COVID-19 has drastically reshaped how we do things, especially our ability to be physically present for things we love most, like working out. During this time, your online presence matters now more than ever. And since your students and prospects aren’t able to drop in and see you face-to-face, it’s crucial to have a strong online presence so that they can get as close to an in-studio experience as possible. If you’re searching for ways to increase your digital footprint, check out our tips below.
Update Your Website
When deciding whether or not they want to make a purchase or sign up for more information, the average consumer will scope out a company’s website first to help make that decision. And thanks to the pandemic, this statement is truer than ever. Having relevant and timely information is not only beneficial because it brings customers to your site, but it also increases your search rankings when students are on the prowl.
Because gyms and studios are among the type of businesses that were heavily impacted by the crisis, it’s a good idea — necessary even — to have a page or a section of your site dedicated to how you’ve changed your operations to accommodate COVID-19 requirements and guidelines. And be transparent, as your current and potential gym members are looking to see how your business is handling the pandemic and its ongoing developments.
Make sure that your most timely and impactful information is front and center in a pop-up or a banner. Don’t make your audience go hunting for it. They’re likely to give up before they even find it.
Lastly, remember that this isn’t the place to showcase mediocre content. Along with your social media page, your website should be the best reflection of you, your school, and the life-enhancing services you offer. Mix it up with news, blog articles, pictures, webinars, and videos; they’re a goldmine when it comes to piquing the interest of your current and potential students. It gives them a taste of the quality of training and curriculum you offer, plus it builds trust and confidence in your brand as an authority.
Increase Review Efforts
Another way to build trust and transparency with your audience is to highlight and repurpose the reviews that you’ve received throughout the past six months. As prospects evaluate your gym, they’re going to look to their peers to vet you. This includes your curriculum, your staff, and, even more importantly, the cleanliness of your studio.
If you’re hungry for reviews, offer an incentive to students who have trained with you before. This can range from something simple like a free coffee or a percentage off their next purchase to something most costly like dinner or trinkets. Encourage them to share specifics, paint a picture of what training with you will be like. If possible, try to collect reviews from students who have trained at your facility post-quarantine. They’ll be the ones best equipped to vet your revised operations. Don’t be discouraged if you receive negative reviews. And resist the urge to delete them as well. Negative reviews are realistic, as you can’t please every customer, but you can use their feedback to tweak your process and continue to make your gym the best it can be during this time.
Have a Clear Landing Page for Promotional Offers
Since your students and prospects aren’t able to drop in and see you face-to-face, it’s a great idea to have strategies in place so that there’s ample information right at their fingertips. Many new sign-ups and current students may be looking for ways to save money, while still being able to achieve their fitness goals. This is where your special offers and landing pages come in.
If you use a software like Kicksite that allows you to create a landing page, use this feature to highlight your offerings and post them on your website, social media, Google My Business — you name it. There’s no such thing as over posting! The goal is to get the word out and, oftentimes, just seeing your post in passing or learning about a promotion by word of mouth is the most effective kind of marketing.
Increase Social Media Efforts for Your Gym
Many businesses have a social media page (or two) for their business. But in the rare case that you don’t, now is the time to create one. Having a social page for your business can prove more valuable than just highlighting your business hours. It can show customers what services your gym offers and act as a backup shop to your brick and mortar location. If you’re fortunate to already have a social media account, be sure to increase your efforts and boost marketing through your page.
Online advertising resource WordStream explores the power in using hashtags in their article on social media, calling it a “free and yet powerful way to expand your social media visibility.” Their suggestion is that instead of using the standard #COVID19 hashtag, opt for more inspiring ones like #WereInThisTogether. You can also opt for a local angle or more specific tags like #AtHomeWorkout.This sets you apart from the sea of other COVID posts.
It’s also ok to take a break from mentioning COVID-19 as much. Nowadays social media is drowning in constant COVID chatter and posts, which can wear some people down. Instead, take the time to encourage, entertain, and distract your audience. Share lighthearted posts you find, create community strong posts, or infuse your captions with uplifting verbiage.
Create a Google Local Listing for Your Business
People search for a lot of things on the internet. In fact, Google receives more than. 63,000 searches per second any given day. And most web searches have local intent; meaning that when someone is searching for a good, product, or service, they’re likely searching for something nearby. We call this local SEO, and you should take advantage of this by creating or regularly updating your Google Business profile. In doing this, you help search engines better recognize your business and see it as trustworthy. A way to further boost your effort is to provide relevant info to your audience. If you’ve created a landing page for promotions and offers as we suggested above, add it to your Google My Business page. If you have a blog or are active on social media, showcase this information as well. Anything that can cause you to be viewed as a resource or an authority.
Although these tips and tactics are COVID-19 driven, rest assured that they can be used well after the crisis has subsided. By incorporating these tools, you can boost your business’ presence and revenue in no time.