This article first appeared in the Wodify Blog in September 2020.
Taking Control of Member Relationships
When working to maintain or increase your membership revenue, there can be a tendency to focus solely on signing up new members.
If you’re delivering great fitness experiences or have a cohesive community, it is common to assume that retention will take care of itself, or that you’re already doing everything you can to maintain your existing member relationships.
Especially during a time when membership levels might be down or it is more challenging to attract new members, it is important to maximize the revenue generated by every existing member relationship. A great way to increase existing member revenue is to sell additional services to those members and upgrade their memberships.
This is best achieved by taking a proactive and systematic approach to member relationship management through the use of structured, technology-driven, ongoing health and wellness evaluations.
Hardwiring Progress Evaluations
First, you should set expectations for new and current members that periodic progress evaluations are your standard process and explain that the purpose is to help them reach their goals. To accomplish this, you can reference your evaluation process in your marketing, which raises awareness about your approach and positions your evaluations as a member benefit. You’ll be signaling your commitment to your members and their progress, which can help differentiate you from competitors and create a sense of true personalization.
To facilitate the booking of these sessions, the simplest approach is to use an automated scheduling solution, like Wodify, that enables members to sign up directly for assessment times.
To create convenience for your members, make times available around classes, and offer contact-less evaluations using a video-conference service such as Zoom.
While most members will be enthusiastic about getting dedicated time with you, you will still need to actively follow up with those who don’t schedule on their own – using email and text, by finding them in person at your facility, or calling them directly to set up their sessions.
Ideally, your new member enrollment process already includes an initial assessment that captures information. This can include, a body analysis, goal and activity profile, and diagnostics around both fitness and weight management.
If that is the case, you are well positioned to repeat all or some portion of that assessment periodically. Even if you have not done assessments with prospects as a part of your sales process, you can still introduce progress evaluations with your current members to begin capturing and tracking this information.
In these evaluation sessions, you can:
- Identify members who may be at risk for cancellation and address their concerns
- Re-enroll members and have them reset or recommit to their goals
- Uncover continuing or new needs for fitness or nutrition support
- Discuss additional service options
- Upgrade memberships
Like an initial assessment, the ideal progress evaluation is facilitated by a dedicated technology solution that can be conducted in person or remotely. This can generate a real-time needs analysis, including diagnostic metrics, dashboards and reports that a client can view and access on their own. This professionalizes the evaluation process, creates a digital assessment history for future reference, establishes your expertise and authority, and helps create a roadmap for additional sales and renewals based on member needs.
Paul Amoruso is the Founder and CEO of Inciteful, which provides contactless virtual fitness and weight assessment software to clubs through its online diagnostic platform. He can be reached at email@example.com.