Key Essentials of Sports Facilities Management

Although the word “sports facility” is all-encompassing, it is both a general and specific term that needs to be addressed. Running a sports facility can include all general sports clubs or even a niche local club that caters to the surrounding demographic. No matter how your sports facility is structured, the way of managing the entire organization is consistent. In this article, we will explore the blueprint that comprises successful sports facilities management and the top 6 challenges that need to be addressed.

What are the top challenges of running a sports facility

What are the top challenges of running a sports facility

It may be easy to get lost in the day-to-day operational nature of your business, but successfully managing your sports facility comprises many things, both from a macro and micro perspective. It can definitely be challenging to maintain a standard of excellence, especially without a proper template or management software. Even with that being said, it is very rewarding to have a business that runs itself and does well for your top line.

Let’s go over the top six challenges below:

  • Managing programs – This includes both member-focused programs, and employee incentives
  • Regulating costs – Ensure that your bottom line is not being cluttered with unnecessary expenses
  • Maintaining inventory – Create standardized and organized methods of stocking so that you are never without inventory, and never in too much surplus
  • Optimizing communication – member communication, employee communication, marketing, and suppliers all must have a proper channel to communicate clearly and timely
  • Time management – the crux of the SMART method is time, a resource that is fleeting and much more valuable than capital
  • Increasing operational efficiency – When a solid plan is in place, continuously monitor and optimize for the best results

Framework for effective sports facilities management

Framework for effective sports facilities management

  1. Structure your programs

This starts with understanding your target customer and their needs and pain points. First, you must figure out who you are catering to, as a blanket approach is not only extremely expensive but reduces the effectiveness of your communication and targeted marketing. Your programs will contribute to the building of your brand, as offering core services in your sports facility will comprise the culture that you are fostering.

When structuring your programs, it is not enough to simply build the program. Introducing a tiered system for athletes of different skill levels and ages is a popular way to offer a complete service to the potential customers in your community. This should be paired with a seamless booking system that also connects to an interactive calendar. Don’t forget to add promotions and referral systems to these programs to add more awareness and create buzz around your brand.

  1. Plan your budget

Your facility may need state-of-the-art athlete training programs and equipment, or it may just function as an after-school camp that is only for young children. Including these two models, and everything in between, allocating your capital is one of the most important functions you can carry out as an effective manager. When first creating your business plan and conducting market research, determine your ideal customer, their income level, and what they are willing to pay in both membership fees as well as private coaching and group sessions. From this, you can determine the level of your sports facility, purchase the correct equipment to do so, as well as build an effective team.

  1. Optimize your space

Even for a large facility, wasting space is a simple, but quick, win for your business to introduce revenue streams. For example, offering specialized amenities, such as squash courts and bocce courts are not able to be used for dual purposes, so more can be charged. However, gymnasiums, yoga rooms, and open training areas can be used for multiple purposes. You can use these spaces for team sports activities, such as basketball and soccer, or even for free weight and bodyweight training. If you ever find yourself short on clientele or owning too large of a facility, you can look into additional revenue streams such as renting out your space.

  1. Organize your staff, and empower them

Building an effective team is difficult, but extremely rewarding. Always start with the members that you have, and empower them. Find out their biggest pain points and address them. Empowered and happy staff will always bring happy customers and members. Offer great compensation, and incentives and always make sure their goals align with that of the organization. People don’t leave “bad” jobs, they leave bad management.

  1. Address your costs

If you find yourself generating much more revenue than your competitors, but somehow always short on cash flow, you may have an expense problem rather than needing to create extra revenue streams. When addressing your cost of goods, it is important to evaluate your business as a whole rather than to start cutting essentials. For example, businesses often look at their wages and marketing costs when first evaluating their businesses, but that may be the reason your business is successful. Commonly overlooked problems are rents, energy costs, overbuying stock, and the light bill. Sports facilities have an extremely high energy expenditure, for example, so look at powering down during warmer days and conducting classes outdoors.

Tie it all together: Management technology

Developments in technology have made it possible to run your sports facility while cutting the learning curve, as well as tying your entire operational structure together. Invoicing, bill payment, marketing, retargeting, communication channels, branding, scheduling, and many other activities are difficult to keep track of if they are done manually. An effective solution is to obtain sports management software that is custom designed just for this reason. Spark Membership is the number 1 leading management software on the market, which lets you manage your sports facility in the comfort of your smartphone. Try it now for just $1.

