Marketing Tips for Fitness Companies
Create cross-referral alliances
If you can manage to create relationships with other non-competing, fitness-minded businesses in your area, you can potentially strike up cross-referral alliances. For example, if you are a local gym, you could forge an alliance with a nutritionist or physical therapist. This creates a symbiotic relationship where you each will refer customers to one another.
Testimonials and reviews
People are far more likely to choose your company if they see you have many positive reviews from others who have already become clients or members. Encouraging people to leave reviews on Yelp and Google will help you get there. Provide your existing base with easy ways to write a review. You can also offer incentives, such as a free one-month pass, or you can send emails or even ask them directly. If their experiences are good with you, they’ll likely be happy to do this.
Develop a strong referral program
Word-of-mouth marketing remains a solid path to new clients or members. You want your existing base to talk about their positive experiences and recommend friends, family and colleagues. This is a lot easier to accomplish when you have an enticing referral program. You can create incentives, such as a free service or free product that would appeal to a wide range of people. The costs of such incentives are quickly offset by the lifetime value of a new client or member.
Develop a strong retention program
For any fitness-related business, the retention of clients or members is an important part of your marketing plan. Depending on the type of business you run, the percentage of client/member loss per year can be different, but if you are a gym, that number is a staggering 40%. A drastic reduction in your existing client base over time can cost you a great deal of revenue. Because of this, it is vital you develop a retention program to keep people coming back to you year after year. Referral programs usually consist of a combination of policies and tactics to increase convenience, staying in touch and engaged, and providing a higher level of service.
Boost Your Marketing Budget During Peak Seasons
There are a few seasons throughout the year where fitness and weight loss become top of mind for many people, such as the New Year, spring break and swimsuit season. During these times, it makes sense to increase your marketing spend to reach as many potential leads as possible since there is a higher than average number of people looking for your services. Be sure to take these times into consideration when building out your social media calendar as well.
Target Your Existing Base
In addition to attracting new clients and working on the retention of your base, you might also want to consider marketing new services to your existing base to increase revenue. For example, if you have a local gym, you can offer workshops for increased flexibility. Or perhaps you have a yoga studio, and you offer a limited-time course about the spiritual aspects of yoga to enrich and empower one’s yogic practice. The key is to listen to your base so you understand what their needs are and find ways to provide services that satisfy those needs.
Leverage your brand recognition through community outreach
One of the best ways to boost your fitness company’s visibility and positive reputation is to get involved in your local community. For example, you can offer educational seminars and free classes at local companies or leave goody bags for your participants. You can also advertise in local publications, sponsor local sporting teams or get involved in charity events.
Develop an email marketing strategy
Developing an email marketing strategy is often part of an overarching content marketing strategy. However, if you have a fitness company, your email marketing should include things such as specials, new classes, schedule changes, advertising specials and incentive programs, offering fitness or nutritional tips and introducing or educating on new fitness techniques, supplements and health products.
Make use of video
Do you have a YouTube channel? If not, you should think about setting one up. Video advertising can be very effective and can showcase the personality of your brand in a way that other mediums cannot. Offering free workout programs can showcase what you do. Additionally, videos that offer fitness and nutritional tips can also bring traffic to your site and position you as a leader in your field.
Blogging is a critical element for any business, and there are so many benefits to your fitness company. Offering consistent, high-quality content through blogging can drive traffic to your website through proper use of SEO and help your practice gain visibility. Additionally, every blog entry is a new page that prompts search engines, such as Google, to revisit your page in an effort to index new content. Having an active blog helps to build credibility as an industry leader in your field and in turn makes your practice appear more trustworthy.
Direct mail advertising
There is a lot of information these days about the effectiveness of digital marketing, and while this remains true, direct mail is still a viable tool in the fitness marketing arsenal. Ideally, digital and traditional methods work together to create a robust strategy that provides returns. Direct mail, if executed properly, can bring new patients to your door. Using a compiled mailing list will allow for geographic and demographic targeting, and it can target people who have just moved into the area and are likely looking for your services.