Lead generating for a couple of bucks November 02 2016
Forget mailers, door hangers, and newspaper inserts. Just for a moment, forget those things. Not because they don’t work. They do work, but they also cost money. And if I have learned anything as a fitness business coach, it is this: Business owners, especially fitness business owners do not like to spend money on marketing. And when they do, they expect a huge number of people to contact them and say something like, “Hey I just got this thing in the mail. I want to come give you money right now.”
I used to own a gym, so I understand.
So, rather than try to convince you that by having a consistent, year round plan of attack, tracking responses from your efforts, and from there sales, let me instead, see if I am able to get you to jump on board with a less expensive form of marketing first.
Purchase 5000 3 inch by 5 inch passes. Get them by clicking here: http://hipgym.com/products/1-000-passes
This will be the best $300.00 you have ever spent.
Now, get out a pen and paper. Or open up word. Whatever you prefer.
Write down all of the businesses near you. Retail businesses. The same type of business you have, where anybody can walk on in anytime. Hair salon, nail salon, cell phone place, convenient store, clothing store, etc.
If you have to drive around, which you likely will, do it. Get all of these businesses on paper.
Add them up. How many do you have? 75? 150? 122? Whatever the number is, divide it by 8.
Example: 123 total businesses. Divided by 8 equals 15.375. Rounded equals 15.
Why 8? You are going to visit each one of these businesses ONCE every two months, or roughly 8 weeks.
So, in my example, we need to visit 15 businesses per week. Okay, now what?
Monday and Friday. Those are the two days that I want you to visit these businesses. Take the number of businesses per week (in my example, it is 15) by TWO.
7.5, I will round it to 8.
I need to visit 8 businesses on Monday and 8 businesses on Friday.
Record how many 3 inch by 5 inch passes you provide to each business.
Who are the passes for? The employees of the these businesses. Most of these businesses will have around 10 to 15 employees. Give enough for 75% to 100% of employees.
Some businesses will allow you to leave passes on counters. This is awesome. But don’t ask on your first pass. Get to know them a bit, but if they offer, take them up on it. Get some cardboard holders for this scenario.
Jason, I can’t get my employees to do this. Fire them. Seriously, fire them right now you pussy.
Okay, before you hand them walking papers, make sure you have tried the following:
“John, our awesome salesperson, I need you to grab 100 or so passes and get outside the gym on Monday from 2pm to 3pm and from Friday 10am to 11am. Here is the list of businesses you will visit with these passes. Simply walk in, “Hi, my name is John and I am with Awesome Blossom Fitness right down the street, and I have some awesome passes I wanted to give to you and all of the employees here at Mings Nail Salon. How many people work here?”
Find out how many people work there, and hand somebody who works there enough passes for almost everyone. Smile, say thanks, walk out. Record how many passes you provided. Do this for 8 businesses. Come back to gym.”
If you do this two days of week, 52 weeks per year, going back to each business every 8 weeks, you will meet new people, including customers, you will increase “impressions” a lot and you will sell more memberships. And then, when you do send out 5000 mailers, or 1000 newspaper inserts, or have the boyscouts distribut 1000 door hangers, those mediums will be more successful because the folks receiving them will have maybe seen some passes on counters or in their employee break room, or seen John the salesperson walking around town in his staff logo shirt and name tag.
If they still won’t do it, fire them and get employees who will.
Keep changing lives.
Content Marketing June 22 2016
Below is an article that our friend Jason Linse recently wrote. It's very insightful into how to get the attention of different personality types.
Content marketing. You have heard the phrase. You likely even know what it means and why it is important.
Free, free, free. Everybody wants something for free. Sort of. Information, nowadays, is expected to be free.
Wondering about something? Work the google on the internet machine and you will find the answer.
I have been writing content to benefit gym owners for many years. And I have filmed hundreds of videos.
I do enjoy it all, and if not for all of my content, I would not be doing what I am doing.
A friend of mine is a runner. Well, he was a runner as a kid, being one of the fastest cross country runners in his home state. Now he is 42 years old. Through the years, he has been forced to abandon running for as long as 10 years at a time, due to injuries. Now, he is healthy and back at it with a goal to qualify for the Boston Marathon.
He is a high GREEN. An analyzer. www.personalityandfitness.com is the place to find out what you are. Email me email@example.com with “personality” in the subject line and I will get you a promo code to take the 5 minute assessment.
