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Increasing Member Referrals with Mobile Marketing


Member referrals are one of the most important sources of new members for health clubs. It’s not surprising that 92 percent of people trust recommendations from their friends, making member referrals a valuable source of leads for clubs. However, many health club operators are attempting to gain referrals by using the same marketing methods that were used over 20 years ago! The old school ways of marketing are not only costly and inefficient, but also outdated.

The good news is health club operators are now able to use new mobile marketing technology to acquire members and sell club services in a more powerful way. With mobile marketing, operators are able to leverage members’ smartphones to acquire members digitally.

How successful clubs get referrals:

  1. Instead of using paper or asking for personal emails, members make referrals anytime, 24/7, from their club mobile app. It’s as simple as texting a friend. Members select contacts to refer from their phone’s address book.
  1. Prospects receive a personalized message via text or email with an offer to try the club.
  1. Referrals are automatically logged in the club’s MMS or CRM.
  1. Automated push alert messages are sent to the prospect to increase engagement during the trial.

Prospects can join the club in person, online or even directly through the mobile app. The benefits of using mobile marketing technology for your club referrals are vast. To start, they have a high ROI. Not only are mobile referrals far less expensive than direct mail, but they are often more effective. In fact, clubs that utilize mobile referrals often see a 300 percent increase in referrals. Nearly everyone reads their text messages, especially when they come from a friend.

In addition, mobile referrals are measureable. They’re automatically tracked in your member management system and high quality mobile marketing tools provide operators with dashboards that show how many referrals are coming in and which members refer the most.

Finally, proven marketing tactics can be repeated with great results over and over again. The beauty of mobile referrals is that they work in a continuous, revenue generating cycle. Once prospects convert into members, we can ask them to make referrals as well. This cycle can be repeated continuously to ensure a steady flow of new members.


Greg Skloot is the vice president of growth at Netpulse. See a free demo of advanced mobile referrals via your club’s mobile app today.


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