COMMON MISTAKES GYM OWNERS MAKE

Running a gym or fitness club is just as challenging as it is rewarding, since there are so many factors that play into the success of one. Here are common mistakes to be aware of so that you can keep yourself and your business in check.

MANUALLY TRACKING YOUR MEMBERSHIPS & CLUB DATA

Technology and gym management software exist for this exact reason. If you’re spending your time updating spreadsheets and have no way to accurately track the data of your club, you’re not only wasting time that could be spent elsewhere, but you’re most likely collecting inaccurate numbers.

Health club management software is meant to do these jobs for you, so you have more time to not only engage with your members, but you know your gym’s strengths and weaknesses from a calculated standpoint, resulting in a stronger business structure. Learn more about gym management software here.

NOT UNDERSTANDING YOUR DEMOGRAPHIC

Every gym or fitness club has one, and if you don’t understand the people using your facility, then you don’t understand your business to its full potential. This mistake falls closely with the lack of gym management software. The best way to understand your demographic is through accurate reporting. It’s important to know if your club attracts more females or males and what age range you’re dealing with.

YOUR MARKETING DOESN’T MATCH YOUR DEMOGRAPHIC

A common mistake many businesses make is marketing to the wrong crowds. This goes for genders and age ranges you’re choosing to target on platforms like Facebook and Instagram as well as the content you’re sharing. Effective marketing affects all angles of your club, and understanding your demographic starts with accurately targeting those prospects in the first place.

For example, if your fitness club is a small boutique or a specialty club like a barre studio, it’s important to recognize that you’ll probably attract more females, so your marketing budget will be better invested if your social media platforms target primarily women within a certain age range. Whatever your content may be, whether you’re posting funny memes, inspirational quotes or nutrition tips, make sure it aligns with your specific audience, both organically and through paid advertising. 

YOUR DEMOGRAPHIC IS TOO NARROW

This might seem contradictory to the above points but remember that just because your club might have a specific demographic doesn’t mean to exclude the outliers. Although you might cater more to a specific gender or age group, consider how other types of members can benefit from your club. This will add more value to them and expand your money-making opportunities.

YOUR TRAINERS AREN’T DIVERSE

Different types of members have different needs, which is why it’s important to have a variety of personal trainers­. Whether that’s a mix of males and females, older and younger or everything in between, always think about your members and how you can best help them achieve their fitness goals.

Remember that just like how member goals vary, personal trainers specialize in different areas of fitness as well. While many members might like to lose weight and tone their muscles, you also want to open your personal training up to individuals who want to focus on less intense exercises or specific workouts like functional training. 

It’s also a possibility that both males and females feel better with their same gender in a personal trainer, so have both men and women staffed to ensure comfortability. The more you cater to different individuals, the stronger your retention will be.

3 REASONS TO USE POINT OF SALE SOFTWARE

Selling memberships and products is the lifeline of any fitness business and adding gym management software like Point of Sale and Inventory Management into the mix is imperative to handling those tasks. Here are a few reasons why owners need both.  

1. INCREASES REVENUE & BUSINESS ENGAGEMENT

The whole purpose of running a gym or fitness club is to sell memberships, fitness gear and generate more income, especially for services that can’t be physically displayed in gyms. Point of Sale is a must-have tool that brings more attention to extra club add-ons like child care, spray tanning, towel service and massages.

Through accurate inventory tracking and reporting, gym owners can detect which services and items they sell most of, so they know what to order more of and perhaps where they should consider decreasing retail prices or running promotions. With a higher understanding of these strengths and weaknesses, owners and their staff have better chances of upping business engagement and generating more club revenue.

2. TRACKS & ORGANIZES CLUB INVENTORY

Organization is key to running a successful gym or fitness club. With the use of Point of Sale and Inventory Management, owners can track and organize club merchandise all in one. The convenient layout of both include custom categories, sub-categories and product images to make it easy for staff to find items while completing transactions and for owners to better track their merchandise. By simply clicking on an image, Inventory Management will show product quantity, purchase history, the cost of the item and the vendor, while Point of Sale will instantly add an item to checkout.

Owners can also adjust retail prices for special club promotions and events while also renaming products and updating how many more of a selected item they wish to order, simplifying the tracking process and ensuring all staff is on the same page. Larger gyms and fitness clubs with higher sales traffic, more employees and multiple locations can especially benefit from Point of Sale and Inventory Management, along with Martial Arts schools to provide and track uniforms for their students.

3. EASY-TO-USE TIME-SAVERS

Point of Sale and Inventory Management can be accessed anywhere and on any device. While a staff member is ringing up an item for a member through the Point of Sale interface on a front desk computer, a club owner can be updating inventory counts with the touch of a finger through Inventory Management on an iPad, tablet or smart phone, eliminating unnecessary spreadsheets and steps. Owners can conveniently scan item descriptions and easily search categories and sub-categories to access product information faster. Both applications save time and stress, increase efficiency and ultimately simplify daily club operations for everyone.

