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Creating Your Fitness Email Marketing Strategy: 4 Simple Steps

banner fitness email marketing image

If you’re looking to create the most engaging fitness email marketing strategies to gain and keep new clients, you’ve come to the right place!

In this guide we’ll cover everything you need to know for designing the best email marketing for personal trainers and other fitness professionals, including:

Before we start, if you’re looking to increase your expertise and the services you offer, check out our personal trainer courses hereYou can download our free course prospectus for more details!

 

Why You Should Invest Your Time into Creating a Fitness Email Marketing Strategy

fitness email marketing image  

Before we dive into our step-by-step guidance on creating the best fitness email marketing campaigns, you might be wondering why they’re so important.

Despite the popularity and success of social media marketing, fitness email marketing is still one of the biggest returns on investment.

Return on investment essentially means how much you spend vs what you get in return for that investment.

Email marketing can work out cheaper and more automated (so easier to run) than a lot of paid ad solutions and some of the statistics suggest they can be more successful too!

In fact, according to Mailchimp, the average newsletter open rate is 21.33% which is 20 times higher than the engagement for Facebook posts.

This is mainly because, unlike in other marketing strategies, you have a direct line to your potential or existing clients. 

There’s other benefits of using email marketing for your fitness business, including:

  • Nurture potential customers - having a direct line means that you can better turn enquiries into clients by speaking to them personally
  • Retain existing clients - by having regular updates through a newsletter you’re creating a sense of community and providing regular resources for clients which they’ll appreciate!
  • Boosts your brand’s trustworthy image - by creating professional, informative, useful email marketing, your fitness business will seem reliable and encourage people to engage with it more

So, as you can see, no matter whether it’s gym email marketing or email marketing for personal trainers, this method is guaranteed to be a worthy investment.

Now let’s dive into our step-by-step guide of how to create the strongest fitness email marketing strategies and get all of these benefits.

Step 1: Outline the Goal of Your Fitness Email Marketing Strategy

goals fitness email marketing graphic

Before you start designing and planning the content of your fitness business emails, you need to decide what exactly you want to achieve.

This is essential if you want to use email marketing for your fitness business because it will not only shape what kind of content you create but also what data you pay particular attention to when you’re tracking its success.

For example, if you have a goal of getting more people to sign up for a particular package, you can decide on some promotional email content for these deals. 

You can also then look at the open rates, the levels of engagement and people clicking through, but especially when people are taking the action you want them to- buying this particular package or deal! 

Some goals you might have for your fitness email marketing campaigns include:

  • Getting more PT clients
  • Promoting a new service you offer
  • Using gym email marketing to drive attendance to particular classes

Having an idea of exactly what you want to achieve will also be informed by your market research. You should be aware of exactly who you’re targeting and how best to reach them.

For example, if you want to gain new customers, you might want to target people based on:

  • Age
  • Preferences (such as previous class attended, goals they’ve expressed, styles of training they’ve engaged with before)
  • Schedule

All of these things will help you design your fitness email marketing campaigns and decide on factors such as the timing of emails and promoting to specific, different groups. 

Step 2: Decide on the Software You'll Use for Your Fitness Email Marketing

software fitness email marketing graphic

The easiest way to create fitness email marketing strategies, and track their progress and success, is through dedicated software.

This will help you design different marketing strategies and customise them to fit your brand. 

The best fitness email marketing software should allow you to do a range of automated services as well as design features to strengthen your campaigns.

There’s several key features you should keep your eyes peeled for, which we’ll briefly go through now!

Look Out for Email Templates

fitness email marketing graphic

Using pre-made templates for your fitness email marketing is a great way to save time and make sure they look sleek and professional.

Most services will offer a range of different templates for key marketing strategies so that you already have a structure down to customise to match your business!

Some of the most common PT email templates you could use for your fitness business include:

  • Welcome emails
  • Newsletter templates
  • Promoting new services  

Check for Software With Email Segmentation

target fitness email marketing graphic

We briefly touched on this earlier when discussing targeting a specific audience or demographic.

Segmentation is essentially where you can group your subscribers into smaller sections to target them in different ways.

For example, you might have a new class that you’re offering which will be an intense cardio workout.

You can use software to personalise your fitness email marketing so that these emails and promotions only reach those likely to sign up, based on age or classes they’ve previously attended.

