Facebook is one of the most powerful tools out there for getting more customers for your fitness studio. It’s one of the world’s biggest advertising platforms, and for the fitness studios we work with, it gets amazing results — we’re talking 225 leads in 1 week.
But as powerful as Facebook ads are, that’s not all there is to the social media giant. There are tons of ways to build your Facebook presence without investing in a paid campaign as well. Here are 6 free ways to grow your fitness studio with Facebook.
1. Facebook Live
Facebook Live is the newest, flashiest of Facebook features. It’s a goldmine for engagement opportunities. Studies show that Facebook users watch a video for 3 times longer when it’s live, which means 3 times the air time and exposure for your brand. This is thanks in large part to the exciting element that live video brings to your content — it’s raw, unfiltered, and uncut, which makes your viewers feel like they’re getting a VIP behind-the scenes pass to your content.
Facebook Live also shows you who watches the video while you broadcast, and it shows viewers’ comments in real time. This makes it the perfect forum to host a live Q&A or walk members through an at-home workout.
In fact, Facebook Live is SO awesome that we devoted an entire episode of The GSD Show to how to use it to grow your fitness studio. You can check it out here:
2. Native Video
If live video isn’t your thing, it’s still good to invest time in native video. According to a recent study, native video — or video that has been uploaded directly to Facebook as its own file rather than a link to YouTube or Vimeo — has a 135% broader reach than a photo or text post. And because it plays automatically as people scroll through their newsfeeds, your content immediately gets past the barrier of a play button. Viewers don’t even have to click.
3. Add a Tab
A custom tab allows you to embed another page or CTA (call to action) within your Facebook profile. You can link this tab to your homepage, class schedule, or even landing page that promotes a special offer or deal. Click the image below to see a video on exactly how to create a custom tab:
4. Facebook Groups
There are a ton of ways to use Facebook groups for your fitness studio. The most common one is a members-only group that includes your entire customer base. Members-only groups are like a virtual club for your studio where you can share gym announcements, wins, photos that help build a sense of camaraderie and community among your customers, etc.
So if a member’s goal is to lose 50 pounds and they finally met that goal, you might post a congratulatory message and photo in the members group.
Membership Facebook groups can also be the ideal place to deal directly with your customer service complaints. According to Forbes, 71% of people who have a great customer service experience on social media are likely to recommend that business to a family or friend, so not only does this help create a great customer experience, but it also keeps negative feedback out of your online reviews.
If you want to learn more about using Facebook Groups for your gym’s members, check out GSD Show Episode 018:
Facebook is an awesome tool to get your brand in front of a ton of people — including a cold audience that might not be familiar with your studio — thanks to its in-post tagging feature. Tagging allows you to mention brands, influencers, and other businesses in your content to notify them that they’re mentioned somewhere in the content you share. Here’s an example:
Once the other pages see your notification, they engage with your content by liking/ commenting/ sharing the post. This gets your content in front of their audience.. And by creating that connection, you foster a relationship that benefits both businesses in the long run.
6. Frequent Posting
To keep your Facebook followers engaged, post good content frequently. Studies show that the Facebook pages that get the best engagement post at least once a day, if not more. But more isn’t always better — according to Buffer, engagement tends to decrease the more often a business posts throughout the day:
Image via Buffer
When you post is important too. Facebook’s best times tend to be from 1 – 4 p.m., with posts around 1 p.m. getting the most shares, and posts around 3 p.m. getting the most clicks.
These numbers vary depending on your studio’s followers and the content you post. While these numbers are a good guideline, remember to test posting frequencies on your own page to see what works best with your studio.
Facebook is an awesome tool to get more people in the doors of your fitness studio, but only if you use it to its fullest potential. If you want to learn more about how Facebook can grow your studio, download our 20-point checklist to supercharge your Facebook page!
Mike Arce is the CEO and founder of Loud Rumor, a lead generation company for fitness studios and independent gyms that supports their customers with sales training and techniques to grow and scale.
Mike has spoken for companies like Infusionsoft, the Better Business Bureau, ASBA, and Local First – all on the topic of Local Business Internet Marketing. He has a passion for local businesses and helping them grow. You can get fresh, updated tips from Mike here.