Archive | January, 2014

Are You Making the Same Marketing and Sales Mistakes as My Local Gym?

31 Jan

Article highlights (continue reading for the full story):

  • The gym had a solid lead generation campaign – utilized both digital and traditional marketing channels
  • Secured my personal information – full name, email, and physical address
  • Instructed me to visit its out-of-date website (first breakdown)
  • Did not anticipate my buying cycle (I researched the company before I ever made contact)
  • Never followed up with me after I decided to redeem its offer of a 1-day free trial
  • Always anticipate/research what your prospect will do when it becomes aware of your product/service

gym marketing campaigns

I’ve been eating way too many burritos in the Mission District lately.  My friends joke that the first place they look for me is the taqueria down the street from my apartment.

As I munched on a burrito while watching college basketball, I saw a commercial for a free 1-day trial at my neighborhood gym. While many people believe using television as a marketing channel is outdated, it’s worth noting that Google reports that 60% of its search queries are the result of someone seeing an offline (print/television advertisement).  The television ad (call-to-action) instructed me to visit the gym’s website to redeem my free 1-day trial.

So what did I do after watching the commercial?

I ‘Googled’ the gym to find out more about not only the free offer but also learn about the gym – from pricing to reviews to staff.

Keep in mind: the company INSTRUCTED me to visit the website.  The website was outdated.  The blog was last updated about 6 months ago and it lacked dynamic content that would have allowed me to learn more about the gym.  If you’re going to instruct people to visit your website, you should at least keep it updated.  The company did a great job of directing me to the site; however, the website content should have been targeted to new prospects researching the gym. Anticipate what prospects will do when they land on your page.

gym-marketing-campaigns

After I surfed the company website, I bounced over to Yelp to read the reviews.  I was satisfied with the reviews, so I decided to redeem my 1-day free pass.

The online sign up was simple: I entered my first name, last name, and email address.  When I hit submit, the instructions told me to visit the gym to redeem my free pass.  I walked the two blocks to the gym to redeem my free pass.  I was greeted at the door and asked to complete a liability waiver.  Sure, I’m happy to sign my life away if I drop a dumbbell on my head.  As I was working out on the elliptical machine (is that manly?), feeling the burrito grease leave my skins pores, I thought: “The gym spent a lot of effort and money to entice me to try its services.  It even secured my name, email address, and physical address (from the liability form). It’s not easy to secure my contact information. I bet they have a really good sales system to ensure I don’t walk out of here without a fight.” What happened when I finished my workout? I walked out without any fanfare. No sales pitch. Nobody asked me for feedback. Nobody made an offer.

The owner/marketing team should have anticipated and planned a sales process for prospects that redeem the free trial offer.  Instead, they let me walk out of the door without signing up for a monthly plan.  Why not create an incentive to sign up that day.  For example: “If you sign up within 24 hours of redeeming your 1-day trial, you get the first month free and a 1-hour massage.”

But they let me walk away.  Not only did they let me walk away, but also they still haven’t contacted me about my experience and/or whether I want to join the gym.  The company spent lots of money (advertising, marketing plan, store front, salaries) for my trial.  It’s a shame that its follow up strategy is ‘hoping’ I’ll decide to sign up for a membership.  It should have systems in-place to ensure I sign up before I leave and follow up sales systems for 30, 60, 90, 120 days.

  • No incentive to sign up that day.  They could have closed the sale by offering me a one month free deal if I signed up that before the end of the day
  • The company could  follow up with an email/snail mail campaign:
    • Did you enjoy your time at the gym?
    • Thank you for the trial – did we mess up?
    • Last chance to save 30% on a yearly package?
    • Free Massage?

If you’re going to spend lots of money on an integrated digital and traditional marketing campaign, it’s wise to anticipate what the prospect is going to do along the buying decision.  The company paid a lot of money to get me to try the service, why haven’t they followed up with me?

What can you do to increase your chances of  converting your prospects to clients?

Good luck!

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Why You Should Send Your Clients a Thank You Gift by January 31st, 2014

13 Jan
Your holiday card is in this pile

Your holiday card is in this pile

Let’s be honest: the holiday card and/or holiday email thank you to your prospects and clients ended up in either the trashcan or the spam folder.  As a business owner/marketing professional/human being, you understand that clients and prospects are inundated with advertisements. You have approximately three seconds to catch his or her attention. 

Imagine how many holiday cards your clients/prospects received during the holidays – cards and gifts from businesses, family members, friends, and former friends that forgot to updated the ol’ mailing list (always a bit awkward for about 5 minutes). 

Are you ready to stand out and get ahead of your competition?

Now is the time to send a sincere, handwritten ‘Thank You’ along with a unique, heartfelt gift to your most profitable clients. Give yourself a timeline of January 31st, 2014 to:

  • Segment your most influential/profitable clients/contacts/prospects
  • Write (handwritten) a sincere ‘thank you’ and personalize it if possible
  • Include gift (see bottom for an idea to get you started)
  • Place a ‘live stamp’ (no stamp machine)
  • Mail

Why now is the perfect time to nurture your clients and prospects?

A)     You will not be lost in the crowd.

As I mentioned: everybody and their mother sent a holiday card/gift/email during December.

B)      Least Expected/Most Appreciate

We just survived the most depressing day (Blue Monday) and week of the year (the first full week after New Year’s)

C)      Your Competition is Back to Taking Clients for Granted

  1. In this ultra-competitive landscape, you should be doing everything in your power to stand out from the competition.
  2. You are in a relationship with your client(s): Your competition sent a holiday card/email (you probably did too). They won’t follow up in January or February or March or April. You will. 

What Should I Send My Clients and Top Prospects?

Here are a few ideas for you:

1) ‘Spring is only X-days Away’ – Here’s a $10.00 gift card to the frozen yogurt shop (bonus points if you purchase gift card from local store) – close your eyes and imagine the warm weather that’s on the way.

2) A $10.00 coffee gift card to keep you warm in February letter. The ad copy could be something like: “Thank you for your business. I know you have a choice, and I’m thrilled you decided to do business with XYZ company. Here’s a $10.00 coffee gift card to show my small token of appreciation; hope it helps warm you up in February!”

Be authentic. Be Creative. Your clients and prospects will love you for it! They might even share it with their social circle; which is like free advertising for your company.

Good luck!

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