It's 8:13pm on a Friday night, you've just coached the last class or client, and you're ready to lock up. But wait...there's 27 emails you've not replied to yet. There are 14 failed payments to follow-up on. Then there’s that email campaign that is due by Monday. Plus you forgot the photos to edit for your social media challenge that ends tomorrow. Sound familiar? Do you know how to automate these and other simple tasks in your gym? If not, then this is the blog post for you! We will be talking about a few different things that you can do to save time and make life easier. After all, you have to carve out time in your day for the things that really matter to you.
We'll dig in on the "Top 3 Tasks" that you can automate right away:
- Email Marketing Campaigns
- Social Media Posts
- Customer Service
Whether it's these three functions of your business or three others, there are plenty of ways to automate the more tedious aspects of running operations at your facility.
Email Marketing Campaigns:
First, let's talk about email marketing campaigns. Email is one of the most cost-effective ways to reach your audience and get them engaged with your brand while they spend time at their desk or on their couch scrolling through social media feeds. By setting up an automated campaign that sends out a new email every couple of days, you can stay top-of-mind with your customers and get them to come back for more.
Most email marketing campaigns are created and coordinated into a set of single email messages that are dripped out over a specific period of time with a very specific desired result. These very specific results are termed "calls-to-action" and might include the following: register for a new block of personal training, sign up for a nutrition challenge, pre-order your winter hoodies, or simply register for a newsletter.
Many gym owners that find themselves struggling to create templates use companies like https://www.constantcontact.com/ that allow you to "create branded emails...and make it easy for people to find you—all from a single platform."
Still other gym owners chose companies like https://mailchimp.com/ that promise that "...email marketing helps you connect with your audience to promote your brand and increase sales...with Mailchimp’s campaign builder, it’s easy to find the right email templates for any message—whether you’re welcoming new subscribers, notifying customers of a sale, or wishing someone a happy birthday."
Either way you choose to go, the automation of your email marketing campaigns will save you lots of time!
I Can Automate Social Media Posts?
Next up is automating social media posts on various platforms. Creating an automated feed that publishes content at specific times throughout the day ensures that your followers will be getting fresh content without having to worry about logging in to your profile every time. And the best part is that you can swap out hashtags and images according to what's trending on a day-to-day basis, so your followers will always get fresh content!
Successful gym owners work smarter, not harder...they also recognize that certain technology helps them do just that. Companies like https://www.salesforce.com/ fits the bill as they allow for automated publishing, content management, conversion tracking, customer segmentation, keyword filtering, multi-account management, and provides valuable reporting and analytics to help drive decision making.
If you want to start a bit smaller, we've seen many gym owners have quick success with https://www.loomly.com/ that helps you "...manage all your social media content, as well as organic posts & ads from one platform. Plus, you get notified every time someone in your team updates or comments on a piece of content, with email, push, Slack, and Microsoft Teams notifications."
Talk about efficiency...if you're looking to save some time on Social Media and drop that 3 hours and 51 minutes a day on your screen, then these are just the tools to help you automate that process.
Should I Automate Customer Service Too?
Finally, you may want to consider automating customer service chat windows. By setting up an automated window that is open 24/365 to answer your customers' questions, you can always be available for them when they need help. Plus, it will save time since the chat window won't have to log their information or wait until a staff member is free at that moment—they'll get an instant response from whichever agent happens to be on duty!
Companies like https://www.drift.com/ allow you to "...bring your go-to-market teams together to deliver personalized customer experiences in real time – so you can increase your revenue, shorten your sales cycles, and strengthen your brand." They see the "need for speed" in replying to customers. FAST.
"Case in point: Just 11% of survey respondents expect immediate responses from forms, compared to 42% for chatbots. Overall, people’s expectations of chatbot response times are nearly identical to their expectations for response times for face-to-face conversations. Which begs the question… why are 79% of Cloud100 companies still using forms?"
Once you realize that there are technologies on the market that will help you optimize, automate, and increase the conversation/help rate in your gym, you'd be foolish not to employ these strategies.
Putting It All Together:
Now imagine it's 8:13pm, and all your daily tasks are complete for the day. Now you can actually hang out with your clients as they walk out of the gym...or better yet, you can turn the key in the lock and head home for the weekend, with all your tasks complete. The possibilities are endless when it comes to automating tasks in order to save time, so don't be afraid to explore all the different ways you can do this! And by sharing these tips with other fitness professionals, hopefully we can all find a little bit of time in our days to focus on what really matters.