The saying, “everyone’s doing it” has been known to be a bit of an exaggeration at times, but when used in relation to social media, it’s fairly accurate. 78% of internet users in the US are using social media sites, making it the most common activity on the internet. It’s becoming pretty clear that social media is not a hip fad, rather it’s something that is clearly sticking around and evolving at a rapid rate.
Seeing that just about everyone is on social media, it’s important that you are too. However, being successful at social media takes time and works best when there’s a solid strategy in place. Just having a presence on a social network is not enough. Before you go out and create several social profiles just to have them, be sure you take the following items into consideration.
Where is Your Target Market Hanging Out?
Creating social media profiles solely for the purpose of having a social presence is not effective, and it won’t get you very far. Demographics vary by social network. It’s imperative that research is performed to ensure your target market is active on a social network before expanding your presence and strategy there.
For example if you’re targeting males between the ages of 30-49, Pinterest is probably not a platform should you pay much attention to. Likewise, if you’re hoping to get more teens to join your fitness business, social newcomer Instagram should be on your radar. U.S. teens describe Instagram as the “most important” social network. Also, with 83% of U.S. teens in wealthy households using this social network, Instagram is proving it has staying power. If you are targeting teenagers, A Teenager’s View on Social Media is something worth reading.
Never Set It and Forget It
You’ve probably heard this before, but it is extremely important and worth mentioning. When venturing into social media for your business, never create profiles and leave them alone. Social media is a lot of work, so only create a profile/page/channel etc. when you’re ready to commit to keeping it frequently updated. Having a page with only one or two posts, or the most recent post dating a month back, could deter a potential member from joining your fitness business.
Provide Content for Current and Potential Members
One benefit of social media is the ability to talk to both potential and current members within one platform. Doing this correctly requires you to utilize different features within the platform. On Facebook, for example, a great way to keep current members updated on the latest happenings is through a Facebook group. Facebook is turning into more of a “pay to play” platform, so creating posts on your main page for current members does not mean they’ll see them. However, if you post within a group, each member will get an alert when new posts have been added.
Using targeted, boosted posts is a great way to get your name in front of users who aren’t current members. Take advantage of unique targeting options to reach your ideal audience in your neighborhood by promoting posts that cover topics such as first-timer classes and community fitness events, like bootcamps and fitness seminars.
Video is Worth Your Consideration
According to a recent report from BI Intelligence, YouTube reaches more adults ages 18 to 34 than any single cable TV network. Half of this age group visited YouTube between December 2013 and February 2014. Believe it or not, YouTube happens to be the second-largest search engine behind Google.
If your target market is on YouTube, and it’s highly likely that they are, consider including video as part of your overall social media strategy. YouTube is a great place for people to learn, so providing how-to videos that cover certain exercises is a great way to help your current members improve.
An even bigger reason to venture into video is that Facebook is starting to take on YouTube by offering its own video features. To easily make your Facebook business page more engaging, start adding videos to the Video tab, and pick your favorite video to upload as your page’s Featured Video.
Facebook’s Gone Mobile. Have You?
A large percentage of Facebook users do not access the social network from a desktop or laptop, which means there are close to 189 million “mobile only” users. If you’re going to be linking back to your website on Facebook, you need to make sure it will display well on mobile devices. 46% of consumers will not return to a website if it didn’t load properly on their mobile device, so in many cases, you will only get one chance to impress mobile users with your site.
Social media can be a powerful platform to promote your fitness business, enrich and engage your current members and expand your reach to future members. However, a solid plan needs to be developed before you start venturing into this space. Venturing into social media is kind of like getting a puppy. It will take a lot of work, and might seem overwhelming at times, but the rewards you’ll get from doing it right are totally worth it.
Social Icons and CTAs for More Followers and Website Conversions
Another way to get the most out of your social media pages is with social icons and CTAs. Add social icons to your website so you can drive readers to your social pages. Once they get there, they’ll most likely become page followers. You can also reverse the flow of traffic by using one of Facebook’s CTA buttons to drive your social followers to your website’s contact us page. From there, it’s likely your visitors will get the information they need to make the decision to buy from you.
If driving social media traffic to your website sounds like a good idea but your site’s not effective at converting visitors once they get there, we can help. We create responsive, integrated websites with all the features a fitness business needs. Our websites have the small but important details, like social media icons. They also have critical features like lead capture forms, Zen Planner software integration, on-page SEO elements and key pages such as about us, programs, schedule and contact us. If you’re interested in learning more about our website services, schedule your demo.
If you’re looking for additional ways to beef up your marketing this efforts this year, we’ve got you covered. Download our free webinar, 10 Steps to Marketing Your Fitness Business, to get actionable tips to improve your overall marketing strategy.