Little Pain, Much Gain: Fitness Advertising for the New Year

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The new year is now in full swing, and the masses are off to the races with their resolutions. Once again, we can expect that “lose weight” and “get fit and healthy” will be on the top of the list.

So we don’t have much to say regarding diet and workout tips to keep up with New Year’s resolutions (that’s your expertise, not ours!). But what we can offer is sound advice for fitness/health club marketers to capitalize on the influx of new potential customers in the coming year.

The fitness sector represents tremendous opportunity for marketers on our ad network. About 70 percent of potential gym members search for the closest gym in their area before coming down for a visit. And it’s pretty obvious that the beginning of the year, as well as the lead-up to summer and fall, are prime time for gyms, personal trainers, and health clubs looking to bolster extra memberships and clients.

By utilizing pay per click offers, geographic targeting, and investing in your landing page collateral, fitness marketers can enjoy an ROI boost, with minimal heavy lifting.

Pump Up Your Proximity
Like any brick and mortar business, a gym or fitness center must capitalize on geographic targeting to truly make a dent in the local market.

If your goal is simply to get more gym memberships or clients for your personal training business, targeting your pay per click ads to hit potential members within close proximity of your location, and including location-specific phrases to your keyword list, is a surefire way to not only run an extremely relevant campaign but also run a highly efficient, low-CPC campaign.

If available, use existing member or client demographic data you might have on file to get a more specific analysis of your audience’s geography. One fitness center in Florida saw that 90 percent of its members lived within 3 miles of the gym. By running a pay per click campaign limited to that area and focusing on increasing phone calls, walk-ins, and free week passes, the gym saw a 30 percent increase in phone calls and a 20 percent increase in monthly memberships, after just 14 days!

Flex the Freebies
As mentioned earlier, free passes are a proven tactic in getting new members in the door. The majority of potential gym-goers do want to spend a few days getting to know your facility, trying out different equipment, meeting your staff, and getting a general feel for your club’s atmosphere. Many gyms charge full price for even a first-time visit and don’t offer free trial passes at all, and this can drive away potential customers who simply want to dip their toe in the water.

To put forth a positive, customer-centric brand image, consider adding a free trial offer to your ad copy and/or landing pages (and, of course, a registration form for good measure). A free pass offer also creates the opportunity to remarket through an opt-in email campaign, so you can build quality relationships, provide helpful tips, and most importantly, add value to their free deal.

Keep Up Appearances
Of course, no great PPC display campaign would be complete without some stunning ads to go along with it. Fitness-themed display banners are a great opportunity to motivate users to check out your gym. And you might also want to try our In-Banner Video so you can maximize the noticeability of your ads on each page where they’re displayed.

Don’t forget to design an effective conversion-driven landing page to capitalize on these new fitness enthusiasts! Consider the following strategies when updating landing pages for your campaign:

  • A cohesive branding theme that integrates the same colors and aesthetics across all aspects of the website.
  • An image slideshow that showcases some of your most impressive machines, facilities, and features,
  • As mentioned earlier, an opt-in form for a free trial pass and an email newsletter.
  • A testimonial page with quotes and photos of satisfied members.

Whether you’re a big, corporate gym looking to get a head start on your yearly membership quota or an upstart personal trainer with big plans for 2014, all of these strategies can help put some muscle behind your efforts. Focus on building relationships, target your ads locally, and implement simple front-end branding changes—and you can resolve for a financially fit year!

As a top-ranked network, provides competitive online advertising and web monetization solutions for companies large and small. Contact us to learn more!