If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, again. It’s an age old proverb and one that many successful entrepreneurs live by. The fact of the matter is, failure happens–things fall through. What defines your brand and business is how you bounce back. True success comes from those who face failure head-on, get back on that horse, go back to the drawing board and never, ever quit.
So how DO you bounce back from a failed business-specifically in the fitness and sports industry? Here are three ways to consider:
1. Explain the failure and don’t make excuses: Transparency is key
Transparency is key and clients will appreciate your honesty. Own your failure–everyone makes mistakes. By admitting your mistakes and making it clear how much time and effort you will allocate to improving your products and services, you will give them the impression that you take your business extremely seriously.
2. Analyze the fail
The trick is to view failure as a great learning experience. Before you embark on a brand new business plan, take dedicated time to evaluate the factors and elements that lead to the failure. You need to really understand what worked and what didn’t. This way, you don’t have to completely scrap your old plan. Instead, you can build upon what worked and reevaluate what didn’t. Did clients love your product but hate your customer service? Were your prices too high? Dig deep and really analyze your client data.
3. Ask for Help
Don’t do it alone. You need to find other professionals and services that can help streamline your business. Are you tracking everything –from memberships, class packages, rentals– on paper? This can be both time consuming and stressful and can also lead to numerous inaccuracies and financial loss. An all-in-one secure management software is key. Not only can you track all your client data and class schedules, you will also be able to set up automatic billing, create a customised app for online purchases, send targeted email campaigns, access accurate reporting and more! The more you streamline your business processes, the more time and effort you can put into creating those exceptional, personalized customer experiences at your facility.
4. Refocus your brand
While you are analyzing your client data, identify your target audience. Was a vast majority of your clientele composed of young adults? Senior citizens? Elite athletes?
Once you recognize your main client base, focus your efforts on delivering products and services to this specific demographic. You need to create exceptional client experiences to attract and retain members. For example, if the majority of your clients are between 15 and 25 years old, you may want to focus on group classes or specific sports skills training to get these youngins’ in the door.
5. Actually Do it.
Now that you have evaluated what works and what doesn’t, refocused your brand, sought help and created a new business plan: set it in motion. Don’t let the failure freeze your ambitions. Most successful businesses fail more than once but it is only after failure that you will find success. Bounce back!