Successful gym and leisure centre marketing – how does it all work out?


During the credit crunch, gym memberships were sacrificed for sky boxes or foldaway exercise bikes never to see the light of day as everyone, everywhere decided to economise.

It’s no surprise then that gyms, leisure centres, health clubs and spas now have to work extra-hard to entice new members, and to persuade former members to return.

Today, gyms need to advertise powerfully and persuasively, while keeping their own costs tightly controlled. However, a low budget, DIY option (i.e. Clipart and swirly font from a personal PC) or as we call it ‘print and pray,’ just won’t convey professionalism, will it? After all, if the gym flyers are home-made, what’s the exercise bike like?

Think about the types of information you want to include to make your flyers stand out from the crowd. Do you have a particular type of machine that is worth shouting about? Vibra-plates seem to be the new thing, so if you these available, perhaps that’s the best way to highlight your uniqueness? Think about how many machines you have too: if you’ve got more rowing machines than anyone else in the area then that could be your key selling point too.

















Are you offering any sort of promotional deal at the moment?  Perhaps a membership discount? A shorter ‘trial’ membership period or a free sports massage or personal training session? Flyers work best when there is a clear call to action and a time frame. Make sure you include a end date, to convey a sense of urgency and ensure you get those new memberships!

Finally, make sure your flyers convey the style and approach of your gym. Is it the type of premises where there are additional services on offer such as a restaurant, spa or treatment room? Or if you are at the other end of the scale, there is no harm in making it clear that you are a budget option for people who want to spend their hard earned money on other things, perhaps a whole new wardrobe once they’ve been enticed to loose all that weight!

Before you print, have a think about how you are going to deliver the flyers. Are you going to pay for someone to deliver in selected areas or perhaps pay to have them included in a local newspaper distribution?

Newly-designed and printed flyers won’t get a new gym member (or a returning one) fit for the London Marathon, but they could entice people everywhere to put the Nintendo Wii Fit back in its box, fish out their old gym gear, grab some shampoo and a towel and to get back out there, having fun and feeling fit and healthy.