My friend recently hired an online running coach. He gets his running plan emailed to him and after each run, my friend emails the coach and reports on how the run went.
I asked my friend, his name is Mark, why he hired a coach. And then I asked him why he hired THIS particular coach.
“I wanted an expert to help me with the right training approach so I could qualify for the Boston Marathon.”
“I chose this dude because he had so much free content out there. I read an article and felt he knew what he was talking about, so I kept reading.”
In my world, as a fitness business coach, I have to put out a lot of good content to appeal to the GREEN folks.
I have to focus on the systems and processes, like my 7 steps to gigantic gym profits in order to appeal to the YELLOW people.
I need to show a good amount of my personality, a risk taking, sort of rebel, who has a disdain for boring and loves variety. This appeals to the primary ORANGES.
And finally, the most challenging thing for me to do, and one I admit that I don’t spend as much time on: Appealing to the primary BlUE people. My last color is BLUE, therefore hardest for me to get the attention of. BlUE people are the harmonizers. They value close personal relationships and are the true people/people. They don’t like to hurt other people’s feelings. Here’s my rationale behind not spending too much time worrying about what BLUE folks think: I am fun, fair, sensitive, intuitive, and a good listener, but I also care more about your sales and profits than I do about hurting your fucking feelings. And I curse. But that is also why many ORANGES (and many gym owners are primary ORANGE and primary GREEN) like me. GREENS appreciate my logic behind my systems, and love my hundreds of articles and videos full of information.
Okay, enough about me. You want to get the attention of all four quadrants?
Here is a link to an article I wrote and published at Linkedin. It went sort of viral, which is awesome.
Let me know what you think after reading it.
Keep changing lives.
Marketing with Facebook April 19 2016
You need to have a Facebook page for your fitness business. You know that already, don’t you?
Do you know the general rule for how many times you should update your status? And what type of stuff should you write, share, or post?
There are a few books out there with several hundred pages written about social media marketing. I recommend “Jab, jab, jab, right hook” by Gary Vaynerchuk. Or “No B.S. guide to direct response social media marketing” by Dan Kennedy and Kim Walsh-Phillips.
But since those two books go over more than Facebook, in this blog post, let me give you the basic playbook for Facebook marketing to make sure you are doing the best with what is arguably the most important social medium.
-Post twice per day. 7am and 4pm. (give or take, you don’t have to be super anal about those time)
-Post inspirational and motivational stuff. You are a gym, your goal is to keep folks coming back to your page, so give them positive things to read.
-Don’t update your class times. Don’t do it. Your Facebook page is for non-members. Your website can have times listed. I see this all of the time. A gym with 400 “likes” who only updates class times for the day. Boy that is exciting.
-Share memes, articles, blogs, etc.
-Once every 5 to 10 days, assuming you are consistently posting twice per day, sell something. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with “example” in the subject line and I will get you a great example for how to sell something on Facebook.
-You have to pay to play. Spend $150.00 per month to grow you followers. Spend another $50.00 or so per month to “boost” certain posts. You goal is to have 3000 to 5000 followers in most sized markets.
Keep changing lives.
How to design a marketing plan. April 23 2015
Let’s say you decide to paint your home. Do you do it? Do you hire a professional? Painting is not rocket science. Yes, there is some skill and carefulness, and knowledge involved, but it isn’t like overhauling an engine.
Me, personally, I hire a professional painter. To me it is more about time. My time is worth more than the cost of hiring a professional painter. Plus, I get to help out a small business owner. Win/win.
Designing a marketing plan for your fitness business is similar, in my opinion. It isn’t the hardest thing to do. But there are professionals out there who will do it for you, and charge you a few bucks. We, at hip gym offer that service. We have a fitness business expert on our team who will design, for you, a 12 month marketing plan. The cost is only $149.00.
So, if you feel that your time is worth more than $149.00, shoot Mike an email. Mike@hipgym.com
But for the DIY folks, let me help you as it may be simply a matter of you needing to understand the basics and how to get started.
-Figure out your budget. Take your gross annual revenue. All the dollars you bring in in one year. Take that number and figure out what 7% is. Between 5% and 10% is recommended. Personally, I recommend 10%, but because I have never met a gym owner who feels comfortable spending that much, asking you to go with 7% is acceptable.
