Speaking with many local gym owners has made one thing clear--most of them do not have a predictable marketing system to get people in the door consistently.
Even when there are some marketing methods in place, they are often not being tracked properly, let alone optimized and scaled over time.
If gym owners want to grow and scale their businesses in today’s fitness world, they must learn to leverage digital advertising and marketing to build predictable lead-generating systems.
In this case study, I’ll reveal the same principles and outline the process we used to generate RM22,132 new revenue and 253 leads for a local gym in Malaysia.
“We are getting lesser membership inquiries every month.”
The gym manager told me.
“And we are just unable to increase our membership numbers for the past one year.”
(For the sake of client privacy, I am going to call them Gym K in the rest of the article.)
Gym K wanted to grow their membership and get more personal training clients, but the struggle to generate leads consistently means it was difficult to recruit new members fast enough to fight with their “churn rate” and increase revenue steadily.
After learning more about their business and marketing, I quickly realized there are four common mistakes that put this local gym in their current situation:
1. They rely on traditional marketing solely, using methods such as flyering and running roadshows to generate new leads. While some of these traditional marketing efforts might still work, the process and results are often slow, unpredictable and untrackable.
2. They only use Facebook as a social medium and don’t fully utilize it for its advertising and lead generation potential. Like many local businesses who are hoping to reach more people, they post content on their fan page regularly and use only "Boost Post" to increase news feed reach and visibility.
3. They do not have a lead tracking setup to automatically and actively track the process. This makes optimizing and scaling difficult, and results in lost leads along the way.
4. They do not have a follow-up and lead nurturing sequence to convert leads to members regularly. Most leads are not “sold” in one single contact. Without a follow-up sequence, leads are less likely to keep Gym K top of their minds when they are ready to join a gym.
This is where we bring our Facebook Lead Generation System into place. Here’s how it works:
1. Put Gym K in front of massive potential members.
2. Attract their ideal customers using the right offer.
3. Capture leads with their information using a high-converting funnel.
4. Call and convert these high-value leads into paying members.
5. Build a “lead list” with follow-up sequence in place.
To execute this system in their business, here are the four steps we went through:
Step 1) Develop the strategy
Many gym owners may have tried Facebook advertising but struggle to make it work.
There are many reasons why a Facebook ad campaign doesn’t work, but one sure way to fail is launching one without a strategic plan in mind.
A strategy helps us to identify who is the ideal customer group to target, understand their needs and wants, choose the right offer to attract their interest, and do all of these with consideration of the highest probability of a financial return for the gym in the shortest time possible.
For Gym K, we first did market research by surveying some of their best members and PT clients to have a deeper understanding on their demographic and customer behaviours.
Then we created a main customer avatar with insights we collected and designed an offer that would best attract their attention.
At the end of the process, we determined a specific audience we want to target on Facebook and decided a “Free Trial” lead generation system was best to start with.
Step 2) Build the system
The next step was to build out the actual lead generation system, which looks something like this:
The development process involves:
Facebook Ad Campaign
Lead Capture Funnel
Lead Tracking Setup
Step 3) Launch the funnel
After everything was developed, we launched the ads campaign live on Facebook.
Unlike traditional TV or radio advertising, you don’t need hundreds or thousands of dollars to start advertising on Facebook.
In fact, it’s actually better to start small and scale later.
For Gym K, we started with a daily budget of just RM40/ day (approximately US $10/ day) and we let the campaign run for at least 3 days at the beginning.
This budget and duration are often enough to see if an ad is working and what ad is performing better.
Many gym owners who try Facebook advertising for the first time tend to worry too much about their ad budget and campaign duration.
They let their emotions take over instead of making informed decisions based on data collected.
That's why it’s critical to set the right expectations from the beginning and understand what metrics are important and worth tracking for your gym business.
These are a few performance metrics that we track for Gym K everyday.
Combining these with Offline Conversions such as over-the-phone bookings and appointments to sales, we obtained better insights into whether or not a campaign is profitable.
Step 4) Optimize and Scale the campaign
The fitness industry is full of people who want to achieve different fitness goals for various reasons.
This gives us plenty of customer avatars to target, where each profile has its distinct demographic and characteristics, and may respond to one marketing idea better than another.
To make profitable ads, we simply need to split-test several different ads. From headline to copy, image to video, or even a different offer and angle, the secret is to keep testing and optimizing your campaign, then scale it to generate even more leads.
For Gym K, instead of scaling one ad campaign after its success, we also added several more campaigns to generate different types of leads so they don’t rely on getting leads from just one funnel.
A quick recap...
Before we started to work with Gym K,
After we built a Facebook Lead Generation System for their gym:
1) They Receive More Leads on Autopilot.
82 new leads in 2 weeks in Campaign A.
171 new leads in less than 2 months in Campaign B.
Whenever a new lead is generated via Facebook ads, our lead tracking setup sent an email notification to inform the gym manager and his team:
At the same time, the lead tracking setup also updated a dynamic excel sheet and populated it with the time the lead was generated, their name, email and phone number automatically.
This allows us to track every incoming lead so the gym is able to call and book an appointment with them immediately, update their lead status live and make further follow-up action much easier.
Revenue snapshot for Campaign A:
Revenue snapshot for Campaign B:
...that they can continue to follow-up, nurture and sell to in many coming months.
As a gym owner, you should definitely follow up with leads within 10 minutes or less. When follow-up times are longer, The Lead Management Study saw a whopping 400% decrease in the chances of qualifying leads.
But let’s not forget that most leads don't become a customer immediately and research also shows that 80% of sales are made after five follow-ups.
Building a private list like this definitely makes future follow-up much easier. Every lead on the list is a potential gym member, so if you don’t get a hold of them this month, try them next month!
Most traditional methods to generate new leads are getting less effective, causing business owners more harm than good.
Facebook advertising and other forms of digital marketing are becoming more essential in any business for generating leads and sales, including local gym business.
If gym owners want to grow profitably, not only do they need to have predictable lead generation systems in place, they should also take follow-up and lead nurturing seriously.
Do you need help in planning and building predictable lead generation and follow-up systems for your gym?
Book a call with us below to see if we're a good fit.