7 Effective Ways Gym Owners Can Attract New Customers

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Gym Owner Ben BookerKeeping a steady stream of fitness clients coming through your doors every month can be challenging. After working with gym owners and fitness pros, we’ve compiled 7 great ways to attract new customers and keep them engaged in what your gym has to offer every month.

1. Partner Up

Work with local corporations to build an internal fitness program. Gather research to show the cost savings of having healthy workers over time and schedule a meeting with Human Resources. Present your findings to them in a formal presentation and show how fitness is an investment, not an added expense. Offer discounts for bulk memberships and plan an open house exclusively for their company to get workers signed up for classes.

2. Offer Remote Classes

Video technology has advanced to the point that virtual training is simple and affordable. Consider using a service like Zoom to let members take classes with you from anywhere. This is a great way to keep in touch with members who travel or have seasonal homes.

3. Market to Seniors

senior fitnessBaby boomers are health conscious with expendable income. If you’re not already tapping into this market segment, you’re missing out. This generation not only has the income, but also has time to get consistently involved. They also tend to be very social and will refer friends. For budget-minded Seniors, partner with organizations such as Silver Sneakers.

4. Diversify Your Trainers

This one may be a stretch in the short term, since adding staff increases your costs, but it can also increase your bottom line. If your gym only has young trainers or they are all the same gender, try mixing it up by staffing someone slightly older or of the opposite gender. You may find that catering to your customer’s comfort level increases their engagement with the services you offer.

5. Be Involved in the Community

Look for events in your local area that involve fitness. Sponsor events like Special Olympics or local sports teams. Go beyond being a logo on a t-shirt. Make a point to show up personally and invite your staff to volunteer with you. Building personal relationships within your local community will bring in far more clients than donating to a charity.

6. Go One Step Beyond

While you may be an expert in physical fitness, potential customers may be seeking out other ways to be healthy. Consider offering nutrition classes or partner with counseling services who offer tips to battle depression or reduce mental stress. Helping your clients break through emotional blocks in their life is just as important as helping them get in shape.

7. Be Part of Their Day

Motivational Fitness QuoteA great way for your clients to keep your gym top of mind is to be a part of their work day. Create inspirational posters with your branding that remind them to get up from their desk and stretch. Or design computer graphics to inspire them to eat nutritious foods. Branded items like these often start conversations about health between coworkers. Consider offering a referral program that rewards your existing customers for recruiting their friends and colleagues to sign up for a gym membership.

Gretchen Cawthon

Tired of battling food allergies, Gretchen became interested in fitness and nutrition to improve her health. Combining her technical expertise with her desire to see others embark on their own journey toward better health, she coaches wellness professionals on how to attract new clients through digital marketing. She also believes you can make anything out of LEGO bricks.

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  1. Sandy on June 17, 2017 at 1:44 pm

    Silver Sneakers is good. And a BRILLIANT brand name, I might add. But what if you wanted 50% of your clients to be seniors, and you were offering something far more advanced than a Silver Sneakers program?

    • Gretchen Cawthon on June 20, 2017 at 5:42 pm

      Hey Sandy,

      Great question. Have you tried reaching out to local senior centers or offered your classes through your local community college? You can offer your classes in their non-credit course catalogs and reach a whole community that way. You may also consider looking at your community magazine. You can typically promote your events for free in many of those publications.

      Also, consider sharing your information at Assisted Living facilities and churches or even see if your local hospital would let you do a free talk or presentation geared toward seniors. Many hospitals offer these classes as a service to the community and you could make your topic “Safety While Staying Strong” or something along those lines. Offering free helpful information up front will give you the opportunity to meet them in person and help strengthen your trust with them.

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