The British sports industry is growing, and changing at a faster pace than ever. Buoyed by the Rio Olympics, as well as the rise in accessibility and awareness around the Paralympics, the industry is growing.
It is, however, changing even faster than it is growing.
– The fast disappearance of contracts-based memberships: Anyone familiar with the success of “Pure Gym” or “The Gym” will already be aware of this first factor: The new sportsmen and women in the UK, all across the board, do not want to get tied to long contracts. And why should they? There is no rationale for a club to tie up their users, beyond that of a commercial benefit to them.
– The fast growth of “pop up” / “social” sports: This is actually in some ways just an extreme evolution of the point above. New members more and more favour outdoorsy, loosely structured, social meet ups when it comes to sport… Simply Google “Pop up sports” and you will be deluged by hundreds of links detailing “pop up sports bar”, “pop up street sports”, gyms’ “pop up fitness contests” or monthly events, as well as a litany of “community pop up sport” events. “British military training in the park”. Offshoots of established clubs grabbing a bigger and bigger slice by throwing a charity backed event. Surely you get the idea.
HOW TO CAPITALISE ON ALL THIS CHANGE?
– Firstly, you will need a contract-free, one-click payment capability to be able to capture more and more of the growing “pop-up” sports mentality. Members want to be able to try first and commit more informally, at the very least. A simple “Try before you buy” capability of that type will go a long way towards new members acquisition.
– Once sports clubs have implemented a more relevant and modern “one-click” payment and spontaneous enrolment capability, they still need to ensure that these members stay engaged by the club. Sports clubs need to create / and or strengthen the “native” attachment of your members to your club, through culture, human contact, and community. That is usually done by building a strong, tightly-knit, coherent and vibrant club community.
o The implementation of a community making software or platform is the solution here. There are only so many events a club owner can organise and manage. There is also a lot more engagement and attachment to the club if members are provided with a safe, relevant online community where they can discuss classes, events, and share technical information. And FaceBook (the current solution used by the more innovative clubs) only goes so far. Many members are still not on FB, or not regularly enough, and/or will not feel comfortable sharing information on a platform seen by hundreds. You can read more on this related blog here.
– When that is done you can start gaining new members by easily organising event-based sports activities, pop-up, charity events, one-off collaborations with other sports clubs. This will need, as mentioned, a one-click payment capability.
Makesweat has been natively developed to offer these two core functionalities, as well as solving multiple club management issues: Streamlining admin, automating user information updating, selling club kit, a rich, balanced interaction for members who regularly attend the same classes and can gradually build a more engaged community. And many more. No upfront cost and easy integration: www.makesweat.com