Keeping sales SIMPLE!

By: Buddy Hull, Health and Fitness Executive

Selling services and products requires nothing more than having a conversation with a customer. If you can’t hold a conversation with a person then you are probably in the wrong industry in the first place. During the time you are talking you will find out whether or not you and that person are a good fit for one another. If you are, great! If you aren’t, it’s no big deal. There will be more customers, right? In case, you haven’t noticed the majority of the public loves to spend money!

In a selling situation you always get back what you put out. Meaning, however you are acting is how the prospect you are communicating with will respond. If you are acting a little nervous the prospect will sense/feel it and may not trust you. If you are acting pushy the prospect they will sense it and begin to push back. Just relax and talk to them like there family.

But here’s the key….. Your prospective buyer should be doing the vast majority of the talking. This experience is about them, and nothing about you. It’s natural for any person to want brag about the terrific services and products they provide and all the wonderful things they can do for that person. You must listen to what the person wants/needs are. After all it’s not your money! If you want to get a new customer you’d better listen for what it will take to get them to make that buying decision.

It really is incredible what happens when you listen to your prospects. They will tell you exactly what it is they want from you. By simply repeating back to them that you will provide them (assuming you can) with the exact results they are looking for, you’ll probably close the deal.

If you ramble on about all the things you do for you have done for recent buyers you may miss the one thing that this prospective buyer is looking for. You could list all sorts of benefits that you provide. But if they don’t hear the benefit they want then they probably aren’t going to buy your product. People buy for their own reasons, not yours. Asking questions and listening to prospects allows you to find that reason.

Promoting benefits and features makes for good marketing, but not for good selling. And for those of you who don’t know, marketing brings prospective clients to you. Selling turns those prospects into paying clients. There’s an huge difference between the two.

Remember, there is no pressure when making a sale. Simply have a conversation with your customer. Ask lots of questions to find out what they want. Assure them that you can provide them with the product they are looking for and more than likely you’ll have more money in your pocket by the time you are done talking!

Marketing: 2 Tips to Better Email Marketing

BY:Rachel Zobonick

Despite the fact that social media gets a ton of attention nowadays, email marketing is still a successful medium that deserves your time and attention. With this in mind, here are a couple of tips that will allow you to build a bigger list and create email campaigns that stand out to members and prospects — resulting in greater email ROI.

Tip 1: Use a Multi-tiered Email Acquisition Approach

Acquiring a prospect’s email is the first step to building a positive relationship with a customer. And there are multiple ways in which you can make acquiring emails easier.

Pop-Up Subscription Windows

Have a pop-up window on your gym website asking people to “subscribe” to your e-newsletter. If you’re using this approach, be sure to describe the benefit to the customer in the pop-up window. For example, will they receive a weekly blog from your club nutritionist with diet tips? Make them feel like they’ll be an “insider” by having access to your emails.

With this approach, just make sure the pop-up window is easy to get out of if a person doesn’t want to subscribe, or they’ll easily get annoyed.

Facebook Ads

Facebook Ads can be a great tool for acquiring emails. Just drive prospects to your email sign-up form through the ad. However, with this approach it’s important to ensure ROI, which is easy to track through Facebook Ads. If a campaign isn’t working, try targeting different age groups or those with different interests to see if you get better results.

Tip 2: Have Great Content

Once you have a prospect’s email — they should immediately see the benefit. Consider sending them a complimentary visit to your gym or even just a blog filled with training tips from your personal training director, so that they know right away you won’t be just blasting them with promotions.

Doing email marketing successfully comes down to strong content. Think about how many junk emails you get personally. The emails you open are the ones that are intriguing and relevant to you.

Therefore, as you put together an email for your target customer, put yourself in their shoes. What would catch their eye? Put time, effort and strategy into your email marketing campaigns — don’t just send an email to send an email.

Strong content:

  • Helps you acquire new emails
  • Helps you retain the emails you have (less opt-outs)
  • Helps grow and build your brand

These are just a couple tips to boost your email marketing ROI, because again, even though social media is a really great marketing tool, email still is as well. Don’t miss out on its effectiveness by putting all your marketing eggs in the social media basket.

