Marketing

ICYMI: Jay Baer on Useful Marketing at #IHRSA2016

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In case you missed it (ICYMI), Jay Baer, author of Youtility and Hug Your Haters, kicked off #IHRSA2016 with a keynote address about how to make your club’s marketing strategies truly useful.

“Being great at marketing is harder than it’s ever been. It’s harder today than it was yesterday, and it’ll be harder again tomorrow. And there are lots of reasons for that.” - Jay Baer

Throughout his talk Baer hammered home several points, the most important being this: today's members simply have shorter attention spans. They spend 30% less time reading newspapers, 23% less time reading magazines and 15% less time listening to the radio. At the same time though, they're spending 105% more time on the internet.

So what does that mean? To really grab their attention, you have to offer up something they’re actually looking for. To compete online, clubs need to create marketing so inherently valuable that members would actually be willing to pay for it.

The biggest takeaway from those tweeting about the address was Baer's emphasis on social media as an avenue to help turn your members into brand advocates.

“It’s marketing members actually want to receive, instead of what we’ve been doing for decades, which is creating marketing members simply tolerate." -Jay Baer

Baer calls the approach of providing marketing your members want to consume "YOUtility," and it comes in three forms. 

1. Self-serve Information

"Members are now hyper-researching everything across all channels. They're kicking the metaphorical tires right under your nose." - Jay Baer

Based on a Google survey, the number of sources a consumer references before making a purchase has more than doubled since 2010. The biggest reason? Smartphones. 

To appeal to these consumers, Baer says that health clubs must answer members' questions with content in multiple formats, rather than just a simple FAQ.

2. Talk Triggers

"You have to figure out what do they expect, and what's the one or two things you can do in your clubs that people would never think possible. When you exceed expectations in that way, it compels people to tell other people about you.-Jay Baer

Baer says that health clubs can create talk triggers by ensuring their member experience is more than just satisfactory. This way, members will have an experience they can't help but tell their friends and family about. Most members have an idea of what their interaction with your business will be like says Baer. So when your clubs exceeds those expectations, you create a great member experience.

3. Real-time Responsiveness

“What all of use need to do is answer every complaint in every channel every time, instead of what we typically do, which is is answer some complaints when we get around to it in the channel that we prefer.” -Jay Baer

When health clubs think about how effective their customer service is, they usually weigh it against their competitors. However, Baer makes the point that your members don't measure you against your competitors, but instead against all the other brands they interact with. One way to close the gap is to respond to all members and prospects when they have feedback. Especially the negative. 


Jay Baer isn't the only one that can help your club supercharge it's marketing prowess. Check out our Mobile Marketing Manifesto to learn more tips about how to market your health club!

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