4 Signs it’s Time to Hire a Lead Generation Company for your Gym

One of your primary responsibilities as a gym owner or operator is to make sure the door is swinging, the phone is ringing, the email is dinging and the text is pinging.

Do you think your membership sales team could benefit from the expertise of a lead generation company to get things going, but you’re not sure you’re there yet?

Should you wait until membership sales or private training reach a certain level before bringing someone in? Should you just ride this slump out? Like anything in the the gym business, you want to be confident that you will see a return on your investment.

With that in mind, here are 4 telltale signs that you may be ready to bring in the outside help of a proven lead generation company for your gym.

1. Your Membership Sales Have Dipped (and overall traffic is down)

This is the most obvious issue.

Your sales numbers aren’t where you want them to be. However, you’re still confident that you have a strong sales team (including management) in place and you want to ensure that you’re giving them everything they need to succeed.

Bringing in the gym experts can give them a chance to examine your policies and procedures to find any gaps or opportunities, while they can also look at your sales culture and selling capability.

2. You Feel That You’ve Plateaued

Maybe your sales numbers are fine. But they’ve remained “fine” for months and you feel like your team is capable of more.

You may have done an expert job of recruiting and training your current roster of membership sales superstars, but they have gone as far as they can with the resources you have in-house.

Many times a fresh perspective can be invaluable when you’re looking to take your gym to the next level.

3. You’re Chasing Unqualified Leads

Everyone wants a sales funnel that is overflowing with nothing but qualified leads. However, we don’t have to tell you that this is not how the real gym world works.

Unqualified leads remain a major challenge in every gym. In fact, half of surveyed gym owners say that increasing their lead-to-customer conversions is their biggest challenge and their top priority.

A team of lead generation gym experts can help you gain access to more leads and ensure they’re qualified.

4. Your Sales Team is Spending Less Time Selling

Is your full-time sales staff only selling part-time?

This is another major issue that plagues many gyms. The average membership salesperson today is only spending about a third of their time on actual selling (or even less). The rest of the time, they’re performing non-revenue generating activities like prospecting leads or writing/ responding to emails.

Of course, these other tasks are crucial to their ability to sell memberships and do their jobs. But should they really take that much time? Two-thirds is too high. You can do better.

A lead generation company for your gym can help you streamline your processes and get your team back on the phones and selling more memberships.

Too many gym owners will only consider bringing in a lead gen company once their leads have dried up. There is always an opportunity to get help long before you get to that point. If you’re noticing your sales slowing or plateauing, now is the perfect time to seek outside assistance. Or, you can reach out if you simply feel that your sales team needs to spend more time selling.

There is really no wrong time to hire a lead generation company. Don’t wait until it’s too late!

Now, let’s start selling!

An Outsourced CEO and expert witness, Jim Thomas is the founder and president of Fitness Management USA Inc., a management consulting, turnaround and brokerage firm specializing in the gym and sports industry. With more than 25 years of experience owning, operating and managing clubs of all sizes, Thomas lectures and delivers seminars, webinars and workshops across the globe on the practical skills required to successfully to overcome obscurity, improve sales, build teamwork and market fitness programs and products. In addition, his company will buy gym equipment from gyms liquidating or closing. Visit his Web site at:www.fmconsulting.netorwww.jimthomasondemand.com.

a message from Jim Thomas

While all of us in the gym business settle in and wait for the pandemic to pass, we need to recognize that this could end up being a significant opportunity for your gym if you choose to expand and advance into the market place. But, it will require work. Don’t just sit and wait, develope a strategy, so that when this is over, you’re prepared to advance.

Here is some impotant information to remember:

  • People will still buy from you, but you will have to ask. Don’t let anyone guilt or shame you into thinking that selling is a bad thing. In many ways, you can treat this like a pre sales.
  • The economy will prosper soon. This is temporary. This will end. Let’s be sure we’re ready.
  • Gyms will re-reopen. There will be pent up demand for your services and products. Be prepared.

Prepare a plan of action and business strategy for the new normal:

  • Keep Selling. For a visual, treat this like a presales, make it simple and easy to get started and add value. Memberships, paid trials, personal training, supplements, etc.
  • Keep your current members. You’re only temporarily changing how you will coach your members (you’re not closing). Help your current members stay with you. Stay in touch with your members. Commnicate, even over-communicate. Such things as online classes, Q&A sessions, sending a work out of the day, check in on them, accountablity sessions, etc.
  • This one is big…be prepared for business after this ends. Don’t find yourself doing nothing and expect to flip the switch. Develope your plan and take action!

Are you ready to keep your members and capture market share?

  • Take control of the current situation and get a grip on things. Write out a plan that allows you to preserve cash, keep your current members, continue to sell, and develope a strategy that allows you to advance, not retreat into the marketplace. Turn off the TV.
  • Leverage an online and remote strategy to serve your members and prospects. Live classes, video, accountabilty calls, coaching calls, have fun with it just like you would inside your gym.
  • Prevent objections and sell during this time; Make this simple. Provide value.

