The fitness industry has undergone a significant change over the past several years. The rise in popularity of programs such as Spinning, CrossFit and Barre have revolutionized the space. Different classes mixed with more adept technology have blended together to create a dramatically different customer experience. However, most fitness centers, health clubs and gyms struggle to recognize their individual members across touchpoints, and fail to provide them with relevant content that keeps them engaged off-premise and motivated to come back.
First things first -- what is clienteling? Back in the day it was common to have a personal relationship with the local butcher, baker or what have you. You’d be greeted by first name when you walked in the door, and the person behind the counter would already be packaging your favorite cut of meat or loaf of bread. Nowadays, that type of service and those types of personal relationships between customers and brands are more the exception than the rule. At the most basic level, clienteling is the idea of treating customers like you’ve known them forever in order to establish long-lasting loyalty. Clienteling is about making your customers’ lives easier through customer service and a great experience.
We are living in the breakout period of big data and the proof is all around us. Every day the digital devices we interact with become smarter and more personalized, improving how they anticipate our needs and desires. The technology leap of utilizing unimaginable amounts of data has modified consumer behavior; customers expect interactions with brands to be as natural and intelligent as the interactions with their phones and apps.
In 2017 we learned how important customer personalization truly is; according to Accenture the retail industry lost out on $756 billion due to a failure to personalize. To add insult to injury the same study showed that 44% of US consumers became frustrated when companies failed to provide relevant personalized experiences.
Customer data and engagement strategies have evolved dramatically in the last few years and will continue to accelerate in 2018. According to Martech Advisor, the customer data platform industry is expected to grow at least 50% per year in the near future, reaching over $1 billion total revenue by 2019. Before your 2018 budget is allocated, check out our predictions for the five biggest difference makers in customer data and engagement.