As a club, you have two important goals – keeping clients happy and getting new ones. Getting clients to join your club is one thing. But keeping them happy enough to come back is something else.
It’s important to make enough time for each client so they achieve the goals they want. But even then, you might see more people dropping out than you’d like.
The thing is, keeping clients happy is often a matter of motivation. And if you can keep them motivated to keep working, they´ll stay with you. Here are some tips to consider if you’re seeking a cure to your client retention blues.
Promote Client Autonomy
People like being in control. This is no different in fitness. Subtly influence your clients to work harder by offering them choices. Squats or lunges? Are we doing interval training today or are we climbing hills? Make sure that the choices you give your clients line up with their fitness goals. Then watch motivation levels soar.
Now, they’re not doing what you’re telling them to do, but what they chose to do. And be happy doing it! How Machiavellian of you.
Track and Reflect on Client Progress
Want clients to believe in you as the best choice for their workout needs?
Of course you do.
Then it’s important to keep showing them that they are reaching their goals. Keep discussing their progress with them. People need evidence that they are doing well to keep a smile on their face, and their trust in you.
A coaching system like Virtuagym could help you out with this. When a new client comes in, complete the intake process and enter the client’s statistics into the system. After you’ve established a starting point, keep these stats updated. Show them the graphs in Virtuagym. Not only graphs for things like body weight or BMI but exercise-specific graphs. Is the 1RM for their bench press going up? Are their running times improving? Showing growth is an easy way of keeping clients happy. Progress is why they’re with you, after all.
Finally, reward their progress. If they reach certain goals, give them a small reward. This can be a free T-shirt, public praise on their Facebook page, or even a free training session. This way you give them something to take home with them, and that will keep them coming back to you. Plus, everyone loves free stuff, right?
Group Workouts to Increase Client Motivation
Consider group sessions. Placing clients together can inject a sense of togetherness in your client base. And knowing they aren’t alone is a perfect way to boost a client’s enjoyment of a workout.
Plus, clients will compete to outperform each other in intensity level. And healthy competition means healthy clients. Newcomers will look up to clients who’ve been working out for longer, who can serve as role models for the group. And if they’re competitive, they might even want to outdo them.
On a similar note, it could be beneficial to consider occasion-based workout programs. These are short programs (let’s say 6 weeks).
They have a defined beginning and end, instead of the normal “work out until you quit” approach. Keeping clients happy doesn’t mean they have to endure the same workout program. Variety is the spice of life, and this is true for fitness too.
Think about it. There is no end to regular personal training. You just go on and on, and that gets boring. But with short programs, you reach an endpoint, which is a reward in itself.
It’s a way to break the perceived rut of a long-term commitment to fitness. And if your clients have fun during these shorter programs, they’ll likely join up again!
Keeping clients happy is just one benefit of smaller workout programs. New clients will be attracted by the smaller commitment, and be more likely to try out your services. After all, they’re initially just signing up for a couple of weeks. This relieves some of the anxiety for joining up. And after that, it’s up to you to keep them happy enough to stay!
If you don’t want to completely overhaul your class model, set some time-based challenges. With Virtuagym, you can create group challenges to encourage some healthy competition. For example, set a goal to run 100 km in a month and have your clients compete against each other to reach the goal first. Alternatively, set a collective goal – 500 km for instance – and have everyone work together to reach that goal. Keeping clients happy does’t have to be an individual task. Your client base can work together as a team to spread smiles through encouraging each other.
When it comes to keeping clients happy these are all effective, easy-to-implement solutions. Some might work for your business, some might not. Experiment, and ask your clients how they feel. And of course, the right tools help a lot.
Client Satisfaction Survey
Want to get closer to your clients? Download our free satisfaction survey and use, copy, or adapt it for your business!