Running a health and wellness center can be challenging if you haven’t figured out what makes it different from tens of others. However, the health club market has a net worth of $96.7 billion that continues to grow more. This points to the fact that without health club marketing ideas in place, your gym has a low chance of surviving the competition.
Here’s another snag — word-of-mouth and print marketing aren’t cutting it anymore. They’re nice to have but not sufficient for making a statement as the fitness club customers should purchase their membership form.
This is hardly surprising — the digital advertising spending is projected to reach $524.31 billion in the next year. Thanks to the global rise in online marketing.
You should be convinced by now that having a well-thought-out digital marketing strategy in place is a must. It’ll help get your gym’s name out to the masses, raise brand awareness, and build a loyal customer base.
Not sure where to start? Keep on reading to find out what digital marketing ideas for health clubs you can start putting to work today.
1. Optimize Your Website For Mobile Users
Besides building a website that would attract leads like a magnet, making it mobile-friendly should be high on your priority list. With 69% of internet users reaching their phones to do product research, it’s no wonder that mobile web traffic accounts for 52.6% of global web traffic.
However, ensuring that your website is simple to navigate and is informative about the club’s facilities is a great starting point. But it can happen with the help of website builders like Wix, Squarespace, WordPress. These tools offer you the type of user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) that would make your target audience stay browsing for longer.
On top of that, your images have to be of appropriate quality and size, the menu has to be easily accessible, and the loading time has to be as low as possible. Check out how much of a difference a website that’s well-optimized for a mobile phone can make down below.
Image Source: Woorank
2. Dabble In Local SEO
Speaking about optimization, you’ll find that more people are finding out about your gym if you improve your local SEO. This includes creating your Google Business Account, using appropriate keywords to describe your business, and encouraging customers to leave reviews. Having a consistent name, address, and phone number across your online platforms helps to rank high in Google’s local search too.
Once your gym is easily searchable by keywords ‘gyms near me’, ‘fitness clubs in [city]’, or ‘health club near me’, you can rest assured that your potential customers will come to you organically. It also makes it easy for them to find your website and give you a call in case they have questions about your open hours or gym memberships.
Image Source: Google
3. Invest In Paid Ads
Your audience is online and catering to it via targeted ads which is the next best strategy to adopt after getting organic SEO-based traffic. One of the best ways to measure the success of your fitness club’s marketing campaigns is to use Facebook Ads Manager and Google Adwords.
If you’re looking for customers that spend most of their time on social media, Facebook Ads will be the most profitable option for you. The Cost Per Click (CPC) is lower, and you’re more likely to get high-quality clicks that will lead to conversions. On the contrary, if your ideal customers are using Google to search for products or services, Google Ads advertisements displayed on top or below the search results will bring you more value.
It might seem overwhelming at first but once you watch a couple of YouTube videos on how to set it up, coming up with creative ads and tracking the success of each will be a breeze.
Image Source: Wishpond
Look at the example above that illustrates how Google Ads shows your ads to the prospective searcher.
4. Be Consistent With Blog Posts
Don’t feel like spending a fortune on a digital marketing strategy that doesn’t promise a good return? Explore the content marketing field. This virtually free method of attracting the right customer works wonders if used consistently and with pre-determined goals and intentions.
If you didn’t know already, 77% of internet users still read blogs. Coupled with the claim by the digital marketers that content creation is the most effective SEO tactic, it makes sense for businesses of all niches to be using well-ranking keywords in their blog posts.
When choosing what keywords to use, sticking to those oriented to the local prospects guarantees better results. They can include the name of the city your gym is in or the neighborhood where it’s located. The more specific they are, the higher are the chances of your leads finding their way to your fitness club.
It’s also good to do your research and write down what questions your readers might need the answers to the most. Some might be more interested in finding out what pre-workout supplements they should be taking while others might prefer to read about the exercise machines that are most suitable for their fitness goals.
Image Source: Vasa Fitness
5. Come Up With A Weekly/Monthly Email Newsletter
Email marketing isn’t dead — it’s changing the face and becoming even more lucrative than before. Now there are welcome emails that 76% of people expect to receive once they subscribe to your newsletter, transactional emails, and re-engagement emails among others.
You can choose to use them all or just a few depending on the behavior and the needs of your email subscribers. If, say, you notice that some prospects are starting to churn, you can send them an email with an exclusive offer that’s hard to resist. For those who’ve been loyal to your gym for a while, an acknowledgment email with a discount for next year’s membership will do the trick.
No matter what tactic you use when writing your email newsletters, make sure you have permission from your subscribers to send them emails. Using a professional-looking template and a clear Call-To-Action (CTA) are also considered to be some of the best practices.
Image Source: Emma
Peloton did it best with their welcome email that immediately makes the newcomers feel at home.
