Host Your Own Mindfulness Retreat (In-person): Quick Guide to Getting Started



If you’ve ever thought about hosting your own mindfulness retreat, now is the perfect time! With COVID-related travel rules easing up in certain parts of the world, many people are anxious for a nice get-away trip.


And what better way to offer them a way to unwind, decompress, and go within than with a mindfulness retreat?


Hosting a mindfulness retreat can be a lot of work. But it can also lead to some of the most transformative experiences - both for you as the host and for your attendees! If you’ve ever been on a retreat (whether mindfulness, yoga, or another kind), I’m sure you have memories to cherish for a lifetime.


Imagine offering your students or clients the opportunity to experience the magic of an in-person mindfulness retreat themselves. Not sure where to start? Use this quick guide as an overview of some things to consider to host and promote a successful mindfulness or meditation retreat.


Get inspired by your students or past retreats


Considering doing a retreat but not sure what your audience would enjoy? Start with some research. Ask your current or past students or clients if they've ever been on a retreat. If so, ask what they enjoyed most. If not, ask what they imagine under the word "mindfulness retreat." Use their feedback to structure a retreat they’ll be excited to attend. Then be sure to notify them when the retreat is ready for them to sign up.


Brainstorm about the past mindfulness retreats you’ve been on. What did you enjoy most? Were there parts where you saw room for improvement in the overall retreat experience?

Note these and use them as inspiration when you consider creating your mindfulness retreat.


Decide on an ideal location for your retreat

Where do you want to host your retreat? In your nearby area? Or do you want to travel to another part of the country...or even overseas? A few key things to consider in terms of location are 1) your audience 2) your budget 3) your time.


Already have a lot of people attending your mindfulness classes that live near your area? Don’t have too much of a budget to allocate to this just yet? Or simply don’t want to spend a lot of time on planning and logistics? Start in your local area. Look for a park area or a retreat center that would be suitable for your needs.


how to promote a mindfulness retreat

Once you decide you’re ready to allocate time and resources towards a retreat that’s further away, go for it by starting the research process. Consider retreats in some of your favorite or new locations that have been on your bucket list for years. Websites like www.retreathub.com allow you to see a list of retreat venues for hire around the world.


Start marketing far ahead in advance

Planning an in-person mindfulness retreat can be very time and energy-intensive. So you’ll want to make sure to maximize the impact with your marketing so you can fill all of your spots and not be left worrying about covering the costs associated with the retreat.


Once you've determined where you want to do your retreat, how long you want it to be, and have at least a basic structure in mind, book your venue and start marketing. Having a strong online presence with your mindfulness business will be tremednously helpful and time-saving when marketing your retreat.


You’ll want to start marketing your retreat at least 3-6 months in advance when there’s a higher chance that people will have time for it in their calendar. This also allows them time to plan for travels to the retreat and perhaps any sightseeing they may want to do before or after.


How to promote your mindfulness retreat online


If your retreat is in your physical area, then you can always print posters with the retreat information to put up in yoga studios, meditation centers, or even coffee shops nearby. But even then, you'll still want to have a solid (and mindful) online marketing strategy in place to reach as many people as possible and get your spots filled.


So here are 5 ways you can start effectively marketing your retreat online:


1. Showcase your retreat on your website

Post about your retreat on your website. Create a separate page that lists all of the details that people need to know before they sign up. Have something about the retreat directly on your home page with a button that leads them to the retreat page to learn more. Consider including a banner at the top of your page or a bigger image at the bottom near your footer (again, sending them to the retreat page to learn more).


2. Help your retreat show up on Google by using the right keywords

Did you know that about 480 people per month type “mindfulness retreat near me” into Google? And that 2,900 people per month are searching for “meditation retreat near me”? Take advantage of this by including these keywords throughout your website pages.


So if you’re hosting a retreat in Miami, FL, be sure to have the words “meditation retreat in Miami, FL” or “mindfulness retreat in Miami, FL” spread throughout your website (ideally, both on your retreat page and home page). This can help increase the odds that your page will show up higher on Google’s rankings to help people find it. Learn more about search-engine optimization (SEO) and how to leverage it to get more traffic to your mindfulness site.


3. Share your retreat with your email list

You’ll definitely want to leverage your existing audience once your retreat is ready to go. Not only will they probably be excited to sign up first, but they’ll probably share it with their friends too! (And reminding them to share it never hurts either :-))


This is why it’s so important to have an email list as a mindfulness teacher. Once you have your marketing materials and a website all ready to go, send an email out to your subscribers, inviting them to visit your retreat page for more info and to sign up.


4. Post about your retreat on your social media

If you have social media accounts for your mindfulness business, promote your retreat there too. Consider creating content around the retreat such as blog posts that are relevant to the retreat. This can include writing more about the location of your retreat or about the benefits of attending a mindfulness retreat etc.


By creating retreat-related content, you’re not always posting the same flyers over and over again. Plus you're providing your audience with valuable insights. Again, direct them to your retreat page to learn more and sign up. Don't have social media accounts? See the tip below or learn 3 ways to market your mindfulness business even without social media.


5. Use a retreat marketing/retreat booking platform

Maximize exposure to your retreat online by listing it on a retreat platform. There are many websites that offer this service (usually for a percentage of your retreat fee or a monthly fee).

Here are just a few to check out:


These platforms can greatly increase the number of people seeing your retreat so you can fill it faster and with less marketing work on your part. (Yay for more meditation and yoga time for you!) Check each website for exact details on their fees and costs so you can build this into your budget and pricing.


BONUS TIP: Post the retreat on the event directory page of www.mindful.org. You’ll have to create a mindfulness teacher profile first if you don’t already have one.


Give yourself time and enjoy the process

A mindfulness retreat is something you should start planning for at least six to nine months in advance. So give yourself plenty of time so you can make it a truly magical experience that your attendees will never forget!


Hosting a retreat can not only be fun it can also help you grow your reach and establish your brand further as a great mindfulness teacher. So have fun with it and enjoy the fulfillment of knowing the impact you’ll have on people’s lives!