Welcome back to Sweat Equity Digital. In this edition, we’re looking at website optimization basics for the fitness entrepreneur, designing creative marketing approaches with fitness challenges, the future of personalized nutrition and personal training, and we dive into proactive injury prevention with athletic trainer, Amanda Randall.
New This Week: Website optimization for strategic business growth…Marketing fitness challenges for low-cost engagement…The future of personalized nutrition in the fitness industry…Interview with athletic trainer, Amanda Randall
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Website Optimization for Business Growth
Every fitness pro should know how to optimize their digital platforms
We know––you’re a fitness professional. Fitness is your passion. No doubt marketing jargon immediately hurls you into a foggy haze of this is absolutely not interesting to me––but with a little know-how, you can make sure your fitness business’s digital tools are primed to keep you doing what you love: training!
You may already utilize a professional service to manage your website’s optimization and performance––but if not, don’t be intimidated by endeavoring to learn a few tricks of the trade for yourself. Besides, as a fitness entrepreneur, it’s worthwhile to set aside one to two hours weekly to learn how to properly manage the business side of your, well, business.
Here are five tools of the trade that everyone should know:
Google Searches. Google offers tools to keep your website and blog’s ranking high and visibility competitive.
- Google Optimize for A/B testing: a useful tool to evaluate how changes to your website’s content and architecture might impact visitor engagement.
- Google AdSense: monetize your blog by persuing Google’s Key Words Planner tool to develop content geared towards current search trends; then, with strategically placed AdSense banners, watch the passive income roll in.
- Google My Business: claim your profile to get in on the organic search game and capture those stellar business reviews.
Mobile-first Indexing. Your website’s ranking determines which page of someone’s search your website lands. Of course, every business wants to land on the first page––and to some degree, you can manipulate the factors that influence your site’s ranking.
Since people are increasingly using their smartphones to search for businesses and to make online purchases, mobile-first indexing makes sure Google is using your website’s mobile version (versus the desktop version) to establish your site’s Google ranking. Long-story-short: make sure your website is mobile-friendly for increased ranking.
Traffic. Do you know where most of your website’s traffic is coming from? Organic searches, social media, or advertising? According to Neil Patel, traffic that results in the highest lead conversion comes from organic searches and email campaigns.
Scan-friendly content. Studies that evaluate online reading behaviors affirm that people are more likely to scan your online content, rather than actually read it. Formatting your website’s content to follow gaze-patterns will keep your visitors engaged with your content.
Evergreen Content. The opposite of what’s trending, evergreen topics, like How to Lose Weight, remain relevant to your readers because you’re providing answers to questions that are always in season. Evergreen content keeps your traffic steady and your content’s sharability factor high.
That sites who remember to keep their actual customer / visitor in mind always do better than those whose first focus is an algorithm and then their customer
— Marion Leadbetter (@leadbetterMaz) August 25, 2020
A shock to none, COVID-19 is still very much a part of day-to-day life. Here’s what’s happening across the country:
Marketing Fitness Challenges for Low-Cost Engagement
Fitness challenges create curiosity, engage audiences, build community, and increase subscribers; and they can stir serious revenue by stirring the spirit of competition. Use fitness challenges to re-engage at-home clients and those prefer-to-go-solo gym members.
US health club revenue averaged 30 million dollars in 2017 (see above). But with on-going spacial shifts in public health protocol, a portion of that revenue won’t be returning to the local gym. Many people are currently looking for and experimenting with fitness alternatives. An auspicious fitness challenge could land your fitness business in the right place, at the perfect time.
[Related: Exercise.com’s 24 Gym Member Challenge Ideas]
And with all the focus on back to school, pandemic uncertainties, and upcoming elections, don’t let the uncertainly threaten your business’s growth by pushing you into obscurity. With some planning and cleverness, market a fitness challenge now to showcase your fitness business as a positive, healthy alternative to endless anxiety.
This UC Berkley technical brief weighed in on the gamification of fitness: “…the combination of social interaction, objective driven play, and simple fun are the key to an explosive growth in fitness. Real life team sports are a prime example of the power of this combination.”
Short challenges are ideal for new lead engagement while long challenges set the pace for a results-driven experience. Here’s how you can design and market fitness challenges to suit your business’s unique growth strategies:
- Marketing fitness challenges for sales. Tap into your social media following. If you have a strong client base but want to stir some revenue from within. Drive revenue straight away with shooting for maximum challenge enrollment or use the challenge as a segue to new a service or business feature. A fitness challenge is also a low-cost approach to utilize a large email list that comprises mostly unengaged leads.
- Marketing fitness challenges for leads and referrals. Consider a free challenge to drive people to your website and use a lead capture page to not only deliver the goods but collect emails for future marketing. Odds are, if the challenge created enough interest for leads to visit your webpage, they’ll be interested in other info as well.
- Marketing fitness challenges for education. Think pull-up, hydration, mindfulness, flexibility, or 15-10-5 challenges with your focus on how/why to do things right. Calories burned or weight loss challenges are apt if your business is implementing new nutrition services/features.
