Promoting New Programs
We all know how über-competitive the fitness industry is. There are so many different concepts: 24/7 gyms, big-box centers, yoga studios, so on and so forth. You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who can’t find his or her preferred workout experience.
Naturally, we dedicate a lot of time and energy toward membership sales. The key to selling memberships lies with the programs you offer. Think of what makes sense for your business. Is it a supplement line? Or a tech product that tracks your heart rate? What about a partnership with the local co-op? Your programs should provide your members with benefits and make it easier for you to capitalize on sales. To stay ahead in this industry, the programs you offer can truly bring that competitive edge everyone’s vying for. They need to be timely, valuable and practical.
With that, it’s important that you know how to market your programs effectively, especially any new ones you’re rolling out. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
Make sure it works. It’s easy to get caught up in the hype of a new program, but nothing kills that vibe quicker than a problem with your product or service. Mistakes happen, but you need to have all your ducks in a row when it comes to new programs. Test it multiple times, triple-check it, have new eyes look at it. Leave nothing to chance — it’s better to go through any issues internally than publicly with the rest of the world.
Know your audience(s). When it comes to communication, think of everyone who touches this program. How does this product or service affect your owners, managers, members, and/or prospects? You must do your due diligence in bringing them up to speed on this program. For owners and managers, they’ll most likely need to know the key selling points. For members and prospects, they need to know what makes this program special — how will it help them?
Play up the key details. Most likely, your new program was created for a specific reason, so your marketing materials need to effectively communicate that. Basics like an incentive and contact information should be included, but your program overview needs to be catchy and grab people’s attention. If you had to pick three words to describe your new program, what would they be? Think of buzzwords and play close attention to your messaging. You want to get your point across in the best way possible.
Welcome feedback — good and bad. You may think this program is a knockout … until you release it. Listen to what your audience has to say. Your members may think one thing and your franchisees may think otherwise. At the end of the day, it’s important to address feedback because you let people know that their opinion matters.
Ultimately, any program you offer must not only contribute to membership sales, but also provide the member with some kind of added value. Once you determine what that value is, you can begin the implementation process.
By Hayley Schnell, communications manager at Lift Brands.