How Gym Business Walk Ins Make The Difference

Let’s talk about why your gym business walk ins can be priceless for you and how to get the best outcomes of their visits. The fitness industry has lots of great people, but maybe not so many of the best salespeople, and I’m OK with that. However, there’s often a point in the life of your small gym business or studio when you desperately wish otherwise.

The time could arise when you need the best team in the world for closing new memberships. So let’s look at why and then address a few points of how to go about it. What I found in the end, and hopefully this works for you too, was a staff of gym professionals with big hearts and some basic selling skills.

The final ingredient is a clear understanding of the company’s membership selling process. If your trainers and front desk staff can identify and close the sales that drop into their laps, that’s all you need. In all of this, the one question that you should answer carefully is, “How do you treat people who wander into your gym off the street?”

Encourage The Naturally Curious Early Adopters

Some people are so naturally inquisitive they’ll just wander in and give you a chance to prove your worth as a new business in the neighborhood. These are some of the most valuable prospects you can get. These are the gems that any retail business, restaurant or gym should treasure.

If you’ve just recently opened your doors for the first time, early adopters can either build you up or tear you down. When they visited, did they take the tour, did you get contact information including email address? Did the prospect purchase a membership, did they make additional purchases of branded merchandise and sundry items?

You need a clear policy about prospects walking in the front door and then train everyone on how to apply it. After all, walk-ins could be responding to what they heard from friends, or they might be responding to your marketing campaign.

Staffing For The Right Mindset

At this point, it’s worth a slight detour to bring up a point about having the right people for the job. Southwest Airlines doesn’t often get walk-ins at 35,000 feet, but they do have a system for recruiting the right people to give the best customer service. By building their team based on the values of spirit, service, and attitude, Southwest has eliminated some of the typical customer service failures before they happen.

The lesson is that if you have people who want to help others, you will provide consistently high-quality service. The next thing is a policy about greeting walk-ins and what to ask them. Staff should either know what to say, offer, and how to complete applications, or they should be aware who is on duty that is responsible for doing so.

Always Pitch Memberships

As long as your people are respectful, friendly, and helpful, prospects will usually give them enough room to make a causal sales pitch. The fundamental pitch should be to ask a couple of open questions get the most basic contact details and a quick tour of the gym. All of your crew should be able to attempt a couple of essential closes.

One might be, “So, you said you wanted kettle bells and tanning beds and that we got! Do you want  the year discount plan or just try it month-to-month for now?” If that works, get to your terminal and get their information and the first month of dues.

Established Fitness Centers Can Encourage Walk-Ins Too

If your gym is off the beaten track, this is doubly important someone took the time and effort to find you. It means that they had a referral from a friend and that is something to encourage.

As a complementary policy to walk-ins, you might consider how to get your members to generate referral business and how you should repay them with a referral fee or spiff. Once you do this, following through on walk-ins becomes even more necessary.

Bibliography

Bishop, Rob. How to Succeed in Membership Sales. November 2011. http://www.athleticbusiness.com/fitness-training/how-to-succeed-in-membership-sales.html (accessed December 13, 2016).

Fagan, Lawrence. Gym Membership Selling And Overcoming Objections. September 11, 2016. https://blog.gyminsight.com/3934-gym-membership-selling-and-overcoming-objections/ (accessed December 13, 2016).

Rodriguez, Vanessa. Fitness Marketing: 10 Ideas to Creatively Market Your Gym to Get New Members & Keep Current Members Happy. http://uhurunetwork.com/fitness-marketing-10-creative-ideas/ (accessed December 13, 2016).

Weber, Julie. How Southwest Airlines Hires Such Dedicated People. December 2, 2015. https://hbr.org/2015/12/how-southwest-airlines-hires-such-dedicated-people (accessed December 13, 2016).

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