Future Proof Your Fitness Club
As developments in automation technologies continue to rapidly advance, many industries are investigating how automation can help improve their business. Whether this be from an operations, marketing or customer service perspective, automation has the capability to cut down manual work, increase efficiency, and eliminate errors.
With automation being heavily integrated into many consumers day to day activities, the experience that consumers expect has adapted. This means that in order to future proof your business and meet customers evolving expectations, fitness club owners must learn how to embrace automation within their club.
There is no doubt that fitness club owners are generally open to the idea of adopting new technology and digital trends. Many gym and studio owners have fully embraced other technological trends such as social media, centring their marketing strategies around building their online presence. However, as the industry becomes more aware of their need to automate, it becomes clearer that finding the balance between automation and human touch points may be difficult.
Within an industry that struggles to create differentiation through their offering, clubs have often used brand personality and in-gym experiences to stand out in the crowd. Introducing automation may mean reducing the number of opportunities that clubs have to make this in-person impression, but failing to evolve could also threaten long-term success.
In implementing any new automations that will be member-facing, it is important to consider whether they are for the benefit of the consumer. If the automation will offer a new level of convenience, personalisation or help your members in achieving their fitness goals, it is good start. Many fitness clubs already offer automated 24/7 access through membership cards or biometric scanners, and there is a heavy shift towards branded apps which offer workout plans and tutorials.
Additionally, automation can help with back-of-house processes as well. Marketing automation platforms create more opportunities for member engagement and allow club owners to deliver tailored content. However, if it is purely to benefit back-of-house operations it is important to make sure that it doesn’t negatively impact the consumers experience.
Many gyms and studios have faced criticism for poorly managed email marketing, or the sending of irrelevant information to members. It is important to ensure that frequency of communication is managed and that the messaging is relevant, otherwise the positive impact that automation can have on the customer experience may be lost.
Future proofing is important for any business owner, and the Australia’s fitness industry is more competitive than ever. It is vital that gym owners and manager stay abreast of the latest technologies and consider how they might be able to integrate them into their business operation.