If you’re reading this, chances are you’re already running a gym, studio, or wellness center, and you’re hungry for more success. If that’s you, you’ve come to the right place. We’re here to share some of the top habits that highly successful fitness entrepreneurs swear and live by.
Being a fitness entrepreneur isn’t easy. It takes a lot of hard work, determination, and discipline to build and grow a successful business in what is a highly competitive industry. That’s why it’s important to build the strongest foundation you can. Some of these things will sound simple and obvious, but remember – they’re often the ones we forget. These habits and strategies – these areas of focus – are common to every successful fitness entrepreneur.
So, if you’re ready to take your fitness business to the next level, let’s get started!
Habit One: Obsess Over Customer Needs
At the heart of any successful fitness business are its customers. Without them, your gym or studio would be empty, and the lights would be off. It’s obviously crucial to make customer needs a top priority. But how do you actually do that?
First and foremost, you need to listen to your customers. Ask them what they need and want from your business, and then strive to meet those needs. You can do this by regularly collecting feedback through surveys, suggestion boxes, or (often best!) one-on-one conversations.
But don’t just stop at listening. Actively address their concerns and make changes based on their feedback. Show that you value their opinion and care about their experience.
You should also think about any seemingly small details that might make a big impact. From providing towels to offering complimentary water bottles, small gestures can go a long way in making customers feel appreciated and valued.
The most successful fitness entrepreneurs start in the most obvious place for a reason: by focusing on customer needs, you not only improve their experience and increase the likelihood of their return, but you also spark those all-powerful word-of-mouth referrals.
Habit Two: Continually Leverage Technology
Fact: technology has become an essential component of any successful fitness business. Embracing technology can help you streamline your operations, improve communication with your members, and enhance your overall customer experience. Whether it’s investing in the best gym management software, utilizing social media to promote your business, or offering virtual training sessions, incorporating technology into your fitness business will help you stay competitive and attract new customers. The most successful fitness entrepreneurs are never late to adopt the technology and tools that can help make their business better – they invest in those things early, and lean on the teams behind the platforms to make sure they’re using them to their full potential.
Habit Three: Foster Community
Building a community is an essential aspect of any successful fitness business. Creating a sense of belonging and connection among members develops a supportive and motivational environment that keeps people coming back. To build a community, consider hosting events that allow members to interact more with each other – things like fitness challenges, workshops, and social gatherings. Create opportunities for members to connect online, too, by setting up a private Facebook group or an online forum. Encourage your trainers and staff to get involved in the community building efforts by getting to know clients on a personal level, engaging with them both in and out of the gym. Building a community takes time and effort, but successful fitness entrepreneurs understand the payoff: a loyal, connected member base that will continue to support your business for years to come.
Habit Four: Relentlessly Seek Learning and Growth
The most successful fitness entrepreneurs are always across the latest trends, research, technology and best practices in the industry. Continuously learning and growing will keep you as informed as you can be, allowing you to provide the best possible service to your customers and the clearest understanding of potential growth areas for your business. Attend conferences and workshops, subscribe to industry publications, listen to podcasts, and network with other professionals in the industry whenever you can. You should also explore courses, certification programs, and online training resources. Don’t be afraid to try new things and experiment with different approaches. Being open to learning, growth, and change is key. When you grow, your business grows.
Habit Five: Develop Your Staff
One of the most important assets of a successful fitness business is its staff. If you want a thriving, successful business, you need to develop a thriving, successful team. When your team is well-trained, supported, and feeling valued, they’ll do the same for your members. They’ll provide the best possible service and experience, and be more invested in the success of your business.
Investing in staff development can include providing training and development opportunities, offering regular feedback and support, and working hard to create a positive work culture. Encourage your team to share their ideas and insights, and find authentic ways to show appreciation for their hard work and contribution.
Think about specific training and resources you could offer them in areas like customer service, sales techniques, technology use, industry trends, or safety procedures. You could create a mentorship program to pair experienced staff with newer team members. You could organize regular team-building activities to help bring your team together.
