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April 17, 2024

Fitness Studio Influencer Marketing 101: How to Work with Local Influencers + Inspiration from Top Fitness Influencers

Since influencers are by definition, people with influence over a certain sector of people, working with them can add both credibility and excitement to your brand, while also increasing the reach of your social media presence. By working influencers into your digital marketing plan, you can gain more followers and engagement through their built-in audience.  

The most important part of beginning a collaboration with an influencer is making sure that both your brand and your influencer’s align and make sense working together. There’s no need to rush influencer collaborations so remember to take your time and do some research in order to find the perfect ambassador to represent your brand.

In the fitness industry, local influencers can be just as powerful as national or international fitness influencers. Local influencers have a strong following in your community and can help you reach potential customers in your area. Here are some tips on how to grow your gym or studio with local influencers through studio influencer marketing:

1. Identify Local Influencers  

The first step in growing your gym or studio with local influencers is to identify who they are. Look for people in your community who have a strong following on social media, or who are active in the fitness community.

You can also reach out to local fitness bloggers or podcasters who have a strong following in your area. These influencers can help you reach a wider audience and attract new customers to your gym or studio.

If you’re looking for an easy collaboration to start out with, try simply inviting a local influencer to take a class at your studio or work out in your gym in exchange for a video about their experience. This is both a low cost and effective way to show off your facilities and all that you offer!  

💡 TIP: Here are a few ways you can track down influencers to work with in your area:

  1. Use an online tool like Modash - Modash has a database of over 200M influencers that you can segment using filters like location, follower counts, engagement rates, and more.
  1. Search for local influencers by running a hashtag of your city + neighborhood. You can also follow hashtags to see posts related to your locale in your social feeds.
  1. Search on Google for influencers in your area.
  1. Creep on your competitors’ social media pages to see if they’ve worked with any local influencers on fitness ad campaigns.
  1. If you have the budget, consider working with an agency that specializes in influencer marketing and has experience running influencer campaigns for fitness studios.

2. Build Relationships with Local Influencers

Once you've identified local influencers, the next step is to build relationships with them. Reach out to them on social media or email and introduce yourself and your gym or studio.

Offer them a free trial or complimentary class and invite them to check out your facility.  

Building a relationship with local influencers can help you establish trust and credibility in your community. It also gives you the opportunity to get to know influencers better and assess if they are a good fit for promoting your brand.

3. Collaborate with Local Influencers

Collaborating with local influencers is a great way to promote your gym or studio and can help you reach a wider audience and attract new customers.

You can collaborate with influencers in a variety of ways, such as:

Or you could even reach out to an influencer and ask them to take over your social media for a day. This is a great way to provide new and engaging content while taking advantage of you and your influencer’s partnership. Takeovers are also extremely easy on both your part and the influencers, and they can be done remotely meaning the influencer you hire doesn’t have to live in your city or anywhere near you for that matter.  

💡 TIP: When working with influencers for your fitness studio, always be sure to have the right systems in place to track your results. Also, don’t get discouraged if you don’t see immediate results – like any marketing campaign, it may take a few tries to get it right.

4. Leverage User-Generated Content  

User-generated content is a powerful tool for promoting your gym or studio. Encourage your customers to share their experiences on social media and use their content to promote your gym or studio.  

You can also work with local influencers to create user-generated content. For example, you can host a fitness challenge and ask local influencers to participate and share their progress on social media.

Not only can you work with local influencers in your community to boost your studio’s brand awareness and drive more leads, but you can also use highly followed fitness influencers to inspire your content creation.

For some inspiration here’s a great example - Kylie Nelson, a beauty and fashion influencer, showcases how she works out at her local Club Pilates studio in Salt Lake City.

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https://www.tiktok.com/@kylie_nelson1/video/7190754388175113515?_t=8cLv1Zcs0az&_r=1

5. Use Your In-House Star Power

Instructors are often seen as experts in their field and have a loyal following of fitness enthusiasts who trust their advice and recommendations. By encouraging instructors to share their expertise and promote the studio on social media, fitness studios can tap into their existing audience and attract new clients.

To make the most of this strategy, fitness studios can provide their instructors with guidelines and resources to help them create engaging and informative content. This can include tips on creating high-quality images and videos, suggestions for topics to cover, and guidance on how to promote the studio in a natural and authentic way. Studios can also offer incentives to instructors who successfully promote the brand on social media, such as discounts or other perks.

By partnering with their instructors as social media influencers, fitness studios can create a powerful marketing tool that not only helps attract new clients but also strengthens the relationship between the studio and its instructors.

Using Top Fitness Influencer Strategies to Inspire Your Studio’s Marketing Strategy

Fitness influencers have become a major force in the fitness industry, with millions of followers and the ability to influence purchasing decisions. As a studio owner, you can learn from top fitness influencers and incorporate their strategies into your marketing plan. Here are some top fitness influencer strategies to inspire your studio's marketing strategy:

1. Authenticity is Key  

One of the most important strategies used by top fitness influencers is authenticity. They share their personal experiences and struggles, and their followers relate to them on a personal level. As a studio owner, you can also use authenticity to connect with your customers.

Share your own fitness journey and struggles and be transparent about your studio's values and mission. This can help build trust and loyalty with your customers.