You can create a different fitness email marketing list for different demographics so that you can better track the success of different campaigns. 

Look for Software With Email Automation

automation fitness email marketing image

This is where you can programme certain emails to be sent at certain times when they’re triggered by particular factors.

Automating your fitness email marketing campaigns will save a lot of time. You won’t have to manually do things like:

  • Reminding clients of their appointments
  • Welcome emails when there’s a new client or enquiry 

You can design these emails yourself, ensuring they’re personalised and professional, without worrying about missing any opportunities for nudging existing clients or encouraging new ones to sign up.

Some of the factors you could use in your automation include:

  • If somebody makes an enquiry
  • If somebody starts the enquiry process but doesn’t finish it
  • Welcome emails
  • Appointment reminders
  • Class booking confirmation 

You can set up an email template to be sent out when any of these things are triggered so that you can stay on top of your customers and not miss opportunities to re-engage them, or upsell services. 

A/B Testing in Email Software

Arrow fitness email marketing graphic 

Whilst you’re starting out with your fitness email marketing strategies, you will most probably go through a process of trial and error with the data you collect and how you work out best to segment your audience.

A great way to do this is with an A/B testing feature. This is where you test out different fitness email ideas by sending a different version to different audiences.

Doing so, you can compare which method works best and which content performs best in terms of how many people receive, open, and engage with the email. 

For example, you might even send the same email but with different subject lines whilst you’re working out how best to encourage people to open the email.

Plenty of these services will have a free tier option so you can test out some different ones to see which works best for you before investing.

However, a lot of these features will be locked within a paid subscription. Once you’ve used the free tier, though, you’ll have an idea of which interface works best for your business and style.

3 Essential Email Marketing Software Options

Now we’ll briefly run through a few of the top options and the features they can offer to your fitness email marketing. 

MailChimp

mailchimp fitness email marketing image

MailChimp is one of the best software options for fitness email marketing because of its holistic approach to different aims and outcomes.

The platform is really simple to use, with a drag and drop system for the design, meaning it’s really easy to customise the templates for your own needs.

One of the main reasons it’s a great option for your PT marketing strategies is the range of services on offer in the free tier. 

When you’re starting out with your fitness email marketing you’ll be able to do the following for free:

  • Build a fitness email marketing list of up to 500 people
  • Five email templates ranging in design and the goal such as ‘make an announcement’
  • Comprehensive, easy to understand data reports regarding open rates, engagement, and click throughs

As you can see, you can invest in one of the more advanced tiers, once you’ve grown your fitness business, and get a huge range of features for an affordable price:

mailchimp prices fitness email marketing image

Active Campaign

active campaign fitness email marketing image 

Active Campaign is one of the best fitness email marketing tools because of its huge range of automation options.

They offer 20 different start triggers, meaning 20 different emails to send automatically when a certain action has been, or hasn’t been, taken. 

This means you can be super specific about the audience of your emails as well as how you track what’s successful in terms of reaching the right people at the right time. 

The wide variety of start triggers for Active Campaign include:

active campaign triggers fitness email marketing image

MailerLite

mailerlite 2 fitness email marketing image

Lastly, MailerLite is ideal for those just starting out with fitness email marketing because of its easy-to-use interface.

You can also have more contacts through the free option than with other platforms, giving you a maximum of 1,000 email contacts before hitting a premium level.

You can also send up to 12,000 emails with this ‘free forever’ subscription.

As you can see, there’s plenty of other exciting features of this simple and accessible software:

mailerlite fitness email marketing image

Now we’ve had a look at some of the options, hopefully you can see how much you can do with your fitness email marketing!

Once you’ve chosen which software you’ll use you can start to populate your fitness email marketing list.

We’ll look at this in more detail now.

 

Step 3: Begin Building Your Fitness Email Marketing List

list fitness email marketing image

Now you know what you want from email marketing your fitness business, and which software would work best, it’s time to start populating your contacts list!

The easiest way you can do this is by creating a ‘lead magnet’. This is something that attracts people to engage with your business and be contacted further to become customers or clients. 

You might have this on your PT landing page or website and ask people for their email addresses in exchange for whichever resource you choose to use.

