The fitness world changed in 2021 and so should your memberships. That means you continue to offer your incredible sessions, whether they’re online or in-Gym. By offering new types of memberships, your clients can get in shape and your business will continue to thrive.
Clients are now cautious to return to gyms and studios and reluctant to commit to long-term contracts and memberships. According to a survey from Freeletics, 60% of Americans plan to cancel their gym memberships after the pandemic. At the same time, 64% are now more interested in at-home fitness options like live streaming and on-demand videos. However, memberships are at the core of the success and revenue for any gym and fitness studio. So, what should you be offering your clients? Here we look at four types of memberships to help you grow your gym or fitness studio.
Virtual memberships, home workouts were already popular pre-COVID with platforms like Peloton, Tonal, and Mirror. According to stats from 2019, 85% of all gym members were already working out at home before the pandemic. Little did we know that live stream workouts would become mainstream for fitness businesses just a year later. In 2020, 72% of fitness business owners started offering a virtual option, compared to just 25% in 2019.
With a virtual membership, clients can enjoy a ‘live’ class from the comfort of their own homes. This type of membership allows clients to continue attending their fitness classes with the instructor they love. As a result, you can create a sense of normalcy your clients had before the pandemic.
Family memberships, with everyone at home, spending more time with family and roommates has become the norm. With a shared, family membership, multiple people in a household can now access your virtual classes or on-demand services from the same account. The pandemic has also had a financial impact on your clients, and a family membership helps your clients save their hard-earned money. This set-up makes it easy for a spouse or parent to book or pay on their family’s behalf. Another great benefit of this flexible membership is accountability. Clients now have a workout partner to help them set and reach their fitness goals. It’s a win-win for their family and your business!
On-demand memberships, before COVID, many people were watching fitness videos on YouTube or with apps, but now the bar has been raised. Studies show that consumer investment in digital fitness has increased by 30-35%. Also, 74% are using at least one fitness app during the pandemic and home fitness app downloads grew globally by 46%. With an on-demand membership, clients now have the flexibility to access your pre-recorded virtual content anywhere and anytime. It has not only added value for your clients, but it’s a great additional revenue stream for business owners too. There are so many options to organize your video library for clients. For instance, you can give them access 24 hours after a live stream class, or sort them based on level, length, or type of class. At the same time, when you offer on-demand classes you build your brand by eliminating the need for clients to view videos from third-party platforms like YouTube or Facebook. On-demand classes also solve a well-known limitation of gym cardio: boredom. Introducing high-energy instructor-led workouts eliminates all the downsides of steady-state cardio.
Hybrid memberships, if 2020 was the year to go virtual, then 2021 is the year of the hybrid studio/GYM. One survey suggests that 9 in 10 people who plan to return to the gym will continue their work out at home. Do you have members who are hesitant to go back to your gym? No problem. An all-in-one hybrid membership gives your clients the option to access your live stream, on-demand, outdoor, and in-studio classes. With a hybrid option you can include unlimited services for one fee or set a specific amount of classes that clients can access each month. As a business owner, the hybrid membership also lets you rely on a regular, predictable income stream since your business will always be open.
If you want to keep your client’s engagement during virtual sessions, you can create challenges for them to participate in outside of the gym. Instigate challenges that are easily done at home – this adds a sense of competition for your clients and members, which may act as a useful motivator for keeping them on track. Tracking your client’s workout results are an important part of making sure they stay on track, as well as showing them how much they are improving. When you first start training a new client, it’s imperative you get a baseline of data to start with. After this, you can adjust their workouts and weights accordingly. Once your client has completed a few workouts and entered the results of those workouts, that data will be automatically inputted into exercise progress tracking graphs. Both you and your clients can see these graphs. Additionally, you can print or email them any time!
FACTS OR FICTION?
In challenging times, when cultural stress is high and membership levels are low, it may be more important than ever to demonstrate your club’s commitment to the whole community by emphasizing values such as social equality, inclusion, belonging, and diversity. It’s recommended to outreach to local groups serving at-risk populations that could benefit from your club’s offerings.
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