Why are CrossFit gym memberships so expensive?
CrossFit is really starting to get some traction and mainstream industry recognition. However, for the masses that are still stuck in the ‘globo’ gym hamster wheel (yet to fall in love with the ‘suck’ of their first WOD) the question of why CrossFit gyms is more expensive continues to be asked. And with the increasing profile that CrossFit has within the fitness industry, the subsequent pressure that this places on CrossFit affiliates to compete on price or justify why they charge more becomes even greater.
Public Library or University and College?
Listen, we all know that there is no comparison between the ‘globo’ gym and a CrossFit box. They’re completely different animals. I read this once and it’s a brilliant way of describing the differences between the two…
Think of the ‘globo’ gym as being the public library and the Crossfit box as a University or College. In the library, you will find all of the information you need to achieve a qualification or certification – and it’s free (or in the least, a cheaper option). You have the access, but it is up to you to stumble your way through things.
At University or College, here too you will find the information you need, but there are a couple of critical differences.Firstly, this is not a free (or lower cost) service. But more importantly, you are surrounding yourself with other people that want to achieve the same outcome as yourself (community) and you have access to lecturers (coaches) in the field of your study, experts that will help shape and guide you.
Prostituting Your CrossFit Box
In saying this, the unfortunate thing is that all too often, affiliates succumb to the pressure of having lower priced competitors by making their prices lower in an attempt to compete on price-point – when in actual fact all they are doing is pimping out their services.
A CrossFit box that competes on price-point is setting itself up for failure on a number of fronts.
Low Cost, Low Value
The lower you cost out your service, the lower the perceived value will be of your service within the community. It has been proven time and time again, that if you put a larger price on your product or service, the perception will be that it is more valuable. A low cost membership will never position you as the ‘go-to’ expert. You will never be the premium service in your community.
A Box Full of Tyre-Kickers
Having a lower price-point will inevitably attract tyre-kickers.
You know the ones that are only interested in getting the best deal. A tyre-kicker is typically a very selfish person. Someone that tends to take up most of your time, is constantly complaining or griping and someone you will find continues to take more and more, but never gives back to the community. These people are not your ideal client (to find out who your ideal client is, check out the article – Who You Gunna Serve). This is not who you want at your box. In fact you’re much better off going without a membership sale than to have this person walk through your doors.
You Gotta Put ‘Skin In The Game’
It is human nature that we want to get the most out of our investments. So if you have memberships that are competing on price, it means that your members haven’t invested much in your program, so it’s not really going to matter if they miss a few sessions, maybe a couple of weeks, or even a month or two. The bulk of your members will not be getting the results that you’re capable of delivering because they haven’t put ‘skin in the game’.
Less In Your Pocket
CrossFit boxes aren’t in the situation where they can open 24 hours a day. Class numbers aren’t unlimited. There are only a strict number of people that you can serve each and every day. With a cap in the number of people that you can work with (unless you go ‘globo’ and start selling a heap of cheap-arse memberships and hope people don’t use them), competing on price will also very quickly cap your earnings.
Competing on price-point lowers the perceived value in your service, it attracts all the wrong people, the ones that you just don’t want to coach, members will commit less to their training, results will be poor, the culture of your box will be bad and at the end of the day, it inevitably leaves you with less in your pocket.
Well How Do You Compete Then?
The starting point is to focus on competing in value, not price.
It’s here that I have to stress that you must believe that in what you do. You need to trust and have confidence in your program. This is not to say that you cannot improve, a good coach and business owner will always feel that they can do better – it’s the legacy of being a good at your craft.
Where Is The Value?
The big issue for many affiliates has nothing to do with the value of the service, but rather the confidence. They fail to see all the little things that they’re doing day-to-day that adds value into their member experience.
To see the value in what you do, start by making a list of every single member interaction that you have from when they first join to when they finish working with you.
- Do you have an induction program (fundamentals)?
- Do you provide training journals and/or nutrition logs?
- Is each and every session intensively coached?
- Do you offer nutritional support?
- Are you available for member questions outside of class times?
- Do act as an information hub for members with newsletters or postings?
- Do you follow up with members that are not attending?
- Do you run additional seminars, events or clinics?
- Is there a social component to your box?
You may think of more, but this is a good starting point. And once you have this list, you can then start to work out if there are any gaps in your offerings. Can you load in more value?
Showing The Value
The next question is how do we get this out in to the market place? How do we get to people to see the value that in our service?
Well it starts by taking your prices down from your website. I love the transparency of this, but unfortunately, people will only ever see the cost, not the value. To see the value, you need to experience it first.
So if you’re not already doing it, provide a no-risk opportunity for people to try your services. This is best achieved in doing a free intro session or a free trial week. And it is here that you let your program do the selling. Give the prospects an excellent coaching experience/s. Talk them through what happens once they join – detailing the support that is on offer. Run the free trials/intro just before or on the back of regular session times, so people can experience the support of the community. This will all help show the value of your program.
A bit to think on here but I would love to know how you compete on value?