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Quarterly Update from the GM

The Fall Season has just begun for a majority of our newsletter readership so right now seems like the perfect time to launch an ongoing quarterly update from Retention Management. I’ll be highlighting a few topics each quarter that I feel are most important to you.

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Industry News

Social Media News

In the world of Social Media, we know the rules are constantly changing. Therefore, it is a good time to highlight some of the changes and updates on our favorite social media sites.

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Email / Social Media

Door to Door Service

Chris W

We all know that many people are more likely to make a purchase online than go around town searching for a product. So why not bring your products and services to their door or rather should we say computer?

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Two Ways to Prevent Member Cancellations

Why do members leave a club? It is a question that is always at the forefront in the fitness industry. Member retention is one of the most discussed topics when dealing with the health of a club. What we have found is clubs look for that one moment that led the member to leave. But is that the true picture?

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Email / Social Media

No One Saw Your Facebook Post

Well, almost no one probably saw your last post and the trend is getting worse. Two years ago – Organic reach of posts was about 16% of a club’s fans. In February, a research survey by Ogilvy and Mather had organic reach down to 6%.

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Email / Social Media

Meet Billy Dawson

On August 11th, Retention Management introduced William “Billy” Dawson as our new National Sales Manager. Billy brings over thirteen years of surpassing revenue targets in direct, inside, B2B, and B2C sales roles.

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Industry News

Brainstorming Time

This time of year most people are on vacation and busy enjoying time with friends and family. That’s good news for your members but often means less time in the gym.

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Email / Social Media

What’s Your On-line Reputation

Reputations are important. In the pre-internet age, a business worked hard to get good “word-of-mouth” opinions out in the community. When your friend, neighbor or co-worker told you about the great experience they had at your Fitness Center, you knew that was the best advertising you could get.

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Email / Social Media

The Fitness Industry Cannot and Will not Survive in Its Current Form Part 3 The Club of the Future.

Inspired by attending the EU Active forum in April prior to the FIBO expo we put together a three part series investigating the paradox between the solutions offered by the health club industry to the challenge of inactivity facing the global population and economy. It's exciting that we now have a growing base of research showing that physical activity does more than create good health. It contributes to leadership, productivity and innovation; lowers depression and crime, increases educational achievement, income levels and generates returns to businesses.

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Published Articles

A Minute in the Life of Facebook

Everyone we know is active on Facebook. We all have personal pages. Every company you can name probably has a Facebook page. Fitness Centers, including your competition, has a page. And everyone is posting.

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Email / Social Media

Refresher Course

We congratulate you on having the foresight to implement a cost-effective way to improve the health of your members. Published studies validate how implementing an email communication program, like our service, not only assists members in achieving their goals but provides you with a distinct operational advantage over your competitors!

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Email / Social Media

Be Our Guest

In an environment where members are often making difficult budgetary decisions, it’s the intangibles which are the most valuable part of your business and more importantly, keep your members from taking their business elsewhere. The old saying “people will easily walk away from a business but not a relationship” is very true in the fitness industry.

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Email / Social Media

Content Matters and the Story of Thor

This month, I am only able to get off a short post (you’ll understand by the end). Therefore, I wanted to talk about a topic I think about a lot – Content! Last month we talked about how it was important to say “no” to the multitude of Social Media platforms out there and choose the ones that match well with your membership base and lead to the best conversations. Once you have determined that your members are on which platforms, the next step is to engage and interact with them. Sounds easy, right?

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Email / Social Media

Email Collection Update

Email Collection is similar to a good fitness regimen - it is an ongoing task. The good news is research has shown that email is the preferred means of communication. Your emails help build relationships beyond the walls of your club.

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Email / Social Media

Everything is Important?

I was out on a run recently and was running by one of the many construction sites that are popping up in the neighborhood. On the safety fence around the lot was a sign for one of the construction companies working on the project. The slogan / tag line was “Where everything is important.”

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Email / Social Media

XERCISE4LESS CASE STUDY

Xercise4Less uses Retention Management's Email and RM360 Member Feedback Management Solutions (provided by partner Listen360) for a more systematic way to communicate and gather customer feedback.

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Social Media News

In the world of Social Media, constant change is the norm. That makes it important to stay up to date on the channels that impact your business. This month, we are going to look at some of the latest announced updates, possible changes and other news.

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Email / Social Media

Pleasing the Masses

It's tough to please the masses but there is a way to come pretty close. You will always have those members who crave every health and fitness tip you can provide. They want to be educated on the best ways to feel good and attain their goals. They are hungry for knowledge, support and encouragement.

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Email / Social Media

What are You Exchanging With Your Members?

