Own a gym and are looking to bring in more fitness freaks? Don’t underestimate the power of customer feedback – a bad review on Yelp about poor quality gym equipment of bad supervision cannot be good. If your customers are miffed about something and you fail to address the same, there are chances he might switch to another brand. While losing that one customer is a certainty, there are chances of spreading the negative feedback about your business to other potential customers.
If you have branches across the country and happen to be a renowned brand, negative feedbacks can have a magnifying effect.
Let me tell you my own story. A couple of months ago, I switched gyms and I’m paying double of what I used to. Here are a few reasons that made me take the drastic step:
- Showers had no hot water supply.
- The lockers had issues with locking.
- There were issues with machines and several other equipments.
- The floor mats were never cleaned or maintained despite the cleaning staff always being available at the gym floor.
That gym had branches across the country and was a renowned name in the eros fitness industry. As a result, I was willing to get my membership renewed provided they addressed my issues. I did convey the issues at the front office but all I was given were assurances. The staff never took any concrete measures or tried to find a solution to these issues.
What could they have done to prevent losing a customer?
Most of my issues, such as the ones related to hot water and cleaning of floor mats could have been resolved easily. I am sure a lot of people were unhappy about it and were not keen to continue with their membership post completion of the lock-in period. However, the staff present there did not pay heed to my complaints and the issue was never escalated. I never had the inclination of pointing these issues to the upper management by sending an email.
As a result of this, I decided to quit my membership when my lock-in period was complete. Feedback on health clubs and gyms is critical as people that start exercising don’t stop it, they just switch. They could have taken tablet feedback or online feedback and should have tried to find the root cause of the problem. But, instead of resolving the issues and keeping me updated about the same, they decided to ignore it.
How can they win me back?
Feedback in gyms is given so that services are improved and customers are valued. Moreover, it is quite likely that I could rejoin my old gym if they have really worked upon my feedback. I am a health enthusiast and like being fit. If any gym offers better services at a price range that I find affordable, why wouldn’t I consider switching? In fact, if my old gym starts offering better services, I would certainly prefer that over others. So here are things they could've done better:
- Captured feedback systematically
- Addressed to feedback
- Taken corrective action
- Kept customers happy
Customer loyalty is based on the fact that brands understand what customers need. While rules are necessary, rigidity and a top-level management that doesn’t adhere to feedback easily can be disastrous.