Author: Alexandra Powers, BSU student
Q: Tell me about your business. Why did you choose this line of business?
A: I run a children’s gym where we teach beginner level gymnastics, as well as offer birthday parties, open gym times, vacation camp programs and a monthly movie night. I was a competitive gymnast and coach when I was young and have always had a great love for both the sport and for kids.
Q: Are you from this local area?
A: I am originally from Long Island, NY. I have lived in Bridgewater, MA for 23 years where I raised my daughter with my husband.
Q: When did you start your business?
A: I opened Stardust Gym in October, 2008.
Q: What was it that made you want to start this business?
A: I walked away from my love for gymnastics to pursue a professional career as a real estate paralegal. I had always wanted to open my own gym and when my daughter was a teenager, I decided it was time to take the leap and do this for myself. It was scary but the best career decision I ever made!
Q: What was the toughest thing you went through when opening?
A: Self-doubt was the toughest thing I went through. I didn’t know if people would come. I stuck to my beliefs of what kids and parents would want in a children’s gym and did extensive marketing in the beginning. The grand opening was a huge success and the parties took off right from the beginning but the gymnastics enrollment took a few years of perseverance and building a reputation.
Q: What inspired you to keep going as you were getting the business off the ground?
A: The positive feedback from parents and smiling faces from the children kept me going.
Q: If you had to start over from day one what would you have done differently? Or what was your most difficult challenge?
A: I don’t think I would have done anything different. The mistakes I made were only minor and made me a better business owner.
Q: What is the toughest part about having a business in 2020?
A: I think the toughest part about having a business in 2020 is continuing to grow the customer base to cover the constant rising costs and maintaining quality staff. Also keeping up to date with the latest marketing trends thru social media.
Q: If a customer was to choose between your business and three others just like it why would you suggest they at least give you a try ﬁrst? What makes you stand out?
A: We specialize on beginner level gymnastics and the size of the gym isn’t overwhelming for children. It’s easy for parents to see their child at all times and the gym is clean and safe. The parties are memorable for the children and easy for the parents. The staff is well trained and love working with the children. We get a lot of positive feedback about the gym and the staff and great reviews can be found on the internet.
Q: What is the number one way you currently bring in new customers?
A: Word of mouth has always been our number one marketing tool. But we also have a good social media presence on Facebook and Instagram as well as an informative website and newsletter.
Q: If you had to look 6 months to a year into the future where would you like to see your business be?
A: I would like to see it continue to grow as is has in the past. I have no plans for any major changes in the business model because of my age as I plan to retire in 4 years.
Q: Would you increase or decrease the amount you personally tend to within the business?
A: I have gradually decreased my hours at the gym recently doing just the behind the scenes work like marketing, accounting, supplies and payroll. I currently have a great staff to run the gymnastics program and only work a few hours during the week with most of my hours over the weekend. Most of my hours are now from home.
Q: Finally, what is the best way for the readers to connect with your business and to take advantage of what your company has to offer?
A: They can see what we have to offer and get a good feel for our business on our website, Facebook and Instagram. They can also sign up to receive our newsletters by email to keep up to date on what’s going on at our gym.