Although a second lockdown is far from ideal, a few weeks of closed doors actually presents an excellent opportunity to push your business forward by utilising your time in the most productive way possible, to ensure you start 2021 with a bang! Here are our top 4 suggestions.
1. Review your current systems
The fitness industry has had to adapt fast following the onset of COVID-19, with the implementation of on-demand offerings, cashless transactions, contactless access and seamless digital joining solutions, so now you have some downtime, it’s a good idea to review your current software by asking yourself, does my current software cater to this new normal and will it help to drive my success in 2021 or will it hold my business back?’.
Essentially, if your current system does not support the transformed landscape of fitness club operations, we strongly recommend that you start the process of switching to a future proof solution that not only supports the new ‘normal’ but helps you bounce back stronger for a record-breaking 2021. By starting the process now, you will be set up and ready to go in plenty of time for January.
2. Plan Your New Year and Q1 Promotions
Let’s be honest, 2020 hasn’t been a kind year, gyms have faced the biggest challenge in a generation but, if you look at it with a positive spin, next year WILL without a doubt, be enormously better. The fitness industry is standing at the foot of a big opportunity, as the global pandemic highlighted the importance of a healthy lifestyle and the impact this has on warding off illness. People are far more health aware as a result, so it could be that we see a bumper ‘new year rush’ in member acquisition, and you want to make sure you’re getting a piece of that pie, which is why we recommend you start planning your New Year and Q1 promotions now. Here are a few ideas:
a) New Year Offer
Start your New Year’s member recruitment drive now by reaching out to your prospect database and include a special offer just for them. You could create a package with a promo code ‘Newyear21’ and send a mass communication to your prospects inviting them to join on this special package. Consider focusing your message around general wellbeing and mental health, as this is likely to resonate with a large number of people.
b) Referral scheme incentives
Prospects are much more likely to sign up if they get a great review of your facility from people they know and trust. And the people giving the reviews are more likely to make the effort if there is something in it for them. So why not incentivise your current members to do some of the heavy lifting for you and promote your gym amongst their peers by rewarding them for recommending you? Consider linking your referral packages to a special New Year 2021 offer.
ClubWise’s software includes an integrated referral system which gives members the ability to refer friends and family to the gym. You can introduce and track successful referral campaigns via reports, and reward members for referrals as you wish.
ClubWise also offers a fully integrated app-based member loyalty programme – FitSense Rewards. FitSense Rewards works to improve member retention and increase revenue by incentivising in club activity with exciting and high perceived value rewards and is extremely effective for supercharging member referrals.
c. Win back lost members with a dedicated campaign
Unfortunately, it was inevitable that a percentage of your members would cancel their membership with you during or after the lockdowns. The pandemic has been hard on everyone and hit some people harder than others, whether financially or health-wise. However, the good news is, winning back these members could be an easy win, presenting an opportunity to build your membership base back up quickly with a well-timed and well-executed campaign combined with clever technology.
Let’s touch on the clever tech first. By providing your lost members with a way to reinstate their direct debit digitally, from the comfort of their home, in a time convenient to them, will no doubt help your cause. Providing them with the ability to clear their arrears at the same time, is even better. The FitSense Member App provides both of these features, which delivers a simple, low friction solution for members to become active members once again, without the need to come into the club and have ‘the talk of shame’ with a member of your team. If you don’t already have this functionality in place, now is great time to get it activated. Speak to a member of the team today to find out how.
You can promote both features via a dedicated email campaign, which could include an incentive to re-join through the app such as ‘Re-join today and receive your birthday month free’ or similar. If you’re feeling generous and it makes financial sense, you could even offer to clear the members’ arrears – offering a fresh start. You will probably find that by doing this, the members total lifetime value will far outweigh the loss of the arrears.
3. Focus on member feedback and take action
Remember that fantastic suggestion from your long-standing member Jo, to add more group heart rate classes to your timetable? And the feedback from Pete on the shabby changing rooms? Well, now is a great time to revisit this feedback and take some action! So dig out that ‘suggestion box’ and focus in on some of the easy wins and a couple of the more challenging ones, as this is a prime time to really show your members that you’re listening to them. Not only does this improve your facility for all your current members, but your new members too. It also demonstrates that you value them and are focused on providing the best experience possible. In turn, you can expect better engagement and ultimately, better retention.
Don’t have a suggestion box? Now is a great time to implement (a digital) one!
Encouraging member feedback through a variety of different mediums such as via a member app or online is the best way to let your members know their opinions matter. This feedback will help you constantly improve your business, providing the best member experience possible. And as we mentioned above, it’ll also help with long term retention, not to mention referrals and positive brand reputation!
4. Implement new revenue streams
To help recoup revenue lost during your club’s closure, it makes sense to look at implementing new, additional revenue streams to help you achieve success in 2021. Here are a couple of ways you could do this:
a. Increase PT revenue with Body Composition Analysis
Body composition analysis presents a good opportunity to upsell PT and increase your PT revenue. Trainers can schedule informed consultations with members based on their data, allowing them to create tailored programmes to support members goals.
The FitSense Member App includes My Body, an integrated body composition analysis tool that allows members to record and track their body composition progress over time. My Body is also integrated into ClubWise Mobile, allowing trainers to take a member’s body composition measurement through the staff app, helping to provide a seamless and professional training service. Not only that, trainers can build dynamic workout plans based on body composition analysis results and goals, by uploading custom exercise videos or using the extensive library of HD videos in FitSense, to provide prescriptive training programmes for better quality coaching, helping PT’s retain clients longer.
b. Implement an In-App Store to increase secondary spend
Providing a fast and secure platform for members to view and pay for chargeable classes, Personal Training and secondary spend items is an effective way to increase your overall revenue.
FitSense makes it easy to set up your very own digital store directly in the member app, so members and prospects can securely pay for a range of chargeable items and activities directly in the app, using their credit or debit card. For more information on the FitSense Payment Portal, click here. click here.
These are just a few suggestions to help you utilise your time in November as productively as possible, to ensure you start 2021 with a bang. If you have any other suggestions, we would love to hear them, feel free to leave a comment below!