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IHRSA 2016 Session Spotlight: Cross-Channel Marketing in the Social Age

From emails to text messages to social media, it’s easier than ever for health club operators to reach out to members and potential members. However, the multitude of communications platforms can become overwhelming, and many clubs have difficulty planning a cohesive marketing strategy.

“These days a lot of people are doing [cross-channel communications] but they don’t realize it or they don’t necessarily have a strategy of how they’re going to use those different channels,” says Fred Hoffman, M.Ed., owner of Paris-based Fitness Resources Consulting. “Before marketing was done with print and brochures and cold calling and websites, and now there’s so many other ways that are being used, especially with social media and other technologies, like text messages and push notifications.” 

Hoffman will outline how health club owners can harness the power of today’s communication channels in his IHRSA 2016 session, “Cross-Channel Marketing in the Social Age: Why it is Essential for the Success of Your Business.”

To select the right platforms to communicate with members, club operators must first answer the following questions:  

  • Who is the target demographic? “Are they talking to the existing members? Who are they, what age groups, male or female, what are their interests?” Hoffman says. “If they’re looking for potential members, what is that demographic? They need to know who they’re talking to.”
  • What is the goal of the message? “What are they trying to do? Is it a special promotion to get members or are they launching a new product or program?” Hoffman says. “They really need to look at a strategy—it’s not enough to simply be on Facebook and have a website. You have to think about who you’re talking to and the reasons you want to talk to them.”
  • Is this the correct channel to communicate this message? “With social media, people think they have a Facebook and Twitter and Instagram, but a lot of times they don’t understand the functions and how to use it for whatever their purpose is. They need to understand how each platform works and how they can exploit them.” 

At Hoffman’s Tuesday, March 22 session in Orlando, he’ll present cross-channel marketing and communications best practices, common terminology, and popular platforms used across the health club industry.

Attendees will “learn how to put together a strategy for using the different channels and how they can successfully link the content that they’re communicating through the different channels,” he says. “A good part of the talk will be about personalization and targeting clients through different channels to make it a personal experience.” 

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