Thank You For Joining Ashbourne Membership Management At PerformX Live

Ashbourne Membership Management performx live 2022 (no border)

Ashbourne Membership Management performx live 2022

 

Over the weekend, the Ashbourne team were thrilled to attend the very first PerformX Live, the freshest addition to the world of fitness industry expos.

It was amazing to meet our VIP guests, our existing partners and all of the attendees to this massive 2 day event.

The team at PerformX did an incredible job helping us get set up and give us the best chance to show gym owners across our industry the impact that Ashbourne can have on their business.

We’re eagerly waiting for next year for our second PerformX and can’t wait to see everyone at our next event, which will be FIBO 2022 in Germany.

If you’re interested in joining us, then we’re providing gym owners with 2 day business tickets to the event, so please fill out our request form and we’ll be in touch to arrange your tickets if we have any available.

 

We’re Always Here To Talk Fitness

We pride ourselves on our customer service, which we couple with the most diverse offering of gym management software available today. We handle everything from direct debits, missed payment collection, class booking, full club membership software and website building – we truly become part of your team and your gym’s day-to-day.

Our success relies on our team being as integrated in your club as possible. It’s why we like to put a name and a face to our staff, so if you ever need something taken care of, you can always talk to someone who you know will personally help you out.

You can get in touch with us at any time to book a demo, or simply chat with our team (you can email grant at [email protected]) about what you need from your club management service.

The Ashbourne Team Joined The Community At Ireland Active Conference 2021

Ashbourne Membership Management Team Ireland Active 2021

Ashbourne Management Group Photos

 

Over the weekend, the Ashbourne team had the pleasure of attending our first Ireland Active Conference 2021 at Castleknock Hotel in Dublin.

Our 3 top team members headed out to show the Irish fitness community what great club management looks like and get to know the tribulations faced by Irish gym owners in the wake of lockdown restrictions being lifted.

Our dream team consisted of:

Evie Blackburn, the head of our support team who solve every single one of our customers’ issues.

Grant Harrison, our sales director who personally walks every single club through how Ashbourne works.

Shannon White, the latest addition to our sales team focused on reaching out to spread the good word about Ashbourne.

 

Ashbourne Group Photo

 

A Huge Thanks To The Ireland Active Team

As our first in-person conference of the year, it was incredible seeing members of the community outside of a screen for the first time in over 18 months, which gave us the opportunity to have some great chats with leisure centre and gym owners from across Ireland.

We wanted to give a special thanks to the conference organiser Niamh Norton, who gave us the warmest welcome into the Ireland Active community. We’re looking forward to being as involved as we can in the Irish fitness community as we continue to help clubs across Ireland grow their clubs and retain their members in one of the biggest shake ups to the fitness industry.

We’ve been putting in a lot of effort recently to become truly integrated with the Irish fitness community. Since we set up our new office home in Ireland, nothing has been made more clear to us that Ireland is a thoroughly unique place to do business, where personal relationships are at the heart of every single business decision.

 

 

We’re Always Here To Talk Fitness

We’re a newly established Irish company who love meeting with everyone across the Irish fitness industry and learning everything there is to know about your day-to-day. We’re eager to chat about your business’ successes, trials and what you need to reach your dream goals; and how we can help you get there.

We pride ourselves on our customer service, which we couple with the most diverse offering of gym management software available today. We handle everything from direct debits, missed payment collection, class booking, full club membership software and website building – we truly become part of your team and your gym’s day-to-day.

Our success relies on our team being as integrated in your club as possible. It’s why we like to put a name and a face to our staff, so if you ever need something taken care of, you can always talk to someone who you know will personally help you out.

You can get in touch with us at any time to book a demo, or simply chat with our team (you can email grant at [email protected]) about what you need from your club management service. We can’t wait to talk to you in the upcoming weeks to kick off your 2022.

How To Save A Failing Gym [2/2]: Rebuilding A Healthy Gym

A few days ago, you joined us for the first part of a story about a gym on the brink of collapse.

In the second part, we’re going to tell you how we solved those problems.

And not only that, we’re going to give you a completely FREE way to do the same at your own club.

Okay, it’s not completely free. The price is to read our story to the end.

And If you missed the first part, then you can quickly catch up by reading it here.


This Is How We Saved A Failing Gym…

 

At the end of the last part you might remember that we had identified dozens of problems with Prime Fitness upon discovering it had been abandoned.

