With the leisure industry being closed for almost half of last year, making a comeback is more important than ever, read more to find out what you can do…
Restrictions easing is the new ‘new year, new me’…
Approximately 12% of all gym sign ups happen around new year, with the 3rd lockdown starting on Boxing Day 2020, gyms did not experience the New Years business boom the way they usually do.
So with this being said, lockdown is easing and ensuring you get it right is essential for having a successful year in 2021! This involves advertising to potential customers, providing the newest technology to your members and getting ahead of your competitors.
Get your name out there…
Marketing is everything. Getting your business out there is the first step. Remind people who you are, where you are and that your back open and ready for business. Start posting some exciting and engaging content your followers will want to engage with. Posting content your followers can relate to and will keep them coming back for more, for instance share a few tips on how to shed those extra quarantine pounds in 8 weeks.
Here’s some ideas that will get your social media accounts noticed:
- Interact with your followers – do some audience polls on Instagram stories and find out more about your customers, what exercises do they love most, what are their fitness goals?
- Consistency is key – create a theme for your account and maintain it. This will ensure when people come across your post they know it’s you.
- Don’t be a stranger – post regularly so your followers don’t forget about you.
- Make it worth their while – you want your followers to gain something from your content, why not post some top tips / exercises your followers can try next time they’re in the gym?
- Showcase why they should come to you, what classes do you run? What state of the art equipment have you recently purchased? What fun and exciting events are you holding in the near future?
- Encourage interaction – add a question box to your Instagram story and ask them their favourite workout songs and create a playlist.
Don’t let your IT hold you back…
With technology creeping its way into every aspect of our lives, ensuring you’re keeping up to date on the latest tech is so important.
Providing good WiFi is extremely beneficial for your members, being able to stream workout videos, posting a gym selfie or tracking their workout on their Fitbit or Garmin, but it is equally as important for you. Creating a positive upbeat atmosphere is crucial, so streaming your workout playlist on Spotify without it cutting out every 5 minutes is sure to keep your members motivated and wanting more.
Technology is also appearing in other ways, making sure your telephone systems are working ready to answer customer queries, maintaining you IT systems that allow members to book time slots (with safety and social distancing being high on people’s list of priorities, the last thing you need is your system crashing and having your venue overcrowded and unsafe for your members and your staff!)
What can I do about this? You may be asking, there are many options available to ensure your IT systems don’t let you down:
- Upgrade your WiFi to a reliable, business grade connection
- Invest in decent business grade kit, there are finance options available at 0% so spend comes out of your Opex not your capex
- Engage with specialist leisure IT support provider – that know your business
- Get you network tested before a big reopening
Find out what your competitors are doing…
With so many things changing in every industry, competitor analysis is a good idea. Find out what your competitors are doing. You don’t want to lose your business to a competitor because you weren’t on the ball. There are many new fun and exciting things appearing within the leisure industry and you want to make sure you are up to scratch.
Start taking bookings, allowing your customers to book in a slot is becoming increasingly popular, so making updates to your website to facilitate this not only shows your customers that you care about their safety, but also that you are keeping up with all the other gyms.
Real time updates on how many people are currently in the gym. Lots of gyms are publishing live updates to their website which allows members to see how many people are currently there (which allows your more cautious customers to feel safer about joining).
As the weather gets warmer and more people are beginning to appreciate outdoor activities, outdoor gym classes are starting to get more and more popular. A recent study shows that up to 72% of members will work out outdoors in 2021, so facilitating this is so important if you want to win over your competitors customers!
So get your notepad and pen out and start brainstorming ideas, researching reliable IT, do some competitor analysis and start your journey to success in 2021!