Want to build a profitable Facebook ad campaign for your gym without wasting your money?
Knowing what’s working successfully for other gyms and what’s not working will help you to quickly create a successful campaign.
In this post, you’re going to see some of the best Facebook ad examples for gyms and fitness centers. But you’ll also see what not to do.
You’ll also discover…
- The one thing you should always include in the text of your ad
- A psychology trick to motivate people to claim your free trial offer
- What you should and shouldn’t put in your ad images
World Gym Video Ad
What I like about this ad is they have made it clear from the beginning of the ad copy exactly what they’re offering – a free 5-day trial.
Facebook users are drawn to clear and compelling offers. They will stop and look closer when they see a clear offer that interests them. But if there is any uncertainty to what is being offered, they will likely keep scrolling.
Whether you’re offering a free trial, discounted memberships or a 6 week challenge, you should make it very clear in your ad what the offer is.
The video and text also give readers a feel for what it would be like training in this gym. Just from reading the text, you can imagine yourself training across the 3 levels of the gym and then going to the sauna after your workout.
This is a technique used by some of the best copywriters in the world when writing sales letters. They will use descriptive language that makes the reader imagine what it would be like to use the product being sold.
Think of it as an instant mental trial inside the reader’s mind. It’s extremely powerful.
How You Can Apply This In Your Ads
Firstly, make it extremely clear in your ad exactly what you’re offering. And also make it clear how to claim the offer. Spell it out, step by step.
Eg. “To claim your free 14 day trial, click below and complete the form on our website.”
Also, try to give people a mental image of what it would be like training in your gym. You can do this by creating a video of the gym. But it can be even more powerful to use descriptive language in the text so readers can use their imagination.
RBT Transformation Program Ad
Result Based Training has been running these same type of ads for years. Which is a good sign that they’re working.
Getting people’s attention on Facebook is one of the major challenges for advertisers on the platform. With so many distractions, it’s difficult to make someone stop and read your ad.
One effective way to capture attention is by calling out a specific group of people in your ad.
The text in this ad begins with “North Melbourne Ladies 40-49, this Transformation Program Is For YOU.”
If you’re a 43 year old female living in North Melbourne, this ad is more likely to capture your attention than the typical generic Facebook ad. Especially if you’re interested in getting fit or losing weight.
This ad is also a great example of how to use scarcity in your ads. Scarcity has been used by advertisers in all industries for hundreds of years because it’s so powerful.
In this ad, they simply say “HURRY LIMITED SPOTS.” Earlier in the text, they also state that they are looking for “9 ladies who are ready to change their lives…”
Scarcity is so powerful because people have a fear of missing out. Fear of loss is a much more powerful motivator than potential gain.
The one thing I don’t like in this ad is the image. It looks too much like a stock image and it doesn’t tell me anything about what the offer is.
In the next example, you will see an ad promoting a very similar offer but with a much better image.
How To Apply This In Your Ads
When setting up your ad, you can select targeting options for age, location and gender. With that targeting in place, you can then use the text in your ad to specifically call out the group of people you’re targeting.
Scarcity can be applied to your Facebook ads in several ways. If you’re promoting a challenge or free trial offer, then you can limit the number of spots available like RBT has done. You can also use time-based scarcity. For example, “our free trial offer closes in 5 days.”
Motion Fitness 28 Day Challenge
As with the RBT ad, this gym is smart to call out a particular target group in the opening line of their text.
But compared to the RBT ad, I would expect the image used in this ad to be much more effective. This is because the text used in the image makes it clear what’s on offer.
When scrolling through Facebook, it’s generally the image part of the ad that will capture people’s attention first. If your image doesn’t generate interest, there is no guarantee people will bother reading the text in your ad.
Some marketing gurus will advise you not to use text in your Facebook ad images. They suggest that using text in your ads will make it look too much like an ad.
Yes, it’s true that a text image will trigger some people’s advertising defences. Many of them will skip past your ad.
For that reason, you may find that the Cost Per Click (CPC) on your ad is higher when you use text in your images. But when you use the right text in your image, you will usually find your conversion rate is much higher when people do click your ad.
Ads with text in the image get more attention from the right people. The ad above is very likely to attract attention from females living in West Belconnen who are interested in fitness.
Because you’re getting more attention from the right people, you will usually find your cost per lead ends up being much lower. And you’re getting better quality leads.
How To Apply This In Your Ads
Use the images in your Facebook ads to your advantage. Take a good image and add text to the image.
The text in your image should make it clear what you’re offering. And it can also call out a specific audience, as Motion Fitness has done in this ad.
Anytime Fitness (Bad Example)
This one is an example of what you shouldn’t do in your Facebook ads.
They have at least included an offer in the image text – Free 7 Day Trial. But besides that, there are a lot of problems with this ad…
It’s unclear how someone should claim the 7 day trial. The text says ‘Register online or drop by the office.‘ But where do you register online? There is no link to a registration form.
When you promote an offer through Facebook Ads, you want to make it as simple as possible for people to claim the offer. Generally, this means linking the ad to a simple form on your website where people enter their details.
Unlike the previous two ads, there is no scarcity in this ad. The ad could be far more effective if they simply included a deadline to claim the free trial. Eg. “Don’t miss out on your 7 day free trial. This offer ends November 14th.”