You may also want to read How To Reopen Your Gym During The Pandemic

Best Tips On Running Self-Defense Schools

The self-defense industry can be extremely lucrative. In a study conducted by Grand View Research, the self-defense industry in America reached over 2.5 billion in 2019 and is projected to grow exponentially each year. Not only are people of all ages looking to attend classes to better prepare themselves for dangerous situations, but it increases discipline, fitness and is a great way for others to interact with each other and build lasting relationships

The question becomes, how do I start successful self-defense schools? Below we will go over the best tips for launching your business, and further, the easiest and most effective ways to market and promote your potential students.

Launching your self-defense classes

Launching your self-defense classes

Self-defense schools can be run as you see fit, but it is important to get the necessary business and self-defense licenses that you would need to operate your day-to-day business. Here are some helpful tips:

  1. Get the necessary licenses

This varies with each person, but research is required depending on the type of discipline you wish to teach, and what area you are located in. It also depends on the scope of your business. If you are planning on keeping this a small and private 1:1 coaching team, you may not be as regulated as a national franchise.

  1. Register your business

Check federal and state records to decide on a naming scheme for your business. After this is done, officially register your business and choose a corporate structure. This can include a corporation, LLC, sole-proprietorship, LLP, or partnership. If you plan on keeping this a small and private venue, consider simpler structures such as sole-proprietorships and partnerships. Corporations and other larger structures will be more suitable for advanced tax planning and bigger organizations. Consult a legal professional if you are ever unsure.

  1. Don’t forget insurance 

Business insurance is something that can be easily forgotten but is extremely important. In the extremely unlikely event of a dangerous situation occurring, you may be legally and financially responsible to fix a situation. This risk is increased in the nature of your business, as self-defense classes generally introduce contact among members and students.

🔔 Businesses require business insurance to assist cover the expenses of property damage and liability claims. Without business insurance, owners may be forced to pay for costly damages and legal claims made against their firm out of pocket.

  1. Build a solid business plan

The American small business association has provided a step-by-step process to create a business plan here. Although it is not necessary, it is highly recommended for organization and funding purposes.

Establish A Great Team – Small business owners experience a lot of burnout when first launching their business. This can be a normal occurrence, as when starting your business you wear many hats. Burnout is not sustainable, and you should be looking to transition from working IN your business to working ON your business as soon as possible by building a loyal and dependable team.

📢 A solid business plan not only assists entrepreneurs in focusing on the particular procedures required for their business ideas to succeed, but it also assists them in achieving both short-term and long-term goals.

How do you promote self-defense classes

How do you promote self-defense classes

Generally, self-defense classes are different from martial arts disciplines. The classes are solely for protecting oneself against dangerous situations, rather than an organized curriculum of levels, belts, creeds, and katas. This means that you should not look to brand yourself the same way that the martial arts industry does. Here are some helpful tips to properly market your business.

Building an effective website

Whether done in-house or through a contractor, it is important to build an effective website that demonstrates your brand in a great light. Your website will be the first point of contact for those that come to learn about your business, so make sure it’s vibrant, easy to use, answers most common questions, and has an intake form.

Get on social media

This can even be done before registering your business, setting a business page on your socials. What’s more, people love personal brands and engaged owners when first launching their business, so remember to also cross-promote with your personal page as well. Your inner circle will usually be your first customers, so make your posts informative, engaging, and friendly.

Choose your ideal customer

Self-Defense is a broad term, and many business owners make the mistake of setting up their business to intake as many people as possible. On the contrary, deciding on a targeted niche early on and creating that intention will bolster your business. For example, your self-defense training could be registered to teach new police officers to get them trained for the academy or on-the-job. Make sure to research any certifications you may need.

Get their attention

Where are your ideal customers spending their time? Social media may cover most of us that view our phone screens, but the message isn’t as effective due to the amount of information we receive on our phones. Advertise in places your ideal customer frequents, such as gyms, grocery stores, community centers, and targeted marketing.

