Monday, 10 August 2015

How to re-engage your Ex-members

August is a great time to try to re-engage with your ex-members. We know that September is the second peak joining month (after January), so now’s the time to put your club in the front of people’s minds with a compelling ex-member campaign.

The ex-member database is a vastly under-utilized resource at many clubs. We find that most ex-members (over 50%) are not currently exercising, and they all know your club, so asking them to re-join will yield results, and ROI is clear compared to trying to recruit new members.

You can send a simple re-join offer, but it’s much more effective to ask for their opinion, have an interaction with them, and then offer them something in return. A simple survey (3-5 questions) can provide you with useful feedback, and at the very least, make them think you’re listening to their response. By all means, tell them about your new class timetable, the new changing rooms, or whatever else you've improved since they left, but make the communication two-way, and ask what they think, want, or need.

Focus your questions on positives, not why they left, but why they joined in the first place (what was their original goal). Follow this up with what their exercise or fitness goal would be today. If you want to include a couple more questions about classes, or support, that’s fine, then we’d finish off with “Where/how are you exercising at the moment”. Multi choice answers are easier to analyse: Premium/Private club, Leisure Centre, Low-Cost Gym, Small Studio/Other club/society, Solo/Running/etc, None.

For each ex-member campaign, you want to know about open rate, click-through rate, response rate (and answer analysis), and finally re-join or redemption rate. Not all ex-member surveys have to result in re-joins… you are re-engaging with them, reminding them that you are still there, still care, and will be ready when they are ready to return.

Finally, please don’t use the clich├ęd old "No Join Fee” offer for ex-members. Read the follow-up post to get some more original ideas to get them back into your club.

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