This might be offering something that can be downloaded or having a form where people provide their details for a free personal trainer consultation

Some of the options for what you can offer include:

  • Recipe ideas
  • Workout plan
  • Food diary

The reason this is such a successful marketing strategy is that by offering your prospective clients something, you’re showcasing your expertise and building trustworthiness in your brand.

By offering a helpful resource, this boosts your brand’s image and credibility. That way people are much more likely to pay attention when you do email them!

Also people will be much more willing to provide their details in return for something.

If you’re interested in email marketing for personal trainers, the easiest way to do this is to offer a free consultation.

That way you’re not just providing a one-off resource but starting the process by which you get new clients!  

This is exactly what MBPT has done, offering a free consultation with contact details required:

consultation fitness email marketing image

No matter what kind of fitness business you have there’s a creative way you can create a lead magnet and populate your fitness email marketing list.

Fitpro Recipes, who provide books for fitness professionals, are a great example of how you could offer a recipe pack:

recipes fitness email marketing image

In order to download the pack you have to provide an email address:

recipes email fitness email marketing image

By downloading the recipe pack, potential clients sign up to receive further emails from Fitpro who can promote their services and nurture these contacts to become customers!

Whichever option you choose, these can either be a static form placed on a web page, or through a pop up box that you place on a particular page.

This is what our own looks like as a pop up:

download fitness email marketing image

Starting the process in this way creates an opportunity for you to market further and populate your fitness email marketing list with people who are interested in your services and want to engage with your business.

However, you have to make sure that you’re very careful with people’s data before you use it for your fitness email marketing.

For more information, check out our article on GDPR for personal trainers. 

Step 4: Plan Out the Content for Your Fitness Email Marketing Strategy 

content fitness email marketing image

Now you’ve got your contacts, it’s time to start thinking about the content of the email marketing for your fitness business!

You won’t just be using your fitness email marketing to get new clients and customers, it’s a way of nurturing existing ones to help with client retention and brand loyalty. 

That’s why we’ve compiled a list of four examples of strong fitness email marketing campaigns you can use to inspire your own content.

Finding this article helpful? Check out some of our others on how to boost your fitness career:

Send Out a Welcome Email 

welcome email fitness email marketing image

This is one of, if not THE, most important email you’ll send as part of your fitness email marketing campaign because this is where you make your first impression with potential clients.

The welcome email is where you start the rapport building process and introduce yourself and your brand to people who’ve registered their interest. 

This should be one of the main automations you set up so you can contact potential clients and customers immediately.

People will be at their most engaged at this stage so this is your opportunity to really sell yourself and your services!

By contacting people straight away you’re setting a standard and a precedent for the quality, and frequency, of content people can expect. 

You should provide the resource you promised and then you can introduce your brand and what exactly you offer.

This is what we do with our own welcome emails, foregrounding the resource people asked for:

origym welcome fitness email marketing image

You don’t want to spam your recipients with unwanted information but you also want to seize the opportunity to showcase your services.

You should also include a call to action (or CTA). This is something that encourages people to take a specific action.

For example, in our own welcome email we have the following CTA:

origym welcome 2 fitness email marketing image

By downloading the price guide this moves people further along the sales process as it shows they’re interested in one of our personal trainer courses. 

Provide Educational Email Content

learn fitness email marketing graphic]

The best way of doing this is to provide a resource or content that’s got useful nutrition and fitness tips for your readers.

This is a great option no matter what your fitness business is. 

If you’re interested in email marketing for personal trainers, this is a great way of promoting the importance of different exercises or having a fitness professional to work with to achieve their goals.

Rather than just promoting your services you’re providing another valuable resource for your subscribers and reinforcing your expertise.

You’ll also be boosting your open rates and ensuring people actually open your emails and read the information you’re providing.

By offering something, and boosting your open rates, you’ll be gaining more engagement too, meaning you’re more likely to sell what you offer to potential clients.

We’ve designed our own example of how you could do this below:

origym education fitness email marketing template image

As you can see we’ve included a fun gif to make the email engaging rather than just a block of text.

MailChimp has a searchable Giphy function so you can insert gifs and images into your emails easily.

Most software options will have an image bank you can use to make your fitness email marketing too so that they are visually appealing as well as informative.

We’ve also used some language that draws people in so that they are persuaded to take the call to action:

education fitness email marketing image

When readers click through you’ll be able to view this data and monitor what encourages people to engage and what doesn’t.

