Are your new members engaged? Or, are they leaving?

By | Customer Experience, Engage, Engagement, Industry, Marketing, Membership | 3 Comments

Mid-February is often regarded as the time when new members who haven’t been engaged and who are not using their membership start to bail. Is your organization beginning to lose new members? If so, don’t lose hope! We have ideas to engage your members and encourage some of them to stay for the long haul.
Here are eight great ways to work your way into the hearts of these new members:

    1. Focus on in-person conversations with new members. There are tools that help staff gain visibility into which new members are in your facility at any given time. These tools help staff understand which members to speak with so they can start identifying what interests them. Don’t have an engagement tool or customer relationship manager (CRM)? Your staff can still work on face-to-face conversations – paying particular attention to new gym-goers or those who may need a little extra love. [Click here to read how the YMCA of Florida’s First Coast is taking their face-to-face interactions to the net level.]
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    2. “We love our Wellness Staff” initiatives. Each week offer a themed gathering to allow members to meet and greet staff members from a particular area. For example, Tuesday night could be “We love our Swim Instructors” allowing members to meet and ask questions with the swim staff.
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    3. Create a group of new members or new members with specific needs and follow that group. This can be done either manually or through your engagement system to give staff extra incentive to follow up with this group. For example, you could build a group of new members that have been absent for the last two weeks to be sure to speak with this at-risk group when they are at your center.
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    4. Group Exercise Open House. Invite your members to join the wellness staff in the Group Exercise room with water and fruit to learn more about the types of classes offered. This can help de-mystify group exercise to someone who might feel overwhelmed.
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    5. Offer newbie-friendly introductory group exercise classes. Offer a series of introductory classes that are shorter and offer more time for setup to encourage new members to try them out. Spin is a class new members may find intimidating so offer a 30-minute spin class and have the instructor go through how to properly set up the spin bike at the beginning of each introductory class.
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    6. Family-night. Offer a family fun night with games or activities that encourage new members to get the whole family involved. Some ideas? Show a movie at the indoor pool? Offer a silly family-dance or Zumba class with glow sticks. Drawing the whole family into the membership makes it more likely new members will stick around.
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    7. Follow up. Have staff conversations with new members from the above events trigger a follow-up task. When staff are speaking with new members, have them try to determine a program or volunteer interest. Then, those conversations can trigger follow-up tasks from a full-time staff member in the area of interest.
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    8. Email Missing Members. Create a list of members that have been missing the last few weeks. Email those members with a little encouragement, an incentive, or a class suggestion.

Reach Underserved Areas with Community Meetups

By | Customer Experience, Engagement, Events & Happenings, Facilities, Industry, Marketing, Membership, Mission Delivery, Online, Programs | No Comments

Member-based health and wellness centers focus on making their communities stronger. However, doing so at physical locations has limitations. While the vast majority of American’s are committed to improving their health, 82% are not joining fitness facilities to do so (IHRSA 2014). Why? Perhaps locations are too far from work, home, or school; maybe they are self-conscious working out in front of others; or maybe they aren’t quite sure how to use the equipment and are intimidated to ask for help. Whatever the reason, you’re missing out on making a positive impact on the health of the majority of your community constituents.

What if you could flip the equation? Instead of expecting members to come to you, meeting members of your community where they are. Could you extend your mission of health and wellness to many more without having to invest in another expensive facility? Yes, you can and it’s simple — organize a community meetup. Here’s an example:

As the suburbs have continued to sprawl, your YMCA is now missing a key and growing area of your community with your closest location being 20 miles away. You could build a new facility, but that takes time and considerable funding. In the meantime, host a bootcamp in a local park every week. Your staff can bring along some weights, jump ropes, and mats, and lots of enthusiasm. Organizing community meetups and allowing community members to connect with each other and the Y in between sessions is quick and easy with a tool like Daxko Well. 

Is your center using community meetups to extend your mission and serve more? We’d love to hear how in the comments below.

Virtual Wellness Making Headlines

By | Fitness, Industry, Marketing, Membership, Mission Delivery, Online | No Comments

Recently, Bloomberg Business published an article about innovative cycling company, Peloton. Peloton offers a unique cycling experience that combines a proprietary high-end spin bike with high-quality subscription-based virtual spin classes. This innovative formula has proven to be successful in reaching spin devotees that either don’t have the time or proximity to attend an indoor cycling studio. With just 1/3 the riders of spinning giant SoulCycle, Peloton already boasts 1/2 their profits.

When you add the success of Peloton with other virtual fitness solutions (Wello virtual training, and Daily Burn are a few options) that are on the market, virtual wellness is finding its footing and proving its value. Comprehensive virtual wellness has the power to offer heart pumping benefits as well as well-rounded wellness programs. In fact, Well + Good just named Intensive Fitness programs — i.e. those “which incorporate additional lifestyle elements such as nutrition and health coaching” — as one of the top wellness trends of 2016.

If your health and wellness organization doesn’t already have a comprehensive wellness offering and a way to connect with members in the virtual space, a virtual membership option is a great way to achieve both these goals. To capitalize on the popularity of high-end virtual classes and intensive wellness programs, your virtual offering should have the following:

A Broad Scope – To engage members and help them see the best results, a virtual offering should encompass all possible aspects of wellness. This would include videos, eating plans, nutritional information and as well as recipes and tracking capabilities.

Individualization – Members expect eating plans and workouts tailored to their level of fitness and a program will build and expand as their experience, strength, and motivation get stronger. A virtual offering should also offer a way for members to test their fitness level and track their results to keep them motivated and moving in the right direction.

Mobile Applications & Member Retention

By | Customer Experience, Engagement, Industry, Marketing, Membership, Online | 6 Comments

Evidence has shown that mobile applications are a way to gain customer loyalty. The same premise holds true for those in the health and wellness industry. According to an October 2013 study conducted by Forbes Insight and Adobe, 83% of company executives used mobile applications to communicate with customers and 67% used a mobile application for brand engagement.

Have you been considering a mobile application for your health and wellness organization? If so, you aren’t alone. Our Trends and Opportunities survey of member-based organizations reported an increase of 42% in organizations offering a mobile application between 2013 and 2014. After all, the average American spends 2 hours a day on their smartphone. Don’t you want to have a presence?

If you are thinking that your website achieves the same results as a mobile application, you might want to think again. There are 224 million mobile app users in the United States and 84% of smartphone users prefer mobile applications to a mobile websites. Members come to rely on your mobile application for quick and easy access to group exercise schedules, program registration, and facility status updates. After all, when a member gives you devoted space on their mobile device, the relationship is serious.

Sources:  eMarketer.com, “Mobile Apps Help Lure Customers, Spur Loyalty”, 2014 Daxko Trends & Opportunities Survey and WebDAM Infographic