Marketing is tough. There’s a million “channels” that you could be using, and as a gym owner, it’s tough to do it all. So let’s jump into our Top Five Ways that you should be marketing your program.
First, sit down and compile a list of goals and list them in an excel spreadsheet by importance. Make sure that the initial list is a set of attainable goals. It’s much easier to progress your goals each month as you figure out what is successful for you as a program. Perhaps your goal is to increase pro shop sales, or add a certain number of new athletes each quarter. Write them down and hold yourself accountable to measuring your progress.
Don’t create a “cookie cutter” marketing campaign. Your mission is to get noticed, so push yourself to find a way to spread a unique brand promise or message that is different from other programs around you. When you decide on the direction that you want to take, make sure that you follow through for the length of the campaign. A great example of a super low-cost marketing campaign is as simple as using social media channels to gain repetitive visibility and show your target potential customers the value of what you’re offering them.
Be A Social Media Superstar
Make sure you have a branded Facebook page, Instagram profile and a Twitter handle. Remember that each platform reaches a different audience so you should create messages that are targeted to the demographic that uses each platform.
Facebook: The target demographic for Facebook is typically a more mature audience. Facebook campaigns should be targeted to the parents/decision makers. Set aside a budget for “boosting posts” on Facebook, as this is a valuable platform for reaching new clients.
*CM TIP: Don’t just hit the boost button and move on. Make sure that you set your location to reflect cities near you. Your post will then show up in the news feed of potential clients near you instead of throwing valuable cash at the wall.
Instagram: This is where the majority of millennials spend their time. Your message on Instagram should be engaging, fun and entertaining. Our helpful hint: Try featuring new skills with a video of each athlete performing that newly attained skill; or post a photo of them with a “level up” certificate. The athlete can also post to their personal handle and tag your gym handle. It’s a great way to generate interest from their friends and soon enough their friends will be asking mom and dad to join! Word of mouth is extremely valuable in attracting potential new athletes.
Twitter: This is the ultimate news platform. You’ll find a mixture of adults, kids and media outlets here that can help spread word about your program. Use Twitter as a tool to promote retweetable content.
Should you use other channels? If you have time, absolutely. Don’t spread yourself too thin. Consistency of posts is crucial to attracting followers, and accounts that appear dormant make your brand lose credibility.
Distribute Press Releases
We can’t stress this enough. Press Releases are crucial and can be another FREE way to get exposure for your program. Make a list of credible news sources, local TV stations, radio stations and don’t forget to include Cheer! Magazine. News outlets are constantly looking for tips, community outreach stories, credible experts of certain topics and more. This is an extremely low cost way for you to gain attention for yourself or your program –and again– it’s the repetition that is key. Media sources that continue to receive press releases from you will think of you when they’re looking for an expert. And good content is often picked up and used by publications. Plus – once you get featured in a newspaper or magazine you can share the excitement with your social media followers! Do you see how this momentum is building?
Need help writing a press release? Contact Cheer Media and we’d be happy to help!
Get Involved in Your Community
One of the most popular (and easiest) ways to get your logo and brand in front of potential new athletes is by getting involved in your community and being as visible as you can be, anywhere you can be. Try contacting some locally-owned and operated restaurants. Ask the business owner if you can provide coloring sheets as a kid’s menu. Offer to print 1,000 copies and include your logo or a special offer in the design or on the back of the sheet. This low cost gift to the restaurant – if done well – will be a no brainer for them to accept and distribute, and they’ll happily collaborate with you and find ways to continue to reach their customers with your message.
Give Retention Gifts
When you’ve created a marketing budget and are ready for some “outside the box” ideas, consider giving out perks and gifts to each athlete in your program. It usually comes as an unexpected, but much appreciated, thank you. This creates loyalty and becomes a word of mouth campaign to beat out competitors in your area.
Here’s a creative gift idea! Join the Cheer! Magazine Gym Subscription Program. You’ll receive copies of the magazine to gift at practice and receive a lot of really cool perks, like a photoshoot and getting your athletes featured in a national publication! And there’s that synergy again… when you post and share your magazine feature on social media. Contact us for more info!