“To thine ownself be true” – William Shakespeare
By all accounts, when people are walking through your doors during our “busy season”, they are doing so for one express purpose, to improve their health and quality of life. This is at its core, our mission as an industry and one would assume we would be great at reinforcing our members’ motivation. Why then if member and club interests dovetail into each other do we still combat the persistent spectre of attrition. We all know there are numerous factors behind retention challenges: price, realization of goals, distance or they simply have not had a good experience.
New members coming in for the above reasons enter with plenty of motivation, but that motivation quickly wanes as going to the gym is not or has not been a habit for them. Just as they need to be indoctrinated into your numerous service offerings they also need to be provided with proper support and nurturing. What if you and your staff had a daily outreach plan to let your members know how important they are to you and that you are as invested in improving their health and wellness? Would visits as an average increase? Would the duration of membership increase? Overall satisfaction?
By developing a retention strategy around keeping members coming into the club and having your trainers, nutritionists and group x instructors as tools you can leverage to motivate member attendance, you can create a support structure that is both empowering and supportive. They can’t very well get healthy if they don’t come. It’s a self-fulfilling prophesy at that point. By encouraging their activity in the club, they may very well keep coming and start to form a positive habit: routine exercise.
If we can “hit the ground running” when they join and let them know there is a support structure at the club that they can lean on and incentivize the members to come in, it’s fair to say that your retention problems would dramatically decrease. At Reunify, we provide state of the art data science and tools to allow you to understand who your at-risk members are as well as what their interests are, however, without someone at the club to act on this information, we are no better than a paper weight (for those of you still using those). While we can help you better engage with your constituents, it is invariably going to be up to you, the club operator to pick up that phone and call them.
We know for a fact that the more members are engaged, the more they will be in the club and the less likely they will be to leave. So before you go looking for a solution like Reunify, look at your yourself and your staff and determine what you are doing today to change member behavior. Have you allocated resources to member outreach? Have you carefully crafted the messaging to them to keep them coming in? Are your services reflective of your members’ needs? Once you have done that, all the rest tends to fall into place and a solution such as ours can really have an impact.