Fitness marketing isn’t the easiest thing in the world to do. In fact, many people who own fitness businesses wish they could avoid it altogether and just focus on training. Unfortunately, you need clients if you want your business to survive to you need to understand fitness marketing out of necessity. We’ll go over the top 6 ways that we see many business owners fail in their fitness marketing.
- Believing Marketing Is Passive: Gone are the days where a business owner could buy an ad in the Yellow Pages and watch the customers roll in. Marketing isn’t just “set it and forget it.” Even if you’re running ads, you’ll still need to test, measure and improve. Fitness business owners need to understand that marketing takes consistent work and should be a long-term focus.
- Targeting “Everyone”: Even if you were selling air, you still wouldn’t be targeting everyone. If you ask most people who their target market is, many people say “everyone”. Let’s be real, most people are not going to become your customer and you should consider that a good thing. With the internet, you can spend small amounts of money and target highly specific people such as married women in San Francisco who have children and shop at Whole Foods. Once you find who your best customers are, it’ll be easier to market to them.
- Failing to Understand Your Client’s Problems: Fitness marketing is a lot about a person's psychology. Many times, it’s not about technical information or education, but rather helping people feel understood, confident, motivated, etc. Most diet plans could probably work if people stuck with them. But it’s not really an issue of needing more information. You can find thousands of books and articles on fitness and nutrition, but it’s much more difficult to get someone to take action. Empathy is key. If someone has a torn ACL, not only do you need the technical information to deal with this injury, but also make the person feel like you know what it’s like to have a torn ACL.
- Failing to Realize That Everything is Marketing: Everything is marketing. The way you answer the phone, treat people, clean your gym/studio. It’s all marketing. After people deal with you, does it make them want to go talk about your business in a positive way? Even when you’re not marketing you’re marketing. If you answer the phone rudely or take a while to call them back can have a negative effect on people. It’s funny, because sometimes business owners want to generate more leads, yet they take 2 weeks to respond to them. That person is gone. They are never coming back. And not only that, they’re probably going to your competitor. If a person is interested in joining some sort of gym/studio, they are going to buy. The question is: are they going to buy from you?
- Ignoring Customer Success: Why is it that some companies spend so much time and money on sales & marketing and then have atrocious customer support? I’m sure we’ve all experienced bad customer support at some point in our lives. Sometimes it can make a customer leave and go to your competitor. See your clients all the way through and help them become successful. Don’t just sell them and think your work is done. Besides, if they don’t get results from you, they’re certainly not going to talk highly of you to other people. Properly dealing with your current customers is a huge part in being successful in fitness marketing.
- Doing Everything: This is something we see a lot. Signing up for every social media site and using every marketing tool won’t necessarily help your business grow. I’d rather see you do a few things really well than everything half-assed. A lot people give advice like, “You need to get on Twitter.” Ok, now what? It’s not that Twitter is bad, but you need to realize it’s just a tool and it all depends on how you use it. Just signing up for Twitter isn’t going to do anything. Building a community, tweeting highly useful and informative things and answering people’s questions on Twitter will be highly useful.
As you can see, fitness marketing is a process and isn’t something you do once and then that’s it. You need to consistent and you need to engage people in a way them makes them want to come back for more. Hopefully this article was enlightening and try putting this information into practice.
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