For those of you that have ever really looked into attrition and predictive analyses techniques for investigating understanding and minimising customer churn, you will know the bulk of research stems from the industries in the chart below. The results show as an industry, we still have a long way to go to begin truly understanding our customers.

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Email / Social Media

Do Not Bury Your Head in the Sand

Chris W

We've just seen one of, if not the best sales month of the year (the debate goes on as to whether September is better than January or not). Whilst it’s great to see all those new members in our clubs let’s not forget that our job is just beginning.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

You Asked For It – You Got It

Open rates, click through-rate, send now, send this day and time, more template tools – now available at your fingertips. Retention Management’s partnership with Constant Contact has upgraded your Email Blast capabilities.

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Email / Social Media

Walk Before You Run

I was attending an open house last fall and an old friend approached me to discuss his fitness regimen. Despite the fact that I have never had any formal fitness training, when you own a health club for 15 years people still want your advice.

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Email / Social Media

'Appy Holiday and a Wearable New Year

Chris W

It’s the time of year when we are all finished with producing our internal forecasts, plans and targets for 2014. Our minds have been full of attempts to predict the trends in the fitness industry we will see and make sure our businesses are well positioned to capitalise on them.

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Chris W

Published Articles

Let’s get this party started!

Chris W

The New Year’s resolution members have arrived. Let us help you to keep them informed and wanting more. Today’s members want to see ways to squeeze more value when they join.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

What Sets You Apart?

Chris W

As most health club professionals are aware, our industry is becoming highly commoditized. From key card easy access gyms to big box athletic clubs on every suburban intersection, clubs are generally selling the same stuff with very few qualitative distinctions.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

What's Going On?

Chris W

What else do you have going on? We are your source to get the word out. Should you use an email blast, Facebook, Twitter?

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Community (noun)

When developing a plan for a successful club, what is the first thing that comes to mind; perhaps, being in a location with a thriving community? If you build a business surrounded by other businesses - they will come!

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Industry News

Testimonial from Halo Leisure

Cathy Fletcher, Marketing Manager at Halo Leisure, shares their experience working with Retention Management and how it helps her communicate to members across 20 different locations.

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Testimonials

Special Relationships

Think about all the long term relationships you have in your life, friends, family and partners.These are all special - right? What are the features of these relationships that made them end up being so special?

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Industry News

Let the Games Begin

Here we go - the start of the Fitness Industry's busy season. Members are looking to get back into a routine and in shape to look good for the holiday season. Prospects are searching for a place to be active, stay healthy and be part of a community. Are you ready?

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Email / Social Media

Six Must-Haves to Retain Customers and Grow Business, part 1

Every organization says the customer comes first. But do you really know what your customers are saying about your business? Do you know if they’re happy, and why? Are you actively addressing their issues? Do you know how well your locations or franchisees are serving your customers?

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Industry News

Break It Up!

Chris W

If you are looking for some of my monthly insightful brilliance and tips for mastering social media for the fitness industry…sorry, not in August.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Are You a Smart Club Owner?

Everyone is familiar with the concept - "walk the talk". It simply means that you need to live up to the advice that you give to others. Unfortunately there are MANY club owners or managers who do not exercise regularly or try to take care of their health.

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Industry News

Customize Your New Member Experience

We all enjoy going to places where we are familiar and know the rules and what’s available. It’s the unknown that can be scary and often avoided. The New Member is excited to get started on their fresh way of life and anxious to hear all that is available.

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Email / Social Media Industry News

Let's Talk Football

It's now officially the pre-season for the English Premier League. A time when clubs take advantage from the break in competitive matches between seasons to make sure they step back from the frontline and reassess where the strengths and weaknesses in their clubs may be.

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Email / Social Media

Blocking and Tackling

Reviewing the various social media efforts of hundreds of health clubs is an interesting exercise. To say there is a little bit of everything out there is a gross understatement.

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Email / Social Media

Start With Why! Sales or Service - Where is Your Focus?

Chris W

Not a week goes by that we don’t talk to a club operator who is concerned about why they are doing what they do. Two years ago Simon Sinek gave a keynote address at IHRSA in LA with the focus being on the fact that everything we do is driven by the question “why?”.

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Chris W

Industry News

Make Memberships Relationships

Chris W

We truly work in an amazing industry. It is rewarding to be a part of something where our goal is to improve the quality of people’s lives. Here at Retention Management, we have thesame mission -to encourage people to make exercise part of their routine so that they may reap the rewards of leading a healthy life.

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Chris W

Industry News

Observations on Social Media

Chris W

On a daily basis, Retention Management’s Social Media division asks our clients to develop their fan bases by asking for likes via broadcast emails, posting links on their websites, tagging images from their club fan page, posting interesting and engaging content, etc.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Education - The Greatest Gift

Chris W

Our second favourite client in the UK (we don't have favourites here at Retention Management :)) contacted us last week to catch up and ask a favour.

