If you spend any significant time working in health and fitness, you start to notice certain themes and behaviors that tend to repeat themselves. For one, visit any gym in January, and you're sure to find it significantly busier than it was just a month before. It's a time when fitness and health club memberships spike and people decide to finally start their fitness routine. Fast forward a few months, though, and many people's habits have fallen away as they get back into work and family routines.
For any smart fitness franchise owner, the questions should be obvious. First off, how do you make the most of the beginning of the year’s increased interest in training and fitness, and more importantly, how do you go about ensuring that those new members don’t disappear a couple of months into the year?
Here are some tips from F45 Training to help franchisees make the most of the new year spike and ensure there’s not a significant drop-off as the year starts to build momentum:
Don’t be too quick out of the gates.
It takes a while for people to get back into the swing of things in the new year. While they are adjusting to new routines and getting their lives in order, they aren’t too likely to be receptive to marketing. It’s often best to wait until the end of January/early February to push any recruitment messaging for your studio.
Play to F45 Training's strengths and stand out.
While every fitness business is shouting out “new year, new you," take advantage of F45's unique product and customer experience to talk directly to potential new members. This is a great opportunity to differentiate yourself from the competition.
The fact that an F45 workout is only 45 minutes long can be hugely appealing to people who are busy and time-poor. A lack of time is also one of the main reasons people don’t stick to new year’s fitness plans. Telling people that they can see results with a minimum time investment will remove their barriers to starting a new fitness plan and remind them that they don’t need to push themselves too hard to achieve their goals. That's yet another approach that doesn’t work when it comes to creating sustainable fitness habits.
People new to exercising are also often intimidated to start and worried that they’ll “do it wrong." Someone trying to go it alone might also give up because improper form or programming mean that they don’t see results. F45’s expert instruction and use of technology make it easier for new members to get it right and give them the comfort of having someone to help them reach their goals.
Get new members to set realistic goals.
Being full of inspiration and motivation at the beginning of the year often means that people will set big, audacious goals. Failing to reach these or see results quickly enough can result in disillusionment and giving up. Instead, tell your members to set themselves smaller, more realistic goals, like improving form on a specific movement or adding an extra two sessions to their training a month. Achieving these small goals will build confidence and help members stay motivated and coming back for more.
Leverage the power of community.
We are all far more likely to stick to a new behavior if we have the support of a community with similar goals and focus. By ensuring that new members feel like part of your studio from the get-go and encouraging interaction between them, your instructors, and older members, you’ll be able to help them stay motivated and committed to getting fitter, healthier and stronger.
F45’s real sense of community and support really separates it from other fitness offerings and group-based training. Franchisees who can ensure that they get the most out of the F45 Training customer experience and power of community will build longer-lasting and more profitable relationships with their members.
Keep an eye on the long game.
While the beginning of the year gives fitness franchises the chance to make some quick gains, it’s important that retention and loyalty remain top of mind. Just like with training, consistency is key and franchisees need to ensure that their main focus is on creating a sustainable business that isn’t reliant on seasonal spikes. Here’s hoping that the whole of 2020 is fantastic for both you and your business!