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How To Build a Viral Community in Your Fitness Business (Part 1)

How To Build a Viral Community in Your Fitness Business- Retention- Part One


Whenever someone finds out how many clients we have coming into one facility, they always ask me how I’m able to grow and sustain such a lucrative business.  People always assume that I’m this great marketer and that I must spend a ton of money on marketing.


Well, they are surprised when I tell them that I barely spend any money on old-fashioned traditional external marketing.  For me, it’s about creating value for the clients and customers that I already have.


Retention is by far the best way to build and maintain a lucrative business.  It takes far more effort to land a new client than it does to keep one.


The best way to retain clients is to deliver an experience, build relationships, and create community within your organization.


If we look at definitions of community, the one that stands out to me is this:  “A community is a group or society that shares common values, helping each other.”


So in business, your goal as the business owner is to create what I call a “Viral Community”.  One where everyone holds you in their highest regard and makes sure that all their friends, family, and co-workers know about you and what you’re doing!


So if we look at how to do that, there are many ways to build a viral community within your organization.  There are three main ways that we implement this into my business.




1) Deliver An Experience


Delivering an experience is first and foremost because it is what people remember most!  This starts from the time someone walks in the door of your facility.  There are many ways to create a WOW experience.  But you especially want to do this upon a prospects first impression of you and your business.  Here are a couple ways that we deliver experience through service in my business:


  • Every person that walks through our doors whether they’re a prospect, customer, or client gets greeted within 10 seconds (if you’re familiar with Moe’s Southwest Grill, you know what I mean!)  We also call this, “Beat the Greet!”
  • Every prospect gets offered a bottled water or coffee
  • Every client gets a FREE bottled water and towel during their warm-up
  • Every semi-private training client gets offered to be manually stretched after every workout
  • Every client gets contacted at least once a month outside of their training sessions to simply check in on them
  • If a client or customer hasn’t scheduled or attended a session in 7 days, they get a follow up call to get them back on track
  • Our facilities are ALWAYS clean, especially the bathrooms (this means more than you think!)


These are just a few of the things that we do to deliver an experience.  There’s A LOT more that I’ll save for another post.


In part 2, we’ll talk about building relationships and creating community within your organization.  The goal is to have a strong and viral community that loves being associated with your facility and wants to invite everyone they know to join them.


About Vaughn:


Vaughn Bethell is the Founder & CEO of Performance QSA, LLC in Greenville, SC.  Bethell started his business right out of college in the summer of 2003 with 23 clients.  Performance QSA has become the largest and most successful personal training only business in the Upstate of South Carolina and now serves over 500 clients and customers.


Vaughn is known as “Mr. Community” amongst his peers and colleagues in the fitness industry.  He has grown his business to nearly a million dollars while spending very little on traditional external marketing.  His specialty is building community within his business and driving referrals.  This is what he teaches as “Growth From the Inside-Out”.


Bethell is a best-selling author and highly sought after speaker on topics relating to business growth, staff growth, and leadership.  You can learn more about InsideOut Business Builder for Fit Pros Here

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