Owning a gym might look financially lucrative, but running one often comes with many challenges, especially when it’s about getting more paying Gym members.
Since it is a local business, it’s important to find creative ways to bring potential clients to your gym. And thanks to the internet, it is now much easier to market your gym services compared to a decade ago.
But wait, we are not talking about Paid Ads only. Simply running Ads won’t get you enough members to sustain.
Rather, you should have a compelling gym funnel in place to try and get more membership sign-ups on a regular basis.
Today, we will look at how you can plan and execute the perfect gym sales funnel that will help you attract the right clients and get you more gym members every month.
In fact, the tactics you will learn in this article can be used by any gym, fitness center, or even yoga center.
So, let’s begin.
Guide To Planning A Compelling Gym Funnel And Sell More Memberships
After reading this article, you will be able to implement the best marketing strategies for the gym funnel so that you can expect to see significant growth in your business.
Selling gym memberships is quite different from other sorts of services out there since people first consider the location & expense before signing up to join a gym.
Besides these, people also look into some other factors such as,
- the facilities provided by the gym
- the environment of the studio
- the availability of equipment
- & most importantly, the guidance provided.
So it is up to you to put some effort into attracting more potential clients with good gym offers & packages and the best service.
- The first challenge here is to make prospects visit your gym and love it.
- And the second challenge is to plan an irresistible offer.
But don’t worry, it’s not as difficult as it sounds. If you have the right plan ready, you will be able to land more membership sales in no time. And in this guide, that is exactly what you will learn to execute.
The following are the key elements of a highly-converting gym funnel:
- Lead Generation Campaign To Collect Qualified Leads
- Nurturing Emails Series For Brand Awareness
- Offer A Free Service Trial Through A Squeeze Funnel
- Nurturing Campaign To Add More Value
- Value-added Induction Program
- Free Session With Professional Trainer
- A Sales Funnel For Gym Membership & Other Services
Let us look at these in detail.
1. Lead Generation Campaign To Collect Qualified Leads
Before you start marketing your gym services, it’s best to collect a list of people that would be interested in your service. And the best way to do that is to run a lead generation campaign.
In this case, you can prepare a quiz form with some qualifying questions to collect quality leads with the necessary information.
In return, you may provide fitness guides, maybe with pre-recorded videos that they do not normally have access to.
For example, you can prepare a form with questions such as:
- Current fitness activity
- Current diet
And include a key question such as
- What is your fitness challenge?
In this case, you can have 3-5 answers to qualify them for the right service, such as Overweight, underweight, low stamina, etc.
All of these will give you key insights into what they are looking for, and you get their contact information, i.e., now they are qualified leads.
Then, place this form on a 2-step funnel. On the landing page, add this form, and add copy to promote that you will offer a free personalized guide to fitness.
Once they fill out the form, take them to a Thank You page, instructing them to check their emails to get the free guide, and ask them to join your Facebook Group, like your social media profiles (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, etc), or and visit your website to check out your services.
Make sure to highlight your brand and location on both pages so that the prospects know where you are located.
Next, set up email automation to send an email to the ones who signed up, with a link to their personalized video guide based on the answer to the question about their fitness challenge.
**This can be easily done if you use Forminator to build the form. Set up conditions for that question to assign the leads to separate tags for each answer, and send their data to an automation tool (we recommend Mail Mint). In your automation tool, you can set it to send respective emails with links to the guides, based on the tags your leads have.
Now that you have this funnel ready, start promoting it on your social channels and run Paid Ads for it as well. (Yes, this won’t get any instant sales for you, but you are investing for future sales.)
2. Nurturing Emails Series For Brand Awareness
Apart from the lead generation funnel you just learned, you also need to run a nurturing campaign afterward to expose your brand.
- So you can set up 3 email series starting from the next day with valuable content, such as diet tips and exercise hacks.
- Followed by a couple of emails with exercise tips using the equipment while showcasing your Gym, and testimonials of current members of how good your Gym is.
The last email should have a CTA to visit your gym.
These will help you to gain trust & authority from your leads and help them remember your brand in the future.
3. Offer A Free Service Trial Through A Squeeze Funnel
This step is the fruit of this funnel.
Normally, many will suggest you craft an online sales funnel for your Gym. But trust me, this is not a business where you can convince one to sign up directly online without a live visit.
Hence, it is important to attract prospects to visit your studio.