BOTTOM LINE

Point of Sale and Inventory Management applications work simultaneously, like yin and yang. Without both, owners lack organization and proper club functionality, ultimately losing overall business engagement. The combination of both is as simple as making quick transactions, then giving owners the ability to instantly update their inventory after finalizing those transactions. Being able to both sell and track various products seamlessly makes for an all-in-one stronger business model for gyms and fitness clubs, big or small.

Learn more about ASF’s Point of Sale and Inventory Management applications and request a demo here

TECHNOLOGY IS BRINGING OWNERS AND MEMBERS CLOSER

Technology can arguably retract us from authentic relationships as our eyes stayed glued to our smart phones, however when it comes to fitness, it’s the saving grace for both owners and members and the key to building stronger bonds between them. Member goals can vary anywhere from weight loss, to muscle toning, to improving their diets. The goal of owners is to increase their revenue, which makes technology the bridge between the owner and the member.

SOFTWARE THAT CONNECTS MEMBERS & OWNERS

Giving members the ability to quickly sign up and check in for events increases efficiency on both ends­. With gym management software, members have more time to enjoy their workouts and focus on their wellness goals, while owners have one less job to worry about and their time can be spent helping their members instead.

In addition, advancements in gym management software are allowing members to make extra purchases directly on their phones, like personal training sessions, supplements and club merchandise, instantly increasing revenue for owners and adding value toward member goals. Enhancements in club management software include reporting, for owners to more effectively track member behavior. Accurate reporting is vital in understanding a club’s demographic, saving important member information like birthdays, learning how a club can improve and most importantly, exceeding members needs and expectations.

SOCIAL MEDIA TO INTERACT WITH MEMBERS & BUILD COMMUNITY

Social media has changed communication, especially in the fitness industry. Although there’s speculation and controversy surrounding social media, it serves as a positive outlet to effectively market to members and allows them to share transformations, frustrations, success stories and common struggles.

Popular platforms like Facebook and Instagram give owners simple and meaningful opportunities to celebrate their member’s triumphs and also keep up with fitness trends like online personal training, quick fit tips and nutritional counseling. Owners can connect with their members along with hundreds of prospects through organic social media and paid advertising by offering value that will help them with their fitness journeys.

Factors could include discounts on memberships, point of sale items and personal training packages. Both parties benefit this way, establishing stronger business to consumer relationships. Ultimately, social media helps owners better understand their members, even beyond the gym. Majority of members are on social media hashtagging their gym selfies and snapping photos of their healthy food. By interacting with them through this outlet, owners can more effectively market to members and offer fitness-related things that match their interests and needs, establishing loyal customers and increasing profit. Learn more how social media benefits health clubs here.

DIGITAL RESOURCES THAT OFFER MORE VALUE

Members need guidance and credible resources while working toward their goals, which is why it’s important for owners to keep a library of online blogs and articles that are geared toward fitness and wellness. The more value owners provide their members with, the more likely members are to achieve their goals, while owners maintain healthy retention and continuous cash flow.

TEXTING FOR INSTANT REACH

Texting is as personal as it gets in this day and age, since that’s how majority of members and prospects communicate on a daily basis. Sending out text alerts not only informs members with important information and updates, but it’s also an effective way for owners to maintain relationships with their members, even if the text messages are automatic. Owners can text various things like when payment information is updated, when full classes have more openings, when a class is cancelled or a member reschedules a session, when the club itself is closed, along with birthday texts for a personal touch.

BOTTOM LINE

What do all of these components have in common? Efficiency. More efficiency equals more member engagement, resulting in stronger bonds between owners and their members and higher chances of landing prospects. It’s difficult for members to focus on their fitness goals and owners to focus on generating revenue when neither have the necessary tools to take care of them. In a nutshell, owners can choose to hide behind their computer screens, shedding negative light on technology, or they can choose to walk across the bridge with everything them and their members need to succeed.

HOW TO GENERATE MORE CLUB REVENUE

There is always room for improvement and financial growth within your club, whether it’s brand new or it’s been around for a while. Here are some ways to increase your revenue.

USE ASF SOFTWARE

When you have the right health club management software to increase your gym’s efficiency and engage your members, revenue naturally increases. Display club promotions in My Member Account Mobile App like discounts on point of sale items and club merchandise so members can make easy purchases.

Through the integration between Scheduler and My Member Account Mobile App, members can purchase and sign up for additional personal training sessions, group classes or training events directly in the interface, making it a convenient process for members and quick transactions for your club. Learn more about scheduling here.

ADVERTISE ON SOCIAL MEDIA

This is a given, considering majority of your prospects, if not all of them are on social media. Not only can you do unpaid organic posts showcasing club offers, but also consider paid advertising on platforms like Facebook and Instagram to generate more memberships. This can be done by directly linking My Enrollment to an ad so prospects can easily sign up with your club. It’s a simple process for them and an easy money-making process for you. Learn more about how social media can help your gym here.