2. Offer Unique Fitness Experiences

Top fitness influencers often excite their audience with unique fitness experiences, such as specialized outdoor workouts or themed classes. You can take inspiration from these experiences and offer something similar at your studio.

Think outside the box and offer classes or events that are different from what your competitors are offering. This can help you stand out and attract new customers.

3. Create Consistent and Engaging Content  

Influencers understand the importance of consistent content creation to keep their audience engaged. Studio owners can adopt a similar approach by regularly sharing high-quality content, such as workout videos, exercise tips, and inspiring success stories.

As well, successful fitness influencers often use storytelling techniques to connect with their audience emotionally. Studio owners can employ storytelling in their marketing efforts, sharing inspiring client transformations, testimonials, and success stories that resonate with their target audience.  

💡 TIP:  As a small business owner it can seem overwhelming at times to create high-quality content every day, instead try using half a day of your time every other week to plan your content in advance. Or you could work with social media marketing agencies or contractors to handle the workload for you!

4. Collaboration and Partnerships

Top fitness influencers frequently collaborate with other influencers, brands, and experts to expand their reach and provide diverse content.  

Studio owners can explore partnerships with fitness influencers, local businesses, nutritionists, or wellness professionals to offer unique experiences and broaden their audience.

When working on a collaboration it’s important to strategize ways the relationship can be mutually beneficial before approaching the brand.  

For example, Vancouver-based Yoga & Pilates Studio, Jaybird, joined forces with a local restaurant to run a highly effective Instagram Contest together. They offered a combined prize of a $100 restaurant gift card & 3-class pass to their studio. By doing so, they offered a more enticing (and engaging) prize without having to give up more of their own services for free. The results?  In just 2 weeks, they were able to generate 363 likes, almost 1,000 tagged comments, and reaped the benefits of new followers and increased exposure.  

@nubatown - Instagram

5. Influencing Behavior Change  

The best fitness influencers not only focus on promoting workouts and exercises but also inspire and educate their audience on adopting a healthy lifestyle.  

Studio and gym owners can adopt a holistic approach by offering nutritional guidance, wellness tips, and educating clients about the long-term benefits of regular exercise.  

As a studio or gym owner, you could do this by creating a newsletter to share wellness and fitness tips, create weekly social posts on the same topic, and use goal setting with clients to build accountability.

Remember, while fitness influencers can provide valuable insights, it's important for studio owners to adapt these strategies to align with their specific goals, target audience, and brand identity.

Top 8 Fitness Influencers to Follow & Get New Content Ideas From

Wondering who you can look at learn new content strategies and ideas? While there are a countless number of fitness influencers with a wide range of specialties and follower counts, we’ve compiled this list of the top eight fitness influencers to follow today.

Kayla Itsines

Kayla Itsines is an Australian personal trainer, author and entrepreneur. She has amassed over 16 million followers across her platforms and has even created a meal-planning and workout app, Sweat with Kayla, which has one million active users.  

Joe Wicks

Also known as The Body Coach, Joe Wicks is a British fitness coach and social media personality who specializes in High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workouts. In addition to his ever-popular Instagram, YouTube and TikTok accounts, he has also published several recipe books geared towards healthy eating.

Jeanette Jenkins

With nearly a million followers on Instagram alone, Jeanette Jenkins is an American celebrity trainer whose content focuses on exercise routines and healthy eating. She’s also the creator of The Hollywood Trainer Club, which is an online community, dedicated to healthy living.

Kristina Girod

Kristina is the Founder and Chief Motivation Officer at the boutique studio Power+Flow and has made a big splash on TikTok, amassing 1.8M followers. She’s done an amazing job of harnessing exciting and upbeat content from her indoor cycling classes to create engaging video content.  

Simeon Panda

In 2017, Simeon Panda was featured on Forbes list of top fitness influences in the world, and he has continued his reign with over 17 million followers. In addition to his social media work, he has also written articles for some of the top fitness publications.

Massy Arias

A certified personal trainer who’s training style incorporates yoga, resistance training and HIIT, Massy Arias has become the go-to fitness influencer of many, with over 3 million followers. She also has personally created several fitness programs and has been featured in a wide variety of publications ranging from Cosmopolitan to Women’s Health.

Rachel Brathen

As one of the pioneers of Stand-Up Paddleboard Yoga, Rachel Brathen is known as one of the most influential fitness personalities in the world. She’s also an internationally known teacher of yoga as exercise and has over two million followers across her platforms.

Cassey Ho

Cassey Ho is known for her Pilates-based instruction videos, which have helped her amass over seven million subscribers on YouTube and over two million followers across her other platforms. She is also the CEO and head designer of POPFLEX, an activewear brand.

Now you've learned how influencer marketing can be a powerful tool for fitness studios looking to expand their reach and connect with potential clients. By partnering with local influencers and leveraging the expertise of their instructors, fitness studios can create engaging and informative content that resonates with their target audience. With the right strategy and approach, influencer marketing can be a game-changer for fitness studios looking to stand out in a crowded market and build a loyal following of fitness enthusiasts.

What’s Next?

Getting new leads in the door isn’t the only sure-fire way to increase your studios bottom-line. Using all-in-one studio management software like Mariana Tek helps studios convert leads faster and generate more revenue from the clients you already have!  

Book a Demo and Discover the Power of Mariana Tek.

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