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An ongoing challenge for any club is keeping their members engaged. Engaged members are more committed to your club, more motivated to see results and a great source of referrals. There’s just one problem — how do you reach members if they’re not in the club? In today’s era of instant access and seemingly infinite alternatives, keeping your members engaged within the four walls of your club is no longer enough. So, what can you do to broaden your reach to members and non-members alike outside of your facility?
Here are three strategies any facility can employ to keep your members engaged beyond the traditional in-club programs.
Technology has made it increasingly easy for your members to track all of their activity, both inside and outside of the gym. Your mobile app can serve as the central hub for promoting and tracking this activity. Publish your group fitness schedule and manage RSVPs, send notifications for upcoming events, even deliver video content for your members to access offsite for maximum convenience. Integrate your mobile app with third-party tech like wearables to encourage accountability that carries through even after your member leaves the gym.
Contests have long been a proven method for motivating people. The friendly competition, the game element and the sense of achievement are all working together to create a powerful stimulus to push past one’s comfort zone. Fitness challenges are a great way to tap into the competiveness of your members and gain some external visibility along the way. With the use of mobile apps and wearables, it’s never been easier to create challenges that extend beyond just weekly weigh-ins at the gym.
Once you’ve launched your fitness challenge, don’t keep it a secret. Use social media to make your challenge visible beyond your member base by encouraging participants to share their progress using a custom hashtag and posting the results and prizes on your Facebook page. This additional exposure can give you added external visibility, while exponentially growing the community of motivators involved in your contest.
You have experts on staff to assist with nutrition, correct form and prescribe the perfect exercise plans. But what happens when your members leave the gym? They are constantly inundated with resources relating to their health and fitness. For many, it’s overwhelming and they don’t know where to start. You’ve hopefully already established yourself as a trusted resource in their eyes.
But don’t limit your expertise to face-to-face interactions at the gym. Newsletters and blogs are a great way to let your team share their knowledge with a broad audience while establishing themselves as subject matter experts. Regular podcasts or webinars can give your members a consistent interaction with your facility as they seek education and motivation.
Consider ways to expand your educational footprint beyond your member base. Seek strategic partnerships with non-fitness wellness platforms in your community. Weight loss centers, churches, and local corporations may already have a captive audience and find value in offering the supplemental fitness guidance from a local expert.
Times have changed. It’s time to think outside the box and consider strategies that extend your reach and engage members wherever they are — whether it’s in your gym or outside of it.
Garrett Marshall is the divisional CEO of Fitness On Demand™. For more information visit fitnessondemand247.com.