The fitness industry continues to grow, and so does the competition. So, as a gym owner, how do you stand out when it comes to promoting your unique services to potential clients? For us, it all comes down to marketing. Because even if you have the best gym in the world, if nobody knows about it, then you won’t have any new clients. So, to help you stand out from the competition and potion your services to your target audience, we’ve developed a list of 12 gym marketing ideas to get you started.
And don’t worry if you only have a limited budget because the majority of these marketing strategies are completely free!
Here’s what we’ll be covering if you want to skip ahead:
- Claim your Google my business account
- Utilize social media
- Set up a referral program
- Create attractive offers and discounts
- Use incentives and challenges
- Co-market with other businesses
- Try offering a weekly free pass
- Send email newsletters
- Start a fitness blog
- Sponsor an event
- Run ads
- Start an on demand course
1. Claim you Google my business account
Claiming your Google My Business Account is important to getting your business noticed online. With 4 out of 5 people continuing to use google as their main search engine, it’s certainly somewhere you want to be seen! Claiming your Google My Business account is free and is as simply as following these easy steps!
- Go to Google My Business and find “Start now”
- Enter the name of your gym
- Add your business address and choose your business category
- Add your business phone number and website details
- Choose a verification option
Once you’ve claimed your listing, add pictures, create a strong business description, and ask current clients to post reviews of your gym. Remember to update your Google My Business Account regularly, and anytime you post a new blog to your website, add it there too. By staying on top of your Google My Business Account, you’ll rank higher on Google’s web browser when people search for gyms in your area. Before you know it, you’ll be appearing at the top.
2. Utilize social media
There are literally billions of people on social media every day. So when it comes to marketing your gym to your target audience, it’s certainly somewhere you want to be.
When choosing your business’s social media platforms, don’t stretch yourself too thin! Instead, pick two or three you want to work with and start there. You want to be able to post frequently to whichever platforms you choose rather than posting less frequently to many platforms at once.
When choosing your social media platforms, it’s also important to look at which platforms your target audience frequents. For example, if you market your services to an older crowd, Facebook may be an excellent platform for you. However, if most of your clients are younger, Tik Tok or Instagram is likely a better option.
Finally, use your social media accounts to post about current fitness trends, and be sure to link them to your website and promote any special membership incentives or offerings to join your gym.
3. Set up a referral program
Referral programs are a great way to use word-of-mouth marketing to promote your gym. After all, your current clients already love your services, so they’re the perfect people to help you promote your business.
When designing a referral program, we recommend making it mutually beneficial for the referral and the person who referred them. When you do this, your current clients feel more incentivized to spread the word, and new clients will feel special knowing they got an exclusive discount through their friends.
And, because you’re running your own business, your referral program can be anything you choose, from a discount to an extra number of classes, a special draw, prize, or more. So, take the time to design an attractive referral program that will help you get people through the door!
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4. Create attractive offers and discounts
Creating attractive offers and discounts goes hand in hand with creating referral programs. For example, you can offer special discounts to friends of gym members who have purchased your highest packages. Or, offer a group incentive or discount to corporate offices who want to help their employees maintain a healthy lifestyle.
The goal of creating attractive offers and discounts is to bring more people to your gym. However, when building your incentives be sure not to undervalue your services. Because at the end of the day, you still want to be making a profit.
5. Use Incentives and challenges
Incentives and challenges are a great marketing idea to help engage current clients and attract new ones too. There are several ways to set up challenges, whether it’s a 30-day challenge where clients can win prizes or a more extended challenge with a big prize on the line.
Another great way to offer a challenge and incentive to newer clients is to run a promotion where the first X number of people who sign up for a gym membership get a limited-time-only discount. This helps bring new people through the doors who may need an extra push to start.
Here are some other incentive and challenge ideas to get you started:
- Offer a bring a buddy discount where both people get 15% off
- Offer a personalized meal plan for new sign-ups (you can do this through Trainerize)
- Create a new years offer or discount
- Do swag giveaways when people sign up
- Offer special holiday promotions
- Offer a 3-5 day trial period.
Whatever challenges and incentives you choose, don’t forget to use social media marketing to promote it and get people excited to try it.
6. Co-market with other businesses
Co-marketing with other businesses in the health and wellness industry is a great way to attract and cross-promote each other’s brands. When looking for companies to reach out to look for businesses that can help enhance the services you offer. For example, maybe you partner with a supplement company to offer your clients a discount on nutritional supplements. Or maybe you partner with a smoothie company, offering a set discount to both your clients.
A co-marketing partnership can be anything you choose. The key is to ensure that both parties benefit and that each uses marketing through social, email marketing and more to help promote what you’re offering.
7. Try offering a weekly free pass
Offering a one-time-only free week trial pass to potential clients is a great way to market your business and get people in the door and hooked on your services. People sign up for a free week are warm leads as they already have some experience with what you offer.
Additionally, don’t sweat it if people sign up for a free-week trial but choose not to purchase a membership. Because, you can keep their email address and continue to market your services and promotions to them through your email marketing campaigns.
8. Send email newsletters
Email newsletters are a great marketing tool for your business. We highly recommend starting and building an email list if you haven’t already done so. Email marketing is one of the best ways to maintain contact and connect with your potential clients as you move them through their customer journey.
The key to using email newsletters to attract more clients is to send them regularly, whether it’s weekly, bi-weekly or monthly. You’ll also want to offer tips and exclusive offers that people can only see when they read your newsletters.
Finally, email newsletters are a great way to build what marketers refer to as “like, know and trust” with your audience. And once you’ve mastered weekly newsletters, you can start to create a host of email newsletter segments and start marketing to past gym members through re-engagement campaigns too.
9. Start a blog
A blog is a great place to position yourself as an expert and market your services to new or potential clients. The more you blog, the more your articles will appear in google searches and other web domains when people search for information on topics related to your blog posts.
At the end of every blog, be sure to create a strong call to action, whether it’s asking people to sign up for your free weekly trial, newsletter, or current challenge. And be sure to cross-promote your blog posts on social media to help market your business even more.
10. Sponsor an event
Sponsoring a local event is a great way to gain exposure and market your gym and fitness brand. Or, you can take it to the next level and host an event in your community or offer a free boot camp or class at an event happening near you.
When choosing an event to sponsor, look for events like organized walks, health expos or any local activity where families can be found. Sponsoring an event will cost you some money upfront, but it can go a long way to bringing people into your gym!
11. Run ads
Running ads on social media or through Google ads is a great way to reach and market to a wide audience in a short amount of time. Our recommendation is to start with all of our suggestions for free marketing. Then, once you feel confident and have a bigger budget, test out running some targeted ad campaigns.
12. Create video workouts
Finally, creating video workouts is a great way to market your services to a wider audience. Not only can you offer local members an excellent option for working out at home, but you can attract a clientele outside of your local community. Trainerize allows you to easily create video workouts and share them in minutes with your community. Download your free trial to start promoting and marketing your workout videos today.
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