13 Great Fitness Club Marketing Ideas

Getting into shape or maintaining a current level of physical fitness is important to many people today. The problem that fitness clubs face, however, is that it is a lot cheaper for people to jog a couple miles on their own every day than it is to sign up for a membership. Your club has some advantages that can be marketed, but your concept of value must compete with the free exercise someone can provide themselves. Show that and these ideas will have a lot of success.

It all starts with the type of services and equipment that your fitness club has. You’ve got to have enough equipment to serve all of your members, modern services that attract different population demographics, and a social atmosphere that allows people to have a good time while they’re working out. If you’ve got that already, then you’ve already won half the battle.

Fitness Club Marketing Ideas that Work

1. Create an Interactive Game
An effective marketing promotion is a game card that you give to all members that has specific tasks that must be completed. It can range from product purchases to the amount of visits made to your fitness club during a month. If the member gets all of the items checked off, then they can be entered into monthly and even yearly giveaways.

2. New Products Are Always Good
If you’ve got innovative products at good prices, then you’re creating a temptation for your members to enjoy. It could be anything from a fun personal trainer session with unique exercises to new supplements that are on the market right now.

3. Put Your Brand Everywhere
When you know what your target demographic likes to do for fun in your community, then you’ve got a place to increase your brand recognition. If you have a lot of golfers, then put your logo on some golf balls at the local driving range. If you are targeting parents, then the seats of grocery carts is a great location. Be creative, put your brand everywhere, and it’ll pay off.

4. Target Local Employers
Many employers are offered wellness incentives by their health insurance partners to save money and that is to your advantage. Schedule a meeting, bring a gift basket of products that you offer at your fitness club, and talk about the advantages that you can provide employees that will save that company potentially tons of cash.

5. Look For Sub-Groups to Target
There is always someone who might like to try your fitness club out and a little effort on your part can find those people. A popular method is to target brides-to-be to offer them a small trial so they can get into better shape for their special day. You could offer a limited trial to people who are unemployed who then might join when they can afford to so with a new job. There are so many sub-groups, the sky is really the limit here.

6. Give People an Incentive To Buy
Your highest margin retail products are what you want members to purchase, so give them an incentive to make that purchase by giving them some value in return. It could be an entry for a monthly drawing that hands out a discount on the next month of membership, free trials for their friends, or something else you can specifically provide. It can even be turned into a game where a member has to do something specific to get an entry.

7. Work with a Charity
Encourage members to solicit donations for certain things they can do at your fitness club, such as miles ran or lifts made at a certain rate. It’s a good way to raise some cash for a good cause and you’ll get a lot of extra exposure for your club at the same time.

8. Hold Your Own Biggest Loser Competition
If you have a lot of club members that are trying to achieve their weight goals, then you can encourage this process through your own contest that gives incentives for pounds and/or inches lost. Whomever loses the most in your club could get a big prize, like 6 months of membership for free.

9. Use a Live Feed
One of the biggest obstacles to getting new business is uncertainty because prospective members don’t know if they’ll be comfortable. That’s why a trial period is often offered, but how do you get people comfortable enough to enjoy the trial? A live webcam with streaming video can give prospects the chance to see your club in action from the comfort of their own home computer or tablet.

10. Donate Memberships
Relationships with other business entities and charities is the key to success and membership donations of 1 to 3 months for employees of these places or even to church congregations can help to drive higher levels of use. It’s a long enough membership to be valuable and establish a routine that can lead to higher paid rates later on.

11. Make Sure You’ve Joined Your Chamber
The local Chamber of Commerce has an immense set of networking resources that will work to your advantage. You can quickly get in touch with other businesses, create a referral network, and get extra attention to your niche expertise by offering free lunch seminars to members about the benefits you can provide to a wellness program.

12. Give Members Recruitment Tools
Load up gift cards or certificates with money that can only be used at your fitness club and then hand them out to the members you know love you. They’ll feel good about being an ambassador on your behalf and a few incentives for their work can make them a strong marketing ally for you in your community.

13. Recognize Commitment
If someone comes to your fitness club every day, then they deserve to be recognized. You can reward them in a number of ways, from commissary discounts to free memberships for their friends, but just make sure that the reward also benefits your club in some way.

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