Are you a fitness club that wants to attract more underrepresented demographics like beginners, plus size, those that feel they need to lose weight before coming to a gym, or simply, those who feel intimidated by the whole gym experience? If so, then this blog post is for you!
There are many ways in which your business can be attractive and successful. One of the most overlooked opportunities is conducting a free 21-day Fitness Study. These studies provide potential members with an opportunity to see if they will enjoy the gym experience before committing to membership. The best part? They’re completely free for the participants!
In this blog post, we’ll cover how free 21-day Fitness Studies work and how your club can run one on your own without needing to hire more people.
Here’s what we’ll cover:
What is a “Free 21-Day Fitness Study?
You might be wondering what a 21-day Fitness Study is. It is basically an incentive to get people who normally don’t go to the gym, and who don’t work out on a regular basis, to come and try your facility.
Participants of a 21-day Fitness Study can lose weight, gain endurance, and feel better about themselves without the hassle and commitment of a membership. This is great for those that don’t have a gym membership, are intimidated by the whole gym experience, or are deciding on whether to join.
What does a 21-day Fitness Study look like?
Quite simply, it’s going to be unique for each business.
One suggestion is to create a 21-day calendar complete with a 21-day meal plan of healthy, easy recipes and introductory weekly exercise routines to get your participants comfortable with the idea of working out. Make sure to include a free group class or two to show them what they might be missing out on. Who knows, one of your group classes might just be what your participant needs to “get them hooked” on a path to wellness.
Here’s another idea. If you offer private, semi-private and small group programs. So, it is safe to assume you’d like more clients in your small group programs. Use the time slots you already have in place and fill the gaps with these prospects.
Why attract underrepresented members to your gym?
There are many benefits to attracting underrepresented members. In addition to helping break down stereotypes and misconceptions about what a typical gym member looks like, it also gives your business exposure in communities or populations where you might not normally have an opportunity for marketing success.
Many prospective members may also be under the impression that gyms don’t offer enough affordable options. This fitness study will help dispel myths and give them a chance to try out your club for 21 days without having to make any long-term commitments or financial obligations.
Another perk is that it allows you to get feedback on what people look for in a gym, which will, in turn, make you more successful in catering to your member’s’ needs and increasing customer satisfaction.
Pre-pandemic, over 1 in 5 Americans belonged to at least one health club or studio in the US. New research shows that consumers are now most concerned with staying active, maintaining good mental health and weight loss. A personalized fitness experience is also on their wish list. Fitness studies are perfect for this, and a 21-day program would be ideal.
How to promote this program so that you get more participants in your free 21-day Fitness Study
The magic is in the mix! Successful 21-day Fitness Study programs are simple, but they don’t have to be boring. Work with professionals to develop compelling creative with a clear message and use it in every piece of marketing you produce. Below are three packages based on small, medium and large budgets.
- If you’re on a budget, guerilla marketing is your best friend.
- Door hangers, take one announcements and double-sided flyers all make excellent options for promoting your new fitness center to nearby small business owners. If your current members patronize those businesses, then you can count on prospecting from their future customers as well.
- Gain new members by using low-cost techniques like email blasts, Facebook ads, and remarketing from your website, that complement other, more extensive marketing initiatives.
- Direct Mail is a powerful medium in this context and, by choosing to mail to areas that have characteristics in common with your current clientele (eg. age, income level or location), you can target the populations you wish to attract.
- Digital marketing including Facebook ads, Google web ads and remarketing.
Regardless of budget, the following components are a must for everyone:
- Be sure to use social media posts, stories, reels and shares to reach a wider audience.
- Regardless of whether you are sending an Eblast or postcard to an internal list or an outside prospect list, you need a landing page. Once you’ve captured their attention, make it easy for them to register right away. You have also captured their contact information!
- Emphasize this study on your website. Prominently.
- On all printed pieces add URLs to drive prospects to your website and landing pages to all your printed pieces to drive prospects to your website.
- Write a news release to be published in your local paper detailing the program, who it benefits and why you’re running it.
- All marketing materials should have the same message and branded design to be identifiable
- Use a ‘register by’ date which allows you to easily extend the session dates, as demand requires.
- Provide incentives for those who are ready to take the next step and join now.
You may want to add layers to the program, such as:
- Client testimonials and before/after pictures
- Study results suitable for publishing on your website
- Current client and non-client pricing (figure about 30% more for non-clients)
- Articles discussing proper nutrition, hydration, exercise and rest
- E-mail survey for participants
Put a tracking system in place for each aspect of the program. Record those that expressed interest and which marketing vehicle drove them to you; of that, how many registered, showed up, participated and completed the program.
Your business is so much more than a fitness club. It’s an opportunity for people to make positive changes in their lives and learn how to be healthier, happier individuals. One of the best ways you can do this is by conducting a free 21-day trial where potential members are given all the tools they need to succeed with little commitment on either side.
The success stories that come out of these studies are nothing short of inspirational; we hope you’ll take advantage today! Let’s start planning your 21-day Fitness Study, contact us!