Does a free gym trial actually work? What you need to know

In this article, we’re taking a look at if gym free trials are profitable for gyms, and how you can get more long term members in your facility.
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Does a Free Gym Trial Actually Work? What You Need to Know


“Try it before you buy it” is a common philosophy in many industries, but is it the most effective way to grow your gym? In today’s article we will explore the most profitable method for acquiring new members into your gym and discuss if free gym trials actually work.




Most Gym Owners are under the impression that if they can just get as many people as they can through the door with a gym free trial, the more memberships they will sell. 


“If we can just get them to come see how awesome we are, they’ll stay for life!” 


The problem with that thinking is, a lot of gyms are awesome, but offering your services for free actually devalues your facility.


Here’s why that thinking is flawed. The reputation of your gym, and how it is perceived is crucial to the success of your business. Gyms that offer free trials are seen as less exclusive, and less valuable than member only gyms.




A free trial costs you your most expensive asset– your time. Especially if your gym is struggling, you need front end cash.


You may be filling your gym with free trials, but if they don’t convert at the end of the month, you’ve wasted your time, your trainers’ time, and have taken up space in your gym with a non paying member.


So how do you fix that?




Do you ever find yourself in a situation where you’re trying to increase EFT value in your gym but as soon as a new member enters your gym, another one leaves and you’re stuck in this hamster wheel, not being able to stack up that monthly recurring revenue?


With free gym trials, most gym owners are attempting to turn fresh leads into long term members right off the bat. Psychologically, this puts more pressure on the lead, they perceive the commitment as too large, and they end up walking away. The alternative that works much better is selling a lead into a front end challenge, getting them incredible results, and then converting them into an EFT (recurring membership).


So how exactly do you do that in your gym?


Some winning trials include: Free 6 week challenges, 60 Day Challenge, etc.

BUT WAIT… There’s a very specific way to run these challenges profitably.


First is what we call “downselling the upsell”, which means you offer a more expensive front end offer, and then sell them into a less expensive recurring package.


That member will come into your gym, pay a deposit of $500 to join the challenge, then you will give them the option to stay with you for a lower weekly price than they paid for the challenge.


The package to stay with you after the challenge should provide so much value that it’s a no brainer that they would pay less for more.


It’s important to note that the upsell should come halfway through the challenge. Don’t wait until the challenge is over to sell your offer. Wow them early with your community, and their results, and the sale will be easy.




Check out our other blogs for more information on how to create and sell an irresistible offer. For data tracking, check out our gym management software. Great gyms track their data daily, the best gyms use GymDash for live feedback on the health of their gym.



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