One of our partners is a boutique fitness chain with 3 locations in the center of the Netherlands. With a 10 year track record of delivering outstanding service Health Works Fitness has an establish market position in its cities and as such has focused primarily on an offline marketing strategy.
During 2019 it became apparent that with the heightened competition in the fitness industry this was no longer enough to maintain its position, let alone grow it. Together with Ada Beta the competitive landscape, its online profile and the exisiting client data was analysed to create a coherent and fitting marketing strategy; tailored for a combination of online and offline client targeting.
This created in 2020 the best quarterly membership sales in recent memory, especially taking into account that all fitness operators in The Netherlands had to close their doors on the 15th of March as part of the COVID-19 lockdown measures.
Following such an event Ada Beta and Health Works Fitness had to switch gears; in a way that neither had expected. As the regulations became clear we worked towards a solution that would strengthen the connection with its members but also deliver actual value to them.
Using virtually all the equipment in the gyms, working with local regulators, law enforcement and the Health Works Fitness teams we created a Sports library (called the SportBieb as a reference to Sport Bibliotheek; the Dutch term for library). Next to the variety of online classes that were provided members could also reserve fitness equipment to create their perfect Lockdown Workout.
Using the system of a library where members would return their equipment after one week all members had an equal chance of getting extra value from their membership whilst also allowing the gyms to create an ongoing connection with the club and its teams.
This severely limited to outflow of members in a period during which no new sales could take place hence allowing Health Works Fitness to bounce back stronger than its competitors.
After the initial disappointment that fitness operators would be one of the last to benefit from the partial lifting of the COVID-19 regulations Ada Beta stepped in to maximise the economic outcome in this restricted environment.
Clearly many gyms understood that the only correct way forward was to organise outdoor fitness activities but the key is not only knowing what; but also knowing how.
Working in partnership we created not only an unparalleled offline experience but also an online way to broadcast this. Ada Beta created a new FaceBook page [INSERT LINK TO SPORTBIEB FACEBOOK PAGE] that targetted not only the cities where the members would traditionally come from but to a much broader audience. This resulted in June and July in the best new membership sales in living memory; obviously driven by a FaceBook page and campaign that reached more than 300,000 people in the Netherlands.
Ensuring that the local teams were brought in to be part of the online success this created a knock-on effect of positivity and celebration at the gyms. Members going for their work-out found themselves engulfed in a sea of positivity; exactly what everyone needed after living through these unprecented measures.
Both the SportBieb and the outdoor fitness show the importance of integrating the online strategy with the offline experience and the team that needs to deliver the client experience.
With the fitness operators able to re-open their clubs following the lockdown Ada Beta then worked with Health Works Fitness to create a unique offering combined with limited costs.
Using the client database as the base for calculating both the costs and impact of the different solutions we decided to harness the enthousiasm of the members combined with a way to reward them.
Using the basic structure of a referral program known as Bring-A-Friend and combining this with a lottery element we were able to combine the offline and online strengths once again.
Every member that would refer a new member would immediately receive 1 month of free membership and if they would refer 2 or more new members they also participate in a raffle where three holiday packages are up for grabs.
Using online tools and data analysis in combination with the local teams (including an incentive structure for success for the teams) we were able to combine actual new membership sales with creating a very active and well-liked online marketing effort. All of this of course with minimal additional costs to our partners.