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How to Succeed in the Gym Business

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Jim ThomasJim Thomas

Will your gym business thrive, or will it join others that have faltered along the way? Although you work hard at your club each day, there is unfortunately no magic formula to eliminating all the risks associated with operating and profiting from all your efforts. You can improve your chances of success, however, by surrounding yourself with good planning and expertise from dozens of other business owners who have been there before you. Here are some basic rules to make sure your gym grows and prospers:

  1. 1. Think like a small gym, even if you have a "big gym" name. If you've ever owned or worked for a small gym, you'll remember a few of its qualities that held an advantage: flexibility, ability to respond quickly and a more personalized approach to member service. Make sure to bring these strengths into your current club and take maximum advantage of those areas that represent the advantages of small clubs.
  2. 2. Plan your actions for success. A successful gym owner understands the power of planning and has a written plan of action. A good plan increases your chance of succeeding by helping you define your gym concepts, estimate costs, predict membership sales and control your risks. It tells you where you are going and how to get there.
  3. 3. A Strong Operational System. All successful businesses have systems in place to ensure the consistency of their offering and the management of their operations. The key to a successful gym, however, is to have proven systems in writing that can be taught to your team. Make sure you're maximizing these tools to help with recruiting, training, marketing, operations, finances, purchasing and virtually every other aspect of running the business.
  4. 4. Differentiate your gym services. Present the benefits of your products and services to your members, highlighting the unique solutions it offers to their problems. Avoid doing what everyone else is doing. Study your competition, and package your fitness services distinctly. At the same time, be careful with your marketing material and how you present these particular benefits. Many clubs market themselves too aggressively and too optimistically, leading potential members to believe they will experience unbelievable results right off the bat for little money or effort.

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