As a studio owner, you entered this career to embrace fitness and bring it to the masses, so if you’ve been hesitant to bring supplements into that mix before now, we get it. It’s a personal choice each owner must make on their own. If open to it, though, you can open the opportunity for a brand new revenue stream for your studio. Below, we explore the benefits of adding supplements to your retail.
THE GOOD STUFF
“We get bombarded every single week with things to sell—vendors coming into the studio or emailing us, all promising to increase our bottom line,” Laura St. John, owner of the three-location Pearl Street Fitness in Denver, tells us.
Sound familiar? Gym owners everywhere are constantly being wooed by marketers to sell their products, but the real worry is whether those products are healthy and safe—and a natural extension to the fitness you’re already offering.
In St. John’s case, she and her co-owner husband Scott had personally been taking the supplement Isagenix for four years, and they were seeing incredible results. “Our students and teachers were constantly asking us how we were suddenly so cut, so lean—I mean we were fit people to begin with. We were closet users of Isagenix. And when our nutritionist announced she was moving, we had this nutrition hole to fill, and we used the opportunity to test the product out with our members.”
DO YOUR RESEARCH
Before making any big retail decisions, it’s always a good idea to poll your members first. Whether via email surveys, after-class questionnaires or quick convos in the locker room, you need to have a definitive understanding of how many of your clients are actually interested in exploring supplements. Many are likely virgins when it comes to the stuff, while others may have had negative experiences.
Which is why, when introducing a supplement to your audience, you should be prepared to know your stuff. You want to be able to stand behind this product and believe in its efficacy—not just its earning potential.
Spend a good deal of time understanding the product, learning the exact ingredients, its best uses, and the timeline one can expect for results. “The big leap for us was going from customers of the supplement to retailers, but once we tested it in our studios, we had phenomenal results,” St. John explains. “We just knew that if we rolled it out and it didn’t work then we would not push it. But the results spoke for themselves. ”
For the St. Johns, the financial reward proved to be true. “Once we did start selling Isagenix and stood behind it and really endorsed it, it more than paid for our rent at all of our locations. It’s an entire vertical market for us that we didn’t even anticipate. We’re making way, way more than sweatshirts and t-shirts and hats combined.”
THE BOTTOM LINE
Earning more than six figures in sales so far, the Pearl Street Fitness is now one of the fastest growing gyms selling the product, and they were recently indoctrinated into the company’s “Team Isagenix” (making the St. Johns the equivalent of brand ambassadors for the product). In addition to placing Isagenix boxes on their studio retail shelves, St. John has also done educational Periscope videos about the product, and hosts nutritional workshops once a month where she offers advice, fields questions and tailors Isagenix packages to her members’ needs.
The best part of this whole experience for them, however, has been the results their members have seen. “It’s been life changing for them,” St. John says. “They’ve noticed such a difference—from their athletic capabilities to their physical appearance.”
Do they have any tips for gym owners considering selling supplements? “You don’t have to be a pushy salesperson to be extremely successful,” she says. “We’ve taken the opposite approach, and now we have gyms from all over the U.S. asking us how we did it.”