Three Ways Health Clubs Can Retain New Year’s Resolutions Members

Credit to CI|Lauren Bedosky, Contributing Writer

Group Taking Part In Spinning Class In Gym

It’s an annual ritual that health club owners, managers, and trainers see play out time and time again: January rolls around and memberships skyrocket. The cardio machines, free weights and fitness classes are filled to the brim with the New Year’s’ resolutions crowd who, after weeks of unrestrained snacking and entertaining, are determined that this is the year they will finally lose those last few pounds. Or run that marathon. Or stave off diabetes.

Predictably, the crowd begins to thin out after a couple of weeks until only a few brave souls are left standing by March. In spite of a desire to be healthier, the majority of people who make New Year’s resolutions inevitably fail every year. They may set up to fail from the get-go.

“The problem is that people make their resolutions in a bubble of overindulgence,” said Michelle Segar, PhD, author of “No Sweat: How the Science of Motivation Can Bring You a Lifetime of Fitness” and director of the University of Michigan’s Sports, Health and Activity Research and Policy Center. “They make these lofty, unrealistic, perfect-world resolutions. And of course, once that bubble bursts, which could be within two days of making it or two weeks, depending on how life turns out, the resolutions can’t survive.”

Segar compares resolutions made within this bubble to a helium balloon: eventually the helium escapes whether or not the balloon pops.

For the gym operators, losing the majority of these new members year after year can be just as disheartening as failing at New Year’s resolution over and over again. But health club operators have ways to keep the resolutions crowd from dropping out—and help them achieve their goals.

Stay Engaged

A common mistake that health club operators make with the New Year’s resolution crowd is that they don’t follow up or offer a plan for helping them reach their individual goals, according to Karen Woodard, president of Premium Performance Training.

“Simply selling a membership and turning people loose will not impact retention or future sales in a positive way,” she said.

To keep members motivated and engaged, operators should partner with members on their goals from day one. For this, Woodard offers a three-step process:
1. Identify the members’ goal(s) during the intake process so that both the member and the club have ownership of the goal(s).

2. Create a systematic monthly follow-up plan. This will be done by the membership advocate that enrolled the member, as well as any other professional involved in the goal plan. The plan should be agreed to by all parties and is intended to keep the member engaged and committed.

3. Invite the member to participate in three health club services that will affect his or her goal(s). This can be done at the point of sale and during monthly follow-up conversations.

Health clubs could even take advantage of the widespread interest in healthy living by creating special New Year’s programs or packages that bundle complementary services to aid a particular goal. For example, a weight loss package could offer a personal training session, a nutrition consultation and body composition testing. Meanwhile, a healthy living package could include yoga instruction, access to supplements and a nutrition overview with a registered dietitian.

The key is to remain engaged with members and continue to follow up with them regarding their goals and concerns.

“Checking in with people at critical junctures, such as after their first month, is important because we can address any issues or concerns they might have before they just quit,” said David Dellanave, co-owner of The Movement Minneapolis. “Let’s say someone joins and their knee starts hurting and they don’t tell us about it until we ask. They might just quit instead of using the physical therapy resources we have to get them fixed up and back on their way.”

Prioritize Enjoyment over Intensity

When new members—some of whom haven’t exercised regularly since the previous year—kickstart their exercise routine, some of them push themselves too hard, ultimately leading to burnout or even injury. Trainers may even encourage this “no pain, no gain” philosophy. However, for the majority of people who are not hardcore exercisers, this punishing mentality just isn’t motivating enough to sustain exercise for the long-term, especially when everyday demands distract and sap energy.

One of the best ways gyms can boost retention among the New Year’s resolution crowd is to encourage these new members to do the activities they enjoy doing, as opposed to the activities that burn the most calories, according to Segar. Though it may seem counterintuitive, especially if the goal is weight loss, advocating enjoyment over intensity actually leads to greater long-term success because enjoyment leads to consistency. It’s only human nature: Members will stick with activities they like, and quit the ones they don’t.

“One of the strongest pieces of science we know that exists is that people who enjoy or feel good during physical activity are the ones that actually keep it up,” Segar said.

