Thanks to COVID, the sector has had a considerably longer ‘rest’ than any of us would have liked. Reports suggest operators have lost 30-40 per cent of members during the last year and in the region of £2.3 billion in revenue*. It stands to reason that every operator’s primary focused is going to be rebuilding member bases to recoup lost revenue and drive new income streams.
Anecdotal feedback suggests operators are expecting pent-up demand to create a post-COVID ‘bounce’ on reopening. But once that wears off and the tougher summer months kick in, a more pressing consideration will be how to attract the 85% of the population who don’t currently interact with our industry. And this is where it’s perhaps time for a change.
This cohort of non users are exactly the customers a marketing partner can help target. Hussle appeals to three very specific customer wants.
There’s the customers who need access to more than one facility in several locations to fit their lifestyle, so wouldn’t join a single facility. And then there’s the customers keen try out venues before joining directly.
This is where our Membership Conversion Service (MCS) comes into its own, proactively encouraging try-before-they-buy users to join clubs they attend regularly – we’ve turned more than 30,000 gym goers into exclusive members in the last 18 months.
What makes the MCS unique in the market is that a member converted is just that, an actual member. Hussle isn’t trying to own the customer, just enabling them to make an informed choice.
Lastly marketing partners can attract hybrid customers – a group we’ve seen grow hugely during the pandemic. These customers get fit in numerous ways; they spend on other fitness services like Peloton or Apple, but want gym access too.
These services could represent a threat to operators’ wallet share, but evidence suggests a flexible offering will ensure these modern members, who don’t want a one size fits all gym, continue to use bricks and mortar facilities at least on some basis.
By offering two types of access pass, Hussle enables operators to create an even broader appeal. Members needing more than one venue can opt for the Multi-Club Pass – priced at a premium to protect operators’ direct memberships.
For try-before-they-buy members and those wanting occasional access there’s the Day Pass, based on operators’ own prices. Both get footfall through the your door, risk free.
Lastly, a marketing partner appeals to customers by investing in two main channels – direct to consumers via big-brand partnerships with companies like American Express, Vodafone and digital banking App Revolut, as well as via big-name employers providing fitness-as-a-benefit, such as Travelodge, Channel 4 and multiple NHS trusts.
This creates a network scale effect no single facility could achieve alone.