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11 steps to successfully implement AI in your gym
July 22, 2021 •

So, you’re interested in the notion of an AI gym. You’ve heard a lot about the power of AI – how it can increase gym membership sales, shape your gym referral program, refine your fitness marketing strategies, increase gym revenue, and far more besides.

The thing is, you’re not sure where to start.

We get it. The idea of an AI gym is exciting, but it feels somehow futuristic.

The good news is that it’s actually very much of the here and now, with gyms around the world already implementing AI and seeing exceptional results.

And it all starts with the data that already exists in your business, if you know where to look.

This data will be the fuel for the insights, innovations and results that stem from AI, and you want to be harnessing as much of it as you possibly can. Believe us, there will be no business wishing it had less data in the coming years.

With that in mind, if you want to turn your gym into an AI gym, your first steps – and the first six steps in this blog – must focus on your data practices, ensuring you’re capturing the data that’s required to power AI.

Step #1: Conduct a comprehensive data audit

Asset evaluation is a great place to start, with an excellent exercise being to look at every area of your business – every system you use – to map where data is captured.

You might call it a data audit (we call it an asset audit due to our understanding of what can be done with it!), but list the data capture points in two columns: the online and offline.

Be comprehensive, as you won’t want to find out in 12 months’ time that you missed one of importance. Look at the tools used across the business – not just proactive collection such as membership applications and PT bookings, but also passive data sets such as entry systems.

For the offline, review what becomes digital, noting whether every item does indeed make the jump and what, if any, captured information gets left behind. Note any islands of offline data that are not digitised, so you can be aware of them later for evaluation of their value and relevance.

Finally, consider any automatic data collection carried out by gym software such as entry systems; often, these sources are missed as they do not have human involvement.

Read more about the valuable data that already exists in your business here.

Step #2: Ensure your gym reporting software catches everything

Give each data source a condition value: a score of 0-10, with 0 being ‘currently a mess’ and 10 being complete and perfect. Your focus here should be on the manual entry systems, as it will be the human element that lets you down.

However, even for automated systems, check what data capture level you’ve chosen. Have you set it at a default level, by which you’re only capturing the data you need right now? If so, is there an option to expand this?

A good policy is simply to collect everything, even if you don’t have any current defined requirement for all of it right now, just so you don’t later regret any omissions. After all, you never know what could be of value in the future; imagine finding out, a few years from now, that some incredible insight is possible courtesy of a new tool – but not to you, because you chose not to collect the relevant data. If there’s no additional cost associated with doing so, turn it all on!

Step #3: Fill the gaps in your data sources

Any data sources scoring below 7/10 should be identified, and a plan put in place to both rectify the historical gaps and educate on what’s required going forward.

There may be a lot of work here, but there are freelancers on sites such as Elance who have the skills to fix data issues such as these, and who are often able to supplement with expanded data too.

Step #4: Connect the islands within your gym CRM software

Ask yourself: Can automation play a role? Do you currently require fields to be filled manually where this could actually be done automatically?

For example, does the personal training sign-up form include gender or age, when this data is already held on the member record or other element of your gym CRM software?

In all likelihood, once you stop seeing your different data sources as isolated islands, you’ll realise much of the data you need to fill the gaps you’ve identified already exists in the business.

Step #5: Put someone in charge…

Establish responsibility. What gets measured gets managed, as they say, and this is no different. You would certainly have someone looking after the cash in the business; data should be no different.

A Chief Data Officer maybe a little too grand a title (though 25 per cent of Fortune 500 companies now have them), but you want someone who can own the business data performance, monitor your gym reporting software and report on data conditions.

In some businesses, the owner/principal would be best, at least until culturally it becomes an accepted behaviour. The senior marketer is also a good choice, as they are usually the current beneficiary of good data practices and will have cause to access most of the data sources within the business.

Step #6: … but also ensure everyone takes ownership

Implement a data policy. Do not get this confused with GDPR or customer confidentiality, though you can undoubtedly integrate these if you wish. Your data policy should describe the importance placed on data within the business, explain how diligent you expect staff members to be, and encourage them to report any data-related issues. 

Everyone in the organisation needs to understand the value of what’s being collected, and their role in ensuring it’s done correctly.

In our experience, the best way to do this is to make clear the benefit to the business of them doing so, rather than focusing on rules or reminding them that it’s part of their job. They probably all know they should be doing it, but it’s the difference in diligence around it that will determine whether or not you’re working with quality data in the future.

Step #7: Determine why you want to become an AI gym

Now you have your data in check, you’re getting close to the point of pressing ‘go’ on your plans to become an AI gym.

Before you dive straight in, though, there are some important questions to ask.

The first is: Do you have a problem to solve?

We see too many examples of AI solutions being asked to look for a problem. Likewise, we see operators enamoured of a concept (by which we mean the buzz around artificial intelligence) without ever being likely to see value from its implementation.

As we’ve discussed already, there are plenty of areas of potential, but you need to ask yourself some important questions before you take the leap, namely: “If I had this insight/value/prediction, would it be valuable?”

Step #8: Dedicate time to the project

Next ask yourself: Do you have the time for implementation?

The results from properly applied data + AI projects can be exceptional, but the initial pay-offs over the first six months are marginal. It’s normally 12 months before we see the true justification.

