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Improve Member Retention with Texting

member retention

Member retention is one of the top obstacles faced by today’s gym and studio owners. Specialized studios are rapidly growing, providing more options to fitness goers. The businesses that retain their members do so by creating an exceptional customer experience, and convenient communication is key to that. 

In a recent survey1, 69% of studio members said they would like the option to text their studio. They chose texting over email and phone as their preferred communication method for all types of messages, including billing reminders, class updates and studio announcements. Studio members like texting because it’s fast. It doesn’t require the formalities of email, it eliminates the playing of “phone tag,” and it’s a way to get responses quickly. 

Gyms and studios across the country are catching on — 87%1 have started using some form of texting to communicate with their members. In addition to creating a positive customer experience, texting helps speed up regular workflows, saving studio employees’ time. 

Here are some ways you can use text messaging in your studio to build member loyalty:

Remind members of upcoming classes 

Classes are one of the best ways to keep your members engaged and motivated. Texting makes it easy to remind members of upcoming classes, therefore reducing no-shows. Send a personalized text reminder to everyone who registers for your class, and if a member can’t make it, you can text members on your waitlist to fill the open spot. 

Inspire and motivate your audience 

Making fitness a priority isn’t always easy. Even the most committed athletes need a little motivation every now and then. That’s where you come in. Set up regular challenges and check in with your members via text to see how they’re doing, and how you can help them meet their fitness goals. Even a simple, “Great workout tonight! Thanks for coming,” after a class will show members you’re invested in their success. 

Provide great customer support 

One of the keys to a great customer experience is seamless support. Whether your members have questions about their monthly bill or your upcoming class schedule, it’s important you get back to them quickly. Because texting is high priority, it’s a great medium for quick questions and answers. Plus, many texting software providers offer automation tools to make answering FAQs easy. 

Show appreciation with special promotions 

Small promotions can go a long way in making your members feel appreciated. Set up special text campaigns and offer discounts on classes, apparel or whatever you think your members would appreciate as a “thank you” for being part of your studio. 

Getting started with texting 

Once you’ve adopted a texting tool, it’s important to train your staff on texting etiquette. Some of those rules, such as what time of day to text, will align with your phone and email communication. You should also consider guidelines that are unique to texting, like what emojis are appropriate to use and how to make a good text message introduction. 

Today’s studio members want to communicate on their own terms. By offering convenient ways to get in touch, you’re showing their time and preferences are important to you. 

Natalie Schwab

Natalie Schwab is the senior manager of content marketing at Zipwhip, the leader in texting for business software. Learn more at zipwhip.com. 

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