Become an Ally

Some health club operators may hesitate to teach their members how to be successful with their goals both inside and outside of the gym because they fear people will cancel their membership if they are able to achieve results on their own. But becoming an ally to members can increase retention, Segar said.

“When I have helped people identify the gym as a partner inside and out, they feel successful,” she said. “They’re more successful and that means they stick with it.”

Despite best intentions, work deadlines, family obligations and tight schedules mean members may go through times where they can’t make it to the gym. On these occasions, members need to have at-home workouts so they can stay on track. Personal trainers should give clients some workouts to do at home, and the intake packet that new members get should include tips for easy, equipment-free workouts. Not only will members feel empowered to lead a more active lifestyle, but they will come to view the health club as a true partner.

When health club operators take the initiative to partner with their members to keep them moving—whether they are at the gym or in their basement at home—members achieve greater long-term success and consistency. And when members feel successful, they let people know.

“People would feel good and talk about a product or service that helped them be successful anyway,” Segar said, “but imagine how someone is going to feel about a gym that helps them be successful when they’ve failed for the last 30 years.”

Marketing: How Social Media Will Change in 2017

By

shutterstock_548902078-620x400According to Statista, “In 2018 it is estimated that there will be around 2.67 billion social media users around the globe, up from 1.91 billion in 2014.”

Social media is no longer something you should consider for your business. It is an essential — something that you should be doing not tomorrow, but today, to market your gym.

With that being said, social media is constantly evolving. There are new features, new platforms and new trends every year.

Keeping this in mind, here are the top social media trends projected to change/influence platforms in 2017. Keep them on your radar and in your marketing arsenal.

  1. Live video. In April 2016, Facebook released Facebook Live for the public, giving everyone the ability to share their real-life moments with just the click of the button. Since, the tool has become a resource for brands big and small, and will likely continue to be a top resource well into 2017, if not beyond.
  2. Virtual reality. In 2016 virtual reality began to hit its stride — in fact, Facebook even invested in the technology with the acquisition of Oculus in 2014. Right now it’s unsure how the technology will impact social media specifically, but be sure to keep it on your radar as this year progresses.
  3. New platforms/features. As always, social media is constantly evolving. Keep in-tune with key changes to algorithms, trends and even new platforms. Early-adopters get the benefit of having less competition when a platform first launches, so keep your eye out for platforms on the rise in the social world.

What is Generational Marketing?

All in all, Generational Marketing is understood as being a method of maximizing engagement and sales through Customer Relations Management (CRM), product development, and focused communications. This is achieved by modeling each Generational Marketing method under an archetypal ideology. This is figured by looking at demographic information according to age group. There is plenty of this information available online, but there are numerous ways to compile even more information and specific data. Generational and Multi-Generational Marketing are basically the same, in that any business is more likely to find increased success when marketing across generations, hence, MultiGenerational Marketing (Williams, et al. 2010).

Click here to download our e-book on Generational Marketing or go to http://leaddolphin.com/ and learn about our powerful CRM/Lead Generation platform.

3 Benefits of Having a CRM for Your Fitness Center

CRM, or Customer Relationship Management, has helped more and more Fitness Clubs understand client behavior, generate leads, and convert and engage members

CRM Software Technology Accessibility

In today’s market, prospective clients expect much more for their membership dollar. CRM software combines the marketing, sales, and customer service sectors into one automated program. It was at one time perceived that CRM software was an option only available to large franchises and substantial operations. Fortunately for mid-level and smaller clubs, this myth is quickly being exposed.

This technology is not only accessible to all clubs regardless of size, but it is the differentiator which gives the companies that use it a competitive edge which separates them from their competition.

Understanding who your target audience is, knowing them and their needs, is not a passing trend. It is a commitment to a new era of engagement that customers now expect from their Health & Fitness Club membership. CRM software tracks, measures, and records customer behavior. This allows for a focus to be made on making better decisions and nurturing more lucrative relationships. It increases the value of your service.

Benefits of Using CRM Software

The benefits of utilizing CRM software is manifold.