To get to that point, there must be a willingness not only to dedicate the time to implement the platform, but to then engage with it – and potentially change many of your workflows once armed with the new insight.

During the early days of Keepme, we found that after delivering a Keepme Score on every member – effectively giving our customers a window into who would leave and who would stay – fewer than 20 per cent would do anything with it.

Let’s consider that for a moment. These operators could now see, often with a runway of more than nine months, which of their members would not be with them when it came to renewal if they did not take action. Yet 80 per cent chose to do nothing with that information.

With retention a hot topic for every operator in the sector, we were perplexed, so we reached out to find out why. What became clear was that the insight didn’t fit their process. Meaning, being told that Member A would be gone in six months if they didn’t take action was valuable, but they didn’t have a workflow to do anything about it.

Step #9: Make a plan of action

So the next step, of course: What are you going to do with your results? How will you use the insights from your AI to increase gym revenue?

You may feel this is a simple question, but with the above scenario in mind, it’s clear the answer to the question ‘what are you going to do with your results?’ isn’t always obvious – not even once equipped with a valuable prediction.

The answer must be this: You must have (or if you don’t, then put) a process/workflow in place to take advantage of your new insights.

  • If I know I’m going to miss gym sales targets in three months because of poor performance in my social media campaigns or other gym marketing channel, what can I do to remedy that?
  • If I know which of the members who joined in the last three months have the highest probability of leaving, what will I do to change the likely outcome?

An AI implementation will give you access to a whole new level of transparency, but to gain value, you need to be very clear about what action will be taken as a result of it.

Put another way, the value is never in the insight. The value lies in the action that’s taken as a result of the insight.

And that value can be significant. Find out just how significant in our recent blog, How AI can increase gym membership sales at your club.

Step #10: Identify opportunities for gym automation

In the first white paper by our CEO Ian Mullane – The Fitness Future: Rules of Engagement – Ian mentions the power of AI and automation. He is clear in his view that processes fail mainly because they have a human element within them.

With this in mind, the next step in preparing for AI implementation is to ask yourself: Will I add automation, not just in the data collection (step #4) but in the use of that data?

“My advice,” confirms Ian, “is that AI + automation is where the real results are.”

When you decide to deploy AI, you’ll need to first understand what insights you’ll receive, then work out what actions you want to be taken with those insights.

Then pause and consider this: Can (any of) these be automatically actioned, rather than requiring a team member to be engaged?

This can be as simple as automatically generating a call list – all members who have become at risk in the last seven days, for example – and sending it to Member Services, who then call those members as part of your gym member retention program.

At the next level, it can be the automatic serving of digital engagements that present customised offers to those members most likely to purchase them.

We’ve seen these and many more implemented by fitness operators, as well as across other services industries.

Step #11: Find the right partner

If you have a strong technology department stacked with Python developers and data scientists, then availing yourselves of some of the Open Source AI tools available – such as TensorFlow from Google – will get you started.

For the 99.9 per cent of operators who don’t, the last big question before you take the leap into becoming an AI gym is: Who will you work with?

Before you go rushing off to find yourself a data scientist, may we suggest that you first take a look at what’s already available for the sector. The best solution will always be your data fed into fitness operator-specific applications.

This doesn’t mean you’ll end up with some cookie-cutter model similar to everyone else, as your data will drive the results. However, using a platform that’s designed for the sector will ensure the downstream effects – i.e. the value that flows from the model – will be relevant and usable in your current environment.

Right now, that means Keepme – the first to provide these services to the fitness industry in an AI platform that’s specifically designed for gyms. We’d be delighted to have a conversation with you to explore how you could become an AI gym.

To read more about implementing AI in your gym business, download our fantastic new white paper – Everything You Need to Know About Data & AI – for free, here.

gym-app

The secret to your gym’s survival in a digital world
May 20, 2021 •

Fitness operators still cling to their bricks and mortar facilities. This in spite of all the evidence, from numerous other industries, that shows how much of a millstone physical infrastructures can be. Not to mention the fact that, as admirably demonstrated throughout long stints of lockdown recently, fitness can survive and thrive with no bricks and mortar infrastructure whatsoever.

Already now, and even more so in the future, consumers will be able to build their own product from a smorgasbord of options – options that, uncoupled from physical buildings, are flexible enough to adapt to their evolving requirements.

That isn’t to say gyms will cease to exist: they represent a valuable part of the wellness ecosystem. But in this time of digital evolution, there’s a need to look at how clubs can benefit from these changes to not only secure their future, but positively prosper.

The thread that ties all of this together is data: it’s the fuel for enhanced service offerings, engagement, personalisation, product customisation and all-round improvement in meeting customer requirements.

You already have the data you need

Club operators are often berated for their data collection efforts. Admittedly, capture may not always be purposeful or intentional, done mainly through necessity and not always comprehensively. Nevertheless, know this: the data already exists in your business to improve and refine your offering.

Indeed, from our conversations with more than 100 club operators around the world over the last 18 months, without exception the data they needed to reposition for the new reality of fitness was already within their businesses.

If you’re still hesitating, concerned about the completeness or condition of your data, please be assured: you would be amazed at what can be done with incomplete datasets. It’s now entirely possible to clean and enhance them, filling gaps and making them fit for purpose.

