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More people are aware of their fitness and health than they used to be 20, 10, or even 5 years ago. Whether it’s a solo workout experience in a garage, or group classes to meet new people, there is no shortage of options for aspiring athletes to meet their goals. While this may be a good thing for the overall physical health of our society, it has made finding new customers more difficult for personal trainers, gym owners, and CrossFit coaches.
Gym memberships have been cut down to accommodate for the competition, and are barely floating by off of name recognition alone. It seems as if a new fitness fad is opening up every other week. How do you, as the owner of a CrossFit box, effectively market your business so you don’t get lost in the crowd? It’s not just about knowing where to put your marketing budget, but also how your name is going to spread in that marketing channel.
One of the oldest tricks in the book for marketing your CrossFit box is offering a free class. A free class allows someone who may be on the fence to not only get a taste of the CrossFit workout experience themselves, they also get to meet you and your other students. Customers value businesses that they trust, and providing a strong first impression can do more than enough to offset the fiscal loss you may experience from offering a free class.
If you don’t find yourself in a position to hand out classes for free, a Groupon may be the next best thing. Keep in mind that a Groupon already cuts the initial cost of your classes, and after that cut, Groupon takes a percentage out for itself. Some business owners may prefer to just have a free class, as it would be less of a barrier to entry. For a change of pace, try promoting free classes by having your CrossFit group do some outside workouts. This way you can give hundreds of people an idea of what your CrossFit box is like, and someone who may have never even thought about the program may have a seed planted in their head for later.
There are a lot of social media platforms for a business to consider. For your CrossFit box, you’ll want to be putting some special attention on Facebook and Instagram. Generally, Facebook advertising performs better when the business is marketing towards younger audiences in their late teens to early adulthood. Through Facebook, you have the option to track and target your CrossFit box’s marketing at people who are involved with CrossFit groups, post status updates using “#CrossFit”, and like CrossFit pages. Many CrossFit owners who advertise on Facebook will do so by promoting a free or discounted class at their box.
You are likely already using – or are aware of – Instagram as a marketing tool for CrossFit. If you are just using Instagram as a channel to post photos of your own classes, then you are most likely not seeing nor hearing much results from it. The primary marketing power of Instagram is interaction. Instagram users are more active than the majority of other social media apps, and love using it to take pictures. Promotions, like using your CrossFit’s Instagram account to offer gear when followers post pictures of themselves wearing a promotional t-shirt or shoes, bring that interactivity and puts more attention on your business.
Partner with Local Businesses
Society has become much more health-conscious, and businesses are quickly noticing. Local businesses near your CrossFit box, especially larger ones, are eager to encourage their employees to stay fit and workout together in order to build workplace camaraderie. Your CrossFit box can use this as a marketing opportunity by offering employee discounts for membership or giving group class at a park that’s near the business.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
So far, every method that’s been recommended to market your CrossFit box has involved offering a free or discounted class in some way. With SEO, you are taking a slightly different direction. The reason you would want to discount or offer a free class is to convince a potential customer to switch from “Maybe I want to do CrossFit” to “I want to do CrossFit”.
With SEO, that customer already knows they want to do CrossFit. They’ll be using popular search engines like Google and Bing to find the best CrossFit box that fits their needs, but they won’t choose you if your name doesn’t show up. The purpose of SEO is to have your name appear near – or at the top – of these search engine results, with call to actions that catch a potential customer’s eye so they choose you instead of your competitor. Depending on where you are, SEO may take time to build up, but once the wheels hit the road, you’ll see far more interested customers finding your website.
In a perfect world, you would be able to enable all of these marketing tactics and more for your CrossFit business. The reality is that options are limited, and you still may not be sure which, out of these marketing tools, are the best option for you. Market My Market has experience in successfully serving fitness centers. Give us a call to discuss the best marketing options for your own personal box.