Written by “Textpert” Jace Treat of Zipwhip
We all use text messaging. But when it comes to communication via text with a business, it’s a little different. So it’s important to remember why we text so much in our personal lives.
We text our family and friends simply to communicate and engage with one another.
That’s the same reason your fitness studio should embrace conversational texting – this helps you stay engaged with your members and encourage a more open dialogue.
Text Message Etiquette & Stats
Think about all the reasons you call your clients. 80% of your calls are quick conversations like scheduling a session, resolving a billing issue, or answering a question. If they don’t answer the call, though, things get dragged out.
A text message makes these little tasks way more efficient. Let’s take a look at how and why your fitness business should incorporate text messaging into its communication process:
- 98% of text messages are opened and 90% of those are replied to within 3 minutes of their delivery.
- Don’t use a period at the end of your sentences.
- A study in 2015 found that a period comes off as abrupt because it implies that you want to end the conversation. You want your members to read your texts as ongoing conversations that start and end freely, so avoid periods.
- Be yourself but also professional
- In our personal conversations, we may use shorthand or slang, but remember that you are a business. Use emoji’s or pictures but make sure that it is a part of your brand and that you are still seen as a leader in your industry.
Texting Your New Leads
Below is a basic flow of what a studio goes through when reaching out to a new prospect. Get their info from your website or landing page, then you have to connect with them. This is one of the biggest areas that text messaging can impact.
In this example, texting starts as soon as someone opts in to redeem your studio’s offer, like a free week or unlimited month. When you include a text in your communication funnel … it opens the door for a 98% read rate. That’s huge.
You’ll want to make sure you still use email, calls, and so on. But this is a great place to start – and it can be automated. Learn more about combining your marketing campaign with automated text message responses from our friends at Loud Rumor.
Texting is huge during the initial follow up process in your sales funnel. Here’s a quick breakdown …
21.93% of emails get read in the fitness industry and unless you’re already in someone’s phone or you call a new lead back to back right away, 84% of the time they won’t answer a call. Although you still need to do both, a 98% read read from texting is something that can’t be ignored when it comes to sales, follow up, and closing more members.
Other Reasons to Text Your Members
Here are also some other ways that texting can make a difference in a studio’s operations:
- Have your team text and remind new members about their first workout class. This is also a great way for them to build report before the new member officially comes in. Reminders are also great for your other paying customers as well. Send out text alerts for events, days you might have different hours of operations (or are closed), and so on.
- Billing delinquencies
- Send text messages to members whose billing has expired to inform them that there’s a problem with their account and to please call you back. Most of the time, members simply get new credit cards and forget to update their billing info.
- Fitness is all about helping your members get results. Text people to keep them on track with their goals and hold them accountable even when they aren’t in the studio. This is great for checking in on nutrition, workout strategies outside of your classes, etc.
- And tons more.
SMS Texting is one of the most used forms of communication and is the only messaging app that is native to every cell phone without any required setup. Talk about convenient and effective.
To learn more about how to implement SMS text messaging to your studio’s communication strategy, we can help!
“Textpert” Jace Treat is the Health, Wellness and Fitness Industry Specialist at Zipwhip, a company that lets businesses add texting to their existing landline number. His team has been featured on several media outlets including the Barbell Business Podcast and The GSD Show, and on the TITLE Boxing Club Digital Marketing Panel in 2016.