Last week I discussed the fast-growing success of Planet Fitness in light of its impending IPO. Since 2012, the company has doubled its number of franchisees, has 7 million members and opened its 1,000th location in D.C. this month. With a “No Judgements” philosophy, the franchise has attracted many exercisers who may have been intimidated by other fitness concepts.
On the other end of the spectrum is another fast-growing concept, which in many ways is as about as different from Planet Fitness as you can get. I’m referring to CrossFit. With over 10,000 gyms, or “Boxes,” the concept tends to attract exercisers who are more serious about their fitness and don’t expect to not be judged. In fact, its customers aren’t even referred to as “members,” but as “athletes” instead.
Although Planet Fitness and CrossFit seem like two entirely different concepts, I believe they have both nailed one thing on the head: In terms of their marketing, it’s very clear to consumers what they’re going to get. With Planet Fitness, members can expect to workout in a simple and clean space free from “lunkheads.” In CrossFit, athletes can expect a hard, functional workout that will be anything but easy.
There’s no confusion. You either like the concept or you don’t.
I’m not saying that every gym should strive to be a Planet Fitness or CrossFit. I’m not saying that at all. What I am saying is that in terms of their marketing, Planet Fitness and CrossFit are both concepts to look up to. In many ways they’re simple, and as a result the average consumer can grasp exactly what they are pretty easily.
With this in mind, take some time to look thoroughly at your marketing. Could you be confusing the consumer in any way? If you’re a gym for “everyone” but only offer fitness concepts that will attract high-level exercisers, then are you really a gym for “everyone?” Or, if you’re a family-oriented club, but have a very limited daycare, then how family-friendly are you? There are many subtle ways you can be confusing the consumer that you might not even think of.
When it comes to marketing, make sure your messaging is consistent, simple and clear. You may just find greater success and join the ranks of fast-growing fitness companies making a splash in the business world.