But there were some key issues which were the most troubling:

  • The gym was insecure and was being used for free by a huge number of people
  • The gym was open 24/7 but was barely being used at night hours
  • The gym’s running costs were astronomical
  • The gym was far too large for purpose, which meant high business rates
  • The place was generally run down



That was a nice handful of issues to walk in on. At first it seemed like the whole project should be abandoned. It was clearly in disarray and we simply didn’t have the money in place to spend on improvements even if we’d wanted to.

However, the desire to try and bring it back was too great. Ashbourne is built on effectively managing gyms and clubs and this seemed like exactly the challenge which had sparked our love and got us into the business over 25 years ago.

So we broke it down into 3 areas that needed focusing on.

  1. We needed to lower the current outgoings
  2. We needed to raise further capital to fund the improvements
  3. Which meant we needed to grow our memberships

 

Focusing On The Positive

The good news was that the gym was incredible. It had some major selling points.

The gym was an amazing size and was clearly popular. Unfortunately, at present that translated to it being expensive and most of its users weren’t paying for it.

 

We just needed to access that potential in a way that no one else had.

 

Step 1: Negotiating Lease & Business Rates

 

We immediately discussed terms with the landlord on the lease and the energy suppliers. Many clubs won’t be aware of this, but the days of negotiation are not over.

You as the customer, have a lot of power and more often than not a landlord and energy suppliers need you as much as you need them, sometimes even moreso.

We cut our prices by thousands in just under a week, with words alone.

The sheer area of the gym was also posing a problem with our business rates. The place was simply too big. However, where there’s a will, there’s a way and it turns out that the very layout of your gym could be costing you thousands extra a year.

With no changes to the gym itself and by simply isolating certain areas, we once again cut our rates by a significant margin. You just have to do the research and learn how rates are actually calculated. It will surprise you how much money you can save.

Once the money had been saved, next we needed to increase our earnings to fund the gym and that meant we needed members.

 

Step 2: Cutting Our Costs & Bringing Members In

 

We cut the 24 hour open times!

There were some grumbles, but it was for the good of the business. It simply wasn’t worth it in the long run and that’s how we had to look at it.

A new biometric system was instantly put in place to only allow entrance with fingerprint.

As well as that, turnstiles and a fully manned reception (helped by the gym not being 24/7) were installed to completely block entry to everyone but our actual members.

Members began signing up in the dozens. It could have been a coincidence, but it’s clear that suddenly a lot of people had lost access to their favourite local gym and were now signing up as members for the first time.

We also increased prices, which didn’t affect the membership at all and instead just brought in more income. If your gym is worth the price, then people will pay it. It’s natural to want to race to the bottom, but you need to make a profit as a business and it’s a habit that needs breaking out of.

Of course, we also gave members back something for that extra price, even though it cost us nothing extra.

We gave access to free internet for the members. It was an internet connection that was already there but simply not made available to members. It cost us nothing and surprisingly, people at the gym didn’t use the internet enough to affect our speeds at all.

But the value to the member was there and that was all that mattered!


And we turned one of those previously pointless rooms into a simple cafe. It was easy to set up and gave members even more reason to spend money and time at the gym.


And then came the third part of our plan. Getting new members.

 

Step 3: Discovering New Members & Building Our Reach

 

We built a new website in-house from scratch.

We created trackable codes.

We began advertising on Facebook to the local area.

We hosted a simple promotion to remove our joining fee.

 

It took us 5 days to do all of that and we got 100 new members for our trouble!

 

And you might remember all of that rundown equipment?

Well, using the new savings and increased income from our targeted membership growth, we pulled in enough to update all of the gym’s equipment and began a total rebrand and redesign of the club, which is ongoing today.

And it was all done with zero investment! 

 

All of it was simply from the gym’s own income.

 

This Is How You Can Do The Same For Your Gym…

 

And now that you’ve read our story and seen what’s possible with your club, this is where we fulfill our end of the deal.

We are offering you a completely free phone consultation.

Using the knowledge we have learned and put into action at Prime Fitness, we want to:

 

  1. Talk to you about your club

  2. Show you how you can improve nearly every aspect of it

 

From how to improve your business rates, to retaining more members or even how to discover a whole new stream of members – we are here to help with exactly that!

Please get in touch with us here and we’ll be in touch to help you take your gym further.

How To Save A Failing Gym [1/2]: This Gym Was Dead! Until…

We have a story for you today. It’s about a gym on the brink of death and how we brought it back to life.

But more importantly, how we did it with:

 

  • No additional investment – Just using the existing cash flow of the gym itself
  • Negotiating with the right people – To save thousands of pounds a year
  • Used the existing gym analytics – To drastically increase the membership 

 

Across this 2 part story, we’ll not only help you predict the dangers of poor club management, but how you can learn from those mistakes and pull a fitness business back from the brink.