Specifically, when combined with the latest tools – and particularly AI (artificial intelligence) – your existing customer data can provide a level of insight that, in many cases, makes it blindingly obvious where improvements can be made and opportunities taken. The insights are right there in the data. They always have been, but now it doesn’t require a staff of data scientists or business intelligence folk to get to them.

What’s more, the latest generation of tools pushes past the one-size-fits-all approach, paying no attention whatsoever to human opinion. Instead, they simply request you feed them data, tell them what you want to know, then leave them to do the rest.

With the massive leaps in processing power and the huge improvements in available tools, these capabilities can be deployed by any fitness operator in little time to uncover important new insights and revenue opportunities.

But above and beyond even these opportunities, there is a new product to be built – one that, by leveraging the existing asset gyms have in their mobile app, moves operators towards becoming the hub at the heart of consumers’ personal wellness ecosystems.

Turbo-charge your gym app

Most operators provide a mobile app, but evolution has been slow: many only started out on this journey because somebody else had one. Now, experiencing low levels of member use, clubs are trying to find ways to gain traction and engagement.

Note that forcing members’ hands, making certain actions only possible via the app, is not the answer; it is never smart to limit customer choice in this way. To drive use of your gym app, you must increase value and, at the same time, position your brand in a place of authority.

Let’s bring this to life and imagine a scenario in which, in addition to providing me with a place to train and a community to train with, my gym was also my guide when I wasn’t on-site. Let’s put aside whether I would pay for such a service (most people surely would) – can you imagine the increased depth to, and importance placed on, my relationship with my gym? It would be one big moat for a competitor to try and bridge, as the comparison would no longer be purely on the basis of facilities and cost. There would now be a whole new involvement – one I will be less likely to want to give up and migrate across from.

Some may think that’s too daunting to even consider, but bear this in mind before you dismiss it: this is a likely delivery by somebody in the not-too-distant future. If you want to build a competitive advantage, you need to look at what can be achieved.

Consider this option. Apple Health and Google Fit both provide users with access to their health data via Application Programming Interface (API). This means an app developer can request the user’s permission to access some or all of their data for the purpose of providing a service. Let’s leave ClassPass, mindfulness and nutritional integrations for a future discussion. Simply equipped with this health data, an operator would be able to engage with a member at a whole new level: suggested content, class recommendations, encouragement and achievement awards, increased personalisation of the personal training service, all integrated within its existing gym app.

Can you imagine the boost this would provide to member retention? No longer about class scheduling or virtual membership/club access cards, all of a sudden your gym app becomes a tool for the member journey – one that can be easily extended with calendar integrations, third-party content and so on.

Such a strategy would deliver for all parties: it would move your operation beyond pure bricks and mortar and, crucially, would do so in a way consumers will accept as being in keeping with their expectations of a gym.

On initial inspection an intimidating challenge, in reality this process boils down to three areas: permission to access data granted by customer; consolidation of data to produce insights; and interpretation and recommendations.

To explore these three points in detail – and to understand how your gym can deliver a customised service to the member via the tech they already have to hand almost 24/7 – download our white paper, The Fitness Future: Rules of Engagement.

mobile-phone

Turning competition into collaboration – how gyms can live with the mobile phone
April 8, 2021 •

As a gym operator, who is your biggest competitor? If Peloton comes to mind, or Apple Fitness+, or ClassPass, think again. Because the biggest threat of course comes from the mobile phone.

That isn’t new news: the mobile phone has been disrupting entrenched business models since the launch of the iPhone in 2007. But it is nevertheless this device – owned by the majority of the population – that provides the most options, the most flexibility and the most personal relationship with fitness consumers. And it isn’t going away. 

So what’s needed is a mindset shift – one that involves gyms looking beyond the threat of the phone to identify the channels it provides to actually fight back.

This isn’t just about the veritable gold of customer data captured by phones, either, or the opportunities to hyper-personalise based on this data. Mobiles can be harnessed to facilitate gyms’ own enhanced services, and new technology will boost these opportunities still further.

The transformative power of 5G 

With speeds 100 times that of 4G and network latency faster than human visual processing, 5G is a step change in capability that will bring many benefits. 

This always on, lightning-fast internet pipe will provide the capability for perfect streaming of ultra-high-definition content in 8k without the need for buffering, cabling or routers. It will mean consumers are guaranteed a high-quality experience wherever they choose to consume it – and this presents opportunities for operators both on- and off-site. 

On-site, a seamless digital experience will be possible, thanks in particular to the higher device density 5G will allow – essential when you consider that many customers now attend the gym with two devices: phone and smartwatch.

5G will allow for consistently-delivered services to the member off-site, too, with numerous options to further enhance the experience. Operators could, for example, draw in members’ instantly-available data using AI tools, generating hyper-personalised recommendations and guidance which, harnessing 5G’s real-time capability, could be delivered instantly and without the need for any human intervention: an app notification congratulating the member on an active day, for example, or suggesting they get more sleep that night. 

Whether 500 or 500,000 members, every day the club would be engaging these individuals with valuable content, extending and deepening the customer relationship.

Then there’s the fact that, through the confidence of delivery it brings, 5G will power new products and experiences including virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). 

