Fitness Professional Online

Without an effective launch process and strategy any new program will fail! It is important to have a formal process in place to evaluate, plan and then execute effective program launches including a detailed timeline with tasks, responsibilities and dates to ensure that a new program is successful.

There are several key areas to consider for any new program launch:

1. What is the Market for the new program?

Who is the ideal customer for this program (age, sex, profile, member, non-member)? The more specific and clearly defined the better!

Why will this particular program appeal to this group?

What is the “elevator speech” about this program? A short description that provides just enough information to get prospects to ask for more!

What is the correct pricing for this program for members, non-members, and staff?

How many prospects are there in the club and in the club’s market for this program?

2. How will the program be Marketed and Sold?

What departments will be involved in marketing and selling the program?

What is the length of the program?

Will there be multiple program sessions?

How will it be priced?

Packages of Sessions (5, 10, 15)?

Who will create the program purchase agreement or add to existing PT agreements?

EFT for set number of sessions per week or month (typically require 30 day cancellation notice like membership EFT)

Who will create and proof the program EFT agreement?

What is the projected program launch date?

What is the projected program end date?

sellingprogramHow will the program be marketed?

Internal marketing to members

What marketing vehicles? Email, posters, club T.V.’s, newsletters, member referral incentives, program presentation page, etc.
Who will design the marketing for the program?
What is the required lead time to prepare all the marketing materials?

External Marketing to prospects

Internet Marketing – Facebook, Linked in, Club Website Banner, etc.
Newspaper – only recommended for “Free Fitness Study” programs
Direct mail

How will you communicate necessary details to staff about the new program and “sell” the program to staff so they are excited and actively promote the program?

Will you provide any type of staff incentives for staff to promote/sell the program?
Who is selling the program?
Who will enter the program into point of sale and club scheduling software systems?

When will program marketing begin and what is the exact timeline for new program marketing rollout?

3. How will the program be managed and delivered?

Who will be directly responsible for this program? It is critical to have a passionate program champion for any new program.

What department/s will be involved in delivery of the actual program services?

What are the details of the program delivery?

Will the program use individual or group sessions?
How many sessions per week?
Who leads each session?
Exactly what happens in each session?

What materials and equipment are required for instructors and participants?

How much will these materials and equipment cost?
Who is responsible for each item?
What is the timeline for creation/acquisition of materials and equipment?

What space is required to conduct the program and is it available at the right times?

Is the launch timing critical for this program such as a January launch of a new weight loss program?

Is there enough time to plan execute the launch correctly?

profitorloss4. Last but not least what is the Projected Program Profit and Loss?

Spreadsheet with following line items:

List your assumptions and logic for all projections in spreadsheet

Program Fees/Revenues per person/couple/family

Monthly program sales projections

Start-up costs
Materials and Equipment
Marketing materials creation and execution
Other start up expenses

Staff Costs

Sales commissions
Salary expense for program delivery
Total Costs over projected program period
Total Revenue over projected program period

Net Program Margin
% Margin (Projected profit divided by projected revenue) – MUST be at least 40% to be worthwhile!

As you can see there is a lot to consider BEFORE launching any new program. A general rule of thumb is that a new program launch will require about 3 months of planning and preparation in order to have a successful and profitable outcome. However if you systematically answer the questions in each area above you can rest assured that your new programs will go off without a hitch!

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Greg Maurer

Greg Maurer

Greg has 27 years of experience in the commercial fitness industry. This includes extensive expertise with new product launches and the creation of the education and programming infrastructure to allow for the successful integration of new products and programs into existing business models including health clubs, studios, athletic training centers, rehabilitation centers, senior centers, and chiropractic centers.

As the Director of Education for Sproing Fitness he created the education platform and training systems. This includes training Master Trainers to train and certify other trainers in the use of the Sproing Trainer for personal training, athletic training, and physical therapy.

His hard work, leadership, passion, and extensive knowledge of health and fitness give him the tools to launch new technologies in the health and wellness industry.
Greg Maurer


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