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Should your marketing dollars drive revenues, or enrich your direct mail provider without ROI?
Direct mail and print for attracting new members are like the horse and buggy days of old. Consider this: If you had a serious medical emergency and the 911 operator offered you the choice of a high-tech motorized ambulance or a horse-drawn carriage to bring you to the hospital, which would you choose? The operator insists that the carriage operates with the fastest horses, the most experienced drivers and the world’s finest buggy whips.
Still seems ridiculous, right?
Once our streets were filled with automobiles, the horse and carriage made little difference. Technology made them obsolete.
So, why would you rely on “traditional” marketing sources like direct mail, print or radio to promote your club or brand? The prospects you hope to attract have stopped responding to direct mail or print, and now primarily search for information on mobile devices. It really doesn’t matter if you triple the amount of direct mail you send. If no one is listening, what’s the point?
Club operators now realize they must fight online for the attention of prospective new members, but few understand the complex new world of
So set aside your horse-and-buggy strategies and “modernize” your marketing tactics.
How? Actually, your choices are few. You can choose from in-house personnel, local marketing vendors who typically do not specialize in fitness — or select from top digital marketing agencies who partner with fitness centers across the U.S.
A local vendor without fitness center experience — or in-house help who has never optimized websites for maximum exposure — could give you more face-to-face contact, sure. But not results.
One of the larger agencies that specializes in fitness could produce a higher ROI — but you might never provide face-to-face interactions.
Here are a few questions to consider when deciding how to attract new members and boost your bottom line. Does your prospective marketing partner:
• Understand the specific marketing needs of a big-box club or regional fitness chain that is not part of a national brand?
• Recognize how to stop small fitness studios from stealing market share?
• Have accreditations of success with others (like partnership status with Google or Facebook)?
• Know how to keep high-value, low-price (HVLP) national chains from attracting your members?
• Worked with thousands of fitness centers across diverse demographic regions to create complex marketing strategies across multiple digital channels (such as search engines and social media)?
• Have a working knowledge of every digital/internet marketing channel and how they interact?
As with most things in life, experience is the key.
Bill Konstand founded TAG Digital Marketing in 1999 and is a member of the Forbes Agency Council. TAG manages complete digital marketing and Internet presences for fitness centers worldwide. For more information visit taggymmarketing.com, call 866.702.0972 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.