It’s fair to say that every industry has had to have a shakeup over the last year - you don’t need us to tell you why that might be! Organisations have had to make big moves and innovative changes just to stay afloat during these strange times. One industry that has been heavily impacted, especially by lockdown, is the fitness industry.
Considering that back in July 2020, Public Health England estimated that having a BMI of 35 to 40 could increase a person’s chances of dying from covid-19 by 40%, and with countries like the UK promising to “wage a war on obesity,” it has been left to health and fitness organisations to figure out ways to help people try and better their health during lockdowns, made even more difficult by strict social distancing laws and learning how to build a presence online.
Having seen some true efforts being made in 2020, like Joe Wicks workouts, Yoga with Adrienne, and most of us opting for daily walks, it’s no wonder many of our fitness specialists are turning to online teaching. However, a new study by the Office for National Statistics suggests the people’s positivity and healthy habits eventually wore off. According to the research, we were drinking more, moving less and addicted to the TV throughout the restrictions... As we start 2021 facing new restrictions (hey there lockdown 3.0...), now is the time to rethink your online strategy and here are 7 ways we think will help . . .
1. The right tools for the job
Remember, most people don’t have gym equipment at home – you need to work with what they have. This could mean substituting weights for tin cans or heavy books, making resistance bands from belts, using a dog lead instead of a yoga strap, or using cushions instead of a Pilates ball. Make sure your class is tailored to household objects rather than specialist equipment.
Make sure you provide easy access to your live stream or video links in your regular booking schedule in your app, website or social media feeds. Familiarise yourself with Zoom, YouTube, and make sure you’ve got good audiovisual quality.
2. Reach out to your current contact base
Start at home. Reach out to your current clients and members, detailing what you can offer them while they are at home. This would usually mean sending emails to your contacts with an advertisement, such as new class schedules, trainer profiles, a summary of your virtual classes. Arrange one to one sessions to develop a training plan or assess their needs – even if they’ve been coming to you for years, lockdown will definitely have had an impact on their body and their health!
If you’re a smaller business, you could also send out personalised messages through Whatsapp, or even create a WhatsApp group as a great way to encourage people to share their progress and feedback for your workouts.
3. Create content around lockdown and Covid
People want to understand how they can get fit and stay healthy at home. If your clients follow you on social media, start blogging with health and fitness guidance.
Create short videos of quick routines that can be followed, depending on how much time they may have, such as a 5 minute break time stretch, 30-minute quick workout, detailed breakdown of a certain posture or routine.
4. Promote your online offering on social media
We all know that effective marketing relies on having and maintaining a strong online presence. This means, creating and developing an account on sites such as Instagram or Facebook, posting regular updates, sharing links to your classes, sharing new material or app content that may help them at home and conversing with your client base.
Think creatively about how you can use social media to appeal to your unique audience.
5. Run challenges
Running a fitness challenge on your social media pages is a great way to engage with and grow your online community. Things such as the 30-day plank challenge, 30-day handstand challenge, 30-day split challenge, or 30-day arm challenge are just some examples – you will find numerous links online which you can adapt and tailor to suit your audience. Encourage your audience to share before and after pictures and use this as a chance to upsell. For example, the 30-day arm challenge will work really well with the HIIT class.
You can download our 30 Days of Healthy Habits Challenge here to share with your audience. Be sure to tag us on your socials if you do!
6. Offer rewards
Try offering rewards for a certain amount of class completions. This doesn’t have to be expensive and could come in the form of 1-1 session or additional nutritional or fitness advice. Try considering the ways you could create some additional incentive to keep members coming back to your online classes.
You could also encourage clients to share your live streaming classes and online videos with their contacts too. Referral programmes are a great way to keep current members engaged AND attract new customers.
7. Bring the clients back and stand out from the competition
You may have already established a good online presence, but how do you get those people whose habits have fallen by the wayside to re-engage with their health? And more importantly, how do you monitor their health and plan any kind of fitness journey when physical contact prevents you from measuring their health and body composition?
This is where BVI comes in, and the really cool part? There are no costs whatsoever to you - you actually earn a commission when your clients engage with BVI! Our new technology that could revolutionise how gyms, PT’s, nutritionist’s and fitness fans alike can connect with their audience online, from the comfort of their own home! Your client simply downloads the MyBVI app from a link on your website, email or social media account, takes a 3D scan of their body, and within a few seconds, they are provided with their visceral fat, total body fat %, and waist to hip ratio, with just as much accuracy as they would usually get in a gym environment.