Looking for gym promotion ideas that’ll boost revenue quickly? If you need to hit a monthly sales target, then well-timed promos can help get you over the line. But doing them too often can also devalue your brand, making people less likely to pay full price. So what’s the best approach?

In this article – we share the 8 most effective types of fitness promos plus 12 calendar-themed gym promotion ideas to pick and choose from…

We’re a specialist fitness marketing agency with 15+ years of industry experience, so we know first-hand what works (and what doesn’t!). We’ve helped gyms, fitness studios, and health clubs to successfully promote their businesses, so our marketing strategies are tried and tested.


Types Of Gym Promotions

Promotions can be a great way to introduce scarcity and encourage potential customers to sign up immediately. The best gym promotion ideas tend to follow one of the following eight formats…

  • Buy one get one free (BOGOF)
  • Refer a friend
  • Complimentary day or week trial
  • No joining or activation fee
  • Get something extra (e.g. gym bag, PT sessions, meal plan)
  • Free upgrade (e.g. from off-peak to peak)
  • Free bonus (e.g. personal training, supplements)
  • Discounts (check out our pricing article for more info)

These types of promos and gym specials are proven to be effective for health clubs and fitness studios. They’re the ones we recommend to our marketing clients when they want to drive immediate sales and boost revenue quickly.

Now let’s look at some specific promo ideas for gyms and fitness businesses…

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Fitness Marketing Ideas Mini-Guide

25 fitness marketing ideas for your gym, studio, or online business. Attract new members, get more PT clients & boost your fitness blog.

Calendar-Themed Gym Promotion Ideas

To help you get started, we’ve put together 12 calendar-themed gym promotion ideas that you can use in your fitness facility. Whether you want to drive more member referrals, increase loyalty, or get a few more leads, here are some effective marketing options

  • Jan – What makes you different?
  • Feb – Collect 10 stamps
  • Mar – Referrals on demand
  • Apr – De-stress
  • May – Summer body
  • Jun – Fresh fruit flyers
  • Jul – Boost Facebooks posts
  • Aug – Free friends
  • Sep – Autumn relaunch
  • Oct – Healthy habit challenge
  • Nov – Black Friday
  • Dec – Pay nothing until January

Let’s look at each of them and how they work in more detail…

List of Gym Promotion Ideas

JANUARY – What Makes You Different?

In terms of new year gym promotion ideas, the key is to differentiate your club. At this time of year, most people don’t need convincing about the importance of fitness – New Year’s resolutions and holiday guilt take care of that. So you just need to convince them to choose your gym over your competitors.

Differentiate Your Fitness Business

Focus your promotion on the aspects that make your fitness studio or health club different

Maybe it’s specific classes (yoga), facilities (such as a pool), or the brand values that differentiate you from others. Be super-focused on this with your messaging and you’ll have new members queuing up to join.

FEBRUARY – Collect 10 Stamps

After the craziness of January, there’s often a dip in attendance. Promos at this time should focus on keeping people coming back (especially those January newbies). You need to help people to establish a gym routine.

So learn from coffee shops, and give cards to members that get stamped every time they attend.

If they visit 10 times during the month, then reward them with a free drink, class, PT session, or swag. Consistent attendance in the first month is linked to longer retention, so incentivise them to make exercise a habit!

This is also an effective way to raise awareness of your other products like protein powder, smoothies, or personal training bundles. Rewarding them with little tasters of your paid goodies can be a great way to upsell them and generate secondary revenue.

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MARCH – Referrals On Demand

March sees another peak in demand for gym memberships, so take full advantage by running a referral promotion. The key is to make it easy for members to refer their friends, family, and colleagues.

One way to do this is by creating online vouchers that are free to access, so people can share them with friends and family. Offer a variety to appeal to different types of people and interests, such as…

  • Swim & Sauna Day For 2
  • Group PT Session
  • PT Starter Class Pass

Gym membership promotion ideas like this are the most effective way to grow an engaged community. People who come along with the friends or family are more likely to join and stay a member longer too. Referral offers generate high quality leads that are valuable to gyms so include them in your marketing plan on a regular basis.

APRIL – De-Stress

April is Stress Awareness Month, so why not promote all your wonderful de-stressing services.

  • Remind existing members about your sauna, spa, and pool facilities.
  • Encourage them to try your yoga, Pilates, or Tai Chi classes. 
  • Hold free relaxation workshops to attract new members and create a ‘de-stress’ package to offer them at the end.

You might also like… This extensive list of health and fitness awareness days so you can plan promos around other key dates in the wellness calendar.

