Five Dig­i­tal New Year’s Res­o­lu­tions for Fit­ness and Health Club Own­ers

Five Dig­i­tal New Year’s Res­o­lu­tions for Fit­ness and Health Club Own­ers

The new year has almost arrived and every­one is keen to fol­low through with their new year’s res­o­lu­tions. Some even say that busi­ness own­ers and entre­pre­neurs should do the same and think about their good inten­tions for 2018. But do you already have a list of res­o­lu­tions for your fit­ness or health club? If you don’t, there’s no need to wor­ry! We’ve got you cov­ered. For this post we came up with five dig­i­tal new year’s res­o­lu­tions for fit­ness and health club own­ers that will not only be easy to real­ize. They will actu­al­ly boost your busi­ness and make 2018 the year in which you final­ly increase online engage­ment with super-effec­tive online mar­ket­ing and ulti­mate­ly uti­lize your full social media poten­tial.

Res­o­lu­tion #1: Final­ly Start Using Social Media to Boost Your Busi­ness

This is the first and prob­a­bly most obvi­ous of our res­o­lu­tions, but also the most impor­tant one. If you’re not already on Face­book, LinkedIn, Insta­gram or any oth­er of the numer­ous social media plat­forms, you need to change this!

Using social media will not only improve the online vis­i­bil­i­ty of your club. It will also change the way you com­mu­ni­cate with your exist­ing and future clients.

How­ev­er, before you decide on which plat­forms you want to use, think about who your tar­get group. On which of the numer­ous plat­forms will you find them? So here’s a list of the dif­fer­ent plat­forms and who spends their time there:

Face­book & Insta­gram

Both plat­forms are about con­sumers, which makes them the ide­al plat­form to con­nect with future clients, mem­bers and cus­tomers. They are also a great tool to main­tain a con­nec­tion with already exist­ing mem­bers and to start a con­ver­sa­tion with them. That way you also col­lect infor­ma­tion that can be help­ful if you con­sid­er opti­miz­ing your club accord­ing to your cus­tomers needs.

That’s why fit­ness and health clubs, as B2C busi­ness­es, need to be on Insta­gram and Face­book to reach their tar­get audi­ence through reg­u­lar (aka organ­ic) posts or through more direct­ed adver­tis­ing cam­paigns.

LinkedIn

If you’re a fit­ness entre­pre­neur, you need to be on this plat­form. Not only to net­work with indus­try experts. Espe­cial­ly if you’re a B2B health or fit­ness facil­i­ty, you also need to post and adver­tise on LinkedIn, as this is where you will find poten­tial investors, or com­pa­nies look­ing to improve their cor­po­rate health pro­grams.

It’s the best plat­form to boost your pro­file and per­ceived author­i­ty and set your­self off from your com­pe­ti­tion. It’s also great to find new employ­ees.

Twit­ter

This is where you can voice your opin­ion — so rants about the dan­gers of seden­tary cul­ture or diet soda go here. This is also where you most­ly engage with pro­fes­sion­als in your field and find some­times ran­dom, yet, valu­able infor­ma­tion about your busi­ness branch.

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Res­o­lu­tion #2: Cre­ate A Social Media Edi­to­r­i­al Plan

After you’ve sort­ed out which of the social media plat­forms you want to use, cre­ate an edi­to­r­i­al plan. This is espe­cial­ly help­ful since you want to be post­ing con­sis­tent­ly. It should list the con­tent you plan to release each week, as well as the dead­lines for all. An edi­to­r­i­al cal­en­dar allows you to plan cam­paigns in advance and not to hasti­ly put togeth­er con­tent in a rush. It also saves you from dupli­cat­ing con­tent and allows you to plan sea­son­al and time­ly con­tent.

Some of the help­ful cat­e­gories to include in your edi­to­r­i­al plan are: con­tent, type of con­tent, authors and pro­duc­ers, edi­to­r­i­al tasks, mar­ket­ing tasks, dead­lines, reminders, date of pub­li­ca­tion, pub­li­ca­tion chan­nel, report­ing of results.

Your edi­to­r­i­al plan is a “liv­ing doc­u­ment” which should be reviewed and adapt­ed on a reg­u­lar basis.

