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How To Market To 3 Generations – Part 1

There’s one golden question every fitness industry entrepreneur wants the answer to: How to market their fitness business to their target client?

In an industry that generates over $80 billion every year, it isn’t easy to effectively grab your slice of the pie. In fact, the number of gyms and fitness studios continues to increase each year. It’s more crucial now than ever to stand out from the competition.

So how do you put yourself in the best position and take the initiative to market your fitness business to three specific generations:

  • Generation X
  • Millennials
  • Generation Z

In this article we’ll discuss the impact each generation has had on the industry, what their fitness priorities are, and strategies to get fitness lead generation under way.

Let’s dive in!


Gen X, born in the mid 1960’s to the late 1970’s, is at the forefront of the current fitness movement. Their health motto is “live life to the fullest”.

They favour fitness plans consisting of doing things versus exercise for the sake of exercise.

Gen X has embraced the notion that movement through fun can be integrated into daily life better than a regimented exercise plan. This has pushed classes like martial arts or rock climbing, driving a mindset that fun sport activities can be the ultimate fitness plan.

How has Generation X influenced the Industry?

Generation X took your basic step classes and turned them into the popular hyped up choreography of the early 1990’s. With a new emphasis on “fun” fitness, variety was added in the form of pivots, jumps, and other complicated moves to keep Gen Xers engaged.

It has been suggested they are even responsible for today’s variety of dance-inspired and high intensity spin classes.

What does Generation X want?

This group wants variety in their workouts mixed with technical execution. Essentially, they want fun mixed with performance — these are their priorities. This means classes that are as much about entertainment as the workout.

Generation X is notoriously heralded as cynical. They refuse to invest in fads or crazes without strong justification that it’ll benefit them long term… minus monotony. As they’ve aged, their mentality has shifted from “no pain, no gain” to “work smarter, not harder”.

How do I market to Generation X?

Generation X is still extremely active in the fitness world. In Australia this generation is approximately 5 million people strong… don’t miss out on an
opportunity to engage with this large market.

Here’s some tips to get fitness lead generation from this influential age group:

1. Stress Work-Life Balance

Your gym or studio could target these clients by mixing technical training with leisure activities – like dance, spin, or martial arts.

2. Set Realistic Intensity Levels

Gen Xers don’t want programs that are overly intense or too stressful on the body. However, workouts do need to be effective. Measurable goals and results are certainly necessary to keep this generation coming back to your facility. Align goals with optimising movement and flexibility as opposed to high intensity workouts.

3. Offer Group Training

This set the tone for a very strong relationship between the education convention and the trade show towards concurrently growing the joint events, which continues to this day.

Group training gives your Gen Xers the excitement they crave and also, the opportunity to create social bonds at your facility. If a member is thinking of skipping a class, their fear of missing out on the social aspect will kick in, boosting your class attendance rates.


The Millennials group comprise those born in the early 1980’s to the late 1990’s and are renowned for being complicated individuals.

Millennials value priorities much different than the previous Gen Xers. Exercise to stay thin is a concept of the past for this group, with a motto of “strong is the new skinny”. They’re using words like eating right more than previous generations.

However they still struggle to fit exercise into their routine, even though they hold health in high regard.

This busy age group seeks a like-minded community where they can have fast, social workouts. The industry is just beginning to truly accommodate and adapt to their unique desires.

How have Millennials influenced the Industry?

This complicated brood has started the movement of “fitness communities”.

But what is a “fitness community”?

Essentially, Millennials have intertwined social atmospheres with their fitness environments. For them, it’s as much about getting together with like-minded people as it is about working out. This generates the idea of a community encompassing their loyalty to certain fitness facilities.

They identify with their fitness community as part of who they are. Think Crossfit or other well marketed fitness communities the big picture.

The concept of inflexible traditional gym memberships just doesn’t appeal to this group.

Millennials also want fast. Guided group classes which have them in-and-out in under an hour is the perfect balance.

How do I market to Millennials?

This age group is entering their prime spending years… and to top it all off, they’re the biggest generation yet. Millennials define “wellness” in a whole new way than previous generations. For them, it’s more than exercising and eating right, but a lifestyle choice. This has them continuously investing in the industry.

If you’re not currently focusing your marketing efforts on Millennials, you may wish to reconsider.

So, how can you capitalise on this group? Here are some suggestions to get your fitness lead generation strategy in place:

1. Get With the Tech Times

Don’t kid yourself into thinking Millennials will notice that promotional poster on the wall. The best way to get this group eating from the palm of your hand? Be in the palm of theirs. You guessed it, you need a mobile app for easy on-the-go class bookings.

There’s no better way to prove you’re truly invested in your member’s experience than making booking a two tap process.

With in-app mobile notifications, you can ensure your messages get noticed: special offers, limited time promotions – you’ve a direct marketing channel to keep your millennial audience engaging with your business.

Fitness studio management software can help you keep up with this technologically savvy group.

2. Go Boutique, Go High End, Go Specialised

It’s not uncommon for Millennials to have multiple memberships for studios with different specialisations. They will pay more to feel special and like to be part of something bigger: a community.

This is exemplified by the rising popularity of movements like Crossfit and SoulCycle.

Could it be time to craft a strategy that makes your service more specialised to specific millennial needs?

3. Implement Short, Varied Workouts

Clubs, like F45, have started to target Millennials by offering short classes that have a lot of variety. Millennials do not want a repetitive experience. They want varied workouts that are short, intense, and effective. Why not implement some “fitness blast” themed classes at your facility?

…we hope you’re liking this article? Part 2 and the conclusion of How To Market To 3 Generations will be here shortly!

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