We live in a world where we have never been more connected and influenced by social media. Mark Zuckerberg is convinced we are entering the metaverse. No matter your opinion on social media, there is no arguing that it is everywhere and cannot be ignored. With one google of ‘gyms’ I can instantly find every gym within a 20-mile radius. But which one will I join? If I cannot find your gym social media, contact details, and content of what it’s like to be part of your gym, within two minutes – then why would I come in real life? You would be surprised of how many of your gyms I have googled, and I can’t even find your address. To put it bluntly you are losing clients and losing money.
The fitness industry is one of the many industries to take hits during the social economic crisis. First there was covid – closing all the gyms. Now there is a cost-of-living crisis, with more prime ministers walking in and out of number 10 than Jager bombs I had on Saturday. For the gyming industry it hasn’t been the most stable few years, and we don’t know what is ahead. What we do know though is social media engagement has increased by 61% in the past two years. Social media is free. In a time of financial crisis, there is no excuse to neglect social media, when it is free marketing and brand awareness.
Building an online presence gives potential customers a place to learn about you, see your members, and picture what it is like to be part of your community. Showing and speaking about the services you offer is the top benefit of an active social media. It is also important to share your knowledge and professionalism. There are too many ‘fitness’ influencers sharing unrealistic body images, dangerous diets, and inappropriate exercise plans. As a gym owner and qualified PT, your social media can be a safe community and platform. Having women with the ‘perfect hourglass’ body and ‘chiselled chest’ men to promote your business will only set unrealistic expectations. We need to stop this idea that we only go to the gym to lose weight. Use your platform to be different and not follow these trends that will soon become outdated.
All social media needs is an investment of time… I understand it’s limited. I have created some tips to follow. This is the difference between clients and no clients.
Don’t change your name!
Keep your name on social media the same as your gym name please. If your gym is called ‘bicep curl’ why is your social media called ‘Bob’s gym’ – make it, make sense.
Use Facebook like a mini website, make sure you have all key details like opening hours, locations and weblinks to other social medias, people use it to access information without finding a website.
Share more details with longer captions, talk about your successes and growth.
Encourage members to leave reviews and communicate with them publicly to show you are active.
Use other Facebook groups, post in your local community page to show them what you can offer.
Create events on your page which will give ever member who follows you a notification – this will remind people you are still there and active.
Create events that everyone can come to with a one-off payment (you can do this through Quoox), not only are you making money, but you are creating leads.
This is your chance to look good… this is how people see you.
Stop posting words on a photo/video content-based platform. I do not want to see a poster you created on Canva, I want to see photos and videos of you working with clients.
Draw me in with your professionalism, show me a video of you teaching correct methods.
Use Instagram highlights – have costumer reviews, stories from an event, recipes, a day in the life.
Invest your time in young people please. I’m 22, I spend over 8 hours a day on my phone, us Gen Z know the ins and outs of every trend.
Don’t waste time playing catch up, use a young person’s creativity – we don’t bite.
If you don’t have a younger PT already working in your gym, then I’m sure you have a family member that is born between 1997 and 2007 – use their opinions.
Resharing clients’ stories
Use clients’ testimonials and encourage them to tag you so that you can repost. Have a photo mirror in your gym with your logo, encourage them to post.
It doesn’t matter if a customer is 50 or 21, a post in your gym with your branding is still free marketing. The thing to remember is it doesn’t matter who sees the social media, people talk. Whether an 18-year-old girl saw your post and told her mum she can have a family plan in your gym or Sue’s neighbour saw it and told her she can have a PT experience and make new friends.
You do not need to be a topless Greek God, just act like a human.
Be genuine in your posts and promote health rather than ‘sexiness’ – health and happiness is more important.
Talk about taboo topics and how you adjusted your gym to be inclusive. Talk about mental health and support you offer through SGPT classes. Talk about women specific health.
Aesthetic is key – it shouldn’t be, but it is. Because of social media we judge everything on look – one of the toxic traits it created (there is good and bad in everything).
Of course, people are also looking for service. But if you and your neighbour had the same level of service but one had a more aesthetic Instagram and nicer looking changing rooms. I’m automatically attracted to the better-looking gym.
Once I went to the gym that had colour coordinated all its accessories (resistance bands, foams rolls, med balls etc,) on a big wall and it just stood out and I was impressed by 20 minutes of organisation.
A little goes a long way, one photo of a clean, tidy gym can be the difference between 10 new customers or just one.
I get what I’ve said sounds like a lot. But time management is key.
Number 1, multiple people can log into your social media, make sure all your staff members are pulling their weight and sharing the responsibility of posting.
Plan generic posts through Hootsuite, on Monday’s you post a video you made on the weekend, Tuesday’s you post a success story, Wednesday’s you post a selfie with clients, Thursday you do a live Instagram… this adds automation and structure. So, you always have a post, even if nothing exciting happened that day.
This is complimented by bath content – create multiply pieces of content from one event. Remember you can screenshot a video and then automatically you have photos.
180 million people have used #fitness – use # they do work.
Create your own # for customers to use and then anyone that clicks on it sees every post about your gym.
Social media is the answer to creating a successful business. Don’t hide from it, embrace, and enjoy the creativity. Post regularly and share your successes, people will find you and invest in you. Quoox is here to support you, using our software correctly saves you so much time in other areas you will have time for Instagram. Book a call with us so we can show you how much time you will have for social media.