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Health & Fitness Days Calendar
A calendar of health, fitness & nutrition awareness days for this year. Get access for free when you join our email list

MAY – Summer Body

If you’re in the Northern hemisphere, May is the ideal time to begin your ‘summer body’ themed promos. Starting at this time gives people enough time to actually see results before their beach break.

Running group fitness or weightloss challenges can help members reach their goals and build a community. Offering 6-8 week transformation programs is a proven way to get existing members re-engaged and attract new members to sign up.

Fitness Challenge Ideas List

JUNE – Fresh Fruit Flyers

If you want a creative way to promote your gym, then stop using printed flyers and hand out fresh fruit instead! Head down to a busy area that’s within walking distance of your gym club and give out fruits with complimentary passes tied to them.

Strawberries, peaches, melon, blueberries, passion fruit, cherries, and pineapple are all in season during June, which means they’ll be cheap to buy and irresistible to passers-by. It’s a fantastic guerrilla marketing tactic for gyms and fitness studios to attract new members.

Fitness Flyer Templates

JULY – Boost Social Media Posts

July sees another small peak in demand, so take full advantage by paying to boost your Facebook, Instagram or TikTok posts. This will multiply the reach and impact of anything you plan to promote.

It’s incredibly effective since you’re able to target your ideal client very precisely, at a time when you know there’s demand. Include a lead magnet or form to capture people’s contact details who show interest.

AUGUST – Free Friends

August is a traditionally quiet time of year for gyms since most people are exercising outdoors or away on holiday. This makes it the perfect time to boost attendance by giving members the opportunity to bring a friend along for free! The gym floor will likely be quieter than usual so there’ll be plenty of space for the extra guests.

The key to getting results from this promotion is collecting their contact info and following-up afterward. This is how you convert visiting friends into paying members. Make sure you have a process for capturing leads and selling memberships to them. Our marketing and lead generation roadmap can help you do this effectively.

Fitness Lead Generation Templates

SEPTEMBER – Autumn Relaunch

The end of September sees another small spike in demand for gym memberships. Use the change in seasons and increased interest as an opportunity to launch new products or services.

Offer free sessions, taster samples, and introductory pricing to encourage members to try something new. Bonus points if you can theme it around pumpkin spice lattes or changing leaves!

Gym Advertising Ideas Tile

OCTOBER – Healthy Habit Challenge

As colder weather and darker nights draw in, it’s the perfect time for members to renew their gym routines. Encourage this by running a 30-day challenge that’s designed to develop healthy habits.

Give them daily tasks via email, social media, and in-club instructions, so they get back into the swing of exercising consistently.

This will give your retention a boost and help keep people loyal throughout the upcoming holiday period. You can also run challenges that generate leads if that’s your priority instead.

Gym Membership Retention Strategies Tile

NOVEMBER – Black Friday

Black Friday has become one of the biggest shopping days of the year, with people expecting BIG discounts. It’s the one time when offering price promotions is universally acceptable and unlikely to devalue your brand.

So, consider offering a serious bargain that’ll draw in new members during the holiday lull. If you opt for discounting, then 15% is typically regarded as the ideal amount to make it attractive.

Alternatively you can also maintain your base pricing but offer extra bonuses on top. For example, members who commit to a full year up from could receive additional bonuses like PT sessions, meal plans, or sports massages.

DECEMBER – Pay Nothing Until January

The most effective Christmas gym promotion is to offer new members a free month. Why? Well, at this time of year people are often busy with Christmas prep so fitness takes a backseat. Promos that work well the rest of the year just don’t get the same cut-through in December.

But you can use this quiet time to fill your pipeline for next year. Do this by offering new members a free or discounted month. This reduces the risk for them and ensures you start the new year with a healthy crop of gym members.

Timing Your Gym Promos

So how often should you run gym promotions? Do you need different marketing campaigns on a monthly basis? Or should you just have special offers now and again?

When planning your promotions, it’s important to consider seasonal trends. By understanding fluctuations in demand, you can create well-timed (and therefore more effective) promos.

Tools like Google Trends can show how demand for gym memberships and personal training changes throughout the year. Unsurprisingly the biggest peak is at the beginning of January when people commit to New Year’s resolutions.

Increase Gym Revenue Tile

However there are also smaller peaks at the beginning of March, July, and end of September which you could take advantage of. It’s also worth noting that demand will vary between the northern and southern hemispheres, since the summer surge will be at different times.

Other things to consider are gym-related awareness days, religious holidays (like Christmas and Ramadan) and discount days (like Black Friday or China Single’s Day).

Fitness Awareness Days & Social Media Post Ideas
This Fitness Awareness Days Calendar is included in our Fitness Marketing Roadmap.

Depending on the type of holiday, you may want to develop a special offer or avoid promoting during that time entirely. Going against the grain can sometimes make you stand out more – just ask