We’ve discussed in previous articles the fact that the UK nation is starting to recognise that it needs to be more healthy. More people are joining gyms/have gym memberships than in previous years. However, having a membership and USING one are very different things and many people who have access to gyms fail to go. On top of this, an estimated 50% of memberships are cancelled each year (Mintel UK Health and Fitness Club Report 2017).
So how can you improve people’s gym attendance/experience, increase retention rate (boosting profit) and do your part to help the nation get fitter? Here, we’ll look at some of the ways that we can give people a smoother gym experience and make sure they stick around.
Use a great marketing technique
Inbound marketing is taking the world by storm. It’s easier and less time-consuming than traditional marketing because you focus on what you do, rather than on contacting people that may or may not be interested in what you have to offer. Inbound marketing uses forums such as social media, your company website and blogs to promote your products/services and position you as an expert within your industry.
Create regular content and make sure that it’s relevant to your target audience - do they want to see it? Do they need to see it? How can you help them, when creating materials?
Inbound marketing is a great way to connect with your member base, keeping them up to date, but also to let potential joiners see how enthused your existing members are, the types of activities/classes you offer and what (if any) promotions are currently available.
Make the most of available technology
An intuitive website that allows self-service is an effective method of getting consumers engaged with your site (and therefore exposed to any updates or announcements) but also allows them to book, cancel or reschedule sessions and classes when it suits them. This means that their interactions with your brand are smooth and convenient, so they’ll keep coming back.
You can help your staff save time on administration by implementing systems that are semi- or fully-automated. Let technology manage your class bookings, referrals, membership renewals etc. and free up your team to spend time with members out on the gym floor. Which brings us to our next point...
Create an addictive environment
The idea here is that you create an atmosphere in your gym which is encouraging, inclusive and positive. Having staff members on hand to answer questions, offer advice or spot someone on weights is very motivational to members. Offer training on equipment so that people can vary their workout, avoid queueing for the “safe” or “easy” machines, and stay safe, whilst minimising the chances of anyone feeling silly or inexperienced/judged when they’re at the gym. People who have made a friend in the past 3 months are 40% less likely to quit the gym than those who haven’t (Mintel, 2017), so having a referral policy or a buddy-system in place can boost retention rates. Buddy systems are ways of pairing up those with similar abilities or goals so that they can encourage and push one another, which means that they’re more likely to achieve their targets and more likely to continue coming to your gym.
So there we have it. Some easy ways to get people coming to you and to keep them coming. If you don't have the time to implement any/all aspects, why not get in touch with the experts and see how we can help you boost your profit and do your part to get the nation fitter?