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Integrated Technologies: How to Fuel Member Engagement

Integrated Technologies

Jeff VanDixhorn, the chief revenue officer of Club Automation, shares how your club can fuel member engagement with integrated technologies.

COVID-19 has brought many changes to the fitness industry, but one of the biggest has been its acceleration of technology as the driving force behind improved member experience and more effective communication and engagement. As a result of the pandemic, facilities are seeing more unique audiences than ever before, and each group requires different communication. In addition, with ever-developing state guidelines and restrictions, the need for an efficient way to communicate facility updates is more important than ever. Technology is the unanimous answer to these emerging needs, and the integration of technology solutions has become the ultimate propellant of future success.

The great thing about leveraging technology is that it’s already omnipresent in our lives. Members are comfortable using technology and expect every business they interact with, from their pizza delivery place to clothing retailers, to provide an online portal or app. Their expectation of fitness facilities is no different. In the past, personalization and convenience were perks of a good fitness club; in today’s world, they’re necessities.

Using Technology to Drive Engagement

1. Nurture Your Micro-Communities: Micro-communities hold a great deal of power within your club. These member groups are segmented based on how they use your club, whether it’s through yoga classes, tennis or spa reservations. To keep your club strong, it’s essential that you communicate and connect with each micro-community. A club management platform collects and interprets information about member activity and interest, so you’re better equipped to effectively serve and communicate with each micro-community. Your management system can also effortlessly create target audiences for new offerings.

2. Championing a Mobile App: Smartphones transcend every aspect of our lives, and in today’s convenience-driven culture, your club’s mobile app is a primary driver of member experience for prospective and current members. Not only are mobile apps a convenience selling point for users, they also provide tangible value to clubs as revenue generators that provide transactional opportunities such as waitlist management and package purchasing. Strongly branded mobile apps are a lifeline to your community, simultaneously keeping members engaged and pushing your club to the forefront of their minds.

Integration for the Win 

The real beauty and power of integrated Technologies for member engagement is when clubs achieve full integration by adopting several tools that work seamlessly together. For example, if you’re looking to promote a new fee-based program, technology can help along every step of the journey. First, use a member management tool to create a target audience. Then, leverage an engagement assistant, powered by AI, to reach out to members. Use your mobile app for one-touch registration and online payment. Finally, use a combination of technology communication tools to remind participants about your class and eventually thank them for coming. With multiple technology tools fostering interaction with your members at every step of their journey, you’re able to ensure an all-around exceptional member experience that doesn’t end once the “sale” is made. 

Technology in the fitness world is here to stay. Let’s embrace it as we forge into the future. 

Jeff VanDixhorn

Jeff VanDixhorn is a club owner and member of the Illinois State Fitness Alliance. He is also the founder of Club Automation and chief revenue officer of Club Automation, CSI Spectrum and TennisSource, club management systems used by more than 1,000 facilities nationwide.

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