This week I have been writing about the state of the fitness industry. This all started as an attempt to clarify our message at RxFIT.
I started off the week by breaking up the “gym” landscape into three categories: commercial gyms, franchised gyms, and coaching gyms. I used this graphic to display clear distinctions between the three.
I then wrote about the problem you and millions of others have: you want results and yet every gym sells them differently. I made it clear that you needed to understand what job you were hiring a gym to do for you. More specifically, if you were looking for access to equipment, a fun workout experience, or to achieve specific goals.
And yesterday I wrote about the specific mindset you need in order to succeed at each of these gyms. An independent person will thrive at a commercial gym, a dependent person will enjoy a franchised gym, and an interdependent person who wants to learn and grow will do best at a coaching gym.
Today, I want to write about the sale’s pitch for each of these three gyms.
Every gym wants to help you, so they have a sales process. Commercial gyms will pitch you on amenities and price, franchised gyms will sell you on technology and fun, while coaching gyms will achieve results through accountability and performance.
Amenities and Price
Saunas, basketball courts, swimming pools, child watch, tanning beds, movie theaters, treadmills, stair-steppers, locker rooms… The list of amenities can go on for a long time. There is no doubt that commercial gyms are the best at buying the coolest “toys” for their members.
This model is “high rent, low tuition,” meaning the gym pays a high price for their rent on a large space while the price of a membership is low. They can afford this model because the amenities attract the masses. They are the Walmart of fitness.
You can’t beat their inventory and you definitely can’t beat their prices.
Technology and Fun
Heart-rate monitors, big flat-screen t.v.’s that display real-time data, trainers with headsets and microphones, surround sound systems, dimmed and flashing lights, and trendy lounge areas all contribute to the strategy of the franchise model. The focus is on selling you a solution based on “science.” The newest technology is used in order to support that science.
This model is “low rent, high tuition,” meaning the gym pays a low price on their rent for their smaller space while the price of a membership is high. They must use this model because their workout experience only attracts a niche market. They are the Apple of fitness.
You can’t beat their beautiful studios and you definitely can’t beat their technology.
Accountability and Performance
One-on-one text messages, face-to-face meetings, personal phone and Zoom calls, and emails contribute to the coaching model. While automations are used, the bulk of communication supports one-on-one interactions. The focus is on building and growing professional relationships where the coach knows more than just your name, but also your goals and dreams.
This model is focused exclusively on performance — are you getting better or not? Coaching gyms used objective benchmark data like the number of pull-ups you can perform, how fast you can run a mile, and how heavy you can deadlift. This model supports both physical and remote locations, so it attracts any individual wanting to reach specific goals. They are the Private Schools of fitness.
You can’t beat their customization and you definitely can’t beat their success rate.
Do your fitness goals need a variety of amenities?
Or someone to hold you accountable?
In other words, do your fitness goals require a business like Walmart, Apple, or a Private School?
Your answer will determine which gym is best for you.