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January 5, 2015
Cashing In on New Year's Resolutions
 
The first few months of the year can be a struggle for business owners. After multiple holiday shopping binges, many consumers buckle down in the following months, and their tightening belts tend to reflect in your post-holiday sales numbers. Don't let January sales get your business off track in 2015.

The best way to keep sales high is to focus on helping your customers find something that they want, right? In January, the easiest way to do that is to help them achieve their New Year's resolution. The most popular resolution involves weight loss and fitness.

Weight Loss, Fitness, and Marketing
After the gluttony of Thanksgiving followed by the drinking while ringing in the New Year, the desire — and need — to get back into shape is high. If your business sells anything related to improving health, then you're in luck. These products are straightforward to market and move well in January. Why not drive sales and help your customers reach their goals at the same time?

Utilize social media and email campaigns that you built up over the holiday season. Just because the crowds are no longer actively seeking you out doesn't mean that you should stop trying to pull them in.

Gym Memberships
Gym memberships are an easy sell in January. The hard part is convincing the consumer that your gym is the best gym. It's your job to get them to notice you, and to do that you need to show them how you can help keep them motivated.

Some gyms cater to the masses by organizing boot camps to help people get in shape in a motivational team environment. Others target family memberships by offering on-site childcare and discounted rates if the entire family joins. The more specialized the membership package, the more pampered your customers will feel.

Also, don't forget to cross sell. If someone comes in to purchase a gym membership, they might also want to book an appointment with your in-house masseuse or use a tanning bed, services that will also help your clientele feel rewarded for their hard work. 

Health and Fitness Apps
There are quite a few popular weight-loss apps on the market ranging from free to a bit pricey. While Fitocracy is just one of many fitness apps, they've been marketing their new "Hire a Coach" program throughout the holiday season. As we move into 2015, they're already effectively positioned to increase their marketing campaign and potentially bring thousands of new paying customers over from their free app.

Once a consumer has enrolled in their free fitness app, they're subscribed to their mailing list and will receive fitness challenge and paid program invitations. Even if the client unsubscribes from the email campaign, the member will see the "Hire a Coach" program offer every time they turn on their app.

For those trying to lose weight, the constant reminders can provide the right level of push to keep them motivated. If not, they might sign up for the coach program, and then they'll have a real person helping them reach their goals.

Healthy Food and Related Products
Businesses from booksellers to grocery stores can profit from consumer desire to learn more about healthy eating. This is the time for bookstores to start promoting everything from books on fitness and diet to cookbooks. Don't forget to mix in motivational biographies to keep people on track and audiobooks for those that need to stave off treadmill boredom.

Online retailers, even the extremely focused stores, can profit in this fashion. For instance, the popular Whole30 program really only sells books on their website. However, their program has become so popular that countless supporters across the country will launch private in-house challenges, as well as the site’s online challenge.

The online Whole30 community hopes to make the January 1, 2015 challenge the largest Whole30 challenge ever. This program has become a recognizable brand name, and they don't sell anything but cookbooks. Publicized health challenges like this provide an opportunity to get your products to the right people.

Accessorize
Just because your business doesn't sell wearable electronics doesn't mean that you can't profit from the post-holiday health craze. The accessories that make exercise easier or more comfortable aren't always gifted, and consumers need to know where to buy them.

If you have a specialty product, make sure that people know about it. For example, tie in your BPA-free easy-carry water bottles with advertising for running or hiking. Start using the #Whole30 hashtag with products that tie into eating "clean." You'll be able to provide your costumers with a useful product and keep your sales high.  

If your resolution as a business owner is to keep your sales high (and why wouldn't it be?), then make sure you stay focused on consumer needs. Help yourself by helping your customers reach their goals. 

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Adrienne Erin is a freelance writer and designer based in Pennsylvania. She has been passionate about career development ever since her college years — all four of which she spent interning in her college’s career center. Now that she is her own boss, she shares the practical advice that she finds works in her own life. To see more of her work, visit her design blog.
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