Automate your marketing and follow-up 

Setting up an entire marketing plan and method is extremely difficult, and even more so, scaling it up when you’ve finally figured it out. Furthermore, a large percentage of revenue is lost due to a lack of follow-up. Spark Membership is the number 1 member management software. Promotions, marketing, follow-up, scheduling, staff management, and payment are all combined into a mobile app. Try it now for just $1

Promotions and deals

Everyone loves a good deal and has a sense of getting more from their money. It is difficult to gain traction when first starting out, so offering promotional deals to new members is a great way to get attention, and hopefully, close your first few clients. Some other ideas include referrals, discounts, bundled deals, and promotional events.

Best Methods To Maximize Your Gym’s Monetization

How do gyms make money

As a gym owner, it is natural to think about monetizing your gym space. In this article, we will define the different ways that gyms and fitness clubs traditionally make money, but also, other ways to bolster your top-line revenue. Furthermore, studies have shown that 50% of gyms and fitness centers fail in the first 5 years due to common situations that are fixable. First, let’s go over the main methods to make money at your gym.

Gym cash flow – the basics

There are a few staple business activities that are paramount to your success. Regardless of the niche that your gym caters to, there is a certain service that all clients will expect to be available and affordable. Below are the most common:

• Membership fees 

When the question, “how do gyms make money?” pops into your head, the first thing that comes to mind is membership. The lifeblood of the fitness industry is largely subscription-based. Not only has this become an expected service and the status quo, but it is an easy way to get access to an increased share of your client’s wallet. While most will remain only members, there are upsells and premium services that can be paired with standard gym access.

• Personal training 

Individual coaching and training has always been the best upsell for a standard gym member. Personal training provides customized and individual solutions for a person’s fitness goals, and the compensation reflects that. Having a team of licensed trainers that command respect and the results of the membership base is a great way to introduce a premium service to those that have the financial capability and drive.

• Classes

These can be both specialized and general. The most common and popular classes are group cycling sessions. It provides a great way to hold the entire class accountable and most enjoy the high-energy atmosphere led by an instructor that doesn’t just teach but is actively demonstrating and advocating for their methods. Although this method is not revolutionary, it has seen great successful results due to the high-intensity atmosphere and group cohesion.

Three common reasons why gyms fail

With over half of gym businesses falling within the first few years of their inception, it is important to proactively mitigate this chance by being prepared. The most common reasons for not being successful are:

  1. Lack of sales and marketing

There is a reason this is first on the list. If you don’t have any clients, you don’t have a business. Setting aside the gym niche, for now, a business owner needs to have a powerful sales and marketing method to both increase brand awareness, and to close sales.

  1. Improper management

There are three resources that every business has; human, capital, and natural. This is a huge learning process, as managing these channels is of the utmost importance for the success of your business. Unfortunately, time is of the essence, and keeping it both simple and effective is a monumental task for a business owner.

  1. Not interpreting the right data

When first asking yourself, “how do gyms make money?”, the actual question should reflect practices that you are already doing. Finding the “it” or “x” factor of your business and expanding on it is the secret to finding a winning and profitable strategy. This is very difficult to do as most small businesses have not developed an effective way to measure and analyze their meaningful data.

In business, the learning curve can be extremely steep, and, unfortunately, can be costly to the success of your business. Proper gym management and membership software help to drastically cut this learning curve and set up a proper way to both manage your business, but also streamline onboarding and revenue. Spark Membership is the best gym management software on the market. Start today for just $1 and see the difference in your data analysis, member management, sales, and staff satisfaction.

5 alternative ways to increase your gym’s revenue streams

As a small gym, it is important to walk before you can run. This means that before searching for multiple streams of income for your business, double down on the staples and watch your gym flourish with proper management. If, however, you are a larger gym that is rapidly expanding or have found yourself location-agnostic, below are some common ways to monetize your gym.

  1. Online classes

No overhead, remote, and no capacity limits.

  1. Supplements and protein shake

Consider setting up a juice bar in your gym for pre and post-workout shakes, or selling your product line with a carrier.

  1. Renting space out for complimentary services

Gyms are often large facilities. Rent out the space you don’t need and even set up referral programs for massage therapists, physiotherapists, and specialized instructors.

  1. Selling merchandise and equipment

Gym bags, apparel, and workout equipment are in very high demand among your members, especially those that are after this lifestyle.

  1. Offering nutritional advice and meal plans

The body is a statue to be molded, yet it cannot do so without the proper fuel. It is just as important to have a healthy diet as it is to stick to a proper workout regime.