Big brands have already begun to dip a toe in AR waters. You may have seen IKEA’s mobile solution, for example, which allows you to choose an item from its range and then, using AR, view how it would look in your home through your mobile phone. Then there was Manchester City’s AR stadium tour, which allowed visitors to ‘sit next to’ and ‘interact with’ manager Pep Guardiola at the top table of a press conference. And that’s before we even start on the numerous brands that allow you to ‘try on’ shoes and make-up through AR features in their apps.

And the momentum will gather over the coming year: Apple’s phones already feature native AR capabilities, while 5G will allow the shackles of hardware to be removed, the heavy processing to be handed off to remote high-end servers, and the service to be delivered to the customer in real-time.

AR’s double vision

Within the fitness sector specifically, AR offers an excellent example of how and where mobile phones can be leveraged to benefit the club – particularly on-site. Let’s bring these opportunities to life.

A member walks onto the gym floor, phone in hand and Spotify in ears. The phone knows the current physiological condition its owner is in: it is aware they have slept well and that they are therefore in a position to exert themselves. 

The member holds up their mobile phone and, on the screen, sees an overlay of the workout being suggested for them. They follow the arrows to the first piece of equipment and, on arrival, are given the option to watch an instructional video. They can also choose to follow suggested output and repetitions. From optimal use of time to ensuring correct equipment usage – and with it exerciser safety – this enhancement to the workout could even, for customers wearing a smartwatch, include the ability to modify, in real-time, the suggested programme based on their body’s responses.

While our member goes about their AR-assisted workout, the trainers on the floor are benefiting from new insights being presented to them by their AR glasses (these are less obvious than the first generation of Google glasses and significantly more practical than pointing a phone towards members). 

The overlay on their lenses shows them the attrition risk of each member in the gym, helping them decide who to engage with first; a quick touch to the side of the frame brings up additional information on the member, to ensure each engagement is based on current and relevant information.

Class instructors benefit from the same overlay for their sessions, allowing them to prioritise shout-outs and ensure every engagement is valuable and delivered with context. 

Back on the floor, our trainer is alerted by a red light over a piece of equipment: a potential equipment failure. On the other side of the gym, another alert suggests an intervention with a member who isn’t using the equipment correctly.

Discreet, not obstructive, the AR for team members ensures they’re always aware of who’s on the floor and how they can engage to add value rather than interrupt. Meanwhile, our member feels they’ve had an optimal workout, completed confidently and with some new experiences thrown in. Plus the whole thing has been automatically recorded for them, so they can review their progress whenever they wish.

Collaborate, don’t compete

What is clear, then, is that while the mobile phone is the nightmare competitor – enjoying a nearly unbreakable consumer relationship, constant evolution from literally thousands of collaborators, and few capital constraints or geographical limitations – it also presents gyms with huge opportunities.

The key is not to try and compete; this is an unwinnable battle. Instead, if gyms accept their role alongside mobiles in the overall wellness ecosystem, they will unleash powerful, value-adding technology that can transform the member experience.

Find out more in our white paper, The Fitness Future: Rules of Engagement.

download-your-free-copy-the-fitness-future-rules-of-engagement

Six essential rules for operators in new white paper, The Fitness Future: Rules of Engagement
February 1, 2021 •

The Fitness Future: Rules of Engagement

Keepme founder Ian Mullane has released his new white paper, The Fitness Future: Rules of Engagement, available now for free download. In the paper, Mullane breaks down the overarching trends that are reshaping the way modern consumers approach health and fitness, along with six essential rules that operators must abide by to not only survive, but thrive, in the fitness future. 

With the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly accelerating the digitisation of fitness, along with the advent of paradigm-shifting technologies like 5G, fitness operators must re-evaluate their role in their members’ daily health and fitness routines. But this is easier said than done. Doing so requires a full understanding of the underlying trends, and an acknowledgement that operators must lean into – not fight – the flow of technology and advancement. In The Fitness Future: Rules of Engagement, Mullane lays these truths bare and shares clear, actionable guidelines that operators can begin to implement immediately.

While it is tempting to believe that the industry will soon return to “normal”, it is the operators who act now who stand to flourish in the fitness future. And though the solutions may seem futuristic on the surface, everything outlined in the paper is, in fact, available today to those who choose to act.

The Fitness Future: Rules of Engagement, is now available for free download via Keepme. Follow this link to claim your free copy. 

Reviews for the white paper

Herman Rutger
Co-founder & ambassador, EuropeActive

“I recommend all operators take note of the six rules outlined in this thought-provoking, insightful document. The concept of customer-centricity is music to my ears, and I welcome the call to embrace the changes taking place within our sector from an ecosystem point of view, rather than hybrid. The future isn’t two-dimensional. It’s multi-dimensional.”

Humphrey Cobbold
CEO, PureGym

“This white paper includes some very important thoughts and ideas that should challenge us all. As such, it makes a valuable contribution to the debate around our sector’s evolution and will, I hope, stimulate progressive discussion.

“The reader might not agree with every example being highlighted, nor every implication drawn out. I myself do not. But let’s be clear, that is the specific intention of author Ian Mullane: to provoke a response, challenging the status quo in a way that almost forces the reader to engage in the conversation.”

Emma Barry
Global Fitness Authority & Chief Creative Soul at Good Soul Hunting

“Ian Mullane is a provocateur who opens the kilt on the future of digital. With online platforms, connected fitness and at-home solutions in triple-digit growth, The Fitness Future: Rules of Engagement is an industry call-to-arms. The future is here, and we are behind.

