From what we have seen so far, the fitness industry seems to be recovering well. Membership sales in April exceeded sales made during the same period in 2019* . Leads are coming in thick and fast with many clubs seeing as much as double the number of prospects being added to their systems vs the same period in 2019*. This is great news and show real optimism for fitness industry recovery.
However, the data is also showing that many clubs still have a large number of members on freeze. There may be many complex reasons as to why members have not yet wanted to return to the club, but it’s important that as a fitness facility, you are doing everything you can to encourage members to pick up where they left off and restart their fitness journey, not just to support financial recovery, but to support your core mission of helping individuals get active and get healthier. In this blog, we explore 4 ways to help you re-engage these members. Let’s take a look.
1. Show Your Members How COVID Secure Your Club Is
Showing your members all the measures you’ve put in place to ensure a safe, socially distanced environment to work out will go a long way to reassuring and re-engaging your members on freeze.
A great way to do this is by filming a short video tour of your facility, that could show your members where the hand sanitiser stations are, the reorganised gym floor, the one-way system etc. By providing members with visibility of the changes and measures you have put in place, they will naturally feel more confident about coming into the club. We recommend creating a targeted email campaign that includes a link to the video.
2. Re-Engage Members with a Free Mini Personal Training Session
Members still currently on freeze have most likely not been to the gym in up to 12 months. They may have fallen into bad habits and lost motivation. What better way to restart their journey than with a free mini personal training session? The personalised and tailored approach of personal training will provide members with a great way to kickstart their journey and ensure they are getting the most out of their gym membership. A personal trainer can help members set goals, provide a tailored programme, and provide educational support for things like nutrition and how to use certain gym equipment etc.
By offering a free mini-PT session, you are also providing members with the opportunity to learn about how personal training works, the benefits, and ultimately, a better understanding of all the areas that a Personal Trainer can help with. Be sure to follow up with members that have taken advantage of the free session, to maximise longer term PT uptake.
3. Encourage Members Back with a Free Personalised Health Assessment
Right now, the public are more health focused than at any other time in most of our living memories. This is backed up by a recent survey conducted by Public Health England, which found that 7 in 10 people want to be healthier. By offering your members a free personalised health assessment using body composition analysis technology, you can provide an instant snapshot of a member’s health and fitness status that can be used to develop a personalised programme with step-by-step targets based around their goals and lifestyle. This is a great way to not only re-engage members but keep them coming back.
4. Call Members to Understand the Barriers and Try to Overcome Them
The best way to find out why your members are not ready to come back is by speaking to them directly. A quick informal ‘check in’ phone call will help you understand the barriers and provide insight into their individual concerns/challenges. With this insight, you can look at ways to overcome these barriers and get them back into the club and back on their fitness journey.
The global pandemic has affected our lives in so many ways. Your members may be experiencing financial struggles, poor health, family issues, job challenges and mental health issues. By being flexible and compassionate, your members will appreciate your efforts in supporting them and accommodating their personal circumstances. Not only may this help to get members back, but it will also go a long way to cultivating loyalty and improving retention of these members.
Final thought – If you are unable to overcome a members’ barriers and re-engage them at this time, it may be better to let them cancel with no penalisation, than push them through a debt collection process and exacerbate any pressure or stress. According to Zendesk, 75% of people would return to a company with excellent service and 56% would recommend it to family and friends, so by allowing your member to cancel, they are more likely to return in the future once their situation has improved. Not only that, but you may also find that you get a good referral or two!
These are just a few ideas on how to re-engage your members on freeze. We hope you find them useful. Let us know in the comments if you have any other suggestions that will help our club community! In the meantime, why not check out our recent blog on clever ‘low touch’ technology solutions designed to encourage members back into the club with confidence.
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*Data analysed from over 1000 ClubWise customers during period April 12 to April 30th 2021 vs same period in 2019.