receives a lot of interaction from clients, especially from texts. 

Katy credits this feature with improving quality communication between their studios and clients and, in turn, increasing revenue.

“I think using your texting features for true client communication over just trying to push sales is a key differentiator that has helped with our client retention.”

Knowing the audience, you’re trying to reach is everything when it comes to effective client communication and with as many studio locations as they have, it was important for Neighborhood Barre to ensure that there was some level of standardization within that communication. 

Marketing Automation makes it easy to standardize these types of communications across all Neighborhood Barre locations, which in turn helps the studios on a much deeper level.

“It goes a lot deeper than just standardizing copy and rules, but it actually feeds into our entire sales and retention process. It helps us make sure that we’re doing everything we can from an automated standpoint to plug any holes that might be there, rather than trying to constantly manually follow up with leads and work them through the customer journey.”

The Results

Since partnering with Xplor, Neighborhood Barre has gone above and beyond their client retention targets!

5% Increase in Retention Rate Client Retention Rate


Increased 3.5% from 2021 to 2022, and an additional 1.5% from 2022-2023.

In addition to their client retention growth, Neighborhood Barre was also able to save money and increase productivity because of the reduced amount of admin time needed to manage their business operations. Not to mention the cost savings of eliminating additional software subscriptions they were previously using.

“You’re definitely saving money by only investing into one platform to do everything that you need to do instead of having to piece together a tech service with an e-mail service, with a landing page service with, you know, something else that you might need. And we’ve definitely saved on admin costs with just being able to segment and being able to have those automations.”

Another one of Neighborhood Barre’s top goals was to increase their client acquisition and since implementing Xplor’s Marketing Automation throughout the entire customer journey, they’ve been able to increase their first-time visits by 28% while maintaining their high conversion rates.

“At the same time, our conversion rates have not dropped. And normally when you see first visits go up, you see conversions go down, but our conversion rate is still over 40% and I think that’s because we don’t use it just for the lead grab, but the majority of our studios are using it for the full customer journey.”

With the help of Marketing Automation, Neighborhood Barre has been able to achieve many of the goals that they set when they first made the switch and with new goals in place for the future, there’s no limit to what they can achieve with the help of Marketing Automation’s wide range of features.

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking into switching to your fitness management software, Katy has some closing thoughts to share:

“We were at a point in time where we wanted to scale for growth and in order to do that, we needed to be delivering the best client experience possible. Xplor has helped us achieve this by delivering the best consumer-facing point booking software, from the app to the website integration, revenue-driving features, and everything else.”

Considering a switch? Book your customized demo to see how Xplor can support the unique needs of your fitness studio!

Get Started with Mariana Tek Today

Article by Xplor Mariana Tek

First published: October 18 2023

Last updated: December 12 2023