“We are schooled in scenarios that exist today and adjacent industry examples we should heed. This white paper implores us to find and defend our place in the wellness ecosystem, automate processes inadequately fulfilled now, and consider the plunge into the holy grail of business acceleration: artificial intelligence. So, lean in, apply the six rules, defend your ‘club is hub’ and unleash the latent data in your business.

“Your future depends on it.” 

Carrie Kepple
Co-founder, Styles Studios Fitness & chair, IHRSA

“Ian’s insights into our industry’s new landscape – an ecosystem in which clubs must be OK with not owning the entire wellness journey – are both thought-provoking and full of truth. We have to find a way to be part of people’s ecosystems, focusing on experiences rather than the technology that drives those experiences. We also have to know when to walk away from technologies that create friction and don’t belong in our own ecosystems. Experience is king.”

Colin Grant
CEO, The PURE Group

“A thought-provoking projection into the future of fitness, with some reality checks and great consumer-centric insights. The well-crafted points around building ecosystems rather than hybrids, and helping customers curate their journeys around data, are critical. These are the call to arms for our industry’s future, and highlight how bright that future can be if we get it right. Ian nailed it!”

Justin Tamsett
Chair, REX Roundtables

“This white paper poses and answers all the questions you’ve been pondering subconsciously, but never been game to ask out loud.  
 
“The way Ian unpacks the industry into six well-illustrated rules makes the journey simple to follow, but the reality he presents will make you squirm if you are set in your ways. Nevertheless, if you want to explore new ways of doing business – indeed, if you want to stay in business – this is a must-read. Open your mind, allow yourself to think differently and begin shaping a business that’s built for the consumer.”

Bryan O’Rourke
CEO, FITC & Vedere Ventures

“Ian does a great job of addressing the huge risks and opportunities that lie ahead for gym brands. Fitness facilities are simply not the sole guardians of consumer fitness any longer: the consumer is the centre, and ecosystems will be the delivery mechanisms now and into the future. I would heed his warnings and embrace his advice.”

About the author

Ian Mullane is the founder and CEO of Keepme, a business dedicated to increasing operator revenue through AI-powered insights and tools. With a career that has seen him work with some of the biggest players in FinTech including as Chief Operating Office at Sungard, Ian was also the owner/operator of the fitness business Vanda in Singapore for more than a decade. An economist by training, Ian also holds a Masters in marketing.

COVID-19 recovery plan

How data can underpin a robust COVID-19 recovery plan
January 15, 2021 •

Who knows what the next few months holds for the fitness industry? One thing’s certain; operators will need a vigorous COVID-19 recovery plan.

Only by having total transparency on everything, from where membership sales leads have come from and which source has the stronger conversion rates, to retention management and which members are most at risk of leaving, will operators be able to successfully reinvigorate their fitness marketing strategies, re-forecast spend and realign ROI accordingly.

Having access to Keepme during my time as a Director of Sales and Operations at Soho Gyms would have made a world of difference to my fitness marketing strategies, my retention management campaigns and my gym sales teams’ time management. Your team is your most valuable asset but can also be an expensive challenge. I managed a big sales team and had to log into three different platforms to track sales and membership data in order to present and share it. Keepme would have allowed me to do everything from one platform as well as better identify team training and development needs, and where support was needed.

Even before the challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic, it was a well-known fact within our sector that it’s more expensive to attract new members than it is to retain loyal ones. Having the ability to view successful campaigns at a glance enables more effective sales and marketing planning, which for many right now is more crucial than ever.

Whether it’s a post-lockdown correspondence or a new year retention drive, the Keepme system can automatically reach out, engaging with every single member at club level, regionally or nationally – it’s quick, effective and built in within Keepme’s engagement suite Connect, making communications swift and accessible. From there, managers and leadership teams can track which members have opened the communication, see how many leads land within sales or visit frequency from existing members, then create automations based on how engaged the membership base is.

Fundamentally, Keepme’s Machine Learning offers operators clear, concise and real-time insights into prospect and member behaviours. It identifies where early intervention may be required to either close a sale or save a member.

The truly accurate 360˚ view afforded by Keepme will support fitness businesses building a COVID-19 recovery plan for a post-pandemic future. With a clear picture of leads > sales > conversions > membership plans > member engagements > retention > revenue projections and team performance, operators can inspect and streamline time management; whilst praising performance and addressing areas for development. Only with this level of insight can operators translate member actions into hyper-personalised engagements to reduce attrition, increase secondary spend and, ultimately, raise operational revenue. 

The operators who stay afloat as we look to rebuild will be those who use their data to its best advantage, and make every member count.

About the author

Amanda Hart is Director of Customer Success at Keepme and formerly Director of Sales and Operations at Soho Gyms.

360°-customer-record

Why operators need a 360˚ customer view now more than ever
December 16, 2020 •

The global pandemic has made the day-to-day running of a fitness facility infinitely harder. While there is now optimism around the roll out of a successful vaccine, and the return to normality this might bring, there will no doubt be ongoing fallout from COVID-19 for some time. Having a data-driven 360˚ customer view has never been more crucial.

As the sector strives to regain its footing, proving your fitness operation is COVID-secure will continue to add another layer to the age-old challenges facing all operators: membership sales and retention management.

