Fitness Center Marketing: What Do You Need?

This is the second article in a five-part series that details exactly what you need to market your fitness center and make it a success.

One of the biggest mistakes many fitness centers make is printing their own marketing materials. They view print marketing as an expense, when it is actually an investment toward revenue generation. Desktop-printed brochures, flyers and postcards are dull and flabby; but the same pieces printed on state-of-the-art presses are sleek, tight and attractive. Gym members appreciate appearances, so choose an affordable online printing company such as PsPrint to deliver your message with professionalism.

Must-have fitness center marketing materials:

Business cards - Business cards are cheap and expendable. Print as many as you can hand out, and make sure everyone you meet has one. This includes your mom and your banker, and everyone in between.

Postcards - Postcards are likewise extremely cost effective and are a great way to get potential members to take a closer look at your fitness center.

Posters - Strategically placed posters can grab attention. Try community bulletin boards, and if you're close to a large institution such as a university, tech firm or factory, see if you can purchase some ad space in hallways and on bulletin boards and place your posters there. Maybe you have someone on the inside who can do this for your free of charge.

Flyers - Like posters, flyers can be placed on bulletin boards and anywhere else your target audience frequents. Under windshield wipers in the grocery store parking lot is a good option.

Booklets/guides - A rather unique, yet extremely effective approach to fitness center marketing is to print booklets about specific health goals - weight loss, muscle building, athletic prowess, yoga, etc. Not only will your booklet add value and establish trust and credibility, it will demonstrate that members can expect real results when they join your gym.

Catalogs - Fitness centers are not retail businesses by trade, but that doesn't mean you can't upsell. Find suppliers to sell athletic equipment and apparel, especially those that can be used at your gym. You can also sell self-branded apparel (think Gold's Gym T-shirts) for double the impact.

Brochures - Your brochure should include images, features and benefits of your gym so it's easy to see why you're the No. 1 choice.

Calendars - Everyone loves (and uses) free calendars. Include special events, tournaments and relevant imagery. Brand your gym on every page.

Greeting cards - Showing that you appreciate your members - and that you truly want to help them achieve their goals - is easy to do with greeting cards. Don't over-pitch, just express that your members are important and wish health and prosperity

Stickers - If you sell products, make sure a branded sticker is affixed to each.

Newsletters - A formal approach to staying connected with your clients. Highlight new health tips and tricks, athletic techniques, print tournament news, write about your members and do all this is an exciting and engaging way to earn a loyal readership.

Other materials you should consider producing include a website, door hangers and a corporate identity package (complete with letterhead, envelopes, brochure, flyer, business card and pocket folder).