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In Print The Essentials

Piggybacking Off the Black Friday Craze

Black Friday

Each season, opportunities present themselves for clubs to take advantage of consumer shopping habits to boost sales.

A great example is Black Friday. Admired by consumers as the best shopping day of the year, this day provides the fitness industry with a unique opportunity to encourage membership prospects to go through with their “purchase.”

Using our calculated customer data, last November we applied strategic, personalized email communications to stand out and break away from the Black Friday clutter.

First, we generated excitement with a “teaser” email announcing that our best promotion of the year was coming. We provided the option to reserve an appointment, creating a sense of urgency. The nature of Black Friday generates that urgency factor — so we piggybacked on that.

Identifying our low hanging fruit.

Based on the “teaser” email, we identified our engaged/hot leads via our marketing management system. We created a smart list of all who opened and engaged with our initial email. We targeted this group with an email scripted to strike an informal conversation encouraging a response, rather than going strictly for the sale.

Over the span of the week-long campaign, we saw a 121 percent increase in open rates with sincere, casual responses from the modified email communications. Seventy-five percent of those who responded with questions converted into members.

While automation makes our lives easier as sales professionals and marketers, staying engaged and following a campaign live is important for identifying new opportunities.

This strategy of identifying and targeting our engaged leads with custom email marketing, resulted in a 30 percent increase of total memberships over the span of the Black Friday campaign as compared to the year prior.

Throughout 2018, think of similar days/events you can piggyback off of to boost sales. Be strategic and reap the benefits.


Co-written by Taylor Antolino and Denise Watkins, marketing and sales directors at Newtown Athletic Club.


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