The success of fitness businesses as we move into 2021 is locked up in their gym software – more accurately, in the data that software provides. Only by using technology to gain in-depth insight, to manage prospecting, fitness marketing strategies and membership communications, can operators free up teams for vital member engagements. And after spending the majority of 2020 either training alone or with just digital offerings for company, members will want human interaction more than ever.

For too long, fitness operators have wasted time, effort and revenue jumping between different CRM systems for membership sales and retention management. Often, the process is so complex that those in charge of mining data eschew the software altogether in favour of gut instinct. But only by harnessing unused – and currently hidden – data can the fitness industry create a genuine step change in its own success.

An AI-powered CRM like Keepme enables operators to take actions with confidence, knowing they’re based on fact. This insight ensures businesses can drive additional revenue and increase profitability at every stage.

Keepme’s 360˚ customer view offers operators clear, concise and real-time insights into sales prospect and member behaviours from the point of data capture and through their membership journey thereafter. Machine Learning identifies where early intervention may be required to either close a sale or save a member. With seamless access to data insights, operators can also identify member patterns and tailor engagements accordingly via ongoing automations or suggested campaigns.

Every fitness organisation in the world is capable of being worth more than they think … Keepme allows operators to do things with standard data sets today that this industry couldn’t even begin to imagine five years ago. And this will only continue to improve over time.

The value operators have in their data won’t present in their data sheet, but the 360˚ customer view it affords will be invaluable to success over the next 10 years.

Schedule a free demo of Keepme to see how you can implement a 360˚ customer view in your fitness club today.

About the author

Amanda Hart is Director of Customer Success at Keepme and formerly Director of Sales and Operations at Soho Gyms.

keepme-membership

Video: An overview of Keepme Membership
December 14, 2020 •

Learn how you can revolutionise your gym’s marketing and retention in our video overview of Keepme Membership. Keepme Membership is a powerful, AI-driven tool that helps fitness operators turbocharge their revenue through increased member retention, secondary spend, and ex-member winback. 

Keepme achieves this with its unique AI engine, which identifies your strongest members as well as those at risk, while also highlighting members who are likely to engage in referrals.

Keepme analyzes every single touch-point, transaction, and demographic data point about your members, resulting in the Keepme Score. The Keepme Score reflects the overall health of your membership – in other words, their overall likelihood of retention. Every member receives a score and is segmented into one of three risk profiles, allowing you to develop intelligent marketing and retention strategies. For example, leveraging low risk members to drive referrals and secondary spend, or targeting medium risk members with campaigns designed to improve retention. From there, the possibilities are endless.

In the video, you’ll get a close look at how Keepme Membership:

  • Helps you track and analyze your past, present and future performance in its powerful AI-driven Dashboard
  • Allows you to instantly engage with key member groups with its innovative Take Action feature
  • Send powerful and hyper-targeted campaigns and automations with the built-in communication tools in Keepme Connect
  • Collect and act on customer feedback with its integrated Net Promoter Score capabilities
  • Get a complete understanding of your customers with its 360° Member Record to drive better engagements and customer service

By providing you deep insights into your members’ behaviour, along with comprehensive engagement tools, Keepme Membership helps you maximize the value of each member and increase your revenue from day one. Find out more in our overview video below.

To see how Keepme can help you attract and retain more gym members, book a free demo today.

keepme customer troy morgan

“We’ve learned lessons from our data with Keepme”
December 1, 2020 •

Keepme customer Troy Morgan, CEO of Willows Health Group, based in Queensland, Australia, is using AI and data to shape his sales and retention strategy, alongside his COVID recovery plan…

Willows Health & Lifestyle Centre has been using Keepme’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) powered retention management tool for a little over 13 months ago, and, this month, CEO Troy Morgan also implemented Keepme Sales. 

Originally opened in the 1970’s, Morgan took over Willows 14 years ago and started the transformation to a fully functional lifestyle centre. The centre now hosts a fitness centre, plus a 500 square meter Allied Health practice with physiotherapists, occupational therapist, dietitians and psychologists.

“Put simply, fitness businesses sit on mountains of data that is largely unused. Harnessed and reported on, this data can not only create real insights for the business but also a hyper personalised experience for each member,” says Morgan. “Keepme allows us to leverage our mountains of data and make real differences to both our gym sales, our business and our members.”

“When we began working with Keepme, the team took 13 years of our data and cleaned it up – it was a real partnership right from the start. Almost immediately we learnt lessons from that data and began to implement changes, pretty much seamlessly.”

The member retention conundrum

“For me, Keepme’s value is in being able to navigate an increasingly difficult marketplace with certainty,” says Morgan. “I can take actions with confidence as they’re based on fact, not gut instinct. Clubs like Willows need confidence in our actions now more than ever, as with COVID we find ourselves in increasingly sensitive times.

“I check the retention management dashboard daily; it’s like a living, breathing system that shows me the members we need to invest resources in … those most likely to leave, to stay and to spend. Being a small, standalone facility we have finite resources; I need to be sure to direct them to what – and who – will give returns. 

“From the second the Keepme system went live I was able to risk stratify my membership base, see who was at risk of leaving and put a monetary value on those members, so we could build strategies on how to improve retention. It took just 30 days to see a reduction in cancellation rates.

