Tuesday, October 8, 2013

It’s Fitness Week at CallFire! That means we’re taking a close look at the growing trends in fitness, and brainstorming on mobile marketing ideas to help gyms and fitness centers take advantage of the upward swing!

At the end of 2012, the American Council on Exercise (ACE) released its yearly analysis of Fitness Trends to Watch. The poll revealed that the fitness industry is experiencing more career opportunities than ever before, and that obesity endemic issues have led both individuals and employers to team up with trainers and gyms in order to promote healthier ways of living. Approximately 87% of fitness professionals surveyed said their business grew or maintained in 2012, even though the national unemployment rate stayed at around 8%. About 50% of trainers and owners said they were self-employed, which is a fantastic indicator of sustained revenue for the industry. In November 2012, CNN Money/Payscale.com ranked a career as a personal trainer as the 18th Best Job in America.

Now is the time for gyms and trainers to take advantage of the growing market! As more people look to get in shape and lead healthier lifestyles, fitness professionals must explore new, efficient, and cost-effective methods of promoting their services. With mobile being the fastest growing marketing realm today, boasting over 3 billion mobile users worldwide, it’s no wonder gyms are jumping on the mobile marketing bandwagon. Below are just a few ways fitness facilities are using mobile marketing platforms to boost revenue, turning their flabby marketing strategies into fit marketing muscles.

Text Messaging for Member Retention
According to ClubIndustry.com, the more often a gym communicates with its members is directly proportional to length of their membership. Since over 90% of all text messages are read within 15 minutes of receipt, gyms now recognize that SMS Text Message Marketing has become one of the most efficient and personal ways to communicate with their members! Members can text in designated keywords like “GET FIT” to receive special discounts and promotions or incentives to refer friends and family. Mass Text Messaging is a fantastic way to increase client engagement and improve member retention.

Phone Number Tracking for Ad Optimization
Gyms are getting smarter about where they spend their money, so determining which advertising methods are working and which aren’t is a key component to any ongoing marketing program. With Phone Number Tracking, fitness centers can purchase local or toll-free numbers, place each unique phone number in a different location, and then compare the call traffic. All numbers can forward to a single main line, so there’s no confusion on the front end. Then, on the back end, management can log into the call tracking analytics to see which numbers are getting the most calls and hence what advertising methods are actually working! Now, when gyms advertise via print ads, web sites, brochures, flyers, or mailers, they can actually track which methods are getting the most amount of calls and adjust their spend accordingly.

Voice Broadcast for Past Due Balances
Gyms, such as Planet Fitness franchises, now use Voice Broadcast services to more efficiently collect due balances from members. With clear, concise messages, automated to fire off whenever a member’s fees are due, Voice Broadcast helps streamline the collections process. Many fitness centers are also implementing a “Press-1-Now” feature so members can pay their balances directly through the phone. This highly efficient and cost-effective service has been a huge success for hundreds of gyms, saving time and increasing revenue month after month.

Auto Dialer for Outbound Sales Efficiency
When an outbound calling campaign requires live one-on-one customer support, fitness professionals are now employing an efficient auto dialing solution. A power dialer makes continuous calls automatically, getting rid of manual dialing, busy signals, dropped calls, or bad numbers, and only connecting the caller when a live person actually answers. With an auto dialer, gym sales reps spend more time selling to an actual person and less time waiting for someone to pick up. This improve calls per hour per agent by 200-500% and is scalable for multiple reps.