Example: Gross annual revenue: $310,000.00
7% of $310,000.00 equals $21,700.00
-Figure out how you want to divide it up over the 12 months. We have a formula. Email email@example.com with “formula” in the subject line and I will get shoot it back to you.
To give you an idea, you will spend more in January, February and March than you will in June, July and August.
-Break your budget up into 3 month chunks. This makes it easier to plan and to spend.
-Count everything. Door hangers, inserts and passes all have hard costs and few bucks shipping. But getting a group to distribute door hangers will also cost and so will getting a newspaper to place inserts. Social media also has costs. You have to pay someone to handle it.
-Make adjustments along the way. Your revenue may start going up a lot, thus allowing you to spend a few bucks more in the second half of the year.
-Track everything. You need to know how many phone calls come in from your marketing efforts, and how many tours.
-Do not conflate marketing with sales. Please don’t only look at the end result. A marketing piece, or electronic ad is designed to elicit a response. A phone call, an walk-in, or an email. That’s it. Track your numbers so you know if you have a marketing message problem, or a sale problem.
Keep changing lives.
How to use Facebook effectively March 25 2015As a fitness business, you must have a Facebook page. More importantly, you must update it regularly. But what do you say? How do you use Facebook to get more customers?
I have been studying the four quadrant theory of personality for over four years. Using this scientific approach, it’s actually simple to write sentences, ads and updates designed for these quadrants.
The world is made up of Energizers, Organizers, Harmonizers and Analyzers. We are parts of all four, but we have a primary, and we respond to certain words based on that primary quadrant.
Organizer buzz words: dependable, plan, organized, serve, manage, consistent, program, loyal, list and check.
Energizer buzz words: fun, exciting, challenge, adventure, compete, change, discount, action, variety, risk and freedom.
Harmonizer buzz words: friendly, welcome, create, amazing, good, love, supportive, family, engage and unique.
Analyzer buzz words: analyze, concept, think, logic, direct, learn, excel, self, professional, discuss, motivate, effective, experience and solve.
So, all you need to do is make sure you have at least one or two words from each quadrant in your Facebook status update, especially when you are using it to sell, which is something you should only do once in a while.
Here is a great example: “Do you need help with a workout plan? One that is fun and challenging, with friendly, supportive and experienced professionals? If so, come try us out for 30 days for only $19.00! Experience all the programs we have to offer here at Awesome Blossom Fitness for 30 days for only $19.00 with no obligation to continue. Simply call or stop in and mention this post!”
Organizer words: plan and programs. Energizer words: fun and challenging. Harmonizer words: friendly and supportive. Analyzer words: experienced and professionals.
Email me with “personality” in the subject line to get your free e-book with more info.
Inexpensive and effective marketing January 14 2015
No business likes to spend money on marketing. But every business needs to spend money on marketing. The main reason that gyms don’t like to spend money on marketing is because it is hard to measure results sometimes. And most gyms don’t give it the proper college try, which is 120 days of pounding your message before you are allowed to say, “we tried that and it didn’t work.”
I could go on and on about the numerous discussions I have had with gym owners and how NOT ONE of them ever had a marketing plan before I designed one for them. But I would only come across more smarmy than I probably already sound. So I will move on and give you some solid suggestions for marketing that don’t involve a lot of money and don’t involve much of a plan.
Guerilla marketing: Shake the bushes, get your boots on the streets, pound the pavement. This style of marketing involves some time, some physical movement, and some 3 inch by 5 inch passes.
3 inch by 5 inch pass: On the front, have your offer. 30 days for $19.00 is a good one. On the back, a map to your location and a testimonial. You can purchase 5000 passes for $300.00 at www.hipgym.com
Seriously, that comes out to 6 cents apiece. These 5000 passes will last you for about 6 months in most markets. That comes down to about 50 dollars per month.
What do I do with these passes? Hump it. Get your ass out of the gym and walk into your local retail business neighbors and hand them out. Simple as that. If a business is kind enough to let you leave them on their counter, do it. Get some cardboard holders so they can be propped upright.
Your goal is to visit very single retail business in a 15 minute drive time once every 4 to 6 weeks.
