The Best Retention Strategies for Gyms and Fitness Businesses in Ghana

by Mercy Berchie February 26, 2020
Retention Strategies for Gyms and Fitness

You have done a great job marketing your fitness business in Ghana, and you have new members. Now you are wondering, how do I keep them? How do I retain my members to ensure they keep coming back for more? What retention strategies will keep them in my gym?

If you want answers to any of these questions, then you are reading the right article for the information you are looking for.

One of the hallmarks of a successful business is to have customers always coming back for more. That’s realistic, right? Because if you are providing real value to your customers, then they would want to come back for more of that value and even tell their friends.

Retaining your members even costs less than acquiring new ones. So if you want to learn the best retention strategies for your fitness business in Ghana, read on.

In this article, you would learn why you need to retain your members, how to develop a retention strategy and the best retention strategies for your business.

When you search for the term “retention strategies for fitness/gyms” you are going to end up with a ton of information on how to do that. Maybe you have tried some of them and they didn’t work. That’s fine, you need to know that every business is unique.

You need to understand your business and know what works for you so you can implement the right strategies.

Let’s now look at why you need to retain your members.


Why you need a membership retention strategy for your fitness business

·         Less expensive

Retaining your existing members costs you anywhere 5-25 times less than acquiring a new member, according to research. Research also says that keeping 5% of your members will increase your profit by about 25%.

If you want to see continuous growth in your sales and profit, you need to understand the means to retain your members. If you don’t do that, you will always spend so much money getting new members when you could spend less of that money keeping the existing ones.

·         Increase membership

When you have members who come to your gym to exercise and they keep coming, it a sign that they love the value they get from you.

People love to do good things, so once there’s something great about your gym, they would tell their friends and family to also come and experience what they are experiencing.

Taking the effort to retain your members would result in a viral increase in membership. It’s just one of the ways to turn your customers into your sales force.

·         Increase in revenue

Like you saw earlier, research says retaining 5% of your customers will result in 25% of increased profit. That’s a lot of return on investment.

Even better, keeping your members costs less than getting new ones.

Now that you know how important it is to keep your members, you have to know why members leave. This is very important for you to do.

There are quite a number of reasons which cut across and I’m going to share them with you, but you have to analyze your business for yourself and determine why your members leave.

If you don’t make this discovery, you are going to apply the wrong strategies and you are not going to see the results you want. The best way to solve a problem is to identify the problem.


Reasons why gym members leave

There are various reasons why people chose to leave gyms. Some of the reasons originate from you whereas others from them. Once you understand these reasons from either you or them, you can strategize and find solutions to them all.

For example, a lot of people stop going to the gym because of low motivation. They start at the beginning of the year with very good resolutions and somewhere along the line, they just stop coming.

The reason is likely because they are demotivated. So you have to understand this challenge and be able to relate to them on this basis so that you can help them get motivated once again.

Here are 4 of the commonest reasons why people would choose to leave your gym.

·         Lack of communication

Communication solves a lot of issues. Once you don’t stay in touch with your members, you position yourself as distant from them.

As a result of this, whenever they decide to quit the gym, they have no real reason to stay back or nothing to reflect on to remind them of your presence or significance in their life.

Now with digital tools and technologies, staying in touch with your customers is both easier and cheaper.

How about messages to remind them of their sessions? A message to motivate them to pursue their fitness goals? And a birthday message?

·         Lack of motivation

Waking up every morning and hitting the gym requires a lot of discipline. And unless highly motivated, it would be such a difficult task.

A lot of people have special reasons why they want to lose weight and once this reason doesn’t become special to you as well, they would not be motivated to come to your gym every morning or when they are free.

So get to know your members, their special reasons and always encourage them to pursue those reasons.

·         Lack of personalization

A lot of people go to the gym for very personal reasons. Because of this, when training and coaching are not designed to meet their personal reasons, they tend to give up.

Going the extra mile to get to know your members, tracking and reminding them of their progress, and checking up on them will pay in both the short and long term.

·         Expensive membership fees

Many people stop going to the gym because of the expensive membership fees. Whereas you must always price membership in a way to make a profit, you can as well price it to be flexible for your members to pay.

That’s why it’s important to know your members and design your payments to meet their needs. This helps to ensure that money is not the reason why they are not coming back.

Now that you know why your members leave in the first place, here are seven membership retention strategies for your fitness business.

Study each of these strategies and use them to your advantage.


Membership retention strategies for your fitness business in Ghana

·         Offer great customer service

How do you feel when you walk into a restaurant and you are greeted with a warm smile, open arms showing you to your table, and a waiter who listens to your order with rapt attention and delivers exactly what you ordered for?

