How to Overcome Common Sales Objections to Sell More Gym Memberships

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How to Overcome Common Sales Objections to Sell More Gym Memberships

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As a boutique fitness owner, confidently asking potential new clients to purchase a membership is one of the most important skills you can master. If you’ve created your client flow,rehearsed your scripts, and role-played with your staff, but you’re still regularly hearing, “I need to think about it,” it’s time to reevaluate your sales strategy.

If you do not actively ask introductory clients to purchase before their package expires, you leave their membership purchase up to chance. [1] Sending an automated email or hoping they loved their experience enough to buy is not helping your bottom line. You’ll need to actively lead your sales process to ensure your clients become members.

Identify Trends

Why aren’t your clients purchasing long-term memberships? Most clients should be committing to your gym if you’re asking them to stay, offering incentives, and providing a sense of urgency. If they’re not, it’s time to search for trends.

To pinpoint why clients aren’t purchasing, start by tracking your leads. Following each client through their introductory offer automatically increases your conversion rates, and it also offers an invaluable tool to repair the holes in your sales process that lose money. Record the specific reason given by any client who did not purchase during your sales pitch so you can identify gaps.

It may not feel like it when faced with a client’s rejection, but each non-conversion offers a clue for how to close the next sale. Rejection is part of the sales process- the more you ask, the more you’re likely to be turned down. If you can remove some of your attachment to your studio and identify trends diagnostically, you’ll receive far more enthusiastic sales in the future.

Common Sales Objections

Do you regularly hear the same response when your client doesn’t purchase? Is it too expensive, or the class times don’t work out? Worse, do you hear, “I have to think about it”or, “let me ask your spouse and get back to you?”

Once you start tracking leads, you’ll likely notice that you hear a few objections more often than others. Price, time, location, commitment, and the ambiguous “let me think about it” are the common reasons customers give when confronted with a sales attempt. Each response hints at what went wrong in your sales pitch or fitness studio.

Price: This objection doesn’t always mean that your studio is too expensive. Sometimes a price pain point is because the sale itself was ineffective. A great sales pitch leads with the value and guides the client to their ideal purchase option without offering too many options.

A price objection may also mean that your marketing is attracting the wrong type of client, your intro offer is priced too low to convert into a long-term package, or your prices truly are too high for your market. You may need to book a strategy call to audit your pricing with one of our preferred coaches to discover the reason for this common objection.

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Time: “I’d love to buy; I just don’t have time for yoga.” You’ve likely heard this one a few times, and the root cause is probably not that the client is too booked to squeeze in a class. If this is the common objection at your fitness studio, ask yourself:

  • Do you have a scheduling issue? Do you need to add early morning or evening classes?
  • Did you offer the correct package for this client? If the client was looking for a casual once-a-week option and you pitched your unlimited membership, the sale won’t succeed.
  • Does your intro offer teach the client to make time for your studio? The trial package is your new client’s way to see if they want to prioritize your gym. Show new clients to re-prioritize their availability by pre-scheduling their classes, texting them before class, and following up often to show them they do have time; they just need tore-organize.

Location: Of all the objections, this one is the most straightforward. Most gym goers are looking to work out within five miles of their home or work. If your marketing campaigns are casting too wide a net, you’ll attract clients who think they can make it to class until they experience a 30-minute commute. Center your marketing to a 15-minute circumference to avoid this objection.

Commitment: If you’re regularly struggling with clients balking at the idea of a membership,it’s time to practice your sales pitch. Ensure you include your cancelation, suspension, and emergency clauses so that the client knows the fine print and remember to lead with the value rather than the term. You may be turning a client off before you even get to the perks of your packages.

“I need to ask my spouse/think about it”: They’re trying to let you down easy. Although this is the path of least resistance, it’s not doing you any favors to improve next time. You may consider sending a follow-up text asking for truthful feedback:

           “As a small studio, we truly appreciate feedback to help us grow. I noticed you didn’t purchase a membership after your intro offer.Would you be willing to take one moment to let me know where we could have served you better so that we can continue to improve?”

If you hear this objection frequently, audit your new client flow from start to finish and look for areas to fine-tune your member experience.The sales process begins the moment your client inquires at your studio, not when their introductory package expires.

Overcoming Sales Objections

As boutique fitness coaches, we prefer to optimize your intro client experience and perfect your sales pitch, but occasionally you can do both perfectly and still hear, “no,thank you.” Sometimes you can save a sale by digging into the “why” behind that“no.”

Price: “I hear you saying the X membership is outside your budget. Let’s work together to customize a package that fits your goals and budget to help you achieve your(specific) health goal we spoke about earlier.

Time: “I understand that now isn’t a great time to squeeze an unlimited membership into your daily life-you have a lot going on! Based on your attendance over the last two weeks and your goal to ________, our once-a-week membership would be the perfect solution for you.”

Commitment: “I get what you’re saying- post-pandemic commitments can be daunting. Why don’t we start you with our mini-membership so that we can eliminate that long-term concern.Our month-to-month membership comes with most of the same perks, and it’s anon-contract option!”

I need to think about it: “No problem! I want you to feel confident in your choice. Let’s send you home with the notes of what we’ve talked about, and I’ll call you tomorrow to check in. Remember, if you purchase your membership before the end of your intro special, you save 50% on your first month.”

Reframing does not mean arguing, but it doesn’t have to signify that you lost that sale, either. Have the confidence to stand as the expert to help your client reach their goals and the grace to know that sometimes it’s just not the right time for that client to buy. If they don’t purchase, remember to add them to your lead sheet to follow up over the next 30-90 days with a come-back campaign so you can try your effective sales pitch skills again.

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About the author:

Niki Riga
Industry Expert
Limitless Studio

Niki has been a client, a studio owner, and a coach in boutique fitness for over a decade, and she can’t think of an industry she'd rather be in. Her favorite part about coaching and studio ownership are the same: she loves supporting clients as they push past their limits and achieve their goals. Niki became a coach because she was regularly asked, “how did you do that!?” by other studio owners who were drowning in the day-to-day responsibilities of business ownership but didn’t have the support to grow their studio to its potential. She created Limitless Studio to partner with owners who have a vision for their business and are ready to implement systems to build the studio of their dreams.