Decoding Digital Marketing Success for Fitness Businesses

Decoding Digital Marketing Success for Fitness Businesses


The fitness industry is rapidly evolving, and with it, the approach to digital marketing as a way to get leads and grow your gym. Gone are the days of a one-size-fits-all formula for online success. As we settle into 2023, the playbook for capturing and maintaining the attention of potential gym-goers continues to be rewritten. If you’re reading this, chances are you’re either a gym owner invested in propelling your business forward or a marketer looking to fine-tune ads for the fitness realm. Rest assured, you’ve come to the right place.


The Fine Art of a Tailored Strategy

Digital marketing mavericks, Zach Adams and Phillip Howard from 97 Display, have been revolutionizing the game by curating unique strategies tailored to individual business needs. “Not every client journey is the same,” Howard asserts, underlining the importance of understanding the unique dynamics of each fitness business. Adams adds, “We’ve spent a considerable amount of time… restructuring… to include a lot of questions that get down to really like the nitty-gritty of what it is the business is looking to do.”


Starting Your Digital Marketing for your Fitness Business: Where and How?

In the realm of digital advertising, your first pit stop should be in recognizing the powerhouse platforms – namely Google and Facebook. But when should you lean towards one over the other? Howard offers, “Facebook is a good place because you can get a good amount of leads very quickly.” However, if your website is already a conversion star, steering traffic towards it through Google might just be your best bet.


Your Fitness Business Goals Are the Compass

Your business goals are integral to your lead generation strategy. Perhaps you’re aiming to expand your client base or you’re on the lookout for quality leads that could convert with ease. Your overarching aim is pivotal in choosing the right path. Drawing an analogy, Adams says he likens the approach to a mechanic who listens carefully and then prescribes a tailored solution rather than a generic fix.


What’s Hot in Digital Marketing for Gym Owners?

Videos are the reigning champions in the current digital marketing trends for fitness businesses, providing a relatable and visually engaging medium to connect with the audience. Yet, navigating video content production can be daunting for some. Fear not, for AI has stepped onto the scene, offering an array of tools to generate impactful video content without requiring a professional production team. “The big thing is video content,” Howard shares, underscoring the trend and the resources available to harness it effectively.

Episode highlights:

5:44 The go-to digital platforms for online lead generation
7:33 How to know where to start when you’re ready for digital marketing
8:44 When you should start with ads on Facebook vs Google
11:04 Why your business goals matter to your lead generation strategy
13:30 A good digital marketing company is similar to a good car mechanic
14:22 What’s working right now in digital marketing for fitness businesses
15:47 How to use AI to amplify your content creation
16:58 How to best connect with and relate to your audience on social media
19:47 What you need to make sure you have BEFORE you start running ads
24:59 The first thing you should ask your lead to do
27:44 The Metrics that matter: Cost per Lead and Relevancy
32:26 The single biggest reason paid ads fail

Before You Leap Into Advertising…

There’s a pre-ad checklist that demands your attention. Ensure your business is equipped with a scalable, repeatable process for follow-up on generated leads. As Howard points out, “don’t start looking at outbound strategies until you’ve got a scalable, repeatable process for your follow-up.”


The First Step for Your Lead

Once you’ve caught their interest, lead them gently towards an action that aligns with their readiness – perhaps a free consultation or a trial session. This nudges them further down the funnel without being forceful.


Metrics That Matter

Cost per lead and relevance are key metrics that demand your attention. A cost per lead of around $15 is often indicative of a healthy campaign, while relevance tells you if you’re hitting the mark in engaging with your potential clients.


The Pitfall to Avoid

The single biggest reason paid ads fail is simple – lack of a robust follow-up and sales process. Without it, even the most promising leads are like untapped gold.


Actionable Takeaways for Fitness Business Owners:

  • Align Strategies with Goals: Tailor your digital marketing strategies to align with the specific goals and growth plans for your business.
  • Platform Selection: Start with Facebook for volume or Google to leverage well-performing websites, depending on your needs.
  • Video Content: Embrace AI tools to create compelling video content to resonate with your potential gym members.
  • Follow-Up Protocol: Before investing in ads, ensure you have a solid lead follow-up system in place.
  • Lead Action: Prompt your leads to book a session or request more info rather than pushing for a hard commitment.
  • Monitor Metrics: Keep an eye on the cost per lead and ad relevance to gauge success.
  • Refresh Regularly: Stay updated with your campaigns to avoid ad fatigue and optimize performance.

Remember, success in digital marketing for gyms isn’t about the routine but about how you make the catch. Understanding the uniqueness of your business and your audience will lead you to a strategy as personalized as your training sessions.

Check out our guide all about improving your online presence. After all, if you’re paying for leads, you want to make sure they have a good first impression, and that’s what your online presence is.


Fitness Revolution helps fitness business owners build and scale successful businesses they love running. Through Strategic Business Coaching, powerful tools and metrics, and live training events, FR is able to help these studio owners tackle their biggest, most pressing challenge. For more information, visit

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