First, the software focuses on sales

  • The basis of automated CRM software is lead generation and the retention of existing customers. The cost of finding new customers can be expensive, so focusing on retaining customers is absolutely invaluable. Long-term clients are profitable relationships.

Second, the software focuses on saving time

  • CRM software automatically generates large volumes of data in regards to your existing members. This data includes targeted promotions which carry an extremely high success rate. It continues by generating large volumes of leads independently, allowing for successful membership opportunities in greater numbers. These two critical platforms are automated, thus, saving valuable time while creating a steady revenue stream.

Third, the software focuses on engagement and management

  • The technology allows for greater sales management and customer service because of the vast amounts of intelligence CRM software provides. Engagement is also a primary focus, which leads to satisfied and longer lasting customers.

To learn more about the fitness industry’s leading CRM click here http://leaddolphin.com/

A quick guide to starting your gym’s holiday marketing calendar

The season is almost upon us; Kids going back to school, Labor Day, Thanksgiving and before you know it NY2017!  With all of these and many more holidays coming up, now is the perfect time to set up a marketing calendar so that you can harness the excitement to either attract new/former members or get current members to try out/buy ancillary services.  Hopefully a couple of these examples will fuel your inner marketeer, so that you get ahead of your competition

  • Look at your enterprise and then start filtering down to create funnels to target your biggest opportunities.
    • Leads that have not been in the gym yet
      • EMAIL: “[gym name] would like to invite you to try us out with a friend for FREE till Labor Day!”  Then inside your message have a link for online enrollment for a 1 time offer
    • Members that have not had a complementary personal training session
      •  SMS: ” Hey [member name]! [gym name] would like to give you an early holiday gift.  click here to claim it
        • Have the hyper link take the member to a few different offers that they can bring in such as; personal training session, passes for friends to join them for a personal training session
    • Members that have bought personal training
      • Email: Offer a “scary special” (clearly a Halloween theme), that discounts purchasing a larger package of personal training, but within a small window.  Have hyper links for the members to quickly get in touch with the appropriate person.

If you need help filtering your audiences, building quality campaigns or improving your sales processes using a digital asset, then click here to learn how LeadDolphin is currently helping hundreds of health clubs achieve their revenue goals. http://leaddolphin.com/

6 Huge Insights Your Club Feedback Program Misses Every Day

by Nick Dyess|Netpulse

History is a little fuzzy on the origins of the suggestion box, but the anonymous tip box has existed in businesses for at least 110 years. Ever since its invention, businesses have been dealing with its flaws – it’s slow, you don’t get many tips and the tips you do get are anonymous. Then came online surveys as the feedback method of choice. While email surveys are better than pen-and-paper, they still only give you a limited perspective of a small subset of members.

Here are 6 insights that your old-school feedback program misses every day.

1. How your average member feels about your club

People don’t go out of their way to leave positive reviews, because they expect their club experience to be positive. This means that typical club feedback programs only hear from members in a timely way when something is wrong and they are upset. While some companies may get more participation on their email surveys than others, you’re still likely only hearing from a small segment of angry members, obscuring you from knowing how the average member actually feels.

2. Are you improving?

How do you know if your club is improving? Email surveys are not a reliable way to measure performance. They take too long to collect enough data to be meaningful and often have different members taking each survey. As mentioned in the first point, the members who take the time to complete online surveys are likely just the members who are angriest that month, not giving you any kind of reliable benchmark to measure yourself against.

3. That piece of broken equipment or bathroom disaster

When does your staff hear about a piece of broken equipment or an “incident” that needs to be cleaned up immediately? Sometimes a member tells you immediately. Sometimes the problem lingers until your staff discovers it much later. Feedback programs don’t help you solve these daily issues. Instead of hearing about these issues as soon as they happen, you find them hours later when countless other members have been frustrated by a solvable problem.

4. Helping the upset member who walks out the doors

It happens. Sometimes members have bad experiences. Maybe they thought the music was too loud, or they didn’t like their class that day or the hot water in the showers wasn’t working. They weren’t upset enough to seek out a manager or file a formal complaint, but it’s frustrating enough that they will remember when it comes time to renew their membership. The typical club feedback program has no mechanism for handling situations like this, meaning there are upset members that leave your club every day without hearing how you’re going to improve their club experience.

