In this day and age, everyone is inundated with information. And that comes in many different forms.
Whether it is e-mail, text message, social media, snail mail or in person, it is enough to make you dizzy and confused.
But, as it turns out, for health and fitness club owners, what you send out and how you send it - to both members and prospects – can severely impact your business.
The latest IHRSA Member Retention Report, delves into how information is disseminated and whether it impacts retention rates.
“The most recent installment of the IHRSA Member Retention Report will help club operators fine-tune their strategy for communicating with members,” said Jay Ablondi, IHRSA’s executive vice president of Global Products. “Although the preferred communication media varies by gender and age, interaction with club staff plays a key role in keeping members. Combined with a targeted online communication plan, in-person communication help members feel at home in their club and look forward to frequent visits.”
The Retention Report is conducted in partnership with The Retention People. Information is taken from TRP 10,000™, the biggest and most comprehensive survey of member behavior ever carried out in the health and fitness industry. More than 10,000 health and fitness members in the U.K. completed a baseline survey of their exercise habits and membership behavior between July and September 2013.
Based on the responses from 10,000 health club members in the U.K., nearly nine out of ten members value interactions with fitness staff (87%), but less than half receive it (43%).
Outside of the club, the types of interactions 65% value receiving e-mails, while 34% value social media updates.
“Communication is only as effective as the action that it creates,” said Claire Holmes, TRP’s general manager for North America. “This report highlights how critical it is to understand and deliver the type of communication that will influence each individual member’s behavior. It’s also a clear indicator that email, text and social media have a significant part to play in engaging certain member demographics, alongside in-club interactions.”
The IHRSA Member Retention Report also gives strategies to use the information provided. Here are a couple:
- Develop a targeted communication strategy designed to maximize opportunities to interact with members within and outside of the club.
- Create a conversation culture within the club – implement methods to maximise face-to-face communications and monitor progress.