Creating a popular fitness series will require you to flex your event planning muscles — but don’t sweat it, Eventbrite is here to help.
With so many options available, it can be challenging to figure out how to make a fitness class successful. This guide will offer tips for organizing, marketing, and hosting an in-person or virtual fitness class that might just become the next workout craze.
Table of contents
- How to plan a fitness class
- How to promote fitness classes
- How to promote online fitness classes
- How to host a fitness class
- Leading in-person workout classes
- Managing your fitness class
- Ready to sweat?
How to plan a fitness class
Regardless of your experience running fitness classes, it’s essential to have a plan before jumping in. Organizing the class’s content and the logistics beforehand will make things easier on you and allow you to focus on encouraging your class members on the day of the event.
What are the five steps to planning a fitness program or class?
- Have a clear vision for the class: When you’re planning your event, choose a specific focus. You can tailor the class around becoming stronger, improving cardio fitness, learning Zumba dance moves for coordination, or yoga or stretching exercises that are great for runners and improving mobility. If you have a particular area of expertise, such as yoga or Pilates certifications, think about the specific type of yoga or Pilates you’ll be teaching, what parts of the body to target, and what fitness levels the workout is appropriate for.
- Plan for different fitness levels: Think about the demographics of your audience and the different types of customers who will be interested in taking your class. For example, if you’re running a virtual yoga class, you will likely attract both absolute beginners and long-time yogis. That means it’s a good idea to include varied movements and modifications that can make the exercises more accessible or more challenging, depending on the audience member’s preference.
- Choose the best time and location: When and where you hold your in-person fitness class will depend on your target audience and where you’re located. In general, choosing a central location or one your audience won’t have trouble finding is a good idea. Consider partnering with local studios or community spaces that will allow you to tap into the patrons they already have. When the weather is nice, park workouts appeal to those who want to spend some time outdoors and get a workout in.
When choosing your time, consider your loyal students as well as new ones. Late-night classes might work best if your class is taking place in a big city with many career-focused residents. In a suburban area with large school districts, your audience might prefer daytime classes. Finding the right location and time slot for your class might take some trial and error, but considering what your target audience is looking for while planning your course will make a big difference.
- Simplify the booking process: If it’s too difficult for participants to sign up for your fitness class, you could lose a lot of potential attendees. Keep your booking process simple to increase signups. If you create an event page with Eventbrite, you can connect it to Facebook and allow people to register for your course without ever leaving the social media platform.
- Plan how you’ll attract attendees to your fitness class: Once you’ve planned your class, chosen a venue, and created an event page, it’s time to start the marketing process. Below, we cover how to promote your fitness event.
How to promote fitness classes
For your fitness class to truly be a success, people need to attend. Ideally, you want to fill up your venue and delight attendees enough that they tell people about it. But how do you attract new people to fitness classes? Our promotional tips will help you reach your target audience and start seeing registrations.
Connect with attendees on social media
Promote your event on social media using hashtags that appeal to your target audience. These hashtags will ensure that your post, reel, or video will be fed to users who regularly consume content related to activities such as yoga, weightlifting, barre, or whatever fitness method you’re offering.
You can also encourage people who have already registered for your class or participated in previous classes to share the information with their social media connections. Consider putting together a giveaway for free classes or merch where you draw a random winner from those who share your post with friends.
Post photos and videos from classes
When you host your classes, get some high-quality photos and video clips of you and your class attendees sweating and enjoying yourselves! Social media users prefer to engage with this kind of media, and showing how fun your workout is can help give potential attendees a positive idea about what their experience at your class will be like. Just be sure to ask for permission to post photos with attendees and offer to tag them in the post.
If you haven’t run a class yet and don’t have content, consider having photos taken of you demonstrating some techniques you’ll use in the class, such as yoga poses or kickboxing strikes. You can reach out to a local photographer or have a friend take photos using a smartphone with a high-resolution camera.
Post in local Facebook groups
For in-person events, promoting your local community is always a good idea. Look to Facebook groups for people in your area that focus on the types of workouts you’re going to provide, or fitness in general. Make sure the group members are part of your target audience. Once you’ve joined the group, you can share posts about your classes or events that are relevant to the group’s interests.
Remind attendees about the next class
When your class is complete and you and your attendees are on an endorphin high, remind them to come back and take your next class. Follow up after the event with social media posts telling your followers about the next session. If you have email addresses from past attendees, include them in your email marketing campaign.
