Like any market operating in a healthy (or otherwise) economy, industries experience periods of growth and times of recession. We know this all too well, right? (2008 anyone?)
And if you watched my video “Fitness Industry Trends and Predictions 2015,” you may have noticed that on this year’s survey you guys reported making less money than last year.
I don’t know about you, but these results have got me a bit… well, let’s just say, concerned.
If everyone working in our industry has, as a whole, taken a collective pay cut, then we need to do something about it. There are some serious actions we need to take to find out exactly why this happened and how we can reverse this downward trend.
Now, before we all get too excited, just remember what I said at the beginning of this post, every market has its “peaks and troughs,” as an economist would say, so there’s no need for a complete freak-out (not yet anyway).
If you’ve watched my video then you will know what I believe is the cause of this drop in personal fitness price erosion: Big Box Gyms. (As if we didn’t need yet another reason to hate these guys.)
But only blaming the Fitness Biz Giants running LA Fitness isn’t really telling the whole truth.
Sure, in 2014, we all did a double-take when we started to notice group training, cross fit boxes, and even boot camps popping up as a new service offered at the local gym. It’s like we went to bed one night and woke up the next morning to find thousands of new direct competitors just a stone’s throw from our Boot Camp’s door.
And to make matters worse, they were offering (supposedly) the exact same service that we offer but they were selling it for less than half of what we charge our clients.
People were calling me in a panic all last year asking me what to do, where to go and how to compete with the giant new kids on the block.
And I told everyone the same exact thing: hold your prices.
But unfortunately my message didn’t reach everyone; do you remember from the video what our survey results showed us? That we had price erosion in 2014. That means fitness professionals across the country lowered their prices in an attempt to compete with these new services offered by the big box gyms.
What’s so disappointing about this rampant drop in prices is that it’s completely unnecessary!
“But Bedros,” you’re probably yelling at your phone’s screen right now, “how are we supposed to compete with low prices if we don’t lower our own?”
It’s simple: You don’t.
You don’t need to compete with these prices because the services being offered by the big box gyms aren’t competing with your business. What you need to realize is that the big box gyms aren’t selling the same thing you do— not even close.
The big gyms aren’t really offering boot camp. Not like our Boot Camps, anyway. What they offer is access to the facilities that you might find at a boot camp like ours. They’ll have the same equipment, similar schedules and similar workouts, but they don’t offer the accountability.
I talk about this a lot in my video, check it our here.
What you need to do is offer a complete fitness program, not just the tools but the instruction and attention our clients need to make proper use of those tools. If you don’t show up to your ‘boot camp’ at the gym, do you think you’re going to get a personal phone call from the owner asking where you were, how you are doing, why you weren’t able to come and if there is anything he can do to help you? No, I don’t think so. But you’re getting that from Fit Body Boot Camp.
Do the gyms include a completely customized and carefully constructed nutrition program that leads clients carefully by the hand, showing them step by step what they need to do to get the results they want? Not at the gym ‘boot camp’ you won’t.
Yes, the big guys can offer lower prices, but they can’t offer the accountability, the responsibility, and the personalized assistance.
Said differently, their prices don’t include RESULTS.
But yours should.
That’s what you should be selling. Not a place to work out, not great equipment, not special workouts, but total life transformations. That is where the personal fitness professional shines and that’s exactly why the big gyms will never be able to compete with you.
But you have to do something, right? You need to have some kind of response to the lowered prices to show your clients and your prospects that you sell something completely different, something infinitely better.
So instead of lowering your prices what you should be doing is altering your marketing message so that you can justify your premium costs.
And you do this by selling what I have just explained to you: results.
Don’t sell your facility or even yourself, instead target your marketing to show the awesome results you create for your clients. And the gym will never be able to compete with you.
It’s that simple.
(Of course, you need to produce those results for your clients before you can use them in your marketing campaigns, but I’m a fitness business coach, not a fitness training coach. Of course, you can get access to everything you need to produce great results with all of Fit Body Boot Camp’s done-for-you and turn-key systems, but that’s another post for another time.)
So put these marketing campaigns to work. Broadcast your ability get results and your accountability to your clients to ensure results. And when you actually deliver on those promises, no one is going to have a problem with you keeping your rates right where they need to be even while your ‘competitors’ keep dropping theirs.
Committed to your success,