And the best way to do so is to offer Free Access to your gym as a trial.
That’s right. You can offer to allow prospects use your gym free of cost for a few days, with no commitments.
Only a 1-week free trial is enough to convince many to try your gym out.
Trust me, there are tons of people out there who were planning to join a gym but never got the courage. Many are also reluctant because they think a gym is too expensive. A free trial will certainly get many of them to consider visiting your gym at least to take a look, if not sign up as a member later.
So plan this free trial and offer it via a banner outside your gym to get local prospects. But more importantly, create a squeeze funnel for it.
Simply create a 2-step funnel. On the landing, highlight the free services they will get such as access to all equipment, free full-body analysis, and maybe 1 free session with a professional trainer.
Keep a simple form just to collect the Name, email, and phone number.
After one signs up, take them to a Thank You page, instructing them to check their emails to book their induction day. Then ask them to join your Facebook Group, like your social media profiles (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, etc), or visit your website to check out your services.
Again, make sure to highlight your brand and location on both pages so that the prospects know where you are located.
**One unique thing you can do here is, on the landing page, you can include a virtual tour of your Gym just to give a glimpse of what they are going to experience for free. This may often trigger extra interest in the offer.
You can easily create this funnel using WPFunnels. For the virtual tour, you may take a look at WPVR.
Once this funnel is ready, promote it on your social channels and run Paid Ads for it as well.
Remember to email the qualified leads that you collected with the lead generation funnel earlier.
Since they are qualified leads, you can be sure many if them will sign up for this trial.
Hence, this campaign will not go empty-handed by any means.
4. Nurturing Campaigns To Add More Value
As mentioned above, whenever one opts into your squeeze form, send them an email immediately, but make sure to make the email copy very welcoming and compelling. The following are some points you need to cover in this email:
- Express your excitement to have them on board.
- Include a link to book a call with your manager to discuss and schedule the induction program.
This means you should plan your induction programs to be held on fixed days in a week so that you can host multiple clients on the same day.
- Mention that if he doesn’t book the call, the manager will call the next day.
So if someone doesn’t book the call, keep their leads separate and have the manager give them a call to see if you should reserve a spot for them.
- Include a few positive testimonials from some of your recent clients.
- And your google location link for them to recognize your location.
- Provide links to your social channels for them to follow you.
So, needless to say, this email will be a bit longer than usual.
As soon as someone books a date, the most crucial part starts. You need to nurture your leads both online & offline in a very strategic way. Despite the trial being free, this is the point at which you have the true opportunity of selling the subscription.
Here’s what you do.
- Based on the date of induction, set up a series of 7 more emails, starting from the day before induction till the second last day of the trial period.
In these emails, each day, give new suggestions on what to do next while at the studio to get the desired result.
For example, in the first email, you may include instructions on what to do when arriving at the Gym, i.e., who to talk with, how to warm up, what clothes to wear, safety instructions with different equipment, etc.
In the second email, you can give them a routine to follow if they want to. And on the next few emails, send new instructions on what to do next according to the routine.
- When the trial session ends, some might sign up for membership instantly but some might take time to think about it. So initiate an automated email series for people who do not sign up within the next 36 hours.
This could be a series of 3 emails. All the emails should discuss the value they will get if they register as members, and offer them a discount through a gym sales funnel (which we will discuss in a later section of this article).
Set it up so that if one accepts your offer, he will be opted out of this email series. Else they will receive the next email 24 hours later.
Mail Mint can be used to set up these automated email campaigns easily. And WPFunnels has native integration with Mail Mint, so you will be able to easily send data there and initiate the automation in just a few clicks.
5. The Value-added Experience Free Of Cost
Now, you have the whole funnel in place. The next big trigger to convert prospects is a good experience during the free trial.
- First, you need to prepare a well-planned induction program. Make sure they are greeted and instructed professionally. They should feel they are important and by no means should they get the impression that it is a free service. It’s your job to prove your worth with quality service.
During induction, announce more details such as rules & policies, security precautions, the studio equipment whereabouts, and who to communicate with for help. Plus, give them a plan on what they can do in these 7 days and let them decide if they want to follow it or not.
**You may invest some time in preparing a good 7-day routine for the common fitness requirements so that people who are new will know what to do.
- At some point in the induction welcome speech, do mention the value you will be giving away for free, i.e., mention the usual pricing that you are saving the prospects with this campaign.
