Whether you own a gym, are a freelance personal trainer or conduct fitness classes, you're also a business owner. Cashflow is the live blood of any fitness business, attracting new clients and retaining current clients are both equally important to maximize profitability.
There are variety of marketing tools a personal trainer can use to attract and engage followers, including YouTube, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. Which one to use will depend on who your ideal clients are, where they normally hang out and what communication channels they prefer.
In the online space email marketing is one of the most effective forms of direct marketing to maintain customer relationships and bring in new leads and it can also supports your SEO and Content Marketing campaigns according to Forbes.
Clients and potential clients who subscribe to your email list (warm leads) have a much higher chance of reading your marketing content than someone who comes across your ad on social media (cold lead).
Here are the three essential steps of setting up a successful email marketing strategy for your fitness business.
Step 1. Getting Subscribers
It goes without saying that subscribers are the lifeblood of your email marketing strategy. No subscribers and you may as well be talking to a brick wall.
If you don't have any subscribers yet, it can often feel a bit overwhelming with where to start and how to get those first few people to sign up to your list.
Here are a few ways to capture subscribers details:
Lead Magnets and your Blog content are great opportunities to capture your visitors' details. If someone reads your blog and finds it useful, they're much more likely top sign up for any related eBooks that may help solve their problem.
On the sign-up form let them know what kind of content to expect and how often. Keep the subscription formalities simple with just the name and email field.
Here's a landing page we set up for My Personal Trainer Website client, Ripped by Rycroft.
As the new GDPR is coming to play, you will need to make sure you use your email software's double opt-in feature for subscribers to confirm they really want to hear from you.
Use Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to promote your blog and encourage your following to sign-up to your newsletter. As above, just make sure you give them all the information they need to make a decision and to comply with regulations in your country.
On The Gym Floor
Working the gym floor may not seem to be the easiest way to get people to give out their email address, but it can work. The key is to be there and available for members to give advice and answer their questions.
Once you have established a rapport and interacted 3-5 times with the same member, feel free to ask if they want to access regular fitness tips from you. You may be surprised how happy that will make them and they will give you their email address.
Step 2. Keeping Subscribers Engaged
According to Hubspot. the average email open rate in the Beauty and Fitness industry is 40%.
How much engagement you get out of your fitness email marketing will depend on a few things. If you'd like the majority of your readers to keep reading your content, try focusing on the following to get better results.
If your CTA (call-to-action) promises something, make sure everything that follows is in line with that promise. Ensure the system is set up and they will get to download that eBook or be added to the newsletter list.
Most landing pages we see say:
"Sign up for this eBook"
When it could say:
"Sign up for this free eBook and get weekly updates"
The second option manages expectations and seems to be offering more than the first.
Consistency is key for many goals in life. That's true for your marketing strategy. No matter what, send out that weekly update people expect from you and ensure you have something to talk about. Some topics to include might be:
Create Content of Value
The idea is to provide your subscribers with solutions to their problems. The content you send out will be better received if its relatable and shows your readers that you care. If your first priority is to build trust and a strong bond with your followers, listen first.
Ask for Their Help
People tend to be very helpful when they feel they can be useful. Are you in a dilemma with a program you are planning to offer, an eBook you are planning to write or you would like to find out if there is need for a product you have in mind?
Ask the people who are more likely to buy in if you offered them the right product. You can do this by asking them to reply or vote on a social media platform.
This could also be a great way when you are nominated for an award. It will be a great feedback for you to learn you are on the right path.
Step 3. Publishing Kick-Ass Content
There is only so much space in an email, however blogging regularly and sending those articles to your subscribers every week can go a long way. On the other hand, it's not always easy to put out content.
Publishing on weeks when you have no inspiration can feel forced from the readers' point of view if you do it without any agenda and may result in losing subscribers.
Plan Your Content
Having a content calendar with topic ideas and articles already written in your drafts can alleviate this issue. E.g. on weeks when you feel super inspired, create as many articles as many you can and schedule some of them for later or leave them in the drafts for weeks when you feel less creative.
Get Ideas from Your Audience
Stay flexible and use questions you receive from your clients or audience that are worth of a whole article and write them in an instant. This will make people feel important and special and see you the professional who genuinely wants to help them.
Use Popular Topics and News to Grab Attention
News-jacking is also a great idea. If you've been paying attention to the media in the past few weeks, the whole world was talking about the Royal Wedding that's happening in Windsor, UK this weekend.
Creating an article about "How to Keep Fit and Glow Like Meghan/Harry on Your Big Day" can appeal to everybody in your audience who has a date for their wedding in their diary, even if it's not till next year.
Invite Other Professionals
Guest blog posts can also help you out, either from a fellow trainer specialized in a different area of fitness, a doctor about health benefits of exercise, a fitness model on secret techniques for lean muscles or a physiotherapist on injur prevention could also contribute to the value of your blog.
Key Points to Remember
When you decide to start email marketing or sending out marketing materials via post, you first need to build your subscriber's list. However appealing it may seem, I don't recommend you to buy an email list from someone else. If you contact people who did not previously give you their consent, your spam score will likely skyrocket and servers might even put you on black list.
Deliver what you promised in terms of frequency and topics. You can over deliver by packing more value into one interaction. If your offer promised weekly updates and all of a sudden you start emailing daily or every other day, some people may get annoyed and mark your emails as spam.
If you'd like to launch a different set of campaign, inform your subscribers and ask them to opt-in and only send tha campaign to hose who subscribed.
Letting people know that they can unsubscribe anytime they want takes the pressure off a bit and makes them more comfortable with subscribing. Make sure that your unsubscribe link is clear to see at the bottom of each email and is a hassle-free process.
Remember, you are required to comply with the new GDPR launching on the 25th May 2018 if you deal with people from the EU. Make sure that all your marketing tools are compliant and you only contact people who want to hear from you. It's far better to have a smaller, but good quality audience than a bigger pool of people who don't open your emails at all.
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