Go ahead, double check that calendar. Ready or not, the holidays are just around the corner. And if you were planning your annual “happy holidays” post to Facebook and a special new member promotion leading up to Near Year’s, that’s fine. But, we think you can do better with your fitness holiday marketing.

Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s -- they’re all holidays about family, fun, and indulgence. Come January 1st, people will flock to their local gyms and studios with the hopes of getting back in shape, taking off the extra holiday pounds, or finally achieving that fitness resolution. But, waiting until late December or even early January to put your studio out there will mean getting left behind.

If you’re looking to drum up new memberships and sales leading up to the holidays -- and be well-positioned to take on plenty of “resolution-ers” as new members -- then you’ll want to try these 6 creative ways to pump up for your fitness holiday marketing.

 

#1: Celebrate early

No, we’re not giving you permission to open up your gifts two whole months early. Get people thinking about those upcoming New Year’s resolutions by sparking the holiday spirit a little early. That way, your content won’t get lost in the shuffle come December.

This could mean a “Santa’s Come Early” new member special or even a “Headstart on the Holidays” fitness challenge, encouraging people to get in shape before the holidays instead of waiting until after. If you’re the first studio in your area to get members thinking about getting in shape for the holidays, you’ll have a big leg up on your competitors.

#2: Refresh your gift cards

Gift cards are a simple, practical gift during the holidays, so make sure yours catch members’ attention. If you’ve had the same gift cards for a few years, try refreshing the design. Or, you can order special holiday-style gift card holders to get people thinking ahead on their Christmas list.

Place the gift cards in an easy to see spot - like your reception desk - and consider giving members’ the option to purchase a gift card online. In 2016, 71% of gift card purchasers said they’d purchased a gift card or coupon online, so give people multiple ways to give the gift of fitness.

(And if you’re directing people to a landing page to purchase those gift cards, check out Landing Pages 101 to see how your studio can create landing pages that convert.)

#3: Bolster your presence on review sites

Last time you went out to dinner, found a new doctor’s office, or went shopping for clothes, did you look at the business’s online reviews first? If you’re like 92% of modern consumers, you probably did.

When January 1st comes around, everyone and their mother is going to be on a hunt for the best fitness studio in town. Make sure you stand out on review sites so prospects find you first. Encourage happy current members to write reviews this November and December, or reach out to your email list requesting feedback. You can even offer a first-time check-in special on Yelp to encourage prospects to stop in (and leave a positive review!). Invest time this month into making your studio look its best on review sites, and your work will easily pay off in 2018.

#4: Boycott the holidays

Okay, we’re not recommending actually boycotting the holidays -- just using that trope to have fun with your marketing. If your studio has a tougher, more serious atmosphere that doesn’t mesh well with the cheer and merriment of the holiday season, you can organize campaigns or studio challenges that are “anti-holiday” in a fun and light-hearted way.

With shopping, traveling, and so much more, the holidays can be a stressful time too. If your marketing and programming uniquely focuses on that side of the holidays, you’ll pique the interest of people who are already a little tired of the holiday spirit. For example, you can organize a “Skip the Shopping” class one Saturday, encouraging people to forget about stressful holiday shopping and take time for themselves instead. Or, you can tempt new members to spend on themselves instead with a new member special.

#5: Holiday meal help

Position your studio as a valuable resource during the holidays by offering some help with eating well. Organize an email or social media campaign with tips for eating healthy during Thanksgiving, or offer a customized meal plan when members purchase a personal training package.

Eating well during the holidays is hard. And when you reach out to lend a hand to members and prospects, they’ll be more likely to think of you when they’re ready to join a gym or start visiting their existing studio more often.

 

#6: Have fun with holiday classes

Around the holidays, turn classes into events. Literally -- organize a themed holiday class, and drum up excitement with a Facebook invite, evite, or posters around the club. Playing up the holidays in one of your classes can be an easy and fun way to motivate members to try classes they haven’t yet or get back in the gym after a long time away. You can even turn your themed classes into lead generation tools by inviting members to bring a guest for free. Or, you can get the community involved by organizing a donation-based event benefitting a local charity.

If your studio hasn’t started thinking about marketing for the holidays, don’t delay! Thoughtful, targeted marketing leading up to the new year is a vital way to keep members engaged, draw prospects to your studio, and be well-positioned for the New Year’s resolution boom.

 

But, we get it -- well-rounded, multi-media marketing can be daunting. That’s why SWETI Services is here to help with a gift just for you: a complimentary marketing review. Our team can get you up and running with a targeted marketing campaign just in time for the holidays. All you have to do is schedule your free marketing review today.

 

 

Nicole Gartside, Content Marketing Strategist

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