with emotions and personal stories instead of data and facts

Much more than just a marketing trend, storytelling offers health and fitness companies numerous uses and benefits in the context of brand management. You can find out what they are and how studios can set themselves apart from the competition with authentic stories and strengthen their own brand using practical implementation leverages.

Attract and retain members with authentic stories

Surely most fitness and health entrepreneurs have heard the term “narration“I heard and the Marketing trend in practice. – consciously or perhaps unconsciously – already implemented. But accurate background, goals and potential the narrative approach open so far only the fewer studio operators In its whole.

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One more reason, this innovative and exciting marketing tool more precisely glow up.

Why is it increasingly important to tell stories?

Especially in the context of membership acquisition activities many fitness and health studios often work with many “sober” numbersdata and facts instead of emotions and personal stories.

Comprehensive information is undoubtedly relevant and important, but does it also have the same persuasive and motivating potential?

The science and practice of marketing show that authentic stories Sure more positive emotions, better identification with the company as well as one long term commitment (Etzold, 2014; Weber, 2017).

That is because captivating stories and images (Ruckenbrod, 2017) often much more sustainable in mind or the subconscious of the recipients are anchored and indirectly linked to their own experiences and adventures and associate (Schmieja, 2014).

That ended marketing and sales point of view Without a doubt, one of the main points that speak in favor of the use of narration.

But the marketing trend can do much more and brings fitness and health companies closer together in the framework of brand management. many other advantages and possible uses with himself (Fordon, 2018).

Sustainable brand management: authenticity of the success factor

In a highly competitive market like the health and fitness industry, it will be in view of comparable products and services for further studies more difficult to stand out from the crowd of competitors and be perceived as a brand accordingly.

But how do you wear them? own corporate values ​​and stories to the outside world in the best possible way? The answer: authentic stories of people With people by People! In practice, implementing storytelling is always about Image and corporate/brand values to support and charge emotionally.

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the company’s own history as well as the people behind this it should be possible honest and authentic in approach be moved. Important: Stories and the people who act in them always have to match your company values.

So arouses interest and curiosity and ideally create one from scratch identification with the company (Sammer, 2019).

But how can this be successful and what personalities and content can you use for this?

Every story needs its own heroes.

When it comes to marketing and member motivation, gyms are playing right now Testimonials and different (everyday) heroes play a central role. The characters, and therefore the stories they can tell, are as different as the people in the studio.

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better go here structured using the following three W formula and ask yourself the following W questions during planning or implementation: “who, what, why?” (see Fig. 1).

Write new stories with the formula of the three W’s

potential heroes both can Clients, trainers and you as an entrepreneur be. A wide range of protagonists makes it much easier for you different subject areas use and therefore target different target groups.

In addition to authentic people, a success story always includes a central challenge, a varied suspense arc and a turning pointwith which people to identify can (Etzold, 2017).

Because gyms usually “Problem solvers” for many different target groups are and serve to satisfy needs, so you must “open several chapters” and tell various success stories.

Happy members are the best ambassadors for your brand

Nothing convinces and motivates more in practice than satisfied, loyal and enthusiastic members. This is undoubtedly one of the main reasons why the Trainee success stories for many gyms play a role in terms of image and marketing.

Consciously or often unconsciously, the first experiences with the storytelling topic are collected here and the individual success stories of the members are told. But is that enough?

Exciting stories from different perspectives.

he he your most individual, credible and customer-oriented stories are, the more likely it is that other members will feel and also new leads approached. So the range of your success stories should do that too. cover the full spectrum of your membership structure and network as well as different target groups and generations.

About the Author

Julian Lohau it is pedagogical staff, tutor and lecturer at the German University for Prevention and Health Management (DHfPG) and a speaker at the BSA Academy. The sports economist has many years of Practical experience in the work of sports associations or clubs. and deal intensively with the issues Marketing and brand management.

Because some feel through the history of the working father approached, who regularly comes to train three times a week and his the “inner bastard” wins. For performance-oriented fitness athletes Athletes who want to increase their performance and Successfully compete in fitness/bodybuilding competitionsto be an example.

Target different target groups

Still others are empowered and motivated by authentic statements or videos on their way to the perfect figure for summer, returning from a serious injury, or fighting aging.

The lives of your customers write countless stories worth telling every day, you just have to do it!

You and your team in focus

Also You and your study team can provide information and personal stories.that motivate and inspire:

Their Founding history, joint successes with athletes and long-time employees, informative behind-the-scenes glimpses of everyday life in the studio successful completion of a new license, the dual study program or similar: These are all stories that can be varied, exciting, informative, and helpful to members or potential new hires.

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Through the specific use of these types of stories you can, on the one hand, actively identify and bond with their coaches or promote the study and its Equipment at the same time also appropriate recognition and show gratitude for the work done and commitment.

through its flexible application possibilities the theme of the narrative also becomes relevant with respect to the story itself. Recruitment and building an attractive employer brand (employer brand) is becoming more and more important today.


narration certainly not the only effective method in the “marketing kit” of fitness and health companies, but definitely one of the most innovative, sustainable and authentic. (Read more: ‘Successful Innovation Management’)

Provide the ideas and food for thought listed Numerous implementation ideas on how to use storytelling usefully and cost-effectively for your study be able. According to the motto of James M. Kouzes: “If you don’t believe the messenger, you won’t believe the message”therefore, you should pay even more attention to the topic of storytelling, in addition to the classic marketing/advertising activities, and write your distinctive personal success stories!

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Excerpt from the bibliography

Fordon, A. (2018). The narrative method. Wiesbaden: Springer Gabler.
Sammer, P. (2019). What’s your story? Leadership storytelling for managers, project managers, and anyone who wants to make a difference. Heidelberg: O’Reilly.
Schmieja, P. (2014). Storytelling in internal corporate communication. Wiesbaden: Springer Gabler.
Weber, S. (2017). How Stories Work: Foundations of Narrative Psychology. In J. Chlopczyk (ed.), Beyond Storytelling (pp. 11–22). Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer Specialized Media.

For a full bibliography, please contact [email protected]


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