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Progress never stops for O2 Fitness. The operator of over 20 health clubs in North Carolina and South Carolina, O2 will be opening two more locations over the next six weeks, and has recently acquired three former Gold’s Gym locations.
The new openings and acquisitions will push its total gym count to 29 before the end of 2017, with much more expansion on the way in 2018. “I think 2018 will be as busy as 2017 has been,” said Doug Warf, the chief marketing officer for O2 Fitness.
The key to O2’s success can be found in the fact it gives members both what they want and need in order to reach their fitness goals.
“We’ve shifted the model a little bit to try to have something for everyone who needs to come to a health club,” said Warf. “We have great classes and in most of the clubs we’re opening, there are three different studios — a cycling studio, a mind-body studio and a group exercise room. And then we’re building in a lot more functional training spaces. We know that a lot of our members want that freedom.”
With state-of-the-art club design and equipment, members always have access to all the resources they need for any workout.
Another recipe for success has been the way O2 structures its staff in each individual club, and how those staff members are trained to interact with and care about members.
“We put the focus on our staff,” said Warf. “We try to have engaging staff members who truly care about the health of our members. It’s not something just based on sales numbers, it’s based on truly caring about health.”
Every health club is only as good as its staff, and that’s why O2 constantly trains its staff to be the best. The emphasis for O2 is always on developing the next generation of club leaders.
“The key thing is making sure that we have the right staffing,” said Warf. “What we’re trying to do right now is kind of build our bench at all of our clubs, so that we have people who are ready to step up into those leadership roles. We want to make sure that our quality and consistency stays the same.”
If the quality of these gyms is maintained (and nothing suggests it can’t be done), then O2 will expand far outside of the Carolinas over the next couple of years. The key to their success has been providing members with the engaging workout experience they want and need.
It’s a member service policy built on accountability and accessibility.
“The great thing about O2 Fitness is that it is concerned with the members’ health,” said Warf. “We try to make our trainers as accessible as possible. And we do that just so [members] feel engaged, and that they know people and have someone who helps keep them on a plan. That’s why I like the way our company is set up, because it truly cares about the members’ health.”