Effective Follow-Up and Communication

You may have noticed in my past articles, I like sharing my ideas and experience with you, so pay close attention to the following chunk of information and learn how you can teach your staff to be better communicators.

 It all starts with follow-up. Effective follow-up begins immediately after the sale when you call or write to say, "thank you." Beyond this, there are several effective ways for you or your staff to follow up that ensures your fitness facility or business is always on the customer's mind.

1. Let members know what you are doing for them. This can be in the form of a newsletter mailed to existing customers, or it can be more informal, such as a phone call. Whatever method you use, the key is to dramatically point out to customers the excellent service you are giving them. If you never mention all the things you are doing for them, members may not notice. Just make a phone call and check up on them from time to time.

2. Write former customers personal, handwritten notes frequently. "I was just sitting at my desk and your name popped into my head.” “How is your exercise program going?” “Is there anything I can do for you?” Or if you run into a former customer at an event, follow up with a note: "It was great seeing you at the Group Fitness Seminar. Hope you enjoyed it.”

3. Keep it personal. Voice mail and e-mail make it easy to communicate, but the personal touch is often lost. Conversations and letters keep it personal. 

4. Remember special occasions. Send regular customers birthday cards, anniversary cards, and holiday cards.

5. Share information. If you read a fitness article or hear about a new book a customer might be interested in, drop a note or make a quick call to let them know.

6. Use follow-up calls to build your business. When you talk to existing customers, you'll often find they have referrals to give you, which can lead to new business. With everything your existing customers can do for you, there's simply no reason not to stay in regular contact with them, so follow-up.

7. Focus on retaining members and customers, not just making sales. Sales people, especially those who get paid on commission, sometimes focus on the volume instead of the quality of the service. Remember, keeping a member’s business is more important than merely closing a sale. Research shows it costs six times more to attract a new member than it does to keep an existing one.

The strategies you learn and practice now, when the economy is on the move, will serve you now 

and in the future.

Take my word for it, never forget to follow-up and communicate with your members! In order to make your facility a success, commutation is the answer.

If you would like to ask a question, or if you have advice, an answer, or an experience to share concerning this article, please contact Gary Hood at 925-672-4800, or email