Successful fitness entrepreneurs know: by prioritizing the development of your team, you prioritize the development of your business.
Habit Six: Build Strong Business Systems
As a fitness entrepreneur, having strong business systems in place is essential. Effective systems can help you streamline your operations, minimize mistakes, and optimize multiple areas of business performance. Without good systems in place, your business can (will) quickly become disorganized and chaotic.
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Start by identifying areas of your business that need improvement. You might need to improve your customer service process, billing and payment flow, or member management system. Once you’ve identified areas for improvement, you can start developing systems – and, like we talked about earlier, embrace technology – to address these issues.
None of this needs to be overwhelming, but you can’t make systemizing things a habit until you’ve started building the muscle. Document your existing business processes and procedures – things like how you handle customer inquiries, how you process payments, and how you manage your memberships. By outlining how they stand right now, you’ll quickly find areas for improvement, or efficiency, or automation.
This is where technology really starts to shine. Invest in best-in-class software and tools that help you automate and streamline your business processes as soon as you can. Use accounting software to manage your finances, and a comprehensive platform (like us!) to handle things like your bookings, payments, schedules and members.
The most successful fitness entrepreneurs don’t try and do all this themselves. They know what they’re good at, and they leverage platforms like Glofox to bring in big system, process and automation muscle.
Habit Seven: Be Adaptable
Adapting to change is a crucial aspect of success in any industry, but it’s especially important in the fast-paced world of fitness. As a fitness entrepreneur, it’s important to stay nimble and adaptable to ensure your business can weather any storm. This means being willing to pivot when necessary, and to continually assess and reassess your approach to your business.
To be adaptable, it’s important to keep an open mind and stay informed about industry trends and changes. We’ve spoken about attending conferences, webinars, and other industry events to do this. About staying connected with other fitness professionals and entrepreneurs, as they can offer valuable insights and support. About the importance of listening to feedback from both members and employees, and how important it is to be open and willing to make changes based on that feedback.
The most successful fitness entrepreneurs are always adaptable. They are always open to change.
Habit Eight: Practice (No, Prioritize!) Self-Care
As a fitness entrepreneur, it can be easy to prioritize your business over your own well-being. You know, better than most people, that exercise and healthy eating habits are critical for good life balance. But the deep passion you have for growing your business can get in the way of keeping those habits turning in your own life. Don’t let them slide (too much!). Practice mindfulness. Give yourself breaks (please don’t work yourself to the bone 24/7). Connect with other people like you, on the same kind of mission as you, so you have a strong network of support when you need it.
The most successful fitness entrepreneurs know how to work hard. But they know not to let their batteries drain too low, too.
Nine: Stay Passionate
Passion is the driving force behind any successful business, and it’s no different in fitness. Passion is what keeps you motivated to continuously improve, innovate and help others achieve their goals. As a fitness entrepreneur – and a person others are looking to for inspiration – it’s crucially important to find ways to stay passionate about your work (even when inevitable challenges arise).
Focus on the positive impact you’re making in people’s lives, and regularly remind yourself of it. Every time you help someone improve their health and wellness, you make a huge difference to the world.
Regularly reflect on – and revise – your goals. Challenge yourself to push beyond your comfort zone, personally and in your business.
Stay connected to your community, and keep it strong. Invest in it, and it will pay you back in passion and energy.
And, almost above all, stay on top of your own fitness and wellness goals.
This is how you lay the foundation. This is how you become the most successful fitness entrepreneur you can be.
These habits of highly successful fitness entrepreneurs can – no, will! – help you take your fitness business to the next level. Some of them sound simple and obvious, some of them might seem intimidating and difficult, but to win you need to embrace them all.
By making these habits key focus areas of your life, you’ll create a strong foundation for your fitness business, successfully attract and retain members, and carve out your own unique space in the competitive fitness industry. Just remember: success always requires hard work, discipline, and determination. But by adopting these habits, and building on what they lead to, you’ll build a thriving and rewarding career as a fitness entrepreneur.
(And if you want some help with the technology piece, reach out today! We’d love to be on your team 💪)