For kids, summer is always the best time of year: no school, beautiful weather, and endless hours outside with friends. But for those in the fitness industry, the new season can feel a bit more daunting. At the average gym in America, new memberships hit an all-time low between June and August. With the warm weather driving people outside and more families scheduling their summer vacations, most studio owners out there have experienced the “Summer Slump.”
Here at SWETI Services, we’ve seen summer after summer in the fitness industry, and we’ve put together some surefire ways your studio can beat the Summer Slump:
Refresh Your Calendar
People may prefer to get active outside as the weather warms up, but that’s not always an option for people that are still working a 9 - 5 job. They may not have time to hit up their favorite hiking trail before work or won’t feel safe running through their town late at night after dinner. Update your class schedule to accommodate those people. Make sure you’ve got some early-morning options for members who want a quick sweat session before work, as well as some late classes for the night owls.
Motivate Your Current Members
Just because new memberships are traditionally low this time of year doesn’t mean you should focus all of your attention on driving those sales back up. Dedicate energy to motivating your current members to get more involved, as well. Try putting together a summer workout challenge, where members are challenged to hit the gym a certain number of times a week to win a prize. Or, they could compete with other members for the most weight lost or highest number of classes attended.
You could also get your current members more involved by offering great deals on some of your pricier services, like personal training or nutritional planning. It’s hard to pass up a good deal, so give members a little push to check out other things your studio has to offer.
If you’re successful in motivating your members, you’re sure to have some regulars you can always count on: The people who show up day in and day out. Summer is the perfect opportunity to show those people how much you appreciate them (while inspiring your less-active members to get more involved, as well, or new members to come on board). Highlight some of your regular members on social media with a “member spotlight” or offer some free swag to people who attend your weekend workouts. That little unexpected surprise can motivate members to keep at it during the summer months.
(Looking for other ways you can use social media to keep your members involved? SWETI breaks it down with 4 Ways You Can Leverage Social Media to Increase Retention.)
Focus on Customer Service
Customer service is important any time of year, but it’s especially crucial during the summer months. Think of it this way: If your members are coming in less frequently during the summer, that means you have less chances to impress them and show them why they love coming into your studio. Make sure your facility is cleaner than ever, always well-stocked, and remind staff to be gracious, helpful, and proactive. If a member has a great experience when they come into your studio and leave in a great mood, they’ll be more likely to come back.
Take Advantage of the Season
Don’t always fight the new season -- embrace it when you can! If your members are eager to get outside, help them do that at your studio. Take one of your weekly boot camps outdoors or organize a fun run that starts at your gym where members can invite friends. Taking advantage of the weather can create a nice change of pace and still provide a great option for your outdoorsy members.
The ultimate way to beat the Summer Slump? Make sure your studio has a well-rounded marketing strategy to keep members involved all season long. SWETI Services would love to help you put that together. Schedule your free marketing review today to get in-the-moment feedback and advice to drive revenue for your business.