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Does Pay Per Click Work for a Fitness Business?

By on June 26, 2013

This question comes from one of our readers and “Friends” on Facebook: Should I use pay per click marketing to promote my local fitness business?

And, if you don’t know, pay per click marketing is those adwords ads that you pay for on Google to attract new clients and leads.

Our answer, to state very simply is… no.

If you’re not making at least $250,000 per year it’s just not worth it. Let’s back up a little bit and put everything into perspective.  You like almost every other Fitness Pro on this Earth has had to go through a slow down, slump or change of venue that created a reason for you to wish, wonder and dream about getting new leads through the door of your studio.

The challenge you may be facing is that you heard someone screaming from the “Conference” pulpit… someone like Perry Marshall, telling you stories of the millions of dollars he’s made, Mike Geary’s made and a host of others that are Multimillionaires because of Google Pay-per-click. You listened and now you are hooked… you want those millions too.

exit-signYour clients may have left through attrition in one big swoop and you need to fill the gap… you may have moved or opened a new facility and need to fill your facility with clients in order to make sure your new facility doesn’t break you.

You believe because of that ever present screaming in your head from great marketers, that pay per click marketing will be able to get new clients through the doorway… it’s not that easy.

Here’s the problem with that thought process – you see, when you spend money on pay per click marketing, here’s what’s needs to happen; you need at least 100 people coming over to your website before one or two of them either e-mails you or calls you, if you’re lucky and that is if you’ve done all the work, keyword research and have an unbelievable message.

For example, right now an ad on Google pay per click costs between $2 to $3 per click. That’s right, if someone clicks an ad, you will have to pay $2-3 – it doesn’t mean they’re going to take action with you. So you’re spending $400-500 to get people to come to your website and, knowing the odds, you’ll get one person… maybe… opting into your e-mail list. Now you’re going to need 30, 40, 50, 100 people in your e-mail list before you even think about converting them into clients.

As you can see, you’re going to be spending thousands of dollars to turn one person into a full time paid client… it doesn’t make sense from an ROI (return on investment) perspective.  Let’s face it, the marketing world has changed because of the internet, marketing is not as cookie cutter and exploitative as it once was. You can’t expect to pay money and get exposure any more and turn that exposure into paid clients. Marketing and especially, Fitness Marketing… is very specific in nature and you need to know “how to do it”.

question-mark-manMarketing can and does become a full time job – you need to know what makes sense, you’ve got to understand your specific market, and then here’s the big finally… you’ve got to know how to convert them into customers.

As a fitness business owner you have many obligations – you need to actually run your business, make sure your programming is working and keep up on the latest techniques and build your knowledge base… then you need to get customers through the door.  Pay per click is a numbers game and if you are not good at math… the numbers can totally screw with you and you wind up coming through the other side a little short every time. The people that make the most money using Pay-Per-Click are absolute Ninjas at it. They spend all of their time… work and free… testing, retesting, tracking and retesting ads to make sure they work. If you have that type of time I say have at it… but most of us don’t. So, if you’re not making $200,000 or $250,000, all the money you’re throwing into pay per click, winds up hurting you, because you’re taking time away from your business and you’re spending money where you don’t have the skills yet to turn that into an ROI.

social-mediaUnless you have the skills, time and patience to pursue this form of marketing I would stick with the attraction getting, results marketing such as, creating a community on Facebook or other social media sites like Twitter, Instagram and Linkedin. Push out as much content for people to connect with you and funnel them to your website to capture them as leads. The more people you chat with, engage and socialize with the more people will want to know what you do and be part of what you are doing.

Bottom line is, don’t do pay per click marketing if you’ve not yet made $250,000 or you don’t have the ninja skills to help you move your business forward.