How Do You Connect With Prospective Members?
Across all of the activities that you organize to market your gym business, do you know what the critical touchpoints are in the structure of your membership marketing and management process? Touchpoints are the events and situations that define how you monitor and measure the customer journey that your members experience throughout their customer lifecycles.
Converting Lookers Into Loyal Members
When a prospect walks into your facility and asks to get more information it is probably not a spontaneous impulse that brought them to that point; they most likely had been thinking about investigating your offerings for some time. Neither is it likely that they intend to sign up on the spot.
If you do get a new membership from the walk in it will be because of the sales process you lead them through a series of touchpoints and then ask for the sale. The term touchpoint is self-explanatory to some extent, a point of contact.
More precisely, a touchpoint is any point of engagement in the customer journey, from initial awareness to the end of the relationship. Touchpoints can be physical, sensory, or communicative; they are anything that links you to customers, whether it’s branded swag, an idea, or anything in between.
Touchpoints On Experience
Touchpoints are all of the tools you use to shape how your customers feel about your gym; this is vital to long-term success because of the experience factors into the value of memberships. Every tool that your staff uses to engage with prospects to convert them to members is a touchpoint.
The concept includes the complete range of interactions with customers, such as face-to-face conversations, facility tours, emails, text messages, and phone calls. That is before your prospects become your clients at the point of sale. After members sign up the mix of touchpoints changes, how they change depends on your objectives as well as theirs.
You can still use many of the same touchpoints, but now you have others that cater specifically to members. The bills that you generate using your gym management software are one example; others include enhanced emails that group customers into segments, follow up cards, and trainers promoting premium services.
Guiding The Customer Journey
What marketers today call the customer journey is the idealized timeline of the experience of becoming a member of your club. The first touchpoints on the path of your future members might be a flyer, a posting on meetup.com, a Facebook ad, or the word of mouth praise of one of your loyal members.
The next step for them is likely to be the first investigation, viewing your social media pages or website. Next, they may decide to walk in, take the tour, and ask some questions. Your prospects are then in direct contact with your staff; it is the first touchpoint at which your team can influence behavior.
It is critical that prospects give some basic contact information to you, a name, number, or email address. At the first contact, you might not even use your application form, which is definitely a useful touchpoint worth using eventually. And so the journey goes, on through membership and on boarding and further touchpoints that you use to lead your members to better fitness.
Milestones In The Customer Relationship Life Cycle
It might all sound like another trendy buzzword that marketers talk about for a while and then forget. However, there is genuine value in giving the process of interacting with members a structure. By marking out the key touchpoints of your engagements, you gain measurable insights and focus on process.
When the process is clear you can analyze what works and what does not, and make adjustments accordingly. The way to use touchpoints is as defining terms; write down the names for each critical point in sales and customer service.
At the very least this should allow you to accomplish two things: Make a better experience for your members and deliver better outcomes for your activities. The benefit will be to both your gym and to your members, you will have better and longer relationships that mean you will succeed in business and build relationships that last for many years.
Setting predefined touchpoints allows you to review results and train staff to improve how they engage with members. Touchpoints highlight the important events in the customer journey and make the experience for your members the one that lasts longest and makes you the strongest.
1&1 Digital Guide. Customer Journey: Turning Viewers Into Paying Customers. December 16, 2016. https://www.1and1.com/digitalguide/online-marketing/web-analytics/customer-journey-the-basics-of-touch-point-analyses/ (accessed August 3, 2017).
Corry, Will. The Importance Of Physical Touch Points In Marketing. May 10, 2017. http://www.themarketingblog.co.uk/2017/05/the-importance-of-physical-touch-points-in-marketing/ (accessed August 3, 2017).
Fagan, Lawrence. Gym Business Walk Ins Are The Key To Building Your Fitness Business. December 20, 2016. https://blog.gyminsight.com/4137-gym-business-walk-ins-are-the-key-to-building-your-fitness-business/ (accessed August 3, 2017).