Send Out a Fitness Newsletter

laptop fitness email marketing graphic

Next up on our list of fitness email ideas is the newsletter. This is a great way to get subscribers to engage with your business, and showcase what you do best!

This is usually a roundup that showcases your business and its successes, as well as any helpful information subscribers might want.

For example, you could include the following in your newsletter: 

  • Personal trainer testimonials
  • Recent success stories with before and after pictures
  • Information about new classes
  • Information about other new services you’re offering 
  • Highlights from your social media page

A newsletter should be like a highlights reel where you remind existing clients and customers of how they could upgrade and engage with your services in new ways.

For people who’ve recently signed up for your fitness email marketing this is your opportunity to show them all the reasons they should invest in what you have to offer! 

Also, by including things like success stories and highlights from social media, you’re creating a community around your brand. People will feel included when featured and be encouraged to engage with your business becoming, or continuing to be, a customer.

HubSpot, who provide a fully integrated marketing service that includes fitness email marketing templates and other services, gives the perfect example of how you should set out your newsletter:

hubspot newsletter fitness email marketing image

As you can see there’s several CTA buttons throughout, either taking the reader to other website content or encouraging them to take another action.

This could be booking a personal trainer session or signing up for a class. 

We’ll touch more on social media in our tip ‘Combine Your Email Marketing for Fitness Strategies with Social Media’, but it’s important this is a part of your newsletter too! 

Send Re-Engagement Emails

email 2 fitness email marketing image

Last on our list of ideas for your fitness email marketing is the re-engagement email. This is designed to pique the interest of those who haven’t interacted with your business or services for a while.

You can entice people in with a new offer, or a sign-up offer, to encourage people to become paying customers or clients.

Using automation for this means you’ll be able to contact people as soon as they disengage. You’ll also be able to better monitor when they’ve dropped off and what works to get them re-engaged.

You can set up a trigger so that people will receive an email like this when they haven’t clicked through to your website for a while or have stopped opening your emails.

We’ll touch more on this in our next section in our tip ‘Ensure You Measure the Success of Your Fitness Email Marketing’.

Speaking to people individually, whether you offer a deal or not, will also make them seem valued by your brand and encourage them to re-engage.

This gym email marketing example from gym etc:

gym etc offer fitness email marketing image

The call to action is clear and tells customers exactly what they need to do to redeem the deal, encouraging them to click through.

Offering deals, especially when they’re time sensitive, will persuade people to take the action you want them to take a lot quicker because you’ve created a sense of urgency.

 

3 Expert Tips on Getting the Most Out of Your Fitness Email Marketing Campaigns

Now we’ll run through some tips on how to make sure the email marketing for your fitness business performs as well as possible and you manage it the best you can! 

#1: Ensure You Measure the Success of Your Fitness Email Marketing 

goals 2 fitness email marketing graphic

It’s all well and good choosing great subject lines and designing great content but how do you make sure people are seeing it?

As we’ve touched on already, it’s just as important to monitor the performance of your fitness email marketing as it is to decide on the content you include and who you send it to.

This is because this data will tell you everything you need to know about who is reading your emails, when, and what tactics are working to get you more customers and keep existing ones.

The data measured by the email marketing software we mentioned earlier falls under ‘KPI’ or ‘key performance indicators’.

These are the important features that measure how well your email marketing is performing such as:

  • Receipt of Emails - this is whether people are actually receiving email marketing for your fitness business in their primary inbox or if it’s going to promotions or spam
  • Open Rates - this is exactly what it says! This is the rate at which people open your emails and looking at this will allow you to try out different subject lines
  • Click Through Rates - you can look at how many people have clicked a link in one of your emails, engaging with it and taking the action you want them to take
  • Subscribe and Unsubscribe Rates - by measuring when people subscribe and unsubscribe you can manage getting new subscribers and how best to engage existing ones so you don’t lose them

Measuring these things will allow you to try out different ideas whilst you’re starting out, to see what works. 

You should constantly be measuring these factors and improving your different fitness email marketing strategies.

Most platforms will have a feature as a dashboard so you can easily view all of this information in one place.