“Rather than waiting for a 30-day report, we can now take daily action. So if a high frequency member is suddenly absent, my team gets in touch. Just this afternoon we made a call around a sudden absence, and the gratitude from that member was huge; it blew their mind.”

A COVID recovery plan

During lockdown, Morgan used Keepme to hyper-personalise Willows’ digital offer so that now, as the club works to find its footing again, the system can help him make decisions about the very real financial challenges he faces. “Now is not the time for guestimates on customer acquisition, retention, marketing strategies and cash flow,” he says. 

Willows is unusual in that it doesn’t operate contracts. As a community-based business, Morgan prefers to build trust within that community, so his members know if Willows is not delivering the wellbeing service that’s truly right for them, they’re free to leave. 

“We back our ability to provide customer-centric service, delivered through the personalisation of our offering,” he explains. “This means we have points throughout the entire life of our members and have created an ecosystem that incorporates both technology and face-to-face services. Keepme closes the loop, allowing us to learn from our members’ interactions with the business in a truly scaled way and continually improve our service offering.” 

Willows’ membership base was at 2,200 pre-COVID. The club has already built back up to 1,600 members, despite a number of social distancing restrictions remaining in place. “Keepme gave me a fine-tuned understanding of each customer’s probable return, which allowed me to rebuild the membership base very quickly,” says Morgan.

Improving membership sales

In November 2020, Morgan implemented Keepme Sales. “Now, for the first time, I’m able to get a 360˚ view of customers, from pre-sale all the way to post membership, should they choose leave,” he says. 

“The AI is constantly learning about our prospects and processes, allowing me to automate tasks and make sure we focus on the sales leads with the highest likelihood of conversion. I can make hyper personalised engagements with potential customers as I know where they came from and when, what their sales process was and what they’re most likely to want. 

“I’ve been blown away by how precise the whole Keepme system is, especially with regards to whether a member will leave or not; it’s scarily accurate! I couldn’t run my business without it now.”

About the author

Troy Morgan has been in the industry for a quarter of a century and as well as his role as CEO of Willows Health Group, he is a Head of Wellbeing Strategy at health technology platform MySpringDay , Director of Wellbeing Strategy at Well360, a national speaker and a business investor.

To find out what Keepme can do for your club’s sales and retention, book a free demo today. 

Video: Keepme Connect, the fitness industry’s leading engagement tool
November 4, 2020 •

When it comes to attracting, retaining, and engaging members, it’s hard to overstate the importance of targeted and personalized communications. That’s why we built Keepme Connect – the fitness industry’s leading suite of engagement tools.

With Connect, fitness operators can send laser-targeted and highly personalized communications via email, SMS, and more. When you add Connect’s ability to automate, you have a tool that is capable of everything from sending targeted sales campaigns to automating your entire new member journey. Sending the right communication, to the right member, at the right time has never been so effortless.

Watch the video below to see how Keepme Connect can revolutionise the way you approach membership sales, retention management, and more. 

Want to see firsthand why Keepme is the best software for gym sales and marketing? We invite you to book a demo today.

Manage your club’s inside sales with Keepme Sales
October 22, 2020 •

We’re pleased to introduce an exciting feature in Keepme Sales!

Inside sales – never lose an opportunity to sell added services in your fitness club again.

Keepme’s inside sales functionality captures, routes, and manages sales for services like personal training, massage, physical therapy, swim lessons and much more. Keepme allows any staff member to create a new lead. Once created, that lead is routed to the appropriate gym sales rep or department manager. It is then entered into an automated sales flow that alerts your staff to the new lead, sets your sales process, creates follow ups and reminders, and monitors your team’s progress from initiation to close. 

Beyond staff-generated leads, Keepme, using the power of our AI models, analyzes and identifies members who are most likely to engage in the services you offer. Our next level analysis ensures your team has the tools it needs to find every opportunity to drive additional revenue. 

With Keepme’s inside sales functionality, your team will never be relegated to sticky notes or IMs to capture and communicate new leads. The system will ensure that you capture 100% of your opportunities for added revenue, and that every lead is followed up with. 

Our robust inside sales management is just one reason why Keepme is the best gym sales CRM for the fitness industry. To learn more about how Keepme can revolutionize the way you manage gym membership sales, book a demo today.

Video: The future of digital in fitness with Ian Mullane and Simon Kemp
October 9, 2020 •

Check out the highlights from the UKActive Active Uprising session featuring Keepme’s founder and CEO, Ian Mullane, and global digital marketing thought leader and CEO of Kepios, Simon Kemp. 

In this insightful discussion, they reflect on how technological advances such as 5G are changing ways in which people consume fitness content, how member data will shape the offerings and services that operators provide, and much more. In short, it’s a conversation filled with forward-thinking statistics and trends for operators to be aware of.

To see how Keepme could help you uncover insights in your member data and drive revenue in your club, book a demo today.

Video: A conversation with Keepme customer Troy Morgan at Active Uprising
October 6, 2020 •

On August 25th, our founder and CEO Ian Mullane joined Keepme customer Troy Morgan (CEO, Willows Health Group) for a fascinating discussion on artificial intelligence and digital transformation as part of UKActive’s Active Uprising event.

During the session, Troy spoke about his journey implementing AI into his health club, and how the predictive insights in Keepme helped his team paint a more complete and nuanced picture of the member. He also went into detail about how, armed with these powerful insights, they were able to build hyper-personalized campaigns that generated significant revenue. 

