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How to Gain Club Traction, with a Capital “T”


Tips for increasing your club memberships, revenue and community image.

Traction. That’s when prospective members walk into your health club ready to sign on the dotted line. Traction is the culmination of your marketing efforts and satisfaction of watching them work. Traction is increased revenue. Traction … with a capital “T.” Does your club have Traction?

The clubs with the strongest membership closure rates — 65 percent or above — have Traction.  So how can you boost your Traction? Simple. “Traction” starts with a “T.” Seriously! With a “T”-shirt. Here are four ways a T-shirt can impact your business:

Referral programs. Popular rewards-based referral programs offer current members something of value for recommending three or more friends for membership. The key words here are “something of value.” Too often, clubs have the right idea but fall down on the execution. If offering a tee shirt, make sure your tee is one that members actually want to wear — the style, the material and the design. Creating a stylish shirt with your club logo will not only capture member’s attention, but will encourage participation in your referral program.

Club store. Generate new revenue streams by implementing a club store with branded merchandise tailored to the active lifestyle interests of your members. Club stores can feature anything from muscle tee’s to compression tee’s to tanks. And for variety, add in water bottles, headphones, weight-lifting gloves or wearable technology. The sky is the limit on what you can carry, not only in product selection but in materials, too. Organic materials, name-brand manufacturers — your club store revenue will be a reflection of the perceived value of the items you carry. Think pro shop; to maximize your revenue, don’t skimp on quality or creativity. Virtually any item can be customized with your logo!

Membership drives and public outreach. Holding a community 5K? Exhibiting at a local event? Tee’s make great promotional giveaways! Everyone loves to get them and when they wear them, that’s additional branding for you. In fact, did you know the average branded tee gets 60 impressions per day, per person? That’s a lot of exposure! But again, the key here is to create a tee that people actually want to wear and makes them look good. But when you do…major traction!

Staff uniforms. Most clubs likely have staff uniforms of some sort. Consider color coding your shirts, too, to draw attention to trainers especially. Members easily remember visual elements and having all staff dressed in a uniform tee will reinforce your branding inside and outside your club walls.

Gaining traction for your club doesn’t have to be rocket science.  You can increase memberships and club revenue with a little creativity and planning. Or more simply stated, “Traction” starts with a “tee.”

Lee Wandling is the President and CEO of ImageSeller, an agency specializing in branded merchandise programs. For more information, contact him at (303) 215-1066 or email Lee.Wandling@Imageseller.com.  Also download your free guide, “Branded Merchandise: The 1-2 Marketing Punch for Health & Fitness Clubs.”


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