Social Media for Fitness

Boutique fitness clubs are everywhere you look nowadays. For those looking to ditch the traditional gym setting, there are tons of options. From SoulCycle to OrangeTheory to hot yoga studios, it can be hard for fitness lovers to decide where they will be getting their sweat on next.

People who are looking for the next best thing in fitness are curious and open to hearing about what’s available to them.  So how can you grab their attention and convince them to join your gym vs. another? A strong social media strategy is a great place to start.

As of 2017, there were more than 400 million daily active Instagram users.  Thanks to all 400 million of those users, #fitness has been used over 316 million times. Whether it’s Instagram or Facebook, workout junkies are taking to social media to show off their results, their sweaty post-workout selfie or a picture of their favorite new studio.

Fitness Social Media Tips                            Social Media Tips for Health Clubs

As a small and/or growing gym or fitness studio, a well thought out social media strategy that pays attention to trends is critical.  Quite honestly, it may be better to have no social media presence at all than to do a terrible job. For example, think about a studio that fails to respond to comments, private messages and reviews? Not only are they losing their business, but others who are browsing the page to get the feel of the community. Also, a low quality picture of the inside of the studio is a representation of low quality service.  Lastly, if the social brands aren’t paying attention to analytics like social reach of content, then all of their hard work is not being seen. It’s also worth mentioning that a gym that receives low response may appear to outsiders as a ghost town.

Here are 4 social media marketing tips for fitness clubs:

1. Build and Grow a Community:

There are a few ways to grow your audience on social. One of the most effective ways is by using paid content and growth ads to get your studio in front of your target audience.  Try Facebook “like” ads, promoted posts, and lead ads to grow your email list. For Instagram, test out sponsored stories and sponsored posts.

Another method is by simply being social and building a community. 68% of Instagram users are said to engage with brands on a regular basis. This shows how effective social media can be to build and maintain a strong audience and create a great sense of community.  Asking people to tag your gym in their photos, check in on Facebook or add hashtags are all simple ways to get followers involved.   Here are a few more ways to get your members involved in social:

  • Use content that drives conversation by trying posts that include questions about workouts or what they want to see.  Using fill in the blank, tips and polls are all great ways for members to get involved and voice their opinions outside of the workout.
    • Example:  “Fill in the blank: The hardest part of today’s workout @XYZ gym was ________”  You’ll be surprised how many of your members start to engage with this kind of content.
  • Posting group photos before, during or after a workout is also a way to build a team feeling and community.  Your members will also most likely share photos they are tagged in to show off to their friends! It can be as simple as gathering together after a Saturday morning crowded workout or showing off the dedicated 5am group during the week.


Social Media for Gym Owners                Social Media for Gym Owners

2. Show an Inside Look into Your Classes and Studio:

New members may be hesitant to try a class because they simply have NO clue what to expect.  (Google and your website’s FAQ can only offer so much information!) Showcasing what you have to offer through photos and videos will encourage people to come in and try out your studio!

Here are a few great social strategies that provide a realistic preview of your studio:

Photo Credit: Total Shape

Social Media Tips for Gyms Instagram stories, Facebook Photo Albums, Instagram and Facebook Live and SnapChat stories. We suggest trying all of them to see what provides the largest reach and engagement.

  • Try a ‘Story Takeover’ day with one of your coaches, trainers or even a front desk staff member! Make sure they focus on volume with their story so that more people are invested in the story.
  • Use videos of trainers explaining how equipment works or how to perform a specific exercise. When you have the budget for it, a produced video is great for social video ads. Tying these to traffic ads to drive people to landing pages for sign-ups and lead gen ads will produce great results if they’re optimized and targeted.

3. Share Members Success:

This one is important because even your most humble members want some bragging rights every now and then, especially those who have had tremendous success. Members who see that you’ve posted about them will be excited to re-share your post, which alerts all of their friends and family about your gym. Not only does this strengthen the current member relationship, it potentially drives new business in.

Some things to try include:

  • Member of the Week: Do you have a dedicated member who is there Monday-Friday before the sun comes up at 5am? What about someone who has been a member for a year? Or what about someone who just went from walking on the treadmill to running a 5K? Or someone who has worked insanely hard over the last 6 weeks and lost 20lbs.  SHOWCASE this! Those are all incredible success’ and are worthy of a photo and social media write up! As we mentioned, not only will they share these posts themselves, but it serves as a great proof or case study for potential new members visiting your page.
  • #TransformationTuesday: This hashtag has been used 13.4 million times on Instagram. It’s a way for social media users to share a ‘before and after’ and showcase their hard work over a certain amount of time. Gyms can use this hashtag if they offer transformation challenges or have before and after photos of new members.

4. Promotions, Coupons and Other Social Specials:

Anytime you run a special or sale, have products/merchandise to sell at the gym, or want to try a coupon or discount, these should all be posted to social.

Here are a few examples to try:

  • Your brand new t-shirts and tank tops are great, but don’t forget to post them out on social. How about trying something along the lines of the first 5 people who comments and share get them for free? Or maybe just for 50% off? The choice is yours, but have fun with it!  
  • Capitalize on the holiday time and the impending New Years crew by offering 25% off on monthly or yearly memberships. Create a social post with a great image and ask current members to help with a social share. You can also create a video and run paid ads to attract the local audience.
  • How about using a “Comment to win” type promotion? Something simple such as: “Comment below and tag three of your friends and all 4 of you win a free week of workouts!” This is a really simple way to push people over the edge if they’ve been thinking about joining for a while, but haven’t budged yet. It’s also a great way to entice current members to push their friends in!


Social Media Health and Wellness        Social Media Contests for Gyms Social Media Tips Gyms

Are you the owner of a small gym or fitness studio? What has been the most challenging part about building and growing your social media presence? Which of these ideas above do you like most? Let us know in the comments!