Marketing is often that unknown, mysterious, and a brushed aside aspect of your gymnastics center. In your average gym, it is composed of one person, a “Marketing Director”, or just the gym club owner. However, this is a big mistake. Marketing and sales; needs to be a large aspect of your business; composed of a team that meets daily to assure the quality of what is being marketed today, yesterday, and in the future. Why? Because we need daily sales, new memberships, to be a driving force of the gym’s revenue.
You can start this process by understanding what marketing for gymnastics is composed of, and how the sales process works. There are two Stars and Stripes Management charts we will observe. The Phases of a Full Stack Campaign, and the Sales Funnel (in part 2 of this blog). These two charts together are a great way to visualize how to properly market for gymnastics classes and efficiently sign up new members over the phone.
Let’s first imagine we want to begin marketing your grand opening of your gym. Let’s do this through the 6 phases of Marketing found in the Phases of a Full Stack Campaign chart.
PHASE 01: CONTENT
To start the process of marketing to your community, you must begin with gathering content. This is through quality photos and videos...
• Quality wide photos of your gym
• Quality photos and videos of happy recreational gymnasts
• Quality photos and videos of serious competitive gymnasts
• Quality photos and videos of hardworking staff
• Quality photos and videos of happy staff
• Quality photos and videos of staff observing client satisfaction
• Quality photos and videos of all programs and services
View an example of a quality marketing video: https://youtu.be/LCpYFDspm48
In addition to media, you also need to ‘ad copy’ which is text content…
• Gym’s tagline
• Gym’s motto or slogan
• Descriptions of programs and services
• Descriptions of special offers
• Subject lines for emails or social media posts
• Inspiring quotes or messages that pertains to gymnastics
• Content to assist with the message you are trying to get across
Just remember, content is king.
Whatever you are posting to your community to showcase your gymnastics center, must be something people want to look at! A good guide we use at Stars and Stripes Management to determine if our content is compelling is by using the mnemonic VEST; content must be Valuable, Engaging, Stimulating, and Trending.
PHASE 02: MULTIMEDIA & DESIGN
Now that you have this raw content of photos, videos, and ad copy, you must spruce up the content by adding text, colors, graphics, etc. You do this by utilizing a graphic designer that can enhance the content by color correcting images, editing the videos, and adding your logo where needed.
The Multimedia & Design phase of your marketing should assure that whatever is being posted is up to date with today's graphic design standards of quality.
Here is a list of items that can and should be done in this phase…
· Enhanced images
· Edit Videos (with watermarks and text graphics)
· Altered video resolution sizes for various social media platforms
· Infographics for various uses
· Flyers for print
· Graphics for social media
PHASE 03: WEB DEVELOPMENT
Now that the content is looking great, it’s time to place it somewhere, and there is no better place today than the web. Your advertising needs to lead to your business management website or a landing page to capture your audience and generate leads. If you are the real deal, a separate landing page for each program, service, and marketing campaign should be created. There must be contact forms, call to actions, and/or click funnels to generate leads from your marketed material.
Here is a list of 'must haves’ in the web development phase or your website in general…
· Quality Website for your gymnastics center
· Content posted on website
· Separate landing pages or sub-pages for campaign
· Separate landing pages or sub-pages for programs and services
· Call to Action items (“call now”, “Text us”, “place an interest”)
· Click Funnel, a “How old is your child?” interest form
· Any CRM or form integrations
· Online registration tools
· Lead tracking embedded into the site
PHASE 04: SOCIAL MEDIA
Now it’s time to dive into the category of online marketing that everyone thinks they know everything about! Social media is today’s most important marketing tool, because it spreads fast and it’s free. However, there is no such thing as a free lunch, you have to work at it!
Let’s take the content created from the Content and Multimedia Phase, and post on social media.
Let’s post the images, videos, ad copy, and graphics on Facebook, Instagram, and Google My Business.
Let’s assure proper hashtag use, three of which should be consistent with all posts, #gymnasticsusa [yourgymname], #wintergarden [yourcity], #gymnastics [yoursport], and maybe 5 to 10 more hashtags on what you are posting about; ie: #summercamp, #grandopening, #afterschool, etc. But we are not done there. Next step is to share the post with friends, followers, and other pages making sure to respond to ALL comments as much as possible.
Here is a list of items you should do when posting a campaign on social media…
· Create a description
· Establish your three main hashtags
· Develop post exclusive hashtags
· Post on Facebook, stories included
· Post in Instagram, stories included, IGTV when appropriate
· Post on YouTube, copy your share link for other social platforms ie: Facebook
· Post on Google My Business
· “Share” posts with friends, followers, and business pages
· Respond to comments as much as possible
· Tag people when necessary ie: employee or coach within post material
· Make sure to adhere to each social platform’s post requirements, ie: image size
PHASE 05: DIGITAL MARKETING
A lot of different definitions for this category, but digital marketing is using online digital technologies to advertise your business. The opposite would be traditional marketing, which is utilizing print ads, tv, radio, and billboards. We can say that this entire blog is about digital marketing, but that is not how we describe it.
At Stars and Stripes Management, we consider the digital marketing phase to be an area that is focused on paid social media, paid search engine optimization, email blasts, and text message marketing.
This is the phase of your campaign that you will invest money into your social media platforms to “boost” your posts so they reach a targeted audience and obtain more views and leads.
This is also where we will focus our search engine efforts to make sure that we can be found quickly (and above our competition) on Google, Yahoo, and Bing.
This takes some time and skill. You will often have to hire a 3rd party to focus on this aspect of your business.
This is a list of items to achieve this Digital Marketing phase successfully:
· Create a Google Search Ad
· Assure Search Engine Optimization through website Keywords and metadata
· Create a Target Audience list (by geographic, demographic, and socioeconomic)
· Boost the Facebook Post
· Boost the Instagram Post
· Boost the YouTube post (if applicable)
PHASE 06: COMMUNITY OUTREACH
This phase of marketing is one we are all familiar with, the oldest kind of marketing… belly to belly/face to face. This is reaching out to the community directly as a person or spokesperson of your business. Examples of this are physical going to the local schools, getting the local news to come to your facility, or participating in any fundraisers or special events. Getting physically involved in your local community is the most traditional, effective, and important part of marketing, and should not be neglected. Just keep in mind, the owner of the gym is the best person to do this kind of work. Here are some good community outreach efforts that are standard…
Local elementary school teach-ins
Local elementary school partnerships
Local business affiliations
Throwing community event(s)
Having the local news come to your community event(s)
Participating in as many local events as possible.
Participating in charities
‘Street Team’ efforts (physically handing out flyers)
There is it is, all 6 phases of marketing. We call it phases because if you were to launch something like a grand opening, or special event, you will want to make sure it goes through all 6 of these steps. However, in a legitimate business, all 6 of these phases can be aspects of your marketing team that your business focuses on daily, regardless of any specific campaign. For example, at Stars and Stripes Mgmt, and for our gymnastics center Gymnastics USA, we have teams of 3-4 developers for each phase of marketing, making a total of 6 different teams, each team dedicated to a specific phase of marketing.
Reach out for questions, inquiries or additional information at zanderarthur.com