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16 July 2021

SportsEye empowering local growth with YMCA South Australia

Through the partnership between YMCA South Australia and ActiveXchange, The Valleys Lifestyle Centre, operated by YMCA SA, has been utilising ActiveXchange’s SportsEye Operator product since September 2019.

The Centre is located in a small town a couple of hundred kilometres from Adelaide, with a population of approximately 3000-4000 people and a community that is heavily focused on agriculture and farming industries.

In the years prior, they were the only fitness centre in town, but the recent openings of a new Crossfit and 24/7 gym had led to a drop in membership and a reduction in revenue.

However, after collaborating and engaging with ActiveXchange, Centre Manager Ben Whalan reported that they have not only managed to reinstate those lost patrons but have also further increased membership - even surpassing numbers from when they were the only gym in town.

Whalan worked closely with ActiveXchange’s Client Success Manager, Ben Chan, to get a complete understanding of the tool and to ensure it was optimised in its application for their operation.

The results were excellent, with the centre experiencing:

  • 9% Growth of memberships year on year.
  • 21% Increase in membership duration year on year.
  • 5% Increased attendance for group fitness classes in the last six (6) months.

Whalan worked with the SportsEye insights dashboards to improve overall transparency and accuracy - relating to demand and demographics of his market to achieve growth.

Membership growth was achieved through data reviews and demographic analysis to understand their member acquisition and retention trends. As a result, Whalan could modify the marketing budget and strategy to target specific market segments and generate further interest in the programs most relevant to the local community and its members.

“In the past, we were trying to be all things to all people. By getting specific around how we targeted our marketing around programming, we were able to make the right offer to the right people and lift membership,” Whalan notes. He also mentions that their marketing expenditure is likely to finish lower for the just-finished financial year because of this tech-aided targeting, further underscoring the technology’s return on investment.

In the past, we were trying to be all things to all people. By getting specific around how we targeted our marketing around programming, we were able to make the right offer to the right people and lift membership.

Ben Whalan — Centre Manager, The Valleys Lifestyle Centre

Membership numbers were also strengthened by an increased membership duration that grew by two months - from approximately 9.6 months to 11.6 months. This increase was due to the work with ActiveXchange in identifying periods when members had lost commitment.

While the Centre targeted the six (6) month point as the key retention milestone, SportsEye identified through visitation patterns that the proper place to target retention was actually around closer to two (2) months. In response to this, Whalan adjusted its focus towards better induction processes and creating immediate connection points for members. These efforts created the roughly 21% increase in membership duration listed above.

Finally, Whalan worked within the SportsEye platform to identify industry trends in fitness and exercise programming, specifically how they related to the demographics of their local membership. Accordingly, Whalan worked with The Valleys fitness team to adjust programming to better suit community requirements and preferences. The result of this was a 5% increased attendance rate for fitness and exercise programming over the last six (6) months.

ActiveXchange, through partnerships such as this, is building the capacity and capability of our sector’s leaders as they continue to focus on their passion. In this case, improving services, a growing membership, and ultimately enhancing the facility’s impact on its local community. By connecting local data to the SportsEye Network, the Centres data is transformed into tangible business insights and evidence to empower decision making.