You can be honest with them and share that this is a way to show how much you value them and that you are hoping this will help them choose to join your gym.
You can also initiate a special tactic during the free trial to keep the prospects excited.
For example, you can announce a specific challenge that will win them extra rewards such as free merchandise or discount on membership plans.
The challenges could be anything from the number of calories burned to the length of time spent working out at the gym throughout the free trial.
You may announce this both at the induction and in the first email sent on the inductiond day.
6. Free Session With a Professional Trainer
During the free trial, you have an amazing opportunity to promote your in-house trainers. You can offer your trial customers a free session with a professional trainer, maybe on a day of their choice, or on the 3rd day of the campaign.
The trainer may educate the client on what changes need to be made to transform and achieve the fitness goal of the client, and how he can assist throughout this period. And then conduct a brief training session to provide a preview of what is in store if the client chooses to take a personal trainer along with the gym membership.
Since hiring a professional trainer is more expensive, but more profitable for you, this will be your opportunity to get a few prospects excited about the idea of hiring one when they become members.
It is wise to provide a discount equal to the first month’s membership charge when selling larger membership options, such as a 6-month membership + personal trainer.
You can spice this opportunity up with a discount offer on your plans after the trial ends.
For example, let’s say you have a 6-months membership worth $90 (i.e., $15 a month) and a personal training service (2-days a week) worth $30 a month.
In this case, the total plan for 6 months will be $270 (or $45 a month).
So what you can do is, you can give a $45 discount, i.e., 1st month absolutely free, with the option to opt-out of the personal training service with a full refund of $30 for each month, i.e., $150.
This will provide your personal trainers an opportunity to attract a few interested clients who won’t stop using their services if they perform a good job.
7. The Closing Sales Funnel for Gym Membership & Other Services
So, once the free session is done, it’s time to pitch your main gym sales funnel for gym memberships and other services.
The way to do this is, on the 2nd last day of the free trial, hand out flyers to your free members with a discount offer on your membership plans. Include a link they can follow to look at the offer.
Also, mention this in the last email you send on the nurturing campaign you ran since the induction booking.
On the last day, you can gather everyone and announce the offer to them.
Now, let’s look at the offer you can make here.
The Gym Funnel To Close The Deal
First, decide on a special discount you can give to the free members. This could be a 20-40% discount on your membership plans.
Next, create a 4-step sales funnel.
- On the landing page, promote your memberships and the huge discount they will get.
- On the checkout page, keep a distraction-free checkout process. No need to add any extra service advertisement on that page.
- Once they have signed up, immediately make an upsell offer to also take a personal trainer along with the gym membership.
**You may or may not provide a discount here. There is no reason to push this right now. When they come to your gym, you’ll have plenty of chances to advertise for personal trainers.
- And on the thank you page, you can suggest the user join your Facebook Group or follow you on social media.
This is the funnel that you will promote in the 3 email series you planned to launch 36 hours after the trial is over.
Again, this funnel can be created easily using WPFunnels.
Now, do not publicly promote this funnel. This should only be accessible to people who have taken the free trial in your gym. So, in a sense, this funnel is just an attempt to close as many deals as possible.
Along with emails, you may also try giving a call 1 week after the trial, and SMS campaigns along with the email series.
So, until now, you have nurtured your prospects and got them to experience your gym. And this funnel will help to convert as many of them as possible.
Re-run The Whole Gym Funnel On Continuous Intervals
This whole process is quite lengthy but has proven to be effective for several existing gyms, for example, Word Fitness in Dunedin, New Zealand has successfully used this funnel to increase its regular members from 180 to about 500 in a matter of a couple of years.
So it is evident that this funnel works. The challenge is, you have enough resources available to continue using this funnel for a long time.
Re-run the whole process every quarter and try to get as many local members as possible.
**Make sure that whenever you run Ad campaigns, you target people from nearby areas. There is no point in running Ads to distant individuals.
A gym funnel can be crafted in many ways, but the one you learned here has proven to deliver results for several gyms. Hence, it’s a no-brainer to start using a funnel similar to this for your own Gym to try and get more long-term members.
And it’s super easy to create them in WordPress using WPFunnels and automation tools such as Mail Mint.
So if you own a WordPress site, then start using WPFunnels now and build a gym funnel that will help you grow your business.