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Secrets to Retention Through a Natural Profit Center

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By: Kristin Ritter

Adding new profit centers to clubs, now more than ever, has been a big topic on the minds of club owners and managers over the past two years. But how do we effectively add a profit center, while keeping the cost to run the business down and making it a value added amenity for your members?

Well, let’s look at the habits of your members to determine the type of profit center that best fits the health club. Most members will work out, take a shower and then leave the club …  STARVING. They’ve just burned hundreds of calories and now they’re looking for something healthy to put in their bodies. Chances are if you do not offer your members a healthy recovery option, they will drive to another local establishment to fill the need. Naturally, offering recovery and performance beverages for those on-the-go, is a “healthy” and well thought out profit center that would add great value to your members and club.

Now we have a profit center that fits the mold, how do we implement planning, organizing, staffing, purchasing and managing to make this profit center a success? You have three options; first, you can look to a franchise, one that has established practices, rules and a set program in place. Second, you could start from scratch, research the products you want to carry, hire staff and figure it out as you go. Or the third option is to work with a Juice Bar Consultant who can supply you with all the tools you need, but without any kind of franchise fees or rules to the business.  Let’s explore each option to find the best fit.

Option #1: Franchises

The allure with Franchises is that everything is done for you and that you are buying into a proven track record, right? Well, not always. Just because you buy a popular name, doesn’t mean that it is going to translate into the same success within a health club. Folks who work out are very health conscience, so look at the ingredients they offer. Secondly, you pay into the franchise to receive product, marketing, rules and established practices for the business. You get the handbook, follow the instructions and everyone is happy, right? Well, if you are the type of owner/manager that likes to make cost effective decisions for your club and have the freedom to change programs, products, marketing that is not working, a franchise might not be for you. With franchises, and we have seen this time and time again, owners get locked into a set of rules, pricing and product selection that can not be changed after the contract is signed. Once the contract is signed, expect to hand over a portion of your profits on a monthly basis.

Option #2: Do it yourself

Do it yourself seems to be a great option, especially for you, the motivated owner/manager that has proven to be a successful decision maker and business entrepreneur. Doing it yourself allows you to do your research on products, recipes, menu, staffing, budgeting and so much more. However, there are potentially two pitfalls. First, time; are you already so busy each day that the thing holding you back from opening a new profit center such as a Juice Bar is that you do not have the time dedicated to make this happen? Secondly, reinventing the wheel; often, when we start a new project knowing little of our future endeavor, we tend to make mistakes. There is always a learning curve.

Wouldn’t it be great to launch a Juice Bar minimizing your time and mistakes, while eliminating royalty fees?  Well then you might want to consider working with an experienced Juice Bar Consultant, Option #3. Click here to read Part 2: Secrets to Retention Through a Natural Profit Center, online.

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