Sweat 440 opened the doors of its first location in Miami Beach, Florida in 2018.
“We started with zero members and just a prayer, 🙏 and within months we got up to over 700 members with lines out the door to get in,” said Cody Patrick about the gym he opened with his partner, Matthew Miller.
Patrick and Miller opened Sweat 440 to address what they see as the biggest obstacle preventing people from exercising. As personal trainers for many years, they always heard people say they didn’t have enough time ⏰ to work out. Delayed by work or traffic or because a kid can't find his shoes, they saw people struggle to make it to a specific class on time, and then just skip exercising altogether.
With this in mind, Patrick and Miller created Sweat 440. Each 40-minute class consists of four 10-minute stations, incorporating strength training, cross-training, and HIIT (high intensity interval training). Classes begin every 10 minutes, and members can jump in anytime, getting a group class experience on their own schedule. 😀
In the last year more than 5,000 people have come to Sweat 440’s Miami location. Patrick and Miller are busy opening new studios throughout Florida ⛱ and in New York City, 🏢 and are looking to expand in California and Europe. They are also rolling out their franchising model, with one franchisee signed up and another eight to 10 franchises in the works.
The Big Mistake
While they are thrilled about the success of Sweat 440, Patrick said he wishes he’d set up a CRM and marketing software from the beginning.
“One of the biggest mistakes we made early on was, we got too busy and didn’t have time to do all the little things that enable you to grow. We got so busy being successful that we didn’t really build a platform or an infrastructure 😬 that would allow us to grow further,” Patrick said.
Sweat 440 joined UpLaunch about a year and a half after they opened. Patrick said the software they were using was taking too much of their time -- time he and Miller needed to grow their fitness franchise.
“We needed a pre-templated, pre-designed system ✅ that we could adjust to make sure it fit our business and our structure the best,” Patrick said, “and that’s how we ended up finding UpLaunch and realizing it was going to be the best system.”
Now, going forward, Patrick said Sweat 440 will use Loud Rumor (a fitness and wellness marketing company) to generate leads, and they’ll use UpLaunch to manage the leads and keep their current members happy, “because it’s a lot cheaper to keep a client than it is to find a new one,” Patrick said. 👍
When asked about advice to new gyms, Patrick said it’s essential to create infrastructure and a platform that supports expansion.
“That was something we had to recover from,” Patrick said, “we made a lot of mistakes and we had to go back and fix them. If we would have just done some of these things from the start, we may have had an easier path,” he said.
What to Look For 👀 in a Marketing Software
Using a marketing software from the beginning isn’t essential but it is helpful. Even if your gym builds more gradually than Sweat 440, you'll always be happy you established a system that grows with your business over time.
However, even if you’ve owned your gym for 10 years, it’s not too late! 😊 You can incorporate a software into your established business to help automate and manage communication with leads, existing clients, and former clients.If you don’t have a marketing software, what features should you look for? What can a marketing software do that you can’t?
Important marketing software features
- Automation. The point of using a marketing software is to save time, ⏰ taking tasks off your plate so you’re free to think big picture.
- A centralized hub. Ideally, you want your marketing, scheduling, information about your leads and clients, and communication in one place. Centralized communication makes everything more efficient and effective! 👌
- A way to assign and manage tasks. You shouldn’t have to remember to ask if your staff is following up with leads and connecting with clients. Your software should do this for you. 💪
- Email and SMS outreach campaigns to help you convert leads, retain existing members, create brand ambassadors, and win back former clients. The more automated the better, so you don’t stay up late every night 😴 emailing leads.