Turning New Guests into Lifelong Members: Employee-Driven Growth for Fitness Studios

Abby Rossi
April 29, 2024

*Written by Tom Schaal, Head of Product at Edge*

In today’s highly competitive fitness industry, providing an exceptional experience for your guests is essential for long-term success. From the moment a potential customer discovers your studio to their first class and beyond, every interaction plays a crucial role in influencing their wallet and loyalty. In this blog post, we’ll explore how fitness studio owners can leverage employee-driven growth to create delightful experiences for their guests, foster employee engagement, and drive sustainable studio growth.

The Guest Journey: Finding Their Studio
  • Today’s consumers rely heavily on online reviews, fitness instructor testimonials, and word-of-mouth recommendations when choosing a fitness studio.
  • According to a recent survey by BrightLocal , 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, highlighting the importance of maintaining a positive online presence for your studio.
The First Guest Experience: Creating “Wow” Moments
  • The first experience a guest has at your studio sets the tone if they become a long-term member. It’s crucial to ensure that every interaction in a class or session is memorable and exceeds their expectations.
  • Research shows that 86% of consumers are willing to pay more for a great customer experience, emphasizing the importance of providing exceptional service from the start.
Gathering Direct Feedback: Listening to Your Guests
  • Encouraging guests to provide timely feedback shortly after their visit, both positive and negative, in a convenient way such as SMS-enabled Google Reviews is key to understanding their preferences and studio experience.
  • Studies have found that 72% of consumers will share a positive experience with 6 or more people, while 62% will share a negative experience with the same number, highlighting the impact of word-of-mouth on your studio’s reputation.
  • Encouraging guests to provide consistent feedback not only allows you to address their needs but also significantly boosts your business’s online presence and Google ranking through positive reviews. BrightLocal’s research uncovered that 70% of consumers focus on reading reviews written in the last month, pointing out the importance of continually receiving fresh, positive feedback.
  • TITLE Boxing’s employee-driven growth strategy helped them motivate and incentivize their employees. Since going live with Edge, an employee incentive platform, new member sign ups increased steadily as have retention rates. With Edge, TITLE has improved from generating 2.1 reviews to over 21 reviews a month. Employees have earned nearly a thousand dollars and established close connections with members who are helping TITLE win more new member referrals.
Increase the Chances of “Wow” Moments: Motivating Your Team
  • Timely action on guest feedback is essential for driving continuous improvement. Positive feedback should be recognized and rewarded, while negative feedback presents an opportunity for employee coaching and growth.
  • Offering small bonuses or other incentives for exceptional performance can motivate your team to consistently deliver outstanding experiences for your members.
  • Leaning on AI-enhanced tools can help you analyze feedback that provide operational insights of both business and staff performance, highlighting successes, and pinpointing opportunities to improve the guest experience. Small bonuses for exceptional performance, informed by these AI-driven insights, encourage your team to consistently deliver outstanding experiences, turning every guest interaction into a potential ‘wow’ moment.
Follow-Through: Building Lasting Guest Relationships
  • Following up with guests after their visit shows that you value their feedback and are committed to their satisfaction.
  • By inviting guests to return or join as members with a specific call-to-action, you can build local relationships that drive repeat business and loyalty. You can further accelerate your guest conversions with employee rewards for the instructor and other team members who contributed to their “wow” moments.
Creating a Growth Cycle: The Impact of Employee-Driven Growth
  • Employee-driven growth fosters a culture of empowerment, where your team is motivated to go above and beyond to deliver exceptional service.
  • As guests experience consistent excellence from your highly engaged team, they become advocates for your studio, driving positive word-of-mouth and online reviews that further outrank your business from competitors.

By prioritizing employee-driven growth and focusing on creating delightful experiences for your guests, fitness studio owners can build a win-win-win environment where guests, employees, and the business all thrive. As you continue to invest in your team and prioritize customer satisfaction, you’ll pave the way for lasting success in a highly competitive fitness industry.


About Edge:

Edge, the leading employee-driven growth platform for fitness studios, unlocks employees as a growth channel for franchise and service brands. The Edge (Employee-Driven Growth Engine) platform boosts employee motivation with flexible rewards & recognition that are aligned to business growth.

Edge’s industry-first technology integrates major Point of Sale (POS) systems with automated employee rewards that drive positive customer feedback, foster friendly staff contests & swiftly address any customer feedback for thousands of franchise and service brands. We are headquartered in Elk Grove, CA and backed by investors like Mucker Capital, Jason Calacanis’ Launch Accelerator, and Moneta Ventures to redefine how employees earn and businesses grow.