A well-defined marketing plan will cover certain elements: packaging, pricing, promotion and positioning. Consider your fitness business as you read the following.

Packaging. Are your name and logo familiar? Do your employees wear a standard uniform or outfit? Are the outfits bold and recognizable, or are they bland? Do you have identifiable products or branded programs?

Pricing. How do you price your memberships and services? Are there regulations? How does your price compare to your competition? Does the cost of a membership at your facility reflect the value? Are potential members willing to pay for that value? Sometimes pricing is beyond your control. A new, state-of-the-art facility requires research, development and construction, and, thus, a higher price. The challenge is to convince potential members of the value you offer for their membership price.

Promotion. Promotion includes advertising, public relations, publicity and education. You can use any combination of these avenues to promote your facility. Advertising is likely the most effective, immediate and expensive part of your marketing plan.

Public relations includes investor and government relations, recognition and award programs, and community outreach. Publicity encompasses less than public relations. An example is publicizing your new club through a newspaper, magazine or flyer.

Education is another way to promote your fitness products and services. Create handouts on topics related to living healthy, and make them available to the community. Host seminars or help conduct a research study. Develop an effective promotion strategy that matches your budget.

Positioning. Does the public know who you are and what you do, both alone and relative to your competition? How and what do they think of you? Are you a well-regarded corporate citizen? How you position your club will affect the pricing of memberships and other club services. Are you low-cost/mass market, or upscale/big ticket?

Marketing is key

You can have the best fitness facility or personal training program, but without being correctly marketed, it will not succeed. Through packaging, pricing, promotion and positioning, your marketing plan will determine what your target market thinks of you, and how they perceive your facility’s fit into their lives.

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