7 Tips for Creating a Fitness Business that Stands Out
Equipment, check. Towels, check. On a low budget, what can personal trainers and fitness instructors do to differentiate themselves from the competition?
For personal trainers with their own studio, it’s tough to compete with the amenities huge gyms offer. Luxury bath products are nice, but they’re not in everyone’s budget. Here are some simple ideas to differentiate your business that don’t cost a ton of money.
1. Customer Loyalty Programs
Loyalty programs give your customers an incentive to keep coming back for more. The options here are limitless. Own a yoga studio? Distribute punch cards and give your yogis a complementary tenth class. You’re a personal trainer? Reward your clients with free or discounted swag every time they hit a major fitness milestone. Whatever it is, make sure your clients know you value their business and support their fitness goals.
2. Clean Equipment
One of the worst gym faux pas is leaving behind a sweaty machine for the next user. Make sure your space has sanitation spray bottles or wipes visible at all times. If you notice someone leaves a machine without wiping it down, don’t shrug it off – get in there and clean! You should also include hand sanitizer dispensers at the points of entry and exit.
3. Easy Payment Systems
Over 50% of Americans don’t regularly carry cash. As our country goes paperless, new credit card processing systems have made it easy for small businesses to accept card payments through smartphones and tablets. Some small businesses are even turning to financial technologies like Venmo to accept payments from customers.
4. Fitness Challenges
Inspire your clientele to take charge of their fitness outside of the gym with health and fitness challenges. This could range from a 30-day core exercise challenge to a clean-eating recipe contest. Before kick-off, make sure to spread the word. Post promotional flyers at the entry area of your gym and share the same image on social media.
5. Optimize Online Presence
Do you have a website? Have you posted on social media lately? Chances are you answered “yes”, which means you’re ready to start building your digital identity. The next step is to consider how you can boost your brand on these channels. For your website, try creating a blog where you post “how to” articles and any news about your practice. On social media, spend your time posting where your audience is – if most of your clients are younger millennials and Generation Z, your best bet is on Instagram. Middle-aged adults are more active on Facebook.
6. Keep a Few Extra Locks on Hand
Have you ever forgotten to bring your lock to the gym? It happens to the best of us. Keep a few extras on hand just in case a customer needs one. If you have the budget to take it a step further, invest in digital lockers that don’t require a physical lock.
7. Fresh Air
This one is pretty simple. Nobody enjoys the smell of sweat. Keep air circulating in your space with fans, and open windows whenever possible.
It takes a lot of thought to make a small business stand out, but it doesn’t have to be a huge investment if you get creative. Take feedback from your customers and run with it (metaphorically speaking, of course). And remember – if your customer asks for something that isn’t in your budget, it doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t respond. Think back to the customer’s problem and derive a different solution that won’t break the bank.