You’re a fitness professional looking to grow your fitness business. You’ve exhausted your Facebook friends list of your mum, your mum’s friend Margaret, and your best mate from school, and you’ve realised that deep down none of them want you to train them. You need to start running ads - but where to start?
If you think like most fitness professionals at this stage, your gut instinct will be to put ads up on Instagram and Facebook. After all, isn’t this where you see all those fitness influencers who seem to have thousands upon thousands of clients hanging off of their every word, commenting on every post, and throwing money at them as they jet-set off around the world?
Well, yes. But you need to understand a little something about social vs. search advertising, first.
Search makes sense.
When you’re starting off with your advertising, you need to start with search (i.e., Google) advertising. Social advertising on platforms like Facebook and Instagram comes in much later.
The reason for this is simple: when people search for a fitness professional like yourself, they actively want help. When people scroll past you on their feed, they do not.
Yes, maybe all those idle scrolling thumbs will stop and look at your content, will double-tap a ‘like’, maybe will even leave a ‘💯’ in the comments. But their intentionality is still low; they simply do not intend to employ you, no matter how much they like your content. That impatient, compulsive thumb will always scroll on by in the end.
Compare this to somebody else who performs a Google search along the lines of “Personal trainer in Manchester” or “Online nutrition coach for weight loss”. The people doing this search are intentional: there is a problem in their lives and they need your help to solve it.
When you are starting out in your fitness business journey, these are the exact sorts of people that you want to reach with your ad. Not idle thumbs, but active, intentional clients.
Let’s prove this another way - the philosophical way - with a good old-fashioned thought experiment.
Say you’re going to visit a new city and you’re trying to find somewhere decent to eat. You have two choices.
First, you could open your search engine of choice and type in “restaurants in [your location]”, scroll through the reviews, find one you like and head there.
Or… you could open up your Instagram, Facebook or other social media and keep scrolling until you come across an ad for some restaurant that you like the look of in the city.
Chances are, you’ll do the former, unless you’ve got all the time in the world to kill and fancy wasting many, many hours of your life for vanishingly little reward.
The same is true in the fitness industry. Your clients are searching for you - not on social media, but on Google. So harness the power of Google ads to connect your business with their needs!
So… when do I advertise on socials?
When Google advertising plateaus off, that’s when you can add social ads on top.
As a leading digital fitness marketing agency, FitMedia has worked with clients across the board - from small, individually-run PT businesses to giant international companies in the fitness industry. Some of these can easily put ££££ per day behind search advertising on Google, and still see huge amounts of growth in terms of leads gained, without any social advertising whatsoever.
Of course, at a certain point (when search advertising stops growing your client base so quickly), you should add in social advertising as a ‘cherry on top’. Don’t take money away from your Google ads (since these will always produce the greatest quantity and quality of intentional leads), but add in an extra pot of cash to each new platform you want to introduce.
By substituting out money from search advertising to socials, you would be diluting your impact across all platforms, likely reducing your overall number of leads from the campaign.
Think of search advertising as the bread and butter and social advertising as the cherry on top.
Here at FitMedia, we are experts at helping fitness professionals grow their fitness businesses through well-placed, intelligent, data-driven marketing campaigns.
Give us a call for an hour’s consultation (totally free!) this week by filling out a few quick questions at www.fitmedia.net/apply to see what we can do for you.