How likely are your members to keep coming back to you if you expose them to misinformation? Fitness trends are constantly changing, you want stay up-to-date with the most current health and wellness news. It’s not enough to rely solely on your own professional education. In order to stay ahead of the game, you should be in the know on what professional journals, publications and your clients themselves are saying. Being on top of these funnels of information will allow you to become the fact checker, refute any misinformation printed by these publications, and establish yourself as an expert. If clients feel you are the most reliable source, they will turn to you for advice on proper fitness, exercise and nutrition practices.
Be fair, but firm
We’re all only human, which means certain situations can arise where you may need to bend the rules a bit. If you find yourself in this positon, make sure your clients are aware you are bending a policy. For example, if you have a 24-hour cancellation policy but you decide not to charge someone due to illness, be sure they are aware that you are bending this policy for them this ONE TIME but it will not be tolerated going forward.
Have Trainers Assign Homework
Make your sessions last longer by continuing them outside the facility. Clients should be given certain instructions or things to focus on when they are on their own time as well. Give them mini exercises to practice at home, or require them to keep a food and workout journal. Breathing exercises, posture activities and meditation activities are some other great examples to try. Clients can discuss or show what they tracked during their next session or communicate with trainers via email.
Continue Education of Trainers and Staff
Knowledge is power. While the organizations your trainers obtained their certifications from will inform them of what they need to do to keep it current, your trainers need to continue their education in other ways as well. They can easily do this by reading verified fitness journals and publications, as well as attending classes, conventions and conferences to stay on top of fitness trends and news. These are all investments in your business, not expenses.
Think Like your clients
While your trainers and staff may be able to bench press three times their body weight, chances are, the majority of your clients are not quite on the same fitness level. Develop programs and offer classes that appeal to members at various fitness levels. Make sure your staff listens to clients and design routines and programs that fit client needs and physical abilities.
Reach for loyalty, not millions
Yes, client retention is always an issue, no matter what size your company is. To be successful, you must retain a loyal client base. It is much more cost effective to save a preexisting client than to focus time and energy on gaining new ones. You need to show that there is major value and benefit for remaining a loyal customer.
A common business practice for increasing member retention is the 21-day rule. The rules is simple: if a client has not been to the facility for more than 21-days, have a member of your facility reach out. Your goal at this stage is to encourage re-engagement at your facility and you can do this in any number of ways, as long as you make the client feel valued. Offer incentives such as a month free if they come to at least two classes a week for 4 weeks, or maybe offer a $25 coupon for all merchandise—the possibilities are endless.
Determine time investment
Finding time to do everything to run a smoothly operating business can be challenging. Avoid burnout by planning in advance and allocating roles and certain responsibilities to your staff. Plan meetings once a week or bi-weekly to make sure everyone is performing their tasks on time and to make sure you are all on the same page. Create a schedule and stick to it. If you own your own business or are in the early stages of building a new business, you may be clocking in a lot of overtime. This will lead to faster burnout and so it is crucial to make sure you are not allocating all responsibilities to one person—especially yourself!
The most obvious and easiest way to promote yourself (if you’re a trainer) or your business is to wear merchandise with your brand or logo out in public. You don’t want to come across as obnoxious, but you should think of yourself as a walking billboard. If people ask you about your brand, don’t jump straight into a sales pitch but rather, ask them about their own fitness goals or what they are interested in and then see if your services would help them reach these goals.