ENGAGE CURRENT MEMBERS

It’s easy to let current members fall through the cracks once they’re already on board with you, but to maintain strong retention, you have to keep them satisfied, and seeking current members out is a prime opportunity to up your cash flow.

Fully engaged customers deliver a 23 percent premium over the average customer in share of wallet, profitability and revenue, so to reiterate, take advantage of both social media and ASF software like Scheduler and My Member Account Mobile App by promoting special discounts on point of sale items and club merchandise. Easily display feature events in My Member Account Mobile App and post discount opportunities for members to purchase sessions on a trial basis, if sessions are not already included in their memberships.

Another strategy is to use My Enrollment to offer 14-day trials for existing members that refer their friends. This way members bring prospects in and you’re funneling in future income.

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF OFF-PEAK HOURS

You’re most likely aware of patterns in your club, especially if you’re using My Reports to track member behavior. Many members actively avoid their gyms during peak hours simply because they’re too crowded. Although this is a common issue, 67 percent of customer churn is preventable if the issue was resolved at the first engagement, so instead of treating this situation as a burden on your club, look at it as an opportunity to fill in the gaps and bring in extra profit.

Offer extra classes and personal training during slower times and promote them on your website, social media and through ASF software. This way, you’re dissolving member frustration and boosting your business at the same time. Remember that members can purchase and sign up directly in My Member Account Mobile App.

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HOW TO PREP YOUR GYM FOR THE NEW YEAR

How to prep your gym for the new year

It’s a no-brainer that January is the hottest time for fitness clubs. Gym memberships will be on the rise, and even though right now prospects may be postponing their motivation to join a gym, it’s still the prime time to get ready for all of the future chaos. Here are some ways your gym can prep for the new year.

Tips on How to Prep Your Gym for the New Year

PREPARE FOR MEMBERSHIP FLUCTUATIONS

It’s common to see a large increase in memberships during this time as it is to also see a large drop once resolutions fade, but you don’t have to let new members slip through the cracks. Battle those common fallouts by tracking your attendance using our 30/60/90 Detail Retention Report and offering special promotions through My Member Account Mobile App  so you’re actively motivating new members and have a higher chance of locking them in long-term.

FOCUS ON CURRENT MEMBERS

Although it’s easy to focus solely on bringing new members in, existing members are motivated as well and now is a perfect time to generate more club revenue through them. They can increase their training by purchasing additional training sessions and discounted point of sale items in My Member Account Mobile App. Members who were on board with your club before the new year’s hype guarantee healthy retention above anything else, so it’s important to maintain loyalty with them.

CHECK EQUIPMENT

Recognize that high rises also mean busier peak times. While a busier gym is a positive thing for you, it can be frustrating for members due to lack of space or equipment. Although you can’t always control those factors, you can check to ensure your equipment is clean and working properly before the big new year’s rush. Also mention off-peak times to current members so they have options. If need be, use your club’s increased income to invest in new equipment later in the year.

USE GYM MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE

It’s important to keep yourself organized as a business regardless, but it’s especially crucial during popular seasons. Make sure your club operates with gym management software to stay on top of your retention and your revenue. Become familiar with our Attendance Report, our Hourly Attendance Report, our 30/60/90 Retention Detail Report and our Revenue Detail Report.

The retention and attendance reports will help you more effectively track prospect and member behavior and our Revenue Detail Report simplifies cash flow tracking, giving you the ability to look up revenue from an individual day and up to a full month.

Encourage members and prospects to use My Member Account Mobile App, so they can easily purchase and sign up for classes and training events. This way, you’re keeping everyone engaged, simplifying their experiences and generating more revenue all at once.

Make sure you’re up to date with the software by reviewing training videos and clicking on the “what’s new” section in My Club Business. You can also get in touch with ASF Client Support to acclimate to the software.

ELIMINATE FINANCIAL STRESS

Pools of prospects also mean an overwhelming increase in cash flow. In the midst of the new year’s chaos, it’s just as important to have another company process your payments–for organization and your own sanity. By handing over financial responsibilities to ASF, member payments are processed safely through our PCI compliant system, which puts everyone at ease and gives you more time to funnel people in and satisfy current members. Learn more here.

ADVERTISE SPECIAL PROMOTIONS

Even though fitness and joining a gym might be an afterthought for members and prospects right now, this is a prime time to run holiday discounts and advertise your club online, and lucky for you, there are many different sales and ads you can run to promote your business. Motivate current members with discounts on point of sale items or free personal training sessions by encouraging them to refer their friends.

Run social media ads that offer a month off membership dues if prospects sign up during the holidays. Make sure social media campaigns contain links to My Enrollment so a prospect can sign up right away. Display special discounts on supplements, apparel and personal training in My Member Account Mobile App so current members can purchase directly on their phones.

By actively promoting various areas of your business throughout the holiday season, you’re engaging new and existing people, generating more club revenue, providing value to your gym and your audience and helping your club stand out.