Imagine walking into your favorite neighborhood restaurant.
As the host leads you to your table, you see a dad you know from your son’s school. You’ve met him a few times at school functions, so you stop for a minute to shake his hand and say hello.
You say goodbye and keep walking through the restaurant. A few tables down you’re delighted to see one of your very good friends. You greet him with a warm hug, laughing about the fact that the two of you had dinner the night before. Then you head to the back of the restaurant, finally sitting down at your table. You get settled and your waiter approaches and introduces himself. You say hello and order a drink.
In the time it took to walk through the restaurant and sit down you interacted with three different people and had three completely different responses: a handshake, a hug, and a hello.
Every day we relate to people differently depending on our relationship with them. Your good friend would be insulted if you didn’t hug him — and your waiter would be surprised if you did.
It’s the same with your business. You have different types of relationships with everyone in your email database. You don’t hug your waiter, and you shouldn’t send the same email blast to your leads, inactive leads, members, and former members.
To get the most out of your emails you have to segment your email list.
The person who came in for an introductory session yesterday doesn’t care about the same things as the person who’s been a member for five years. When you send the same email or newsletter to every contact in your database, it’s at best a wasted effort and at worst it sends the message you don’t know — or care about — your contacts.
If you’ve never segmented your email list, it’s difficult to know where to start, how to divide up your email list, and what to send to each segment.
We can help!
In this post we’ll cover:
The difference between an email blast and a segmented campaign
How to segment your email list
Customized content suggestions
And as a bonus: real world examples of some of our best targeted emails!
So let’s get started!
The difference between an email blast and a segmented campaign
First off, what exactly is an email blast, and how does it differ from a segmented campaign?
An email blast is when you send a single email to a large email list, usually your entire email list. If you send enough email blasts with content that isn’t relevant to a large portion of your list, you will eventually train your recipients to ignore your emails, unsubscribe, or report as spam.
A segmented email campaign is targeted communication meant specifically for each of these groups. Email campaigns can have different content and can be sent at different times, depending on the recipient. Once you start segmenting your email list you suddenly have more opportunities to offer content that’s relevant and meaningful to the recipient, which can help you forge real connections with everyone on your list.
How to Segment Your Email List
When it comes to segmenting your email database, first you want to divide it into leads and clients. Simply put, a lead is someone who has never purchased a service from you, and clients are people who currently or at one point have given you money for a product or service.
You can further divide leads into inactive and active leads and split the clients into current and former clients.
Inactive Leads – Acquaintances
Inactive leads know of you, but don’t really know you. They follow you on various social media platforms, are on an email list, and receive some kind of value from you and are still interested in your service. They just need more nurturing.
Active Leads – New friends
An active lead is someone who replied to an email, called, or who has come into the gym or signed up to come in for a free session or trial. They’ve made an extra effort but are not yet clients.
Clients (Current and former) – Good friends
Clients are people who have paid for your services at one point. This includes current and former clients. In most cases you know something about their lives — what they do for work, if they have any kids, what they like to do for fun.
Action Item: Start dividing your email list into groups. The easiest way to start is to make three groups: leads, clients, and former clients.
Customized Content Suggestions
Once you organize your email list you can start rolling out segmented communication.
Communicating with Inactive and Active Leads
Remember, active leads know about you, but haven’t experienced your service personally. Let someone else vouch for you and give some motivation for the relationship. No one likes talking about themselves, so let someone else do it! There’s nothing like a friend adding credibility for you.
Inactive and Active Lead Content Ideas:
- Get testimonials from current clients and turn those into emails.
- Identify a few incentives to foster the relationship, and offer warm leads a free consultation, a free class, or an intro PT session.
- Make sure active leads know about events, live webinars, or community events.
- Finally, it’s very important your active leads know how to start. As we covered in this blog post “Capturing a Lead Isn’t a Sprint,” the easier it is for someone to schedule an appointment, the more likely they are to make one!
Sample Email for an Active Lead
Subject Line: What are you waiting for? (We’re waiting for you)
We’re so excited to meet you!
Right now you’re probably trying to figure out the perfect time to start this fitness journey.
You might be thinking, “Those people seem really fit, I need to get into better shape before I try,” or “I’m really busy right now, I’ll go in when I have more time.”
Here’s the thing:
There will never be a perfect time.
Life will always be busy.
You’ll always wish you were in better shape.
We avoid unfamiliar situations because for most of human history new experiences could be deadly. Staying inside our comfort zones kept us safe from predators and danger.
However, in the modern world, thoughts like these aren’t helpful.
In fact, they’re preventing you from a potentially life-changing experience.
Here at [account.name] you’ll be trying new things and meeting new people, but it will all take place in a safe, supportive environment. Here you’ll find just the right amount of “productive discomfort” (Tiptoeing Out of One’s Comfort Zone (and of Course, Back In) <<< a really good read!) where you can challenge yourself at your own pace under the watchful eye of knowledgeable, experienced coaches.
We can’t wait to meet you!
See you soon,
[staff.first_name] from [account.name]
Communicating with Clients
When someone is a client, you’ve given them something of significant value, solidified a positive experience, and delivered proven results. Clients can generate the highest return on communication — they are extremely valuable. This is the time to catch up with old friends. Many gyms stop sending emails and texts to people when they become clients. This is a mistake. Did you know 63% of new members quit within the first six months? To beat that statistic you need to keep your clients involved and engaged in your gym.
There’s no need for small talk since everything you’ve done to this point has built a relationship. You’ve won friends, now you need to keep them and not lose touch!
Remind them why they love your gym and offer them more ways to get involved, to do more. You don’t want them to get bored or wish they could get more from their membership.
Client Content Ideas:
- Send out information and offers for additional PT, one-on-one nutrition coaching, accountability checks.
- Make sure clients know about events, specialty seminars, and supplemental programs.
- Create content that explains how these extras will help them get more out of their gym membership.
Sample Email for a New Client
Subject Line: Welcome to [account.name]!
I’m so happy you’ve started training with us.
It takes a lot of courage to start something new — you should be proud of yourself!
As you get started, remember you’re not alone. We’re here to help you every step of the way. Our experienced coaches can answer all your questions and help you establish a new, healthy routine.
But first, I want to thank you for choosing to be a part of our family here at [account.name]. If I can help you in your fitness journey, please don’t hesitate to ask!
Looking forward to getting to know you better,
Communicating with Former Clients
One of the biggest mistakes made by gym owners is not communicating with former clients. Former members are extremely important leads! In the same way you nurture a cold lead coming into the gym, you want to nurture former members to break down barriers, offer to help, deliver value, and offer opportunities to get back in the gym at a later date. Check out our blog for more information about what to do — and what NOT to do — when a client leaves your gym.
Former Client Content Ideas
- At-home workout ideas and healthy living tips, to show you care about their health and fitness.
- An offer to buy them a cup of coffee or a simple “how are you?”
- An email simply telling them how awesome they are.
Sample Email for a Former Client
Subject Line: Hey how are you?
I was just thinking about you and wanted to see how you’ve been. I miss seeing you around the gym!
TIME SAVING TIP: You don’t always have to send completely different content to these three groups. If you have an interesting, informative newsletter, try sending it to every group and just change the subject line. For example, inactive and active leads could have a subject that says “Let’s get started.” Current clients get “Make the most of your membership” and former clients receive an email titled, “We’d love to have you back.”
At UpLaunch, we offer advanced segmentation with emails, text messages, and tasks tailored to each leads, inactive leads, clients, and former clients. If you need help segmenting your email list or want customized content for every type of lead, give UpLaunch a call!
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