Post flyers in strategic locations
Go old school and ask local gyms, community centers, cafes, or health-food restaurants if you can post a flier at their locations. That way, you’ll catch the eyes of your shared audience members.
How to promote online fitness classes
If your fitness class is fully online or virtual, there are certain marketing efforts you can embrace to increase the number of people who are attending your class.
Create useful content
Content is a great way to draw in your audience, and you want what you create to be high quality. This can include blog posts and videos about fitness, training goals, or healthy eating. Short videos demonstrating strength training exercises or quick, nutritious snacks are an excellent way to increase engagement and interest your audience in what you have to say.
Run a fitness challenge on social media
Design a fitness challenge for your followers to participate in virtually. You can create a hashtag for the challenge and encourage participants to post about their progress. You can also take on the challenge and post about your experience. Challenges can take on many different forms, whether it’s working out every day for 30 days or doing a week-long challenge where you work on increasing the number of pushups you can do. Make sure your challenge aligns with your fitness expertise and appeals to your target audience.
Make sure your classes are easy to find
When creating your landing page or event page, ensure you’re writing copy with keywords that potential attendees may use when searching for fitness classes online. Consider using keyword tools that help you determine how many different websites or ads are using those keywords and competing to rank high on search pages. At the very least, ensure your pages are searchable so they can be found by an organic search.
Motivate previous attendees
Your best customers are the ones you already have. Send emails to previous attendees to remind them when new classes are coming up, and encourage them to share the information with their friends and family.
How to host a fitness class
A fitness class is an event, and for an event to be successful, attendees need to leave feeling like they’ve had a valuable experience they would be willing to pay for again. Make sure your hosting skills are on point so everyone wants to come back and work out with you again.
Leading in-person workout classes
When you’re hosting an in-person fitness class, you’re able to feed off the energy of your attendees and see how into the workout they are. Go above and beyond by staying organized and personable.
Plan, test, and practice your routine ahead of time so you’re prepared to both do the workout and lead the class. Arrive at your venue early to ensure any audio equipment you’re using is working and you have any exercise equipment you need.
Make your class stand out
When creating your class, consider your target audience, and tailor certain aspects to their tastes. You can design your routine around certain styles of music or particular artists. You can also target specific types of athletes with classes like “Yoga for Runners” or “Strength Training for Dancers.”
Keep the energy going
Trying out a new fitness class can be intimidating for some people. Do your best to be enthusiastic and encouraging so everyone feels comfortable and included. Making an effort to learn names and welcome new attendees demonstrates that you care about attendees’ experience.
End on a high
Most classes end with calming stretches, which is important, but keeping up your enthusiasm until attendees leave will help them remember the class. Don’t forget to thank everyone for coming and let them know when your next class will be.
How to host online fitness classes
Hosting a virtual fitness class has its own challenges, but with some practice and forethought, you can make sure it’s a rewarding experience for everyone.
Send reminders before the class begins
Ensure attendees make it to the class on time by sending them an email reminder and posting reminders on your social media pages.
Know your equipment
High-quality video and sound is the most critical part of any virtual event. You don’t need a huge budget to get started; you only need a smartphone or a laptop with a camera and a microphone. If you have room for improvement, consider a 1080p webcam and an external microphone to up your game. Choose a streaming platform that will allow your attendees to best engage in your class.
Create the perfect backdrop
If the background of your video is too busy, it will take the focus off of you and the workout. Try to find an area that is a blank canvas and add some subtle accents, like plants, to create visual interest without distracting viewers.
Interact with attendees
Audience participation is vital for both in-person and virtual classes. Engage your attendees by calling people by name, offering tips on their form, or providing encouragement. Check in during rest time and ask attendees how they’re feeling.
Managing your fitness class
Creating and maintaining a successful fitness class will depend on your work to manage these events behind the scenes.
Make sure you have a contingency plan for each class
Know what to do if a class attendee suffers an injury or has a medical emergency during your class. Have a backup plan if audio equipment fails, too. Planning ahead will ensure you know what steps to take in an unexpected situation.
Keep attendees in the loop
Life happens, but it’s important to inform your attendees if any changes are in store. Make sure you can contact attendees if the time or location of your class changes, and give them as much notice as possible. If you have to cancel a class, let attendees know if you are refunding any fees they may have paid or if they can transfer to another session.
Act on feedback
Listen to your attendees for suggestions on improving your classes and attracting more people to them. Consider sending out a survey via email to previous class attendees to get their feedback.
Ready to sweat?
If you’ve already got your routine down and your venue secured, it’s time to start promoting your fitness class. Post your event for free with Eventbrite.