Creating efficiencies for your sales staff
Signing up new club members using a paperless contract isn't just about being environmentally conscious with paper usage. It also incorporates a digital contract system into your new membership process that can open up opportunities for increased revenue.
The data, which populates the digital contract doesn't have to come from your sales staff sitting with a new member asking time consuming questions. Your staff is probably gathering a lot of personal data such as a member’s name, address, contract terms, credit card number, etc. There’s a lot of information needed to fill out your contract, and even more time spent at the sales desk. Although, the time spent with a new member helps to build the relationship and increase retention, even the best sales representative has to put the client at ease while gathering personal information in a sometimes-stressful moment. An alternative would be to give the new member some space and have your sales staff repurpose that time for follow-up questions, referrals, or simply getting them a complimentary bottle of water. So, why dedicate all of that time?
New member data-entry
What if the member could simply enter their own personal information without having to communicate it publicly in front of the sales staff and other patrons? They could privately enter their data themselves into a much simpler format while still leaving the club's contract intact; and at the same time the terms of your membership can be condensed into preset offers. The member can access those offers on a computer, iPad, or kiosk at your club. Additionally, they can be directed to the club website and select a link that takes them to the membership page. Perhaps following a facility tour, or a membership discussion, the prospect can sit down in a private space, where they can choose which level of membership they’re interested in pursuing.
There can be several different types of offers that correspond to the level of membership. For example, presenting an offer that is only available at the club through a traditional sales process, or an offer that is only available online. Your club can create these offers for every membership being sold and include not only the terms, but also any add-ons for recurring fees including personal training, which incidentally adds sessions when payments are collected. All the member has to do is simply choose the membership offer they desire. Once selected, the member can enter their information; how they want to pay; and select “Join.” In this process, we've just eliminated the need for your staff to enter the member’s data, or in some cases, hand-write a contract to be set aside to enter into the system later. Once the member submits the form, the data-entry is finished.
To maximize the number of members who join online, it's key to first drive them to your website. Of course, you could have a membership link on your site and hope that somebody occasionally visiting will join your club. However, a more proactive approach would be to run multiple marketing programs (banner ads, radio spots, email blasts, etc.), and then advertise a special membership offer by first going online to your website. Once the prospect lands on your special offer page, they will find an additional special rate for joining online. Not only does the new member join your club from the comfort of their own home, but they will also save a few dollars in the process and the club can save on commissions paid.
The message you’re conveying to the audience is that it’s quick and easy to do business with your club. Having several ways a prospect can join your club can be utilized through the software tools of your payment processing company. In addition, having a defined sales strategy and investing in training is important for the success of your staff. There are definite advantages to having prospects choose membership levels by entering data themselves into your management software. It relieves pressure on your new members and sales representatives. It also eliminates data entry errors by your staff and provides a sense of privacy and security for the new members. There are now more possibilities from where your new members can join your club, and that's an alternative to consider for the efficiency and increased sales of your club.
Implementation Department Manager
Prior to coming onboard at ASF, Jason worked over ten years for American Century Investments and JP Morgan Chase in financial planning and mutual fund analysis. He landed at ASF in 2002 and soon got involved in Training, Sales, Data Conversion; and is currently the manager of the Client Implementation Department. Jason loves the team environment taking on several large, complex tasks with minimal fuss and a lot of attention to detail. His team continues to find strategies and methods that make Implementation more efficient, all the while processing large volumes of inbound client transfers. With his discipline and strong work ethic, Jason continually keeps his department and ASF clients on track.