And if you stick with us to the end, we’ll help you avoid all of these pitfalls and save your gym!

Let’s start at the beginning, where we uncover the problems of a poorly run club.

 

How To Save A Failing Gym: The Problem

 

Prime Fitness in Redditch was a gym that had all the odds stacked against it. 

It had already been abandoned when we arrived. The owners had walked out, leaving the gym on automated mode. The gym was 24/7 and the systems we’d put in place had automated the place to such a degree that its members weren’t even aware it was unmanned.

Members had arrived, checked in and exercised without even realising the gym was on the verge of closure.

So how does a gym that’s running so seemlessly get to this point?

 

The issue? 

Mismanagement. 

 

A mixture of bad planning, lack of investment and a continued attitude to allow these problems to pile up had brought the club to breaking point. 

The motto for running it until that point may as well have been:

See no evil. Hear no evil. Speak no evil. 

Issues were ignored on a mass scale, and when the ongoing leaks finally got too bad, the ship was abandoned.

 

The Reason Why Gyms Fail

Sadly this isn’t a special case. Hundreds of gyms close every year, often in their very early years and it’s more often than not because naive managers quickly come to find out the truth: that running a gym is hard. It needs constant attention, not only in terms of the upkeep of the equipment and overall quality of the gym, but also when it comes to managing growth and the processes that allow for that growth.

What can seem like small problems that can be made up for with a quick extra job here and there, or simply putting in more hours to handle any inefficiencies, can quickly derail over time. 

Everything can be under control and then something surprising comes up or a disagreement arises and everything can fall apart. Because if you’re not resolving old problems, then you’ve always got more to deal with, no matter how good you get at putting things off.

And you only have so much time in the world. And there’s only so many problems you can potentially deal with in a day. There isn’t always more time. It can and will run out.

 

The Key Problems We Found At The Club

We closely monitor all of our gyms, so it became obvious once it went quiet that something was going on at Prime Fitness.

We quickly arrived on the scene and got to work on finding out what had gone wrong.

From the outset it all seemed like a lost cause, but we wanted to properly investigate.

We found a laundry list of problems:

 

  • The equipment was rundown, sometimes flat out broken
  • The gym wasn’t regularly manned
  • The gym was open 24/7 (we’ll go into this problem in a bit)
  • Security was lax and members were sharing pin codes to enter the gym
  • The gym was huge, yet many areas were completely unused

 

And the problems only got worse when we looked into the outgoings. The cost of the lease was too high and the energy bills each month were astronomical. This was partly based on a lack of accurate budgeting, partly due to a lack of negotiation with any suppliers but mostly it came down to a complete lack of planning.

The first place we turned to was the management system, which had been tracking all the analytics, from costs, intake and most importantly, member usage.

The membership attendance was very high, which was fantastic.

So what was the problem?

It seemed to be only a few members who were attending, several times a day, every single day of the year.

So what was causing this? Was it just a select few potential Olympic athletes in the making?

 

The Problem With A Badly Managed 24/7 Gym

Surprisingly not. It was instead multiple people using the same pin code to enter the gym. Dozens of members were using a single account. And this was all because the gym was not being manned or managed well enough to spot a problem that we discovered within a few hours of arriving.

Ashbourne are very aware of the problem that pin codes cause and that’s why we don’t use them.

We always provide fingerprint scanners as the most secure form of entrance, to successfully verify every single individual member, making it effectively impossible for multiple people to use the same membership (unless they are the 1 in 64 million people who share a fingerprint – but surprisingly that doesn’t happen too often).

But once again, there had been no update or thought put into the entry systems, allowing these issues to perpetuate until word got around and people simply weren’t signing up. People in the area were hungry to use the gym, because it was still a large and well stocked gym, but there had simply been no plan in place to combat these issues at their source.

 

Potential customers were using the facilities for free, when they could’ve been paying members.

That same data also showed us further issues, the largest being that even though the gym was open 24/7, only 5 people were using it during the night hours.

Tens of thousands of pounds a year were being spent to give 24/7 access to a just handful of members.

All the data was there to solve this issue. For months and years, no one had taken the time to check these in-depth analytics which at a glance would’ve immediately shown these glaring issues.

Thousands could’ve been saved. Members could’ve been engaged and brought in.

In theory this was a great gym and now it was too late to be pulled back from the brink.

 

It was a textbook case of a business that had been given up on and was likely just going to fade closure.

 

Or was it…?

 

You can click here to learn the solutions of how we saved a failing gym in part 2…