club management software member retention

Gym membership retention ideas

21 March 2016

Retain Those Gym Members

Guess what? It’s March! And it’s time to wake up and pay attention to member retention!

In the new-year, January and February were all about club member workout resolutions. Certainly, new members and your prospects were driving the conversation about workouts and fitness goals.

Now that we’re in March, it’s about action and re-commitment! The action from your club staff should be to continually retain gym members and prospects; keep them engaged, challenged, and move them closer to their fitness goals one workout at a time. You’ve probably noticed that your member’s re-commitment may have started to fall off, or will in the coming weeks. Club owners need to be paying attention this time of year because if they are not careful, they will lose members that are starting to get complacent, not show up to class, and do not come to the gym as often. Consequently, they will stop paying dues, cancel their memberships and become a new-year casualty instead of a new-year success story. No one wants a decrease in club cash flow from a lack of dues revenue!

3 Ways to Retain New Members Now

1. Leverage your club management software

Your club management software company should have tools available for you to help retain gym members and help analyze your attrition making sure you maintain a strong cash flow. The most critical data you should be looking at is in a 30/60/90 Day Retention Report. This report contains details of members that have joined during a specific time period (Jan. & Feb.) and their attendance within the first 30, 60, and 90 days of their membership. Additionally, you'll see in this type of report the last time they visited the club, and if they are past due (how many days). Finally, you should be able to email members directly from the report, either individually or as a group. Other gym management report options should include filtering by the type of membership they have purchased. Looking at this information, as well as additional attendance or nonattendance reports in your gym membership software will help to check with members that signed up in January and February. It also makes sure they are still coming to the gym, attending classes, purchasing training sessions and are on the way to exceed their fitness goals.

It's a good idea to personally check-in on members that aren’t attending. There's a reason they signed up. Make that personal connection to get them back on track and re-commit to their fitness goals. You’re the fitness professional – give them the attention they need to succeed.

2. Build club community to retain gym members

Be sure to take advantage of mobile apps, which are a super-convenient way for members to be engaged in your club through social media, plus helping to manage their schedules, sign up for classes, schedule training sessions, make purchases, and keep up with special club offers. In addition, members can keep in-touch with club staff regarding fitness questions, or to discuss the goals they’ve set for themselves. Mobile apps will also allow you to put forth challenges to your members that promote engagement and community that’s centered on improving member health and allow for making that transition to a healthy lifestyle. Members help keep other members engaged and that makes your job much easier. In addition, push notifications are also a valuable tool to keep members informed and engaged in club happenings!

3. Promote the use of wearable fitness trackers

These little mechanical gems keep members engaged, and in many cases addicted through viewing and logging their fitness progress. Members are now enthusiastically tracking their activities, food, steps, heart rate, and more. Wearable devices also give members the added support and encouragement they need by allowing them to invite friends to fitness challenges such as, who can walk the most steps in a day; who can run the furthest; or who can be the most active on a daily or weekly basis. Studies have shown that wearable device users that engage with one friend or more tend to be more active than the average user. Create challenges for those groups and present it on a club mobile app.

Lastly, don’t forget to celebrate all your member’s success stories! Post them in the club and online, and share them with members that are struggling. Make your members feel good about themselves and watch member retention become less of a problem, and more about increased club revenue.

Christie McPherson
Client Training Manager
ASF Payment Solutions

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Christie McPherson is client training manager for ASF Payment Solutions. She spent a number of years in a senior management role on Wall Street working with mutual funds. Christie has been with ASF Payment Solutions for 15 years as a client training manager and focuses on providing the best systems training in the business. Product development and system quality assurance are also an integral part of her responsibilities at ASF. She enjoys working with a staff that genuinely cares about helping clients grow their businesses and is happy to promote teamwork, fitness and a healthy lifestyle, which fits her core values as a certified Schwinn cycle instructor.