We started our blog in December of 2008. We’ve done a total of 102 posts so we are averaging 5 posts per month. Our goal with our blog was twofold. First, we wanted to create a better connection with our clients by providing them great information on exercise, diet and nutrition as well as activities and fun events we would be offering. Second, we wanted to increase our search engine optimization to drive additional traffic to our website and to our business. We come up with a theme every month for our company. We tie in all of our posts around that topic and try to work the theme into any specials that we are offering. For example, we know that a lot of our clients travel during the summer, so for July we devised a travel fitness program including some basic exercises with tubing that people can do anywhere. We provided pictures and videos of the exercises and created a blog posting on travel fitness. We also offered a travel fitness special where people could come in and get two 30-minute sessions and a set of tubes. Our other blogs fit the travel season theme as well: Stay Fit While Traveling * Could You Get the DVTs? (how to avoid deep vein thrombosis while traveling) * 5 Ways to Cheat Your Personal Trainer (a tongue-in-cheek article on how to maximize workouts). For our blog, we think about key words that our potential clients would be searching for. Then we make sure that our posts contain those words. We have gotten 17 new clients who have signed up and specifically listed the website as the place where they heard about us (6 in 2009 and 11 so far in 2010). We are definitely seeing an increase in the new clients who are coming to us from our site. The blog has been a wonderful way to connect with our clients, keep our site fresh and get new clients.
As owner of a thriving Pilates studio for 14 years, I have strived to stay on the cutting edge of marketing. Our studio posted a website in the late 1990s, which we maintain ourselves. We also promote ourselves on the search engines with great results. However, the whole Facebook, Twitter and blog thing has escaped my grasp, I hate to say. Meanwhile, upcoming new studios in the area seem to have a command of the social media situation and use it to their benefit. The time I currently spend teaching, administrating, marketing, e-mailing and making phone calls to clients amounts to over 60 hours per week. I have not felt that I have had the time to devote to a blog or to staying on top of Facebook. We are expanding the studio to double our size this fall. As such, we do need the additional marketing edge. As this is written, we have an appointment with an area guru on Facebook, Twitter and blogging. This type of growth is vital for us, and I must find the time to add it as a priority.
I’m in the middle of a business expansion this year, and I have found my blog to be helpful in promoting my new trainers, covering topics of interest and attracting new clients. When I post a new article, I announce it through updates on Twitter and Facebook and provide a link. This strategy increases the number of eyes that see it, and at times the article links have been reposted by others on their accounts. New clients often remark that a particular article they read on the blog was a factor in their decision to use our services. I started the blog to help personalize my business and to differentiate myself from my competition. I must admit that I am a very sporadic blogger, and need to work on posting more regularly. However, even the limited number of posts I have done has benefited my business and increased traffic to my website. Blogs are a great tool for retaining clients as well as attracting new ones.
I actually started a blog when I was a fitness enthusiast, before I ever got my personal training certification. I really wanted an outlet to discuss all of my fitness and nutrition antics and I met a lot of great people doing that. Since then I have started a website for my business, which will contain most of my blogging, but I will continue to maintain my original blog because it’s more of what I am doing in my personal fitness journey. I think blogging is a fun outlet and can be a tremendous tool to stimulate conversation and help people find answers to their questions. It’s a great social networking tool and I’ve always felt like I wanted to try to help someone else’s journey be a little easier than mine by putting helpful information out there!
I have a blog here on IDEA fitness connect, and I share it through my Facebook account. I keep it fun and simple, with some motivation for my friends and clients. I get a lot of requests to pass it along to others, which I think is great! I just use it to send a little information and a positive message every few weeks or so. It helps my new clients get to know my philosophy a little better before we even meet!