The next problem is this ad doesn’t give the reader any reasons why Anytime Fitness Taber is the best gym in the area. Besides the office hours, you really know nothing about this gym from reading the ad.
You should use your ad as an opportunity to highlight all of the top reasons why someone should join your gym…
Is your gym the top rated gym in the area on Google? Mention that.
Do you have a sauna? Mention that.
Is there lots of free parking. Mention that.
Do you offer month to month, no lock in contract memberships? Mention that.
Do new members receive a free personal training session? Mention that.
Even if your local competitors offer the same things, you should still promote these benefits in your ads.
Finally, the ad graphic looks like it was designed in Microsoft Paint in five minutes. A graphic like this can impact someone’s overall impression of the quality of the business.
You don’t need to have a professionally designed graphic in your ad. But something that looks too amateurish can reflect badly on your business. The same applies to the design of your website, which I talk about in this article.
If I lived in Arvada, I would want to train at this gym after seeing this ad.
CreateU Gym has created an excellent video for this ad with the gym owner giving a tour of the gym. If the ad is still active when you read this, you can watch the video yourself here.
For most people, joining a gym isn’t just about who offers the lowest price or the location. People want to train somewhere they enjoy. They want to train in an environment that makes them feel good.
In this video, you can see how modern the gym looks. All of the equipment is new. Everything looks clean.
If you have a gym that members love to train in. Especially one that is visually appealing – a video tour in your Facebook ad can really help to win over potential members.
I also give CreateU Gym bonus points for having the gym owner in the video. It gives the ad a more personal feel.
People who view the ad will feel like they already know Brendan, the gym founder. This will make them more comfortable going into the gym for a trial. And if Brendan is there when they go for a trial, it will be a familiar face.
How To Apply This In Your Ads
Create a video tour of your gym to use in your Facebook Ads. You can hire a local videographer if you want a more professional looking video like this one. But this could also be done just with a smartphone camera.
Bonus Tip: Using Facebook video ads, you can create retargeting audiences based on the percentage of the ad a person has viewed.
For example, you can create an audience of people who viewed at least 75% of your video. And then run different ads (or even the same ad) to those people. If someone has viewed 75% of your video, it’s likely that they’re at least somewhat interested in your gym.
Showing them one more ad might be all it takes to get them over the line and register for a trial at your gym. You can learn how to retarget video viewers on the Facebook website here.
Thrive Community Fitness (Bad Example)
This may not be the worst ad I’ve ever seen on Facebook but there is a lot that this gym could do better…
They have at least made some sort of offer in this ad. But it’s not clear and compelling.
Nobody is going to get excited about a $10 enrollment fee. Compare that to the offer made in the World Gym example…
Get started with a $10 enrollment fee or claim a free 5-day trial. Which would you choose?
And how much is the enrollment fee normally? If the ad stated that the enrollment fee is usually $100 and this month only it’s just $10, then this could actually be a decent ad.
Aside from the uninspiring offer, the ad doesn’t include anything to get viewers excited about joining Thrive Community Fitness.
In the book Scientific Advertising by famous copywriter Claude Hopkins, he’s gives one excellent piece of advice…
When writing your ads, think like you would if you were trying to sell someone in person.
If you were approaching strangers in a local shopping centre trying to sell gym memberships, what would you tell them about your gym?
For the best chance of a sale, you’d want to tell them about all the best things about your gym. Maybe the 24-hour access. The community feel. The brand new equipment.
That’s what should go in your Facebook ad!
Fernwood Everton Park
Facebook users love giveaways. If done properly, they can be an extremely effective way to generate leads for your gym.
The ad copy in this ad from Fernwood Fitness is clear and straight to the point. Users can quickly see what is being offered.
Similar to the Create U ad example, they have also included a video in this ad that provides a tour of the gym.
Personally, I have found still image graphics to perform better than videos when running a giveaway. If I were running a gym giveaway promotion on Facebook, I would use a graphic similar to this one…
The graphic you use in your Facebook Ad is your best opportunity to catch someone’s attention. Especially if you use clear and bold text in the graphic like above.
I would also recommend using the ad copy to create a sense of urgency. All competitions will have a deadline for entries. This should be made clear in the ad copy to generate urgency.
If you do run a giveaway like this one, be sure to have a plan to follow up with everyone who enters the competition.
If you’re collecting phone numbers as part of the giveaway, you can then call entrants and invite them in for a trial.
Of course, not everyone will answer their phone and some people will give you fake phone numbers. Have an automated digital follow up in place to reach these people.
Create a sequence of follow up emails to go out to entrants after the competition closes. Use these emails to provide people with more information about your gym and include a call to action.
The emails and phone numbers you collect during the giveaway are extremely valuable. Yes, there will be some freebie seekers in any giveaway you run. But there will also be people who are genuinely hot leads for your gym. Don’t let that go to waste.
Facebook Ads can be one of the best ways to attract new members to your gym. When you consider the potential lifetime value of a new member, Facebook Ads can have a very high return on investment.
But it’s also possible to quickly burn money on your campaign if you get it wrong.
By following the tips in this article, you can quickly develop a profitable Facebook ad campaign without wasting your money.
Want to take your gym Facebook Ads to the next level? Book a 60-minute consultation to discuss your ads. Learn more here.