Promotions are an effective way to drive more revenue and boost class attendance quickly. They can get the word out about your offerings, encourage word-of-mouth, and even attract new audiences.  

Promotions should always create a sense of urgency around making a purchase or commitment quickly. That said, it’s important to be strategic and only run promotions seasonally (about every two to three months) and offer discounts for a limited time only (up to one week).  That way, you won’t over discount and devalue your brand.  

Let’s talk about seasonal promotions 

Oftentimes, promotions align perfectly with holidays, national days, or changes of season. When they do, get creative and festive with what you offer and your associated marketing strategy.

When building your promotion calendar, the key is to plan ahead and take advantage of seasonal trends. When you understand the changes in demand, you can optimize and align your promotions accordingly. For example, the peak for fitness is the first week of January; during this competitive time, focus on how to position your studio above the rest. During slower summer months, run specific promotions to bring new foot traffic in the door. 

Looking for promo inspiration? You’re in the right place. We’ve rounded up calendar-themed promotion ideas to pick and choose from throughout the year.

January New Year package discount

January is peak fitness shopping season. During this spike, make your studio stand out with marketing and promotions. The beginning of a new year is the best time to offer a generous incentive and discount on packages to win over customers looking to try something new. Do you have a solid new client intro offer? This is the time to push that promotion.

Pro tip: Potential customers are searching for fitness studios online so make sure you’re spreading the word about your promotion(s) on Google, social media, and your website.  

February: Bring your Valentine for free

Create a week of Valentine-themed classes where clients can bring friends or their significant other. Play love-themed playlists, incorporate partner-based movements, and sell partner packages to encourage multiple sign ups. As always, make sure these classes are top-notch to increase conversion.  

March: Refer a friend competition

Now that you’ve acquired new customers at the beginning of the year, March is a perfect time to expand your referral program. Happy customers are very likely to refer family and friends through word of mouth, but they’re even more likely to spread the word when there are special incentives in place.

Hold a referral competition with a reward like “refer more than 10 people and get a free personal training session,” or the student who refers the most people gets a private group class with their friends. Another effective referral incentive? Offer a gift certificate to another local business or branded merch.

April and May: Spring forward open house

As Google trends show, May is another peak time for fitness purchase, so April is a perfect time to host a new client open house and offer a springtime package discount to encourage sales.

June and July: Summertime package discount

Summer is often a slow season as clients are spending more time outdoors and on vacation. Boost attendance with a slight package discount or a buy one, get one free offer. Now is the perfect time too advertise your own outdoor workouts—or add them to your schedule if you’re able! 

August: Attendance incentives and bring a friend

August is the perfect time to boost attendance with a class attendance incentive or challenge. For example: Attend 10 classes and get a VIP gift. 

August is also a smart time to invite your clients to bring their friends along (be sure to remind them about your referral program!) and fill up those classes.  

September: Labor Day sale

Labor Day weekend is a popular discount time of the year. Take advantage of the holiday trend by providing discounts on studio packages or merchandise. As your clients settle into their fall schedules, they’ll be itching to get back into a fitness routine. Now is a good time for another open house event!

October: Halloween promotion

Run a Halloween themed attendance incentive. For example: Attend five themed classes in October and win a Halloween SWAG bag. Halloween is also a fun time to host a studio event such as pumpkin carving, scary movie night, or a Halloween dress-up workout. Building your community has its own promotional advantages, too.

November: Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday sales

Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday are great opportunities to offer deep discounts without devaluing your brand. However, you’ll need to be creative to be a cut above the rest. Host a fun, post-turkey workout (or a few) and pair it with deep discounts on class packages, retail, and gift cards for the holidays—more on that next!

December: Holiday gift package discounts and holiday referral program

The holidays are all about gifting and celebration. Host a holiday shopping event where you offer different types of holiday discounts including class packages designed to be gifted to friends and family. During this time of year, be sure to promote your retail section and, of course, gift cards.

As you plan your promotions for the year, make sure you have a solid marketing plan in place to support your efforts. Get strategic and share your promotions in your studio, on your website, through social media and paid ads, and at local community events.

Need more help getting exposure and bringing new faces to the studio? ClassPass can help! Partner with us.