Here’s what MailChimp’s email analytics look like:

mailchimp analytics fitness email marketing image

You can look at the general analytics for your campaigns holistically or hone in on a single email when you’re trying out different methods:

mailchimp analytics 2 fitness email marketing image

This way you can track the success of your campaigns and be constantly getting the most out of your fitness email marketing strategies!

#2: Combine Your Email Marketing for Fitness Strategies with Social Media

social media fitness email marketing 2 graphic

Though, as we mentioned earlier, the engagement for email marketing can be a lot higher for social media alone, the two combined make for a very strong fitness email marketing campaign!

By combining the two, and having them work in tandem for your fitness business, you’ll be reaching a wider range of audiences.

You will also be more present across different platforms and by integrating the two you’re presenting the same message and reinforcing your brand in people’s minds.

People will grow more familiar with your fitness business and this familiarity is vital for gaining new customers but especially for retaining existing ones.

Now let’s look briefly at the different ways you can integrate your fitness email marketing and social media. 

Use Linktree in Your Instagram Bio

linktree fitness email marketing 2 image

A Linktree in your bio will allow you to have a group of links together to all of your key web pages or sign up options!

Having them all in one convenient place makes it easy to direct your potential customers and existing clients to where you want them to go.

You should include a link to your lead magnet or have one where people can sign up to the newsletter.

This is what Backbody Project have done with their own page:

linktree fitness email marketing image

As you can see they’ve got a Linktree in their bio which has a sign up option for the ‘mailing list’:

linktree 2 fitness email marketing image

By giving people the explicit choice to opt in through your social media page you’re establishing that your fitness email marketing is a useful resource rather than just something for your own sales! 

Use Organic Posts on Instagram to Get Subscribers

instagram fitness email marketing graphic

One of the most obvious ways you can combine fitness marketing for your fitness business with social media is through organic content.

This is content you create, like posts or stories, rather than content you’ve paid for such as Facebook ads or ads on Instagram. 

This is another great way of getting people to sign up for your newsletter and increase your subscriber sign-up rate.

If you have strong social media accounts, providing useful information, people will associate your fitness email marketing with this content and vice versa.

This way you’ll boost engagement on both platforms!

This is what Dawn Derow has done with her own posts:

newsletter subscribe fitness email marketing image

As you can see she’s hinted at special content and added an extra incentive for people to sign up.

This is your opportunity to really sell yourself and show how equally valuable your fitness email marketing can be like your social media content. 

Add Social Media Buttons to the Bottom of Your Emails

socials buttons fitness email marketing image

Most platforms you would use for email marketing your fitness business will have templates that already include these buttons.

They will usually be at the bottom of the email in a row, linking readers of your emails to any of the following:

  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • TikTok
  • YouTube
  • Twitter

This just increases the engagement on both platforms and allows people to reach you in a variety of ways.

This is what it should look like:

social media buttons fitness email marketing image


#3: Plan for Your Future Fitness Email Marketing Strategies

 laptop plan fitness email marketing graphic

By now hopefully you’ve got plenty of ideas from our tips on fitness email marketing strategies and how you can grow your subscriber list.

But once you’ve got your numbers solid and you’re growing your business, you need to make sure you’re planning ahead with your content. 

This will involve using all of the steps we’ve already mentioned to be aware of what you can cover and how you can always be improving your numbers.

For example, you need to make sure you’re staying on top of fitness trends and using data from your fitness email marketing software to improve your reach and increase subscriptions.

You can also use this data to plan future campaigns and always be looking forward to new ways you can improve.

By looking at what works you can plan future, inventive ways of doing more of this and retain as many subscribers and customers as possible.

 

Before You Go!

That concludes our guide on how exactly to design and implement the best fitness email marketing campaigns.

Don’t forget that one of the best ways to attract new clients is by levelling up your skills. If you’re already a personal trainer why not check out our Level 4 personal trainer courses to take your career to the next level?

You can download our free course prospectus to find out more!

 

Enquire now to boost your fitness career

Become a master personal trainer with OriGym today

Written by Jessie Florence Jones

Content Writer & Fitness Enthusiast

Jessie has a 1st class honours degree in English Literature from University of Leeds and an MA in English Literature from Durham University. Naturally Jessie has a real passion for writing especially about film, culture and wellbeing. Outside of writing she loves hiking, country walks and yoga, which she has been doing religiously over lockdown.

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