Watch the highlights below! If you would like to learn how Keepme could help increase revenue in your club, book a demo today.

New Feature Announcement: Keepme Leads Manager

New Feature Announcement: Keepme Leads Manager (Video)
September 22, 2020 •

New feature announcement! 

Keepme Leads Manager – your sales team’s job just got a lot easier…

With the Leads Manager tool in Keepme Sales, your team can handle every element of the gym sales process all in one place. Rather than asking your team to jump from your CRM tool, to their phone, to their email platform and back to their CRM, losing critical information and time along the way, your team can execute every action directly from our Leads Manager tool. Keepme’s Leads Manager routes and prioritize leads, sets actions for your sales staff, and establishes next actions. Critically, Leads Manager allows your staff to send emails, text messages, and even make calls directly from the platform, eliminating confusion of using multiple tools to accomplish their work, increasing productivity and improving your close rate. 

Keepme Lead Manager keeps your team on target by mapping out the entire sales process, automatically sending thank you emails, follow ups, appointment reminders, and suggesting next actions. Our system takes the guesswork out of the process and creates multiple avenues for your team to take. Whether it’s a high value lead or a short term customer, our system will tailor the interactions, pace and level of automation to ensure you have the most efficient and effective sales process for your business. 

Keepme Leads Manager is just part of the picture. To learn more about how Keepme can revolutionize the way you manage your gym membership sales and drive retention, book a demo today.

Presenting Keepme Sales, The Fitness Industry’s First AI-Powered Sales Tool

Presenting Keepme Sales, The Fitness Industry’s First AI-Powered Sales Tool
September 18, 2020 •

We’re delighted to introduce the latest addition to the Keepme platform – Keepme Sales. 

Representing diverse customers across 9 countries, our clients surprisingly have one truly consistent request over the last 18 months: for Keepme to solve their sales problem. While many of our clients were already using the most popular gym sales support tools, they felt like what they were getting was little more than a polished up spreadsheet. We knew they needed better and that we could create something special. 

Rather than provide a bandaid, we sought to bring the fitness industry something it has never had – a fully integrated, AI-powered gym sales CRM tool that allows users to capture, manage, close, and transition leads into members all in one place.  

Seamlessly blending new lead capture, routing and management, Keepme Sales provides our users with one stop shop to not only monitor and collect information, but to execute. Our AI is constantly evaluating your lead quality, quantity, and progress to identify, segment, and funnel them into tailored sales flows built to optimize your teams effort and reduce the cost of acquisition.

Keepme’s built in communication platform allows the customer to leverage the power of AI to maximize their team’s time through smart automations built to ensure every lead is followed up with and no lead is ever left unattended.

Finally, Keepme Sales reaches beyond new membership sales and drives non-dues revenue. It starts by evaluating current members who are likely to engage in anything from personal training to swim lessons, building specific lead lists for your teams to pursue.

With the addition of Keepme Sales, our customers have the power to manage members across the entire life cycle, from lead generation to winning back ex-members, all in one platform. To learn more about how Keepme can revolutionize the way you manage your gym membership sales and drive retention, book a demo today.

We’re Proud To Introduce Keepme V2, A Next-Generation CRM for Fitness Operators
September 1, 2020 •

There’s excitement in the air at Keepme HQ! After months of tireless work and thousands of development hours, our team is proud to bring you Keepme V2 – the fitness industry’s first comprehensive, AI-powered gym CRM.

A genuine step change in club technology, Keepme V2 enables operators to drive additional revenue and increase profitability at every stage of the membership lifecycle – from lead capture and sales, to membership retention and secondary spend, to ex-member win back. All of this is backed by proven Artificial Intelligence, allowing operators to uncover revenue opportunities that are hidden in their data and act on them with the click of a button. No more jumping between tools, no more guesswork. 

Our brand new Keepme Sales module is a true one-stop solution, empowering gym sales teams to capture, allocate, manage, communicate with, and close leads all in one place. Keepme’s AI evaluates each lead and funnels them into tailored sales flows, while our sales playbooks and automations ensure every single lead is followed up with. And Keepme Sales isn’t limited to gym membership sales – it allows your reps to effortlessly manage inside sales for services like PT, massage, swim lessons, and anything else your club offers. To sum it up, Keepme Sales was purpose-built to turbocharge your sales team’s productivity and help them shatter their sales targets. 

Once a lead becomes a member, Keepme Membership provides you with industry-leading tools to maximize their lifetime value. Building on our proven Keepme retention platform, Keepme Membership’s AI identifies at-risk members and other critical member groups with pinpoint accuracy, while our new ‘Take Action’ features allow you to engage them with a single click. Building campaigns and automations has never been easier with Keepme’s best-in-class communications suite, which now includes a library of pre-built automations so operators can build world class member journeys right out of the box. Whether it’s re-engaging members who are slipping away, sending offers to members who are likely to purchase class packs, or reaching out to ex-members to win them back, Keepme Membership helps you achieve maximum revenue for every member in your club. 

We firmly believe that no operator should settle for band-aid solutions. If you have any questions about Keepme V2, please reach out to us via our live chat in the corner below. And if you would like a personalized tour to see how Keepme V2 could help your club, we warmly invite you to book a demo today.

— Team Keepme

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