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Res­o­lu­tion #3: Keep the Online Con­ver­sa­tion Going

Don’t just click the like-but­ton or copy-paste a gener­ic response to com­ments on social media. You can do bet­ter. Engage your audi­ence and keep the con­ver­sa­tion going. If some­one posts “I love your new func­tion­al train­ing equip­ment”, you can think about what response will keep them more engaged: “that’s great, we’re so hap­py you enjoy our work­outs” or “We are excit­ed you like our new equip­ment, what func­tion did you enjoy most? We’d love to hear more!”.  

But why should you put in the labor? There are three rea­sons: First, your cus­tomers feel impor­tant and val­ued. Sec­ond, you learn about prob­lems ear­ly and are in a posi­tion to fix them before they dri­ve cus­tomers away. Last, but not least, you can focus on invest­ing in areas that mat­ter most to your cus­tomers because you col­lect infor­ma­tion con­stant­ly.

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Res­o­lu­tion #4: Cre­ate An Online Pres­ence Refresh Cal­en­dar

Your web­site and your social media pres­ences are not set in stone. When your busi­ness grows, changes hap­pen and it’s impor­tant to keep them updat­ed, so don’t just set it and for­get it. Cre­at­ing a review-and-refresh sched­ule will remind you to revis­it your site and oth­er chan­nels on a reg­u­lar basis. It is essen­tial to check if your infor­ma­tion is com­plete, your key facts are cor­rect and if your texts are still per­sua­sive in order to main­tain a suc­cess­ful online pres­ence.

Com­plete­ness

Did you fill in all the fields on your social media pro­files? If your pro­file is incom­plete, your facil­i­ty will not prop­er­ly show up in search results on Face­book or Google Busi­ness. This can cost you cus­tomers as they often-times rely on search engines to find fit­ness and health clubs.

Facts

Check if con­tact details, open­ing hours, your address, your pro­grams and ser­vices are cor­rect. For exam­ple, do you adver­tise your new func­tion­al train­ing cir­cuit train­ing?

Also check your pho­tos. Maybe you need to update and remove pic­tures of for­mer staff and replace old logos.

Pow­er­ful Copy­writ­ing

The ads you place, your home­page and also the descrip­tions in your social media pro­files, this is how your clients first encounter you. That’s why you want to leave a stel­lar impres­sion, which depends on pow­er­ful copy­writ­ing. So it’s a good idea to revis­it your online texts and make adjust­ments reg­u­lar­ly.

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Res­o­lu­tion #5: Respond Faster To Emails And Oth­er Mes­sages

It sounds sim­ple but it’s def­i­nite­ly not easy. We all know that some­times life gets in the way of fast respons­es, but they are impor­tant. If a future client walked into your club, you would not ignore them for a day, two days or even weeks and months. You would talk to them imme­di­ate­ly, mak­ing sure they feel wel­come.

So here’s the deal with Emails, Face­book and LinkedIn mes­sages, voice­mails and busi­ness reviews: if you don’t respond fast, poten­tial clients will lose inter­est.

That’s why it’s a great idea, to com­mit to tak­ing some time in the morn­ing, and some time in the after­noon to check all your mes­sages and imme­di­ate­ly respond to them. This will not only impact your busi­ness in a pos­i­tive way, but also ease your mind, because we all know there’s noth­ing worse than hav­ing to sit down and respond to 100+ mails.

Con­clu­sion

If you keep in mind these res­o­lu­tions, then 2018 will be the year in which you prof­it from your online pres­ence in new ways and there­by increase mem­ber reten­tion among oth­er things.

 

Bou­tique fit­ness” — is the US con­cept a mod­el for the future of fit­ness indus­tries world­wide?

With a turnover of 27.6 bil­lion dol­lars in 2016, the US fit­ness indus­try is clear­ly the largest mar­ket glob­al­ly, earn­ing as much as the UK (6.1 bil­lion), Ger­many (5.5 bil­lion), Japan (5.1 bil­lion), France (2.7 bil­lion), Cana­da (2.5 bil­lion), Aus­tralia (2.5 bil­lion) and Italy (2.45 bil­lion) com­bined. So clear­ly, there is much to be learned from the fit­ness entre­pre­neurs of the land of the free. Espe­cial­ly when it comes to new busi­ness mod­els and new con­cepts.