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Chris W

Industry News

Gymbassadors

Chris W

One of my favorite books on social media and general business acumen is “The Thank You Economy” by Gary Vaynerchuk. Gary comes from a small, family owned business background and he now oversees a burgeoning wine e-commerce business.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

It's Still a War - So What's New.

Chris W

Have you heard the adage that it is in times of war when we see the most radical improvements in technology? This makes sense right? Advances in technology make it much easier for us to win more battles and we need to win the battles in order to survive so we can win the war.

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Chris W

Published Articles

Engagement or Spam

Chris W

Managing social media communities in the health club industry creates certain temptations. Through our various channels we have developed an audience. If we are good at fan/follower recruiting we have a big audience. Social media platforms create a huge cost mitigation credit on your advertising budget balance sheet compared to traditional media.

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Chris W

Published Articles

What's in a Name?

Chris W

What’s in a name? Or should we say what’s in a subject line? The subject line in your email message is the first thing your members will read when your mail appears in their inboxes. Next, they will tend to check who the letter is from and if it looks legit.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Gymtopia - a place where clubs do social good

Chris W

Every once in a while a great opportunity to make the world much better presents itself. Ray Algar’s Gymtopia concept is one of those opportunities and Retention Management is proud and honored to be the first major endorser of this great cause! Once you read Ray’s piece we’re sure you’ll be as excited as we are to be a part of it.

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Chris W

Published Articles

Set it and forget it.

In the fitness industry those words are rarely used. It seems as soon as you implement the latest exercise craze, a new and improved routine or piece of equipment arrives on the scene. Yet, most facilities maintain some or all of the valuable basics to increase the bottom line. For instance, personal training, group exercise, weight loss/nutrition programs and referral offers.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

A Pup named Butters - Viral Exposure and the Power of Social Media

Chris W

As health club operators, we are slowly but surely learning that engaging social media content creates viral exposure and increases our available audience. Interesting content blowing up your engagement is blocking and tackling; fundamentals, right? Maybe, if this content is executed as part of a consistent and persistent strategy.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Retention in the Era of Instant Results - Expand Your Focus

Chris W

As we enter another new year, it is difficult not to notice the media frenzy regarding the growing fitness and obesity crisis. Bestseller lists contain books on the latest diet fads and television infomercials are constantly hawking the newest exercise programs that people hope will be their magic bullet.

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Chris W

Published Articles

Are you ready for 2013?

Chris W

Maybe we can help cross an item off your ‘To Do List.’ At no additional charge, we will work with you to create an active member and/or prospect pre-branded template for your marketing broadcasts.

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Chris W

Social Media and Your Sales Cycle

Chris W

I was reading an interesting blog regarding the effect Social Media has had on the sales cycle. The writer was convinced that the internet had initially sped up the cycle; however with the advent of the social web, he theorized the sales cycle was now slowing back down.

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Chris W

Published Articles Email / Social Media

Get Ready for the Holiday Season

Ready or not, the fitness industry’s busy season has arrived! There will be referral programs focusing on ‘giving the gift of health’, holiday activities (i.e. 12 days of fitness), Toy for Tots collections, special group exercise classes, and possibly changes in club operating hours.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Social Media Corner: Develop Your Champions

Retention Management’s new social media division assists health clubs of all shapes and sizes. We work with multi-club operations, small single operator clubs, large multi-sport clubs, key card/self service clubs, luxurious high dues clubs, new clubs and old clubs. Some have been in existence for decades, one opened just last week.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

On Email's 30th Anniversary

As we celebrate 30 years since the creation of email, we wanted to share with you this great article from MediaPost's Email Insider blog on why email continues to be a vitale part of business' sales and growth strategy.

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Chris W

Published Articles

The Importance of On-Going Email Collection

Chris W

Email Collection is similar to a good fitness regimen - it is an ongoing task. The good news is research has shown that email is the preferred means of communication. Your emails help build relationships beyond the walls of your club.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Labor Day Holiday Card Time

The Labor Day Holiday is fast approaching. With the traditional end of summer holiday comes many schedule changes as well as a three day weekend. And it is also time for you to notify your members of any special holiday hours and events going on at your facility for Labor Day.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Social Media Corner: Growing Your Audience

The world of social media is filled with catch phrases. From channels and platforms, to collaborative consumerism and brand advocacy; we are successful in slicing and dicing our various terms to identify trends and label the means in which we ultimately build our on-line communities.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

GETTING SOCIAL

One of the world’s greatest marketers, Seth Godin, recently asked: “How can you squander even one more day not taking advantage of the greatest shifts of our generation? How dare you settle for less when the world has made it so easy for you to be remarkable?” He was, of course, referencing the vast momentum behind social media.