The same principle applies to a gym too. People love great customer service and it is among the top reasons why customers remain loyal.

If you want your gym members to be loyal and keep coming back to you, then you have to offer great customer service.

Delivering great customer service is not just the role of your receptionist. It is the role of everyone in the gym including the cleaners, trainers, accountants, etc.

You have to get everyone working in your gym to be focused on delivering a great customer experience to keep your members coming back for more.

·         Get customer reviews

Since your customers are the ones who have actually experienced your facility, getting recommendations, feedbacks or reviews will help you to see your shortfalls and make amendments.

Reviews will open your eyes to their likes and dislikes about your facility and help you to address them.

If you don’t put in the strategies to get constant feedback from your members, they are going to leave and you are not going to find out the reason why they left.

Once the reason they left is unclear to you, you are not going to be able to address whatever problem so that no one leaves again for the same reason.

Reviews also help you get customers. When the name of your gym is displayed in search results, your reviews are also displayed.

More positive reviews send a positive signal to potential clients so that they choose your gym over your competitors.

There are many ways to get reviews from your members. You can send surveys to them through their emails and let them know that by telling you what they are dissatisfied with, you can address them.

Another way to get reviews is to leave a suggestion box in your gym and make papers available for them to write their concerns.

Also, ensure that your coaches and trainers interact with your members to find out their views about the service you provide and other relevant information.

·         Personalization

Once you understand that personalization is very essential for your business, you can see positive results. There are so many reasons why people go to the gym.

When you are able to understand their motivation, then you design training sessions and training that fit exactly for them. If you can prioritize patient satisfaction in your business, they will also prioritize your business.

So get to know them and understand them. For those with tight weekdays, arrange weekend sessions with them. And for those who for some reasons may not be able to come to the gym, talk to them about home training.

When they come to your facility as well, sit with them and discuss their goals with them. Some might have unrealistic goals and that might even discourage them along the way if they are not seeing the results.

Talk to them and set measurable, realistic, and time-bound goals with them. Help them to understand their goals from your perspective and theirs and mingle the two.

Ultimately get to know your clients, their interests, and use those to engage them. Your members need you to help them stay committed to their goals, and once you can do this, you will get them staying.

·         Consistent training and motivation

The advent of social media and digital technology has made communication easier and cheaper.

If you want your members to stay, you have to make sure you stay on top of their mind. One way to do this is to communicate with them.

This might seem like a lot of work at first, but if you have your business at heart, you must have your customers at heart as well.

Using social media, you can send them messages and motivations to encourage them to exercise and prioritize their health and fitness.

You can send them weekly emails and inspiring stories of people in your gym who achieved their goals through your gym to encourage them and instill trust in them.

Communicate to them about their efforts as well. Send them messages reminding them of training sessions, their goals and how far they have come, why they need to exercise more to achieve their objectives.

Celebrate their milestones with them to make them feel motivated.

For example, if someone came to your gym with a goal to reduce 5pounds in three months, make it a point to celebrate with them when they lose their first 1 pound to encourage them.

Like I said earlier, exercising takes a lot of self-discipline and if you don’t help them stay disciplined, it is going to cost your business a lot.

·         Make health investment a priority

When people come to your gym for the first time, get them to understand the place of good health in their initiative.

Help them to link their goals to a bigger goal of promoting their health and wellness. When you can get them to do this, you can be sure they will keep coming to maintain their health.

·         Social events

People like to exercise in groups. Whether it’s because they feel more motivated or because they believe they have more fun in groups, you have to leverage this opportunity.

You can have monthly group workouts or community workouts to help them feel engaged. During those periods, you can ask them to bring their friends and family along.

This can also help you get new members on a very good note.

·         Payment flexibility

Since expensive membership is one of the top reasons why people stop going to the gym, you have to put in measures to ensure payment does not become an obstacle to any of your members.

You can set up long term payment options with them or monthly payments. The bottom line is to discuss with them and discover which payment plan will work for them.

Don’t forget to let them know your payment options as well so they can easily make payments.

If you want your business to continually yield profits and results, you have to balance a good marketing strategy with a good retention strategy.

Ultimately, you have to know your business and understand your target audience to continually provide value to them.


Conclusion

A good retention strategy will help you to retain members, increase revenue, and get more members for your gym.

Use digital tools to connect and stay in touch with your members to always stay on top of their minds. Organize regular social events to increase bonding between members.

What have been some of your biggest challenges in retaining your members? Kindly share it with us and let us learn together.

Do you need help putting together a good marketing or retention strategy for your gym or fitness business? Contact us and let’s talk.


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