Yes, you will be back. Over and over and over and over. I am going to repeat this: You are going to revisit every retail business once every 4 to 6 weeks. Why? Because these passes will get tossed, 99% of the time. You walk into jiffy lube and give 15 passes to the boss man who has 15 employees. Some part time and some full time. He hands them to his team and they all toss them aside. But next month, you come in one day after one of his employees has a doctor visit. Doctor tells him he is fat and out of shape, has high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Now that pass is important to him.
Get it? Good.
Keep changing lives.
How to design a marketing plan December 23 2014
“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.” This is a quote from Ben Franklin. I agree with Mr. Franklin, and I like to think that anybody reading this would agree with me. But I also know, being an expert on personality, that about 50% of the population struggles with planning. And in my experience, less than 10% of gym owners actually have a 12 month marketing plan.
Whether you are a person who loves to plan, or somebody that despises it, you have two choices when it comes to marketing your fitness business. 1. Create a marketing plan, be proactive and have a good chance at success. 2. Don’t plan, be reactive, and almost guarantee failure.
Here’s the deal: We at hip gym can help. We can design a marketing plan for you, no problem. Yes, it will cost you a few bucks, but trust me, if you are not somebody who likes to design marketing plans and/or you don’t know where to start, the $149.00 you spend would be worth it if were $949.00.
If you want to design your own, here is how you go about it:
Step one: Calculate the budget. The formula we recommend is to spend between 5% and 10% of gross annual revenue on marketing. So, to make it easy, take 7%
Step two: Calculate the breakdown monthly. Some months require more money spent than others. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for a document that breaks down the monthly percentages.
Step three: Decide where to spend it. Print marketing works, and is necessary. We recommend a combination of door hangers, direct mail, passes, and inserts. If you purchase in bulk, you will get the most bang for your buck.
Step four: Track it. Before you decide that direct mail pieces don’t work, be sure you track how many phone call, tours, and emails come from the campaign. Not sales. The marketing piece is designed to solicit a response. Salespeople turn these leads into sales.
Step five: Make adjustments along the way. Design a plan for 12 months, but be prepared to possibly make adjustments based on increased revenue or lack of results.
To get started on us building you a marketing plan, simply order through www.hipgym.com and a representative will contact you to set up a 30 minute call. Within one week of this call, you will have a plan in writing ready to be implemented.
Keep changing lives.
How to do a door hanger campaign December 09 2014
Door hangers can be an effective way to get more leads for your fitness business. They can sometimes be even more effective than Direct mail marketing. But being around this fitness industry for 19 years, I know that it takes a bit more thinking through to pull off a successful door hanger campaign than it does a mailer. Let me walk you through the key points so you get the most bang for you buck.
-Cost per piece. Print marketing always comes down to cost per piece, and it is always based on purchase volume. If you want to order only 500 door hangers, you are going to pay much more per piece than if you order 10000. I get annoyed when gym owners purchase a small amount. Do you have a closet? Then order 10000 or more and store them. They aren’t going to rot. They don’t have a shelf life. You can get the cost down to 6 cents per piece if you order enough door hangers. The Hip 10000 package is a good example. The Hip 10000 package includes 10000 hangers, 10000 inserts/flyers and 10000 passes. 30000 total pieces for $1800.00. 6 cents per piece. Customized, no design fees, no hidden fees. In upcoming blog posts, I will cover inserts/flyers, and passes, but for this one, I am only tackling door hangers. Take the 10000 door hangers and put them in the closet. Grab 1000 hangers, leaving 9000 in the closet.
-Find a youth group to distribute. Here is where you are going to add to the cost per piece. Your goal is to distribute 1000 door hangers for between $50.00 and $100.00. Call the boy scouts. Tell them you are looking for 10 boys, aged 10 to 15 to each take 100 hangers and place them in neighborhoods that you designate. Then ask them if $50.00 is an acceptable donation. I used to pay $100.00 at a gym I owned a few years ago. $100.00 brings the total cost per piece up to 16 cents, which is still about half of what a good size direct mail piece would cost you. If the boy scouts say no, call the girl scouts. Then the high school athletic director. Maybe a church group.
-Don’t do this alone. To get the most bang, you need to get 500 to 1000 out in one shot. A 3 to 4 hour campaign on a Saturday morning, and you are golden. Work out a deal to have the scout group do it once per month for the year and you will get your 10000 out before you know it.
Email email@example.com for a free marketing guide.
Keep changing lives.