We interviewed Debbie Lee, the director of marketing for Gainesville Health & Fitness on marketing strategies. Be sure to check out her insight!
Q: What is Gainesville Health & Fitness’ most affective marketing tool?
A: Members! Our efforts now are to find the talkers. One way we do that is using the “ultimate question” — “how likely are you to refer friends and family to GHF?” Those that score us a 9 or 10 (out of 10) are identified as net promoters. Give these net promoters something to talk about and share (passes, special events, news)
Q: How important has social media become in marketing?
A: Since everyone is using social media now, it’s one of the most important ways to get in front of the marketplace. Join the conversations already going on or start them. Currently we are using Facebook, Twitter and Youtube to do this, mostly with fun, behind the scenes info and news.
We are the storytellers in marketing and social media is another platform for us to use. We are getting away from that traditional marketing copy and just tell real stories with the message we want to share.
Q: Are there any new developments in marketing strategies Gainesville has been utilizing?
A: The new developments include what I mentioned above, more and more stories to give personality to the company via our members and our staff. Now we can use social media to present these stories instead of relying on expensive advertising; we still do some advertising but have replaced some with the newer methods. We are in the process of creating a new website with a goal of tripling our web inquiries about membership. Our web company will work with us to create more compelling calls to action (based on better analytics), better tracking/follow (so we are not relying on sales people to do all of it), and better options for users to share with friends.
Q: How can clubs get members to market for them?
A: In addition to finding the talkers that will share with their family and friends, we have made it super easy for members to bring in guests without the perceived hassle of the sales process. We call it “power of friends” and it has more than doubled the number of guests members are bringing in with them to our clubs.
Q: What’s an important piece of advice you could give to clubs in terms of marketing?
A: One of the most important pieces of advice is to have someone that is dedicated to social media — it will become even bigger than it is now. Equally important, learn something every day from the experts in not only social media, but all kinds of marketing strategies. I know there’s always someone smarter than I am out there and I can take what they know and apply it in my setting. We all have to share!
Interview by Rachel Zabonick