Eighty-two sign-ups via a few impactful words. Fifty percent returns from one campaign. More than $5,000 in additional monthly revenue for one franchisee. Cost reductions that have effectively raised the ROI to beyond 100 percent.
What’s the magic bullet here? Text messaging — or, to put it a bit more precisely, text marketing.
The power of text messaging lies in its unsurpassed ability to connect people and businesses instantaneously and cost-effectively. Of late, short message service (SMS) has become a medium as important as the telephone — and, increasingly, as a welcome two-way street linking companies and their customers.
Text marketing campaigns represent new turf for many businesses, including those in the fitness industry. Given that SMS is fundamentally about motivation and community, the fit could hardly be more natural. Text messaging initiatives can dramatically increase sales and customer satisfaction; in turn, leading to member retention.
Fitness is, after all, a relationship business. In this instance, the value is the relationship, and the cost for a gym to manage that relationship via SMS is small by any measure. A big part of the relationship dynamic is opt-in consent. Formal opt-in procedures put the relationship with members on a solid legal footing and open the door to truly effective text marketing.
Why Text Marketing?
When lined up against telemarketing, digital and print, text-marketing campaigns are simply more cost-effective. Text marketing allows for quick interaction and guarantees that 99 percent of the targets receive, and read, the message. CallFire technology includes keyword triggers, enabling you to use one keyword relevant to your business, but customize your response to different groups of opt-in members. With this system, it’s as easy to text 1,000 or 10,000 customers, as it is to text one.
From club management, SMS can showcase marketing promotions, club events/updates and cool blog posts. Fitness trainers can send motivational texts, daily workout routines, announcements of new classes and more.
Of course, just like a cardio routine, in text marketing the key is always repetition, repetition, repetition.
Dinesh Ravishanker is CEO of CallFire in Santa Monica, Calif. For more information about Callfire, visit www.callfire.com.