Creative Ways Fitness Businesses are Approaching Life in the COVID Landscape


The heart of any fitness business is its community. Especially during an unsettling and unknown time, keeping your community connected to your business—and connecting with one another—is more important than ever.

Coronavirus may have closed fitness businesses doors, but it doesn’t mean businesses have to close all together. With the help of fellow fitness businesses, mind and body online have compiled a variety of ways to keep fitness professionals and members connected and revenue coming in.

  1. Keep memberships active with live streaming classes. Offer classes live, and if you’re a personal trainer, you can do virtual one-on-one or small group training.
  2. Offer on-demand workouts for clients to watch (and re-watch). If you prefer a more polished look, pre-record workouts to share with your members. That way they can sweat with you from home whenever their schedule allows.
  3. Create workouts just for kids. With kids home from school, parents everywhere are feeling a little bit stressed. Whether you live stream, record on-demand, or simply share a printable workout, both parents and children will appreciate movements that can be done together or specifically with kiddos in mind.
  4. Network and cross-promote with your neighbours. All small businesses are feeling the pinch, so talking with one other and sharing ideas will help the entire community and put you in contact with businesses who can help promote your online classes.
  5. Let your local media know what you’re up to. Pitch your live stream and/or your on-demand workouts and provide all relevant details.
  6. Use social media to connect with customers. If your members follow you on Instagram, use stories as an opportunity to showcase what you’re up to and local resources available to them (including those businesses you’re cross-promoting).
  7. Create a members-only Facebook group. Again, use social media to your advantage. Make it private and encourage members to engage by sharing healthy recipes and Netflix recommendations, coordinating FaceTime workouts, and offering exclusive content from your business. Consider marketing your Facebook group as a perk of being a member to help maintain autopay’s during this time.
  8. Start an at-home challenge. Challenges help keep clients motivated throughout the year—and in a time like this, an extra dose of motivation will be just what your community needs. Have fun with an at-home plank or squat challenge with rewards like discounts or free swag. To get the word out, use member-only Facebook groups or other social media avenues.
  9. Do a review campaign. Your loyal customers want to help you, and getting more reviews is a great way to engage them while strengthening your brand.
  10. Let your customers pre-buy packages, memberships, or services. Loyal members will feel good knowing they’re helping our businesses in the short-term so they can receive the services they love.
  11. Discount memberships or packages. Ideal? No. But if discounting memberships and/or packages for a month means saving clients in the long term, it’s worth considering.
  12. Ramp up retail. Whether it’s offering to send swag packages, opening an online retail store, or both, our clients will be looking for gear to wear and use while at home.
  13. Take it outside. This may not work for everyone, so be sure to check any municipal government, logistical, or weather-related restrictions—especially if your city has sheltering in place restrictions. For those who can, however, moving workouts to the great outdoors will help clients get their sweat on with ample room to spread out.
  14. Rent or check out your equipment. Some members may not have access to the equipment they’ll need to effectively work out at home—and won’t be able to go to the store to purchase. Rent equipment like weights, kettlebells, yoga straps, and yoga blocks for a fee or as an exclusive perk for continuing a membership.
  15. Host an online workshop or workshop series. Give paying members additional value with a single or series of online workshops on topics like foam rolling at home, proper form, nutrition, breath, etc. Offer workshops for free to paying members and charge for those individuals who’ve cancelled but want to tune in.
  16. Pick up the phone and call, text, or FaceTime your members. That’s right, we’re talking good old-fashioned connection. If our clients aren’t seeing us in person, they’ll miss those interactions. Make their day by contacting them directly and letting them know you’re thinking of them. It’s a simple gesture that means a lot—several of our clients told us so.

Some great tips to use and adapt to your own fitness business from Mind Body Online.

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