The dawn of a new year is the perfect time to reset. Rethinking how you might like to approach your business is exciting, too!
Business goals, as opposed to a business plan, allow you to regularly reflect on your performance as a (fingers crossed) profitable enterprise, provide clarity to staff for their own professional development and make achievable plans for the next year. Where a business plan will set out your goals for the long-term success of your gym, business goals are those individual steps that contribute to that success.
It’s important to reassess your business goals at the start of the year to reflect any larger changes that might have impacted or might impact your business.
The Covid-19 pandemic has had obvious impacts on the fitness industry, with gyms having to shift their business goals and often their business models to pivot towards digital delivery of services.
Insights from your customers will help you anticipate their needs and build out goals for the year. For instance, if you survey all the female members of your gym and find out that a significant percentage don’t feel comfortable using a section of your gym or have encountered harassment recently, this would give you clear goals for improving their engagement through better training of staff and other actions.
Business goals for gyms tend to be individual actions you can take each three months of the year or longer to build strength in your gym as a business. Some common business goals gym owners strive for are:
Do you want a better understanding of your customers? Gym management software can help you understand who is entering your gym and how often, while marketing tools such as surveys will give you precise insights into your member base. You can use this information to shape all of your other business goals in the year, as everything you do needs to have your members’ interests at heart.
You might set yourself the goal of building partnerships across a range of areas, such as physical therapy experts, wellness partners, coaches and commercial partners.
Partnerships can help you expand what you offer your members, bringing how they manage their health and wellness into the one place: your gym! This can have a large impact on retention rates, improve engagement as well as a sense of community in your gym.
You may simply have a goal to improve retention rates. There are various reasons why people fail to renew their gym memberships, but breaking up your goals into each quarter will again give you actionable and achievable pathways to keeping your members happy.
Everyone wants to increase their revenue, but how do you do it? Tackling individual actions periodically through the year, such as new programs and classes or promotional offers for new members, will help you figure out what works best for your gym.
Marketing can be a daunting concept to tackle, and most gyms don’t have dedicated marketing teams who can build awareness and engagement with your brand.
There are some clear steps you can take to improve your marketing, but doing some customer research (surveys, workshops) will help you understand where you can improve as a gym. You might find addressing customer service or adding certain classes will go a long way in your marketing than any newsletter or advertising campaign will.
Diversifying your offering as a gym, such as what classes you offer or bringing guest speakers or running community events may be a goal you take on for 2022. If you want to run events, research the best time of year to run these and give yourself plenty of time to organise and promote these.
Covid-19 has turned many businesses upside down and changed how they measure success and performance. Many gyms have had to strip back their offerings significantly and reframed how they intend to measure for success in 2022, aware their profits will reflect any constraints on how they would usually run their businesses.
Your business goals will dictate how you measure your success at the end of the year. Taking actions based on customer feedback is easily measured by redoing any customer research to find out if you reached your goals. The most important thing is to accept the limitations external pressures have put on your gym, focus on the core things that matter during a crisis, and take small steps with your business goals. You got this!