Building Relationships with New Health Club Members

Jimmy Girot

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July 19, 2019

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category

minute read

PUblished

July 19, 2019

First impressions in health clubs set the tone for each member’s experience. Beyond a trustworthy smile and firm handshake, a first impression extends beyond a member’s first interaction. During a member’s first 90 days, they are forming a permanent opinion of their experience. Creating the ultimate first impression requires a strategic focus on the member’s first day all the way to their 90th day, and beyond.

You don’t get a second chance to give a first impression, but you have several opportunities to build a healthy, long-term relationship with every new member.Club Automation recently attended IHRSA’s July webinar called How to BuildRelationships with Members in the First 90 Days. Presented by Lisa Gorsline, President and General Manager of Corpus Christi Athletic Club, this webinar shined a light on the importance of a member’s first 90 days. There were many key takeaways fromLisa’s presentation, but a few tactics stood out the most to our team.

New Member Coaching Program

At Corpus Christi Athletic Club, new members who may be deconditioned or new to a health club environment are assigned a personal coach. This coach is more of a personal club ambassador than a traditional fitness coach. The coach is responsible for confirming one-on-one orientation appointments, making sure the new member is comfortable with navigating the facility and offerings, and will end up contacting the new member 12-15 times during their first 90 days. This is a simple, yet powerful way to enhance a club’s retention efforts.

Club Orientation Challenge

IHRSA research has shown that frequent attendance often correlates with longer membership tenure. According to the IHRSA Health Club Consumer Report, 80% of “core” members, those who use the club for at least 100 days per year, belong to a health club for at least two years.This data drives Lisa Gorsline to offer a club orientation challenge called“Around the Club in 30 Days.” For this challenge, new members who complete 10of 17 listed activities receive a free t-shirt. This challenge is a fun and simple way to encourage new members to explore every aspect of Corpus Christi Athletic Club.

New Member $25 Credit Program

To take their engagement one step further, Corpus Christi Athletic Club offers a broad program to encourage new members to take advantage of every service and amenity. New members who complete this list within 30 days of joining will receive a $25 credit to their account. The $25 Credit Program to-do list is:meet with your coach, complete the Around the Club in 30 Days challenge, get a family picture taken at the club, complete three “Start Smart Sessions” and attend one group exercise orientation class.

Building a healthy relationship with every new member is possible, but it requires intentionality and consistency. Efforts to set the tone for new members will undoubtedly pay dividends for years to come.

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