Marketing Your Gym for the New Year

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The new year is a great time to get new gym members as many people set new year’s resolutions to get fit and lose weight. Here are the most important things you need to know about marketing your gym for the new year.

Start Early

If you wait until January 1 to market your gym, it’s too late. The best thing you can do to market your gym for the new year is to start early. Most people don’t start going to the gym before the new year because the holidays are busy, but that doesn’t mean they’re not starting to research their plans for the new year now.

Start marketing your gym in Q3 to create awareness of what you have to offer. You can also market new year’s resolutions specials and encourage people to sign up early even if they don’t plan on starting until January 1. Additionally, you can offer gift cards and gift certificates that people can give to their friends, family, and themselves while they’re doing holiday shopping. 

Know Your Target Market

Another important factor in marketing your gym for the new year is to get clear on your target market. You need to know who they are, their goals, and where they hang out.

Who are they?

Are you targeting middle-aged women looking to lose weight or young men looking to get shredded? Your target market will make a huge difference in how and where you market your business, so getting your specific target market dialed in is important. 

What are their goals?

Once you have an idea of your target customer, you need to get as specific as possible and create a customer persona for them. In the customer persona, you can define things like where they work, their interests, and their goals. Knowing these intimate details about your target market will help you create copy that will draw them in and make them know your gym is where they belong. 

Where do they hang out?

In addition to knowing who your target market is and their goals, you will also want to be clear on where they hang out. This will help you get the highest ROI on your marketing dollars spent. For example, if you are targeting young men, you don’t market at women’s hair salons. However, if middle-aged women are your target market, marketing at hair salons may make more sense. 

Special Programs

Knowing your target market will help you answer the question, “why should customers choose your business?” when you create marketing copy for your business. In addition, creating special time-sensitive programs for your target market will help answer the question, “why should customers work with your business now?” For example, creating a special offer such as “a free month with a three-month commitment – only in January!” will create urgency as people won’t want to miss out on the deal. This will encourage prospective clients to buy now instead of waiting until they get the motivation to invest in themselves.

Referral Programs

The best marketing often comes from word of mouth from your current customers. One way to encourage current members to promote for you is to offer them a chance to bring a friend for free for a short period. Additionally, if you want to incentivize sharing, you can offer incentives to members that bring new members, such as free equipment, training, swag, or even cold hard cash. 

First Impressions

You never get a second chance to make a first impression. Many gyms spend thousands of dollars marketing their business only to throw it all away by making a bad first impression that puts their potential new customer off. To create a great first impression, use the data you collected about your target market. Then, ask yourself, what is most important to this type of client? For example, if you’re targeting brand new gym members who feel self-conscious about their bodies, they may crave a gym that isn’t intimidating and is welcoming and friendly.

If that’s the case, you’ll want to ensure you have friendly, welcoming staff that is happy to answer questions, and do what is necessary to make your customers feel confident, welcomed, and beautiful no matter their shape or size. 

Make it Easy to Pay 

Another mistake is making it difficult to determine pricing and to sign up and become a member. You can avoid this mistake by making it easy to sign up and become a member. Think of how easy Amazon makes it to buy something with just one click. Try to create a seamless payment experience, and don’t create unnecessary barriers for people looking to join (like making them call you to get pricing information). 

Create Community

People come to gyms to get results, but they usually stay for the community. Help people feel like they’re a part of something bigger by adding community components to your gym. You can do this by helping members build relationships with other people. For example, you can create workout classes encouraging people to partner up. This gives people a chance to meet new people and feel like they’re part of a community.

Additionally, if you value creating a community, make that part of your gym’s culture. One example is to ask trainers to work to remember new members’ names and greet them by name when they see them.   

The Bottom Line

Marketing your gym for the new year is a great way to leverage the trend of new year’s resolutions to grow your gym. With these tips, you’ll be well on your way to making January your best month yet. 

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