Should You Be Marketing to Gym Rats?
Gym goers make up a huge percentage of the population.
As of 2012 there were over 50 million Americans with gym or fitness club memberships and over 30,000 individual facilities to support them. That’s some serious reach potential.
So, what’s so special about the gym rat set? This group of consumers tends to have more disposable income, be more social, and generally more purchase-ready than other segments of the population. Here are a few things to know about this diverse group:
- Studies have shown that people who frequent the gym make up to 9% more money than those who don’t
- The average gym goer visits their health club twice a week
- On average, each American pays about $60 per month for a gym membership in their area
As a marketer you should absolutely be taking advantage of the captive market inside gyms. Not only do gym members typically spend anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours at the facility each time they go, gyms are increasingly adding errand services to lure in additional members. All that means the time people spend at their local health club is bound to creep up and up – as a marketer, that increases dwell time for your ad.
There are several other health club trends that make sense for gym marketers. Fitness centers are becoming more niche-oriented which means you’ve got a more segmented audience to market to. There are now gyms specifically for women, for baby boomers, and even for parents of young children!
Another gym trend marketers can take advantage of is the rise of the social gym experience. Group classes are big businesses as are dance groups and small-group personal training. Gyms like Crossfit nurture a competitive community vibe and some gyms encourage members to post photos directly to social media.
Lastly, convenience services is the biggest change hitting U.S. gyms. More and more, gyms are opening for extended hours (or just becoming 24-hours), offering services like dry cleaning and barbershops, and incorporating food-centric services like salad and smoothie bars. These services are keeping people in gyms longer which is good news for brand marketers.
Most gym rats are used to the digitization of health clubs. Many facilities now offer cardio machines with digital screens for TV or simulations built right in, and plenty of gyms offer “digital” classes that involve spinning in front of a giant road-like simulation screen. Gym rest areas are increasingly using tabletop caddies to display local ad messages, infotainment, and even give patrons a place to charge their phone while they recharge themselves. And Media Caddy’s bar top solutions are popping up at smoothie and juice stations to give fitness fanatics something to look at while they sip.
More and more, gym-goers know the gym is a place to see and be seen. The gym industry is a $21 billion dollar business and gym attire, too, is skyrocketing in popularity. Smart advertisers are finding inventive ways to reach this active, high-earning market that go beyond bathroom-door ads and flyers by the front desk. This coveted group spends money, they’re avid consumers, and they’re consistently reachable by high-quality, well-placed digital ads.
What is your business doing to reach the gym crowd?