Thank you.

Jim

An Outsourced CEO and expert witness, Jim Thomas is the founder and president of Fitness Management USA Inc., a management consulting, turnaround and brokerage firm specializing in the gym and sports industry. With more than 25 years of experience owning, operating and managing clubs of all sizes, Thomas lectures and delivers seminars, webinars and workshops across the globe on the practical skills required to successfully to overcome obscurity, improve sales, build teamwork and market fitness programs and products. In addition, his company will buy gym equipment from gyms liquidating or closing. Visit his Web site at:www.fmconsulting.netorwww.jimthomasondemand.com.

How to handle a pay raise with gym staff in a challenging economy

I speak with many gym owners and operators who have concerns on how to hand out pay raises when times are tough. Although… difficult times can be nothing more than an excuse not to offer a pay raise even though there’s merit. My answer normally will surprise the concerned gym owner when I tell them my solution to pay raises is the same no matter if it’s good times…or not so good times.

Gyms need talent. There is a shortage of talent. Talent will cost money otherwise you will lose your best people to other industries.

As we all know, sales can have a way of being a moving target…so if you continually compensate your staff around a fixed compensation plan, you are setting yourself up for a fall. I like to see gyms offer some form of a guaranteed opportunity, but with plenty of upside based on production and job description.

· You have a budget, right? Give staffers responsibility for certain line items. Say the budget for towel service is $2,000 per month…any savings they can generate in that line item would result in a 50% bonus off the total savings. So, if they save the club $500, they would receive a $250 bonus. It’s a win-win.

· Additional compensation does not have to come in the way of direct dollars. Work a half day on Friday, but receive compensation for a full day.

· Make childcare available for a reduced cost or even free. This offers a potentially significant savings for the employee plus the added bonus of convenience.

· Where it’s possible, offer flex-scheduling. This is a nice perk for those who have children or simply like the idea of beating rush hour traffic.

· Everyone is in sales…or they should be. Have a commission plan for every employee in your club. And then teach them how to promote and sell.

· Offer more training and continuing education that’s job related. Help make them more valuable to you…and increase their confidence and self esteem at the same time.

· Have a monthly contest. Of course, a sales contest would work in many departments, but you could also have a cleaning contest based on daily inspection scores. How many more memberships would you sell or how many members would you retain with a cleaner facility?

· Combine duties. When someone leaves your company…instead of hiring someone else, take a look around, maybe you have someone who deserves more money and they can pick up some of these duties. The club will save and the employee will get an increase.

· A common mistake in evaluating compensation is to view the employee as an expense…if you can learn to view the employee as your most valuable asset, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

· A final reminder…the most expensive person you have on staff is the lowest paid person who’s worth it.

Now, go give someone a raise!

An Outsourced CEO and expert witness, Jim Thomas is the founder and president of Fitness Management USA Inc., a management consulting, turnaround and brokerage firm specializing in the gym and sports industry. With more than 25 years of experience owning, operating and managing clubs of all sizes, Thomas lectures and delivers seminars, webinars and workshops across the globe on the practical skills required to successfully to overcome obscurity, improve sales, build teamwork and market fitness programs and products. In addition, his company will buy gym equipment from gyms liquidating or closing. Visit his Web site at:www.fmconsulting.netorwww.jimthomasondemand.com.

Keeping Your Gym in Shape: Fourteen Ways Your Gym Billing Company is Losing You Money.

Thousands of gyms and fitness clubs are doing their billing and member management using Gym Software. But just because you have gone digital does not mean you are ahead of the game. There are many ways that your Gym Billing Company can actually cost you money and this article discusses several of those ways.

1. Your vendor / gym billing company requires you to use their merchant account. Gym Billing companies are not financial institutions. They are middlemen that mark up and resell financial services at a profit. Requiring you to move your billing services to their merchant account can cost you an additional 2% to 3% in monthly charges

2. Your Vendor does not provide next day funding for ACH transactions. It is critical to keep the cash flow going in your gym. Gym billing companies that do not process your ACH transactions in one day may cause critical lapses in your cash flow. Prompt ACH processing is important so that you can manage your billing and cash flow of receivables.

3. Your Vendor does not provide an integrated email and texting function within their software. Having software with integrated email that includes self-managed custom templates is critical if you do email marketing to your existing member base. If your vendor does not provide this service you will incur the extra costs of a service like MailChimp. And having your existing member database accessible to integrated SMS templates will eliminate the time consuming exercise of exporting your member database and uploading it to the SMS Company your vendor uses for texting. Remember though,

if your vendor has integrated an outside texting service, there may be extra rates applied every time you do a text to your member base, so be sure and check for that.

4. Your gym billing software does not include an integrated EFT payment-processing gateway. If your vendor outsources their ACH and credit card processing they will pass those costs on to you, usually with a markup.

