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Sport fitness equipment

It’s a sweat trying to reach and retain customers in the fitness sector. Competitors will work hard to lure them off you with cheaper memberships at rock bottom prices. For many, it’s a price war with the fighting gloves off.

But every marketer worth their weight in gold will know it’s not always commercially viable. Attracting consumers to become faithful fitness fanatics is more than the price they pay. Having worked with a range of fitness brands such as The Gym we know it’s the added value you bring.

Here’s how you can super-charge your marketing to bring them that one step nearer to brand advocacy:

Make your brand a lifestyle choice.

In 2014, 13.2% of the UK population registered at a gym or fitness club compared to 12.6% in 2013 (The European Health and Fitness Association), indicating an increasing appetite for memberships. With more than 6,112 fitness facilities established within the UK in 2014 (Leisure Database Company State of the Industry Report) it’s a noisy marketplace.

Buying into a fitness programme is more than just a service offering. Inspire and support your customer base with a lifestyle choice that emulates your brand values.

Social media and the company blog are great platforms for content marketing and SEO – so use it to your advantage. It’s well-versed that Facebook nurtures communities in a hub and spoke fashion and it’s a good place to start if you’ve yet to dip your toe into the world of emojis.

Motivate consumers with tips and tricks on how to reach their fitness goals, run a Twitter Q&A and provide practical healthy-eating advice. Remember, consumers are engaging with your brand because they intend on reaching a specific fitness goal. So, help them get there – whether that’s in the gym or out of it.

Nudge and nurture behavioural change.

Within the first six months, almost 50% of all people drop out of an exercise program. Therefore, it’s imperative to nudge and nurture your customer base via customer insight. Data gathered from tools like Google Analytics, E-CRM platforms and CRM software will help inform decision-making for your marketing strategy.

Coach your laggards and inspire them pick up the weights again with an incentivised direct marketing campaign. Build upon the data gathered from audience profiling to deliver communications that will determine an action. Seed content tailored to each stage of the customer journey.

More importantly, identify your target audience’s motivators and tailor the messaging to their needs. Categorising why people join the gym will increase engagement and loyalty to your brand. So, whether it’s losing weight, wanting to be healthy, sports excellence or social motivations, ensure your persona maps are thoroughly executed and dovetail your overall marketing and content strategy.

Technology is your friend.

When it comes to giving that personalised touch, gym-going consumers are very versed to it. Analytics company Flurry reported fitness apps were growing faster in users than the industry average by a whopping 87% in the first half of 2014. In support of this, Mintel highlights:

  • 27% of gym members are interested in using smartphone / apps
  • Meanwhile, 24% are interested in receiving dietary advice by email, text or by application

With goal tracking cited the number one reason for accessing mobile health and fitness apps (eMarketer, 2014), it’s the perfect channel to motivate your customer base and increase engagement.

Incentivise and reward key milestones.

After Iceland and Malta, the UK has the highest level of obesity than anywhere in Western Europe (Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, 2014). This in turn means a higher sample of overweight people who are eager to shed the pounds.

Get into the mind-set of your target customer. Focus on building relationships that are goal-orientated. One effective way to do this is with loyalty scheme programmes, which reportedly increase in-store visits by 185%. Whether you provide cash incentives like Boots or a Waitrose style ‘pick your own’ deals, it’s a good place to start.

No time to stop. Increase brand awareness now.

Here’s a quick round-up of actionable insights you can apply today:

  • Identify your target audience and platform preferences
  • Categorise your target audience motivations and create persona maps
  • Review your existing marketing strategy
  • Identify the gaps and opportunities against your persona’s needs
  • Tailor your content strategy into streams, ensuring each motivation is targeted
  • Execute, review and iterate

If any of the above seems like a daunting task doomed to be pushed to the bottom of a very long ‘to do’ list, then get in touch. Having a fresh pair of eyes will revolutionise your overall focus. A good agency partner will audit your strategy, check it against your key milestones and provide solutions on what areas really matter.

If you are having challenges meeting and exceeding your marketing objectives contact Marketing Services Director, Sonya Cragg at Caburn Hope now on +44(0)1273 480 404 or email s.cragg@caburnhope.co.uk to discuss how we can help you grow your brand through transformational planning.

Interested in hearing more? Read our case study on The Gym and find out how our fast-track marketing successfully launched 38 Gyms in three years.

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