Member Experience

How to Create the Ultimate Member Experience in Your Gym

Creating the ultimate member experience in your gym is all about mapping the customer journey. Here are some ideas to wow them each step of the way!

Monica Hilton
March 21, 2024
How to Create the Ultimate Member Experience in Your Gym
Creating the ultimate member experience in your gym is all about mapping the customer journey. Here are some ideas to wow them each step of the way!

Have you ever taken some time to truly stop and think about the member experience that you’re providing in your gym? Some food for thought: If you’ve put forth a ton of time and effort, there’s a good chance you’re giving your members the “ultimate” experience.

But on the other hand, what if you haven’t given it any thought at all? There’s still a 100% chance that your members are having an experience. Unfortunately, it might not align with the vision you have for your gym.

Increase gym revenue and retention
Creating the ultimate experience leads to increased gym revenue, retention and referrals.

As gym owners ourselves, the PushPress team understands the importance of creating the ultimate member experience. And with our collective experience as a guide, we’ve worked hard to carefully curate a road map to help you get there.

Check out the details below. Then be sure to download the Gym Owners’ Guide to Creating the Ultimate Gym Member Experience today!

Why is the Member Experience so Important?

As a gym owner, you understand the never-ending quest for things like additional revenue streams and lead acquisition. But did you know that the gym member experience is absolutely critical for increasing both gym revenue and retention?

For starters, the fitness industry is extremely competitive. The members of your gym community have options around every corner. Therefore it’s crucial to create an experience that sets your gym apart from the competition. You’re aiming to provide more than just a place to work out. By truly creating an unforgettable experience, you make it an easy choice for members to stick around.

And that leads to another great benefit: Retention. We live in a wishy-washy world where memberships can be easily canceled or switched. So, with stable revenue and long-term business success in mind, keeping members happy is imperative. Make them feel valued and engaged. Then they’ll spend more money and invite friends.

Five Steps to Creating the Ultimate Gym Member Experience.

In order to create the ultimate gym member experience, think about the entire customer journey. From the moment someone reaches out to your gym, to years down the road when they’re a long-term, loyal member.

Our goal is to help you examine each step along the journey. Are there ways you can truly wow people? To make your gym a place they don’t want to live without, let’s start from the beginning...

1. The Initial Inquiry.

When a prospective member initially reaches out to your gym for information, how quickly do you respond? Perhaps the most critical part of the response itself is the timing.

Consider this: If there’s any delay, one of two things could happen. First, your extremely-motivated lead might be ready to join the first gym that responds. On the other hand, too much of a delay in response time might cause them to lose motivation, and never join at all.

Therefore, act quickly and give them a friendly, personalized response. Even though this communication might just be a simple text exchange, it sets the tone for the whole member experience.

Automated workflows in PushPress Grow
Use the power of automation to keep you from having to drop everything and respond to inquiries.

We recommend using PushPress Grow to automate the process. So the minute someone reaches out, Grow sends an automated response that can be customized to your gym’s brand voice.

The best part is, Grow workflows are designed with one goal in mind. Leads are encouraged to book a free trial to come try out your gym. If they don’t act immediately, Grow will continue to send automated emails and texts to keep encouraging them to walk through your doors.

2. Signing Up for a Free Trial.

In the wise words of Eminem, “If you only had one shot, one opportunity... would you capture it? Or just let it slip?” A free trial - whether that’s a class or intro session - is sometimes your only in-person chance to wow prospective members.

Once again, give them a warm welcome from the minute they walk through your doors. As Rudy Trevino, owner of The Fit Stop in San Antonio, TX, says, “It’s really all about creating connection.” Yes, you want to give them a great workout. But more importantly, you want to show them the atmosphere, connection and accountability they can expect at your gym.

If you do this right, it’s no longer about selling gym memberships. This part of the member experience is about showing someone you understand their problems. And that you have the solutions.

3. Becoming a Gym Member (and those Critical First 100 Days).

When a new member joins your gym, one of your goals is to reduce the overwhelm as much as possible. At this stage, there’s a lot for them to learn and take in.

Personalize the gym onboarding process by assigning a coach to each new member. Then that coach can help them set goals and create an accountability plan. This is also a great time to introduce options for personal training or your nutrition coaching program. Plus, it’s always nice to have at least one familiar face in the gym that they’ll recognize as they get started.

Pro Tip: PushPress Grow offers the ultimate 100-day, automated workflow to nurture your members through this critical time. Want to learn more? Book a demo with our team today!

4. Transitioning from Newbie to Gym Fam.

Once the initial “deer in headlights” feeling wears off, your new member is off and running! Remember, they initially reached out for help reaching results, so that remains the primary focus.

Whether you outsource gym programming or write it yourself, your gym community should be achieving results. From logging workouts to recording PRs, tracking is the only way to visualize progress. Need help? Check out PushPress Train, the only workout-tracking system your gym needs.

Once you’ve ensured that your new member has set goals and is working toward achieving them, it’s time to have some fun! Create a calendar of community events and fun gym challenge ideas. Essentially, the idea is connect your members and encourage interaction.

Creating the ultimate member experience
Challenge and connect your gym community as part of creating the ultimate member experience.

5. Enjoying the Experience as a Long-Term, Loyal Member.

The difference between a long-term member at your gym and one who joined temporarily is what happens next in the gym member experience. Ultimately, people want to feel welcomed, valued and appreciated. Here are a few ideas to consider implementing in your gym:

  • Give some personal recognition shout-outs! Celebrate your members’ birthdays, gym anniversaries and milestones. Send a personalized note or gift, and don't forget to use the power of automation in PushPress Grow to take the work off your plate!
  • Create mentorship opportunities. Encourage your most loyal members to become a mentor or ambassador for newer members. First, this will foster a sense of pride and responsibility for seasoned members. Second, it should help to strengthen the sense of community within your gym.
  • Start a loyalty rewards program. Want to show members how much you appreciate their continued commitment to your gym? Consider a loyalty rewards program to offer some exclusive perks. A few ideas include discounts on gym merchandise, free personal training sessions, or exclusive access to special events.
Pro Tip: Once you’ve created a community filled with loyal members, remember to ask for referrals! Creating a successful gym referral program can help to increase revenue and retention.

In Summary: Driving Retention and Revenue with the Ultimate Gym Member Experience

The ultimate gym member experience can often be found at the intersection of increased gym revenue and unmatched retention numbers.

By focusing on the various steps along the customer journey, you can create an unforgettable experience. Plus, you’ll be earning all the business benefits that come along with it.

Start with an immediate, friendly response the moment a lead reaches out for information. Encourage them to book a free trial, then wow them during their first visit. Focus on results, goal-setting and tracking to guide them through the critical first 100 days. Finally, implement some fun ideas to show members you want them to stick around for the long term.

Follow these steps to welcome and convert new members. Then retain them to drive revenue and retention for the continued success of your business.

Ready to create the ultimate member experience in your gym? Download the Gym Owners’ Guide to Creating the Ultimate Gym Member Experience today!
Monica Hilton

Monica is our Content Manager extraordinaire for PushPress. She also owns her gym in Indianapolis, Together We Rise CrossFit, which she opened in 2014 and previously worked in IndyCar racing.

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