6. Start Offering Digital Incentives For Referrals
Everyone loves a good deal and your fitness enthusiasts aren’t an exception. So why not offer them incentives for referring their friends and family to sign up for your gym membership? No need to print out flyers or hang posters at your fitness club — you can take it online where your customers can receive an email with the referral proposal or engage with a social media post mentioning the referral program you offer.
Make it easy for both your existing and new clients to claim the offer by embedding it into your website or a mobile app. There you can tie their referral number to their account and allow them to sign up for the gym membership using the code you sent them via email.
As for the type of incentive, it can take the form of a discounted monthly membership, an upgrade to a more inclusive fitness package, or access to the gym’s facilities for which they would normally have to pay a fee (ex. a spa pool, sauna, or a meditation studio).
Image Source: Business 2 Community
7. Take Social Media Marketing Seriously
In today’s age, it’s not enough to just be active on social media. Health and wellness companies are notorious for using platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok to attract new clients and retain existing ones. But, you need to put in a lot of effort to regularly engage your followers.
There are plenty of reasons to be using social media to promote your business. A whopping 73% of marketers claim that social media marketing has been effective for their brand in one way or another. In addition to that, 71% of customers confess their willingness to recommend the company to their friends and family if they had a positive experience with it on social media and you have no excuses to not be crafting and posting exclusive content to your social media accounts.
To help you out, play around with tools like Buffer, Hootsuite, or Sprout Social. Designed to make it easy to drive meaningful connections on social media without having to do much of the manual work. They allow you to focus on partnering up with influencers who will bring you closer to your desired ROI.
Read More: Best Time to Post on Facebook
On the topic of partnerships — social media is a great place to build long-term relationships with companies and digital creators. Get inspired by Gymshark, the brand that generates millions of sales thanks to its well-strategized social media marketing strategy. Their ambassadors get sent free workout attire and are then expected to post wearing it on either their personal social media accounts or on the Gymshark’s account.
Image Source: LaptrinhX
You can do the same — offer your loyal clients a free class in exchange for a social media shoutout and track how much traffic and/or revenue it brings you.
8. Test Out Affiliate Marketing
It’s easy to have others promote your gym for you and earn a small commission as a result. All it takes is setting up an affiliate program, finding quality affiliates, advertising the program, and following up with affiliates.
Your affiliates can be fitness apparel shops, personal trainers, supplement manufacturers, and even doctors or physical therapists. If this concept is new to them, consider incentivizing them with a heavily discounted membership or a flat fee for every new customer they bring in.
Keep in mind that affiliates might need some nurturing too. You can find out what they might want to see your gym offer in the future by sending them targeted email campaigns every once in a while. Your email can also contain a survey or a request for a video testimonial you could then post on your website and social media platforms.
Image Source: Onelittleweb
9. Host Digital Fitness Events
Being in the fitness industry, hosting digital events is a great method of showing what your gym is all about. We’re talking about scheduling a webinar where personal trainers can share their tips and tricks on how to stay fit when breastfeeding or what diet is the most nutritious for teenagers.
Don’t feel like you have the resources to offer virtual guidance? Hosting a holiday event with membership giveaways can be a solid option too. Tell your clients about the upcoming event via a social media post or in your weekly newsletter and you’re likely to gain some new clients interested in joining your gym.
Image Source: LaptrinhX
10. Release Ebooks, Workout Guides, And Other Useful Resources
You don’t have to do it all — pick the health club marketing idea that seems like a good fit and test it out. The idea is to generate leads by packing as much value in downloadable resources like ebooks, workout guides, and meal plans as possible.
If you choose to go down the ebook route, make sure you do extensive research beforehand. Even if you think that you know all there is about weight training, there are plenty of studies and expert opinions circulating on the internet on that same topic that can add a useful perspective to your already comprehensive digital book.
Workout guides and meal plans are more frequently-used options that tend to generate good organic traffic nine out of ten times. Newbies are always in search of workouts and meal ideas that take the guesswork out of planning and are thus more likely to be drawn to your gym if you provide them with a useful add-on like a protein-rich diet for a busy working mom.
To take it up a notch, you can explore uploading a couple of videos explaining what’s the proper form for doing some of the gym exercises to YouTube or Teachable. This digital marketing strategy is time-consuming but the result — quality leads and happy customers — is well worth it.
Image Source: Dasantosh
There’s no shortage of effective health club marketing ideas that promise to deliver results. You have the more direct website optimization and paid advertising options and the more intricate alternatives like SEO-friendly blog posts and collaboration with digital influencers. All of them do the trick of spreading the word about your gym and acquiring new customers that are bound to stay loyal to you.
We’d recommend using a combination of active (social media marketing) and passive (ebooks and/or workout guides) approaches so that you’re able to build a good digital presence that’ll deliver the best results both for you and your customers.
A piece of advice — no matter what digital marketing strategies you adopt, remember to track their performance to ensure that you’re getting a good return on your investment. Seeking feedback from customers will help you figure out how well your efforts are received too.