5. Motivating your staff

Uber collects feedback after every car ride, which motivates drivers to provide exceptional service to every passenger, every time. Your club likely has internal performance reviews for your employees, but does your member feedback program actively encourage your staff to go out of their way for every member like Uber’s does?

6. What your most important members are feeling

While all of your members are important, not all members are created equal. There are members who are big spenders on personal training, classes or merchandise that you would really like to keep happy. But how do you know if they are happy? Unless they happen to take your email survey or tell you their feelings directly every time they are at your club, you really have no way of knowing the mindset of your high value members.

How Much Data is TOO Much Data?

In this digital world, access to information is not a problem. The problem is accessing actionable information for your fitness center. Given the competitive landscape, only the right data can aid you to make informed and timely decisions. But how can you get this right data? This raises the question of “data overload, and how to avoid it.” Is there a limit to the amount of data that you need to derive the right data? Is there such a thing as “too much data”? If there is, how do you overcome it?

The trick is to get the right data. Once you have the data that is specifically targeted towards your clients, you can manage your customers, as well as your health club organization, in an efficient and hassle free manner.

“Too much data” is a myth. Let us debunk this myth once and for all. Here is a small guide that explains what you need to know about the right data.

Make the Data Actionable

What you need to do is to sift the relevant data and manipulate it in a form that urges people to take the action of becoming your customers. Collect the data that you have on your customers’ behavioral patterns, their credentials, their preferences, reviews and use them to create a strategy that works best for you.

Remember that only relevant data works for this. All other data that does not relate to your customers is irrelevant, and you certainly don’t need to waste your time on sifting through that data.

The process of making this data actionable takes place in two steps: housing the data and marketing the data.

Marketing the Data

Customer relationship Management (CRM) tools are great to automate the process of marketing.

Marketing is not an easy job, and marketing strategies differ from business to business, depending on the target market, the need of the customers, the policies of the company, and so on. Having tools at hand that automate many processes for you and help you figure out the best way to market your services is a great advantage, and apart from providing you with a greater efficiency of your marketing programs, it also saves your time and money.

Use a Single Platform for Housing Data and Marketing

If you use a different platform for housing the data and another for marketing it, you will have a lot of trouble and the efficiency of your process will go down. This is because transferring this bulk of sensitive and crucial data from one platform to another in a continuous cycle is bound to have problems. On the other hand, if you use a single platform for both the housing and marketing of the data, you will have a higher efficiency and will be able to create a marketing campaign that works best for you.

If you need to know more about how to get the most revenue for your fitness center, contact Lead Dolphin today!

With is better: Gym sales & processes with and without LeadDolphin.

A quick look at how LeadDolphin can stabilize your health club’s sales and processes

Recording valuable telephone inquiries

Without employees are expected to have a script memorized and to use a paper logbook to ensure they are getting in the sales funnel

With LeadDolphin employees can click on a “TI” feature, that will prompt your exact script for handling these leads, provided a form to submit the TI information and will place these leads in the correct funnel to provide automated follow up

Guest Registration

Without  new guests hopefully fill out a paper liability waiver, so that they can take a tour in your facility

With LeadDolphin new guests are prompted to fill out a tablet that will instantly populate the guest in LeadDolphin’s powerful CRM and instantly populate the guest in your POS software using our robust API. Finally LeadDolphin will close the loop by disseminating if this guest is “out of town”, “new” or a “be back”.

Leveraging Data

Without operators are sourcing “homemade” excel sheets, reviewing log books and reports from multiple platforms to make decisions on where to focus staff time / energy

With LeadDolphin operators have a suite of reports, that are pulling LIVE data that is being harvested from multiple platforms and brought forward in a meaningful with actionable end results.

LeadDolphin is the fitness industry’s leading CRM & lead generation tool.  With a robust sales engine, built around health club value propositions, LeadDolphin is quickly adopted by your team and will instantly influence your bottom line. For more information go to http://leaddolphin.com/