It is often said that a craftsman is only as good as his tools. This is true of carpenters, handymen, engineers and even fitness facilities. Your exercise facility will never reach its full potential unless you take advantage of the industry's top tools. It does not matter if you own/manage a brand new facility or if your gym has been in operation for decades. The failure to capitalize on the latest cutting edge tools will put your facility at a significant competitive disadvantage.
Pinpoint Your Target Market
The customer personas you must recruit in order to maximize your revenue are not the exact same as those of other businesses or even other gyms. The product(s) you select will hinge on the individuals you need to recruit. Do not select a product because it is the latest version released or because it seems uber-cool. Sure, such a product might make you stand out yet what matters most is that you emerge from the pack in the eyes of your target customers.
Spend some time researching whether the specific product you have in mind will actually enhance the exercise experience for the demographic(s) you need to maximize your revenue. Furthermore, the addition should have a short learning curve and an intuitive user experience design. If the target customer does not feel as though the tool boosts their workout experience, do not add it to your facility!
Do Your Homework
The tool research process starts with the vendor. The vendor should be overflowing with information about the product. The best vendors perform extensive product vetting, making sure that it is of the highest quality and provides meaningful utility for your facility's members. Keep digging to gain an in-depth understanding of the tool's utility today as well as across posterity. It will likely be subjected to extensive use so a warranty will be necessary. If you have any suspicion that the tool is a short-lived trend, move on to the next product until you find one that will engage clients for years or even decades.
Try It Out
Do not invest in any sort of fitness center tool until you have taken it for a test spin. Use it yourself to determine if it has merit. Then ease it into your members' workouts to gauge their reactions. Request feedback and respond accordingly. Letting your members try out new tools will do much more than provide valuable insight regarding the tool's merit. It will also position you as a trusted ally rather than as a greedy business owner/manager who is strictly out to make a profit.
The number of new tools created for fitness centers and workout regimens is seemingly endless. It is awfully tempting to add a steady stream of these new products to your facility. Don't fall into this trap! Just because most other gyms or workout warriors are using a certain tool does not mean that it is a prudent investment for your facility. Pick your spots carefully. Only invest in products that will actually provide utility to the members you currently serve and those you would like to add to your member base.
If You opt for an App, Assistance Will Prove Critically Important
An app for your fitness center will establish key inroads with coveted prospects as well as those you currently serve. However, an app can quickly become a “money pit” if it is not handled in the proper manner. Spend some time studying successful gym apps. Key in on app features that are most likely to benefit your target audience. Brainstorm how you would like these apps to be implemented into your gym's unique app.
Once you have settled on the app's intended functions, it is time to build it. Proceed carefully! You can attempt to build the app with your in-house talent if you employ computer gurus. However, the ranks of most fitness facilities aren't loaded with tech gurus. You can create a new tech department to construct the app. However, adding such personnel will cost a tidy sum of money. Furthermore, once the app is built, there might not be enough work to justify the continued employment of these professionals.
The more prudent course of action is to lean on an experienced third-party app creator to build the app on your behalf. This is almost always the best option as it controls costs, reduces the odds of bugs and speeds up the app's time to market.