5. Your vendor does not provide automatic processing of declines back into the system, along with an automated way of rebilling declines. If you have to search for declines after every billing you are wasting your time and your employee’s time. In the gym industry, time is money. Your vendor should automatically process all declines and rebill them as part of their service.

6. Your vendor does not provide deferred revenue reporting for accounting purposes. Deferred revenue is money received by a company in advance of having earned it. In other words, deferred revenues are not yet revenues and therefore cannot yet be reported on the income statement. As a result, the unearned amount must be deferred to the company’s balance sheet where it will be reported as a liability. If you have to spend time doing this reporting instead of your vendor, it becomes another added expense for you.

7. Your vendor does not provide a clear explanation of charges. There is nothing more aggravating than discovering ‘blended hidden’ rates of services in your vendor’s bill. If they do not provide this clarity there is no way for you to know exactly how much you are paying for what.

8. Your vendor’s software does not allow for extensive data mining of your member database. In the fitness industry it is critical to be able to quickly contact ALL the members in your database — current, former and prospective — so you can inform them of sales, specials, events, new products, “please come back” offers and use the integrated CRM to upsell them. If your vendor does not integrate this function into their software it may take you hours to search the database for the group you want to reach, export the result, and then contact the members through one of the email or texting services.

9. Your vendor’s system does not include a mobile phone app. More and more gym members want to user their phones to schedule training, buy services, research history,and check into the gym. A built-in app that your members can quickly acquire and download to their phone can save your club hundreds or thousands of dollars.

10. Your vendor’s software does not allow for online training and scheduling. Being able to allow online booking and scheduling is crucial. It frees up your resources by letting the trainers and members schedule classes themselves. Plus standalone scheduling systems can cost hundreds of extra dollars a month, a real detriment to your bottom line.

11. Your vendor’s software does not reflect the number of training sessions used after purchase. If the vendor’s system does not automatically perform the function of managing the allocation and use of purchased sessions, you will spend your money using your staff to manually keep track of what was purchased and when it was used.

12. Your vendor does not provide a CRM website that integrates with your software. Fitness clubs that can be found on all the social media outlets are ahead of the game. And the smart clubs use social media — Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram — to link to a user-friendly website where the latest offers and specials can be purchased. If your vendor does not offer this service and link it directly to your software database, you are losing revenue that could push your earnings to a whole new level.

14. Your vendor does not include online contracts as a feature of their software. For years you have been having your new clients fill out paper contracts at the front desk — contracts that you then have to file away and keep permanently somewhere in your office. Software that stores all these contracts digitally and allows your members and prospects to sign up using a kiosk, tablet or phone allows you to store all your “paperwork” in the cloud, saving you space and allowing for instant retrieval of contracts. Paperless contracts stored on a secure cloud server also keep your club PCI compliant.

And that’s just some of the ways that your vendor can lose you money. When you are looking for Gym Billing Software or if you are just starting to wonder if you have gym software that is doing the very best job for you, review this information so you can ask the right questions.

An Outsourced CEO and expert witness, Jim Thomas is the founder and president of Fitness Management USA Inc., a management consulting, turnaround and brokerage firm specializing in the gym and sports industry. With more than 25 years of experience owning, operating and managing clubs of all sizes, Thomas lectures and delivers seminars, webinars and workshops across the globe on the practical skills required to successfully to overcome obscurity, improve sales, build teamwork and market fitness programs and products. In addition, his company will buy gym equipment from gyms liquidating or closing. Visit his Web site at:www.fmconsulting.netorwww.jimthomasondemand.com.

Attention Fitness Club Owners!! Are you struggling to grow your club and operate it?

Here are some of the most common problems I see club owners facing:

  1. They don’t have enough time to scale and manage because they are putting out fires 🔥
  2. They are barely breaking even or worse…..losing money 📉
  3. They are experienced with fitness but not with running a business
  4. They don’t know if they should sell their club or try to bring it alive 🏥
  5. Because of this, they are impeding the growth of their club

If one or more of these sounds like a problem you have had recently, then it’s time to make a change.

I’m Jim Thomas and I’ve been specialize in helping club owners make the right decisions to take their clubs to the next level. If you would like me to personally audit your club, and provide you with a strategy session to see how we can improve your current situation, simply click the link below, fill out your name and number, and I will be in touch with you shortly! (Offer limited)

Because…..When the going gets TOUGH, the SMART get HELP.™

Get a strategy session ➡️➡️ https://lnkd.in/dGs2SVu

An Outsourced CEO and expert witness, Jim Thomas is the founder and president of Fitness Management USA Inc., a management consulting, turnaround and brokerage firm specializing in the gym and sports industry. With more than 25 years of experience owning, operating and managing clubs of all sizes, Thomas lectures and delivers seminars, webinars and workshops across the globe on the practical skills required to successfully to overcome obscurity, improve sales, build teamwork and market fitness programs and products. In addition, his company will buy gym equipment from gyms liquidating or closing. Visit his Web site at:www.fmconsulting.netorwww.jimthomasondemand.com.

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