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Gear Up Your Summer Programming


Growing up, there was nothing I looked forward to more than summer vacation. No long school days, no homework and no worries. Those carefree days between June and August were spent running around with friends and soaking up the sun. This laid-back attitude is synonymous with the summertime. Unfortunately, it doesn’t apply to the fitness industry. Ask any operator who owns a health and wellness business. The summer months typically bring a lull. People want to run, bike and even do yoga outdoors. They just want to be outside and enjoy the fresh air.

While you can’t force them to stay inside, you can entice them with timely operations and marketing materials. Part of being a business owner is adjusting to the times, or in this case, seasons. It’s great to have year-round campaigns in place, but it’s important to have additional opportune specials that pop up throughout the year.

Your summer programming is just as significant to your business as your New Year’s and Back to School efforts. You need to keep driving traffic through your doors – snow or sunshine. Here are three easy ways to prevent the summer from becoming a bummer for your club:

Find a new partnership. Are there any new local businesses you have yet to reach out to? Now’s the time to combine forces and find ways to benefit one another to keep prospects rolling in. Better yet, find a partnership with a business that considers summer its peak season: a community pool, a frozen yogurt shop, a smoothie shop, etc. This will help you get your name in a place you know will have plenty of foot traffic.

Host an outdoor event. If you can’t beat the warm weather, might as well join and bask in it. There is plenty you can do outside that will create a buzz for your gym. For example, you can hold a field day or boot camp at a park. Bring light equipment and invite the community to your free fitness session. Have personal trainers or staff members lead stations and guide participants through certain exercises. Be sure to have ribbons and free trial passes to hand out at the end.

Hit new movers with direct mail. Did you know that the busiest moving season is between May and September? There’s a good chance you’ll have new residents nearby your club who will be looking for a neighborhood gym to join. Get your name in front of them first with an attention-grabbing direct mail piece and an incentive they can’t refuse.

Summer is not the time to lose focus on your business goals. Continue to get your name out in the community with fun, seasonal marketing and outreach efforts. Who knows, maybe your sales will heat up.

Hayley Schnell

Hayley Schnell is a communications manager at Lift Brands. She can be reached at hschnell@liftbrands.com.

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