4 Easy Ways to Begin Using Email Marketing at your Gym
Back when I started my first corporate gig at PaySimple, I worked side-by-side with the email marketing team. I had always thought of email as just a method of writing letters back and forth between friends and family. I didn’t really use it for anything too serious. However, after seeing how the guys at PaySimple used email marketing to drive sales leads, I was officially convinced in the power it holds. Email marketing doesn’t need to be as time-consuming as you think it does. We here at FitnessTexter only deal with text-message marketing for our clients, but we actually use a bit of email marketing ourselves to generate interest in our text messaging business. We’re not NatGeo with their amazing Monthly Photo newsletter, but we still have a decent amount of success with our email marketing campaigns. That said, here are 4 ways that any fitness business, be it a yoga studio, CrossFit box, or martial arts center can benefit from using email marketing.
Craft a Monthly Newsletter to Keep Current Members Involved
Writing a newsletter doesn’t need to be as boring as you think it does. I’ll be the first to admit, we don’t have a monthly newsletter at FitnessTexter. We should, but our clients are from so many different business sectors that it would be difficult to write something that everyone would enjoy. A monthly newsletter can be as simple as having an upcoming calendar of social events, an employee of the month club, and any other stories of interest. It’s a great way to keep your current members engaged too. SendGrid, a Denver startup, is a great place to set up email marketing.
Use Drip Marketing to Keep Your Leads from Getting Cold
Though we don’t do any drip marketing here at FitnessTexter, I definitely did it back when I worked at PaySimple in Denver. GetDrip seems to be the top drip marketing provider, but we used Marketo back at PaySimple. Regardless, if you have a lead submission form on your website(and the end-user gave you permission), you can add them to your drip marketing list. This should just be a bi-weekly email gauging their interest. You can provide some “email-only” promotions after a couple weeks to bring in leads that never materialized into new gym members.
Send Personalized Automated Replies to Form Submissions
One of the things we do at FitnessTexter is to send automated email replies every time someone submits a free trial form. This is a great way to start the conversation with potential clients. We don’t add them to a marketing list(see below), but we just send them a “Your email has been received. Could you answer these questions about your business?” It’s a great way to weed out the SPAM-y free trial submissions from the real free trial submissions. If someone submits a free trial form and doesn’t reply to our business questionnaire, we can usually be about 75% confident that they will not become a customer.
DON’T Add People to your Mailing List without Telling Them
One word of warning; do NOT add people to your email marketing lists without their prior consent. I’ve emailed various fitness businesses about FitnessTexter and a few weeks later, I start receiving their weekly newsletter. This is very illegal; to add people to your marketing lists without their permission. The CAN-SPAM ACT discusses the legality of sending marketing emails and it’s something that all businesses need to follow. If you use a service like MailChimp you’ll be okay, but if you’re manually entering email addresses into your marketing lists, you’re looking at a lawsuit in the future.