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Top 3 Best ways I Marketed and Advertised my Fitness Center after I converted it to a 24 hour fitness center, Plus the fitness marketing.tv Podcast

Sunday, February 1st, 2015

My Gym Marketing top three ways I tripled my gym memberships in under 3 months and kept a 90% retention rate for over 6 years until I sold my gym.

I’ve tried every marketing thing there is when it came to Marketing and Advertising my 24 hour Fitness Center. I owned it for 10 years and sold a few months ago for many times what it cost to start.

I loved the Gym Business but as they say in “the godfather”, I got an offer I couldn’t refuse.

Here are the top 3 ways I found worked best for my Fitness Center Marketing and not only grew my fitness center but saved it from closing like so many gyms in the first 3 years.

I always said “I can’t do Marketing”, then I read a quote that General Grant said Abraham Lincoln related to him when he told him he couldn’t seem to beat Robert E Lee at one point. Lincoln told him that they had a saying out west, “If you can’t do the skinning, hold a leg so someone else can”. I listened to, watched, went to seminars, and spent my own money seeing what worked and what didn’t.

Here’s what I found out.

1. Niche

I researched until I Found out what people wanted from a fitness center in my area. This was not hard for me to figure out, but it was hard to figure out how to do it.  No one in the industry would tell me anything, and I don’t blame them. So I had to reverse engineer it myself.

It was to CONVERT TO A 24 HOUR FITNESS CENTER.
This was my first priority. I logged the whole process in a book you can get below

2. Website
I got a great website template and built my site along with “video tour”. A video tour is very important, in it answer all the questions your prospects ask when they come in to look around. You can see the video I did at http://youtu.be/5bA3bfNTNzg

Then I put as much content along with keywords in my webpages and post that people were searching for like “tuscaloosa gyms” or “tuscaloosa 24 hour fitness centers”. Then I added an Email subscriber form to the website. I had one at the bottom of the website and also I had a pop up form that would show up 5 seconds after they view the site. I used aweber email service.

3. Radio Ads
This was the crucial piece of the puzzle that drove my marketing efforts and made my gym successful.
I wrote my own ads. I only ran 15 second radio ads because that’s what I found to be the best bang for my buck and also folks would listen for 15 seconds without turning the radio. BTW, I almost always wrote funny ads

I would do what I called an ad blitz. I would run ads on monday, wednesday, and friday for 10 t0 15 times per day. You can get a great rate for running ads for a month long. usually I paid from $350 t0 $550 and believe me when it came to successful fitness marketing, it way more than paid for its self.

The radio ads drove folks to my gym website, then they would watch my video tour or sign up for my emails and or hopefully come in and sign up. You can get all my radio ads word for word in the book below

The beauty of all this working together was that it did my selling for me without me having to show them everything individually that usually took 30 minutes in person. they would usually walk in and say “I want to sign up, I already know how the system works from watching the video”. Now that’s Marketing!

If you’re looking for a successful fitness marketing system, get my book and see how I started my fitness center from scratch then converted it into a 24 hour fitness center then marketed it successfully for the next 6 years then sold it successfully.  If you want the complete 200 pages of my business biography get the complete book at www.how2ownagym.com

comments or questions email: shannoncook902@gmail.com
Shannon Cook

UPDATE: The podcast is now available here

Get the book then listen to the podcast to learn how to open a 24 hour automated gym

The best way to sell Fitness Gift Cards for your Fitness Center and where to get Gift Cards for your gym

Monday, December 19th, 2011

Another marketing guy, Curtis Mock, told me about getting Gift Cards for my fitness center to add another revenue stream to the gym and offer customers who are looking for gifts for friends and family, a unique way to give a gift card instead of Gift Certificates.

Curtis was right, and I like to give credit where credit is due, that’s what I do here at this website, I don’t act like I came up with everything Ido that works for marketing my fitness center and others I do consulting for.