[From Exercise.com’s exercise library: Perfect Push-Up Workout Plan]
Use your business’s mobile app to stir and maintain interest with push notifications and SMS messaging. Don’t have a branded mobile app for your fitness business? You may want to read this.
And if you’re still unsure about which type of fitness challenge will best benefit your business now, use the app’s data to determine your clients’ collective goals and build your challenge around those. Make sure to have a plan to display challenge results; reward participants and winners. For a maximum bang, keep it fun and make it easy to participate.
Even the banana industry has gotten creative with fitness!
— Progressive Grocer (@pgrocer) July 8, 2019
The Future of Personalized Nutrition in the Fitness Industry
Gone are the days of the one-program-fits-all era. The personalized fitness experience has been trending for quite some time and, more recently, personalized nutrition has been aggressively forming its niche in the health and wellness industry, too.
Nutrition plans have always been a strategy in optimizing athlete performance. Nonetheless, frustration for trainers abounds because some diets work only for certain populations of people but not others. Clients are increasingly aware of this phenomenon and want a nutrition plan that will work. Period.
Personalized nutrition strategies dig deep into a person’s physiology and psychology by considering family health history (including genetics), personal health habits, and long-term health goals. Fitness clients develop increased awareness regarding how eating behaviors, lifestyle, and environment all contribute toward reaching long-term fitness goals.
Benefits of Personalized Nutrition
There are numerous benefits to personalized nutrition analysis, with the first being the personalization of a diet to attain fitness and health goals. Different populations of people have different food requirements, such as those who are pregnant, have heart conditions, or those with ultra-active lifestyles.
Personalized nutrition programs can be diversified by incorporating options such as vitamins and meal timing to blood work results and gut biome analyses. Benefits include, but certainly aren’t limited to, these factors:
- Personalization increases motivation
- Family history offers insight into behavioral and medical predispositions
- Get specific with: pre- and post-workout recommendations, sugar intake, and carbohydrate needs
What’s on the Horizon
You’ve most likely encountered the terms epigenetics, nutrigenetics, and nutrigenomics. These areas of nutrition science focus on how our genes affect nutrition, and vice-versa. Nutrition professionals hope to use the research to better understand how a person’s lifestyle, diet, and genetics can be used in combination to prevent and treat disease.
[Source: Research Gate]
Several of the largest food manufactures are investing in and collaborating with nutrition startups in the research and development of nutrition personalization. Nestle’s development of its Nestle Health Science division and its partnership with Samsung is just one example.
Other startups, like DayTwo, are receiving substantial funding from Johnson & Johnson and the Mayo Clinic to fund their gut microbiome research. Yet, for many clinicians, study outcomes may look promising but aren’t yet absolutely compelling.
Personal Trainers and Personalized Nutrition
When it comes to personal trainers, the authority to give nutrition advice varies from state to state. And outside of giving general nutrition guidance, some form of nutrition certification is required for fitness professionals who intend to provide meal planning for weight loss and disease management.
As with everyone in the medical profession, even certified nutritionists or dieticians still have rules to follow. Have a look at Exercise.com’s Can a Personal Trainer Write a Meal Plan?
Proactive Injury Prevention With Amanda Randall
Our resident interviewer, Schimri Yoyo, sits down with athletic trainer and educator, Amanda Randall, to discuss how athletic trainers support proactive injury prevention on the field.
- “There’s a lot of research and education that we’re putting out there as athletic trainers, but you’ll actually have lower rates of catastrophic injuries when you have an athletic trainer on the field for your practices and games. We’re able to recognize when things are getting to a certain dangerous point and stopping it before it gets there hopefully.”
- “…if I’m working with a particular sport or a particular season. Let’s take soccer, for example. So, with our soccer programs at the school, I go over with the coaches some warm-up activities that they should implement: [I model for them] a nice dynamic warmup to help prevent the muscular injuries.”
- “Obviously, injuries are going to happen anyway, but I’m here to help them through that rehab process. And if it’s something that’s not responding quickly to the treatment I have for them, that’s when I would refer them out to a physical therapist or the orthopedic doctor. So, we’re all working together to keep them out there.”
Interesting Internet Finds
Share these links on your social media platforms for increased reach and engagement
Taste: Need protein but not in the mood for beef, pork, or poultry? Try this Shrimp, Avocado, and Egg Chopped Salad as a quick and filling protein-packed alternative.
Watch: Love to hate burpees but looking for a little variation to mix it up? Men’s Health gets creative with, “Upgrade Your Burpee with 6 Brutal Variations.”
Read: Because the health benefits of running include much more than physical fitness, here’s another reason to make that morning jog a priority: What Actually is Mindful Running and How Do You Do It?
And that’s a wrap! We hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s digital issue of Sweat Equity: Insider Fitness Business Insights. We’ll see you in two weeks! Stay safe. Stay kind. And wash your hands.
If you’re ready to grow and manage your business better, book a demo with our team today.
This week’s newsletter was brought to you by Brittany, Mathew, and Jeff.
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