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Chris W

Published Articles

The Value of Add-Ons for Your Emails

It has always been our objective to have our service function for you as quietly, seamlessly, and automatically as possible.Our job is to make you look good to your members, and we do our best to work behind the scenes.

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Chris W

Email / Social Media

Welcome aboard November and December Newest Clients

Although we will still be launching several new locations before the end of the year, I thought it was due time to welcome aboard the newest locations to the Retention Management family.

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Chris W

Welcome Aboard September's New Clients

It is time to welcome aboard our new clients for September. And they are truly an international group. Welcome to the following fitness centers from the US, UK and Sweden.

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Chris W

August's New Clients

Another month and another group of Fitness Centers joining the Retention Management family.

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Chris W

Say Hello to May's New Clients:

It was another busy month for our Client support group as we welcome the newest centers who launched our service during the month of May – 26 locations in all.

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Chris W

Meet our newest clients.

Welcome to the latest locations to join up with Retention Management. These 19 locations represent 5 different countries:

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Chris W

Retention Management is Hitting the Road

This Winter and Spring, there is a chance that Retention Management will be at an event near you. The first events will be in the US and Australia.

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Chris W

Welcome to our newest clients

We want to welcome the latest clubs who are now working with Retention Management to fight attrition:

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e-can't, e-can, e-comms

At the recent SIBEC EU networking event in Croatia, associates for Wahanda (www.wahanda.com) delivered a key note speech that made such an impact on the majority of delegates attending that it dominated discussions for the duration of the event.

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Chris W

Published Articles

Health Clubs "Push the Button" of Email Communication, Part 2

Chris W

Last time, we talked about why email is so important to running a successful health club. With a recent independent study showing that email communication has a significant positive effect on a person’s health and fitness and the cost benefits of an email programme over other communication methods, email is now taking centre stage for health clubs.

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Chris W

Published Articles

"Just Five Minutes"

Chris W

The warm smile and friendly "hello, how are you?" from reception, the encouraging comments from the fitness staff as members go through their workouts, the duty manager that holds the door open as a member walks in are all part of the complete package consistently offered by successful clubs.

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Chris W

Published Articles

Retention and the Magic of Synergy

Much is constantly written about specific things or actions that clubs can take to combat attrition. However, with the multitude of tactics comes one important fact: they must be delivered in unison throughout the membership experience for optimal long-term retention advancements.

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Chris W

Survey Explores Reasons Why Americans Don't Go to Health Clubs

BOSTON–While 91 percent of the respondents to a recent survey believe exercising at a health club would improve their overall health, only 18 percent of those surveyed actually belong to a health club, according to the International Health Racquet and Sportsclub Association (IHRSA).

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Chris W

10 More Ways to Keep Your Members (Happy!) Part 2

A recent IHRSA Tip outlined ten steps club operators can take to improve their membership retention. The response was overwhelming: most readers asked for ten more! If the industry has an Achilles' heel, membership attrition is certainly it. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, the following suggestions can help you improve your club's retention.

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Chris W

Published Articles

10 Ways to Keep Your Members (Happy!) Part 1

The health club industry enjoys great success in selling memberships. However, for every 15 million members who walk in the front doors, 12 million exit through clubs' back doors.

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Chris W

Focus on Stopping the "Churn Factor"

June and July’s Club Insider article by Norm titled "Wall Street: What the Experts Think About The Health Club Industry" where he interviewed David King, Senior Managing Director of Bear Stearns Merchant Banking, John Maxwell, the Managing Director of Fixed Income Research of Merrill Lynch and Paul Lejeuz, of Credit Suisse First Boston was enlightening with regards to their objective perspective on the industry and how much emphasis or importance they put to building customer loyalty.

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Chris W

Key Characteristics of High Retention Clubs

The natural tendency to use aggressive new member acquisition to grow your fitness business has become a strategy of the past as market penetration has increased and the marketplace has grown even more competitive. Amplified attention, therefore, should be given to member retention.

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Chris W

Published Articles

Member Motivation = Member Retention

Retention. Retention. Retention. We hear about it. We read about it. We know it is a key element to improving profitably. But where do we start?

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Chris W

Retention Takes Action

Retention issues in our industry often receive front page headlines but routinely get pushed to back page status when it comes to taking action.

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Chris W

Published Articles

How do you calculate Retention?

Chris W

Retention certainly receives a tremendous amount of discussion and press in our industry, rightfully so because of the key role it has in the financial success of every club.

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Chris W

Published Articles