Curtis Mock also has a great web show called Fitness Business Television. I highly recommend you check it out at www.fitbiz.tv

So after I got my Fitness Gift Cards I started offering them at a discount like 1/2 off for special occasions but mostly selling them at face value of $165 which is good for a 3 month single membership or 2 months family membership to my 24 hour gym and tanning salon. You can do the face value of the cards in many ways but I like to use them at an exact price of 3 months membership because its easier for me to keep up with them in my Gym Software System by Firebug Software.

I am a consultant to and Helped Will Herring #54 line backer for the New Orleans Saints NFL team , open his Gym in Auburn Alabama called Herring Fitness 24 hour Fully Automated Gym.

 I got him to get the gift cards also, and he just did the face value at $100 good towards a membership which is fine too, you can see some of the specials I have him run on his website at www.herringfitness.com . I also have Will do email subscribers only specials which I do also to my email list. You can see how I have my gift cards for sale on my website at www.templegym.tv , I have great success in getting subscribers with the email sign up form on my website that says in the form that if they subscribe they will get email only specials. 

The thing I found out about gift cards is the same thing most retailers know. That is there’s a lot of people that will buy but never cash the cards in, and you basically come out keeping the money for no service, which is good but I like to have them coming in so they will most likely continue using the gym and become regular members.

I also give a large amount of gift cards away to those I can tell will actually use a membership and hopefully will bring in friends, which most will. I always keep them with me, I have a knack for reading people that will appreciate and use the gift cards, and will spread the word about my gym to all their friends and family.

Can you imagine someone giving you a $165 gift card for anything, and it being real and valuable. They cant believe it most of the time, I made sure to have my website address and info on the back of the gift card so they can go to my website and see for themselves.

Will Herring is experimenting now with giving away some cards, he is reluctant to begin with, but like the 30 day guarantee I got him to give at him gym, he will see it works just like the trust the 30 day guarantee builds by just offering it.

I also do one major thing that Will Herring is just starting to do now. When a new member signs up at my gym or his, I send out a thank you letter, along with how the gym operates in case there’s no one there when they come in, being that we are a 24 Hour Fully Automated Fitness Center. Along with that letter I send out a free gift card included in every envelope. But the catch is they cant use the cards for their current membership, they must give them away to anyone that isn’t a member.

I have more success with this one fitness marketing tactic, than almost any other I use.

The next tactic is to sell the gift cards at a great discount, say my $165 card for two for one or even three for one.

Believe me it they will pay for themselves and bring in more people than just about another way of using fitness gift cards to market with.

 I don’t make a dime from selling the gift cards, I like the cards because they work ,and Curtis is a stand up guy and great at what he does, so I recommend if you are in the market for fitness gift cards, visit his website at www.fitnessgiftcards.com and get your art work started today and pick your colors and raised letter option and the magnetic strip option on the back so they look authentic. they will ship them to you within about 2 weeks most of the time.

Look at mine on my website and copy some info if you wish, but the robot logo is mine and cant be copied without my consent, but I will license it out if your interested. the website to view my gift cards is www.templegym.tv. then search gift cards.

Also if you like the website I use I can build you a fitness center website for your gym. A website for your gym that will in most cases will pull way more prospects than your competitors site.

Websites i like to use are a template videos, aweber email contact form,stats tracker,seo friendly, everything you need to crush your gym competition. Simply contact me with any questions and I can get a estimate to you, i use a template for most of the gyms I open and they end up drawing more traffic than all the competition combined like I do and Will Herring does also in his town.

Don’t believe me? I have stats of exactly how many visitors come to all my gym websites including Will Herring’s

I charge a set rate , but add on’s are extra like the video. If you shoot the video and post it to YouTube, I can simply install it into the site and maximize the keywords for that video so it will be found when searching for your gym because google loves videos now.

let me know if I can do anything for you, and god bless!  Shannon Cook  consultant to the fitness industry, email: shannoncook902@gmail.com