The fun friendly running clubs for all
Marie Bean was working in the fitness industry (AFL Clubs and gyms) and a sea change took her to Noosa Heads, where she worked in a gym. However, her first love was always running. A lady at the gym suggested she start a running club, which she did and Lazy Runner has grown from there.
Here is what Marie shared about her business.
Q. Describe your business and products/services you offer
My Business is called Lazy Runner, it started off as a running club, and then due to popular demand more clubs started- after a while I realised that people wanted to have some running coaching and couldn’t get to the clubs, so I offered online running coaching- this has been an amazing success and now I coach runners from all over Australia and the world.
Q. How long have you been in business?
I started my first Lazy Runner running club 8 years ago in Noosa Heads QLD
Q. How many hours a week do you work in your business?
I still coach runners in my club in Brisbane (I have 8 clubs around Australia that have trainers operating them), so that takes about 10 hours a week, the rest of my week is spent with my online coaching and building my brand, so that could take another 20 hours per week
Q. What kind of online and offline marketing do you do and which is working for you?
My Lazy Runner website is very popular, one of the most popular running websites in Australia. Many people go to it to find running events, get advice on running or to book workshops or online coaching, so I work a lot on keeping the website up to date and interesting for runners.
I market in my area by networking events, and I am also in demand as a motivational speaker, so that gets the name out as well. Last year I wrote a book on running – called Lazy Runner, I have toured Australia and the UK with the book and it is doing really well
Q. What mistakes have you made in running your business and what lessons have you learnt from those?
One mistake was trying to be in 10 places at once and it just wasn’t working. I was coaching at 5 separate running clubs, not to mention driving lots of kilometres to get to them, I found licensing out the clubs, freed me up to spend time on the things I loved, the online coaching and writing.
As much as I love coaching the clubs, I found my expertise was better spent on the on line work or the book tours or conducting workshops around that country- that way I could reach so many more people and yet the clubs could still run without me.
Q. How has your website helped you run your business?
I have found most runners go online looking for advice, races and products, so a running website to cater to all those needs has been really successful. My Lazy Runner websit e is full of helpful tips and advice on ways to train without having to join a club or gym- I get 1000 unique visitors to my little website each day, and I make sure I update it every day so its stays fresh and people keep coming back.
Q. What obstacles or challenges are you facing at the moment?
The fitness industry is a tough one, there is so much out there and the cut price deals make it really hard to make a good living. I find running is different to the other fitness styles (bootcamps, gyms etc), it needs to be quite specific to each person’s level and needs- and running coaching is not easy to find. Marketing has always been a problem, the main issues are how much to spend and in what area, and trying to hit my right target market.
Q. Any other comments / points you would like to share about running your business?
I worked as a nurse for 20 years before I started in my own business, I was in my forties and very ‘green 217;. It has been really rewarding and I have enjoyed every minute. However, you have to be extremely passionate about what you do – which I am – as it takes such a lot of time and commitment to get success – and even when success comes you cannot rest on your laurels for a minute! There is always another business or enterprise snapping at your heels- and you need to stay in front – lucky I am a runner!
For more information, visit the Lazy Runner website.