In the last five years there was much buzz about “bou­tique fit­ness”, an up-and-com­ing busi­ness con­cept — and rumor has it that it will turn work­ing out into the new going out.  But what exact­ly is bou­tique fit­ness and what can we learn from this trend?

Boutique Fitness blog

What is bou­tique fit­ness?

Bou­tique fit­ness stu­dios are small gyms of usu­al­ly between 100 – 300m², which spe­cial­ize in cer­tain fit­ness areas. For instance, they offer box­ing class­es, cycling, func­tion­al train­ing or bal­let. This spe­cial­iza­tion allows them to design their stu­dios in min­i­mal­ist ways and to invest only in the equip­ment their cus­tomers tru­ly need. At first glance they often resem­ble exclu­sive clubs, lofts and even art gal­leries more than actu­al fit­ness stu­dios. As they focus on cus­tomer expe­ri­ence, they dif­fer from old­er fit­ness mod­els. They empha­size the social aspects of exer­cis­ing, while also offer­ing high qual­i­ty work­outs.

Sounds expen­sive? It is. Skirt­ing tra­di­tion­al con­tracts, bou­tique fit­ness clubs are usu­al­ly pay-per-hour. But this comes with a pre­mi­um price tag. For one group ses­sion they gen­er­al­ly charge between $20 – 35 per per­son. Yet, peo­ple are more than will­ing to pay for an hour of train­ing, accom­pa­nied by hip hop or elec­tro beats, espe­cial­ly if they are led by top-notch coach­es.

Accord­ing to Forbes, some of the cus­tomers of the exclu­sive fit­ness stu­dios work out up to 15 times a month, spend­ing around $142 in total — way more than the $70 they would pay in an aver­age gym. Bou­tique fit­ness there­fore has evolved into a lucra­tive busi­ness mod­el that promis­es high rev­enues to entre­pre­neurs. Soul­Cy­cle, one of the most strik­ing bou­tique fit­ness chains, gen­er­at­ed a prof­it of over $25 mil­lion before their ini­tial pub­lic offer­ing in 2015. And they are not the only ones turn­ing a prof­it. Oth­ers have long caught on to the idea and com­pa­nies like The Bar Method or Cross­Fit rank among the most promi­nent com­peti­tors in the bou­tique fit­ness busi­ness, with some of them gen­er­at­ing $4 bil­lion in annu­al rev­enue.

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Data-dri­ven work­outs are the future

But bou­tique fit­ness is grow­ing increas­ing­ly com­pet­i­tive with more and more play­ers enter­ing the mar­ket. This also puts pres­sure on busi­ness­es to stay inno­v­a­tive. Alex Fell, the cofounder of War­rior Fit­ness Boot Camp, a suc­cess­ful bou­tique fit­ness stu­dio that focus­es on func­tion­al train­ing, sees the future in going dig­i­tal.

Tech is key, accord­ing to him, and not only when it comes to book­ing class­es, com­mu­ni­ty build­ing and adver­tis­ing. The indus­try is head­ed towards data-dri­ven work­outs that make progress quan­tifi­able. There­fore it’s not only about cre­at­ing “lifestyle com­pa­nies”. It’s also about enabling clients to track their own progress and achieve­ments through per­son­al­ized feed­back.

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So what can we learn from bou­tique fit­ness?

Fit­ness in the dig­i­tal age is not mere­ly about get­ting peo­ple to sign a con­tract to a fit­ness club. It’s most­ly about fos­ter­ing long-term engage­ment. That way, busi­ness con­cepts that rely on pay-per-hour mod­els can be more lucra­tive than tra­di­tion­al gyms.

Most of all, cus­tomer expe­ri­ence is essen­tial. Cre­at­ing spaces that facil­i­tate com­mu­ni­ty build­ing and accom­mo­date the lifestyles of clients, while also offer­ing high qual­i­ty work­outs, is cru­cial to retain­ing them. There­fore new tech­nolo­gies and data-dri­ven work­outs are increas­ing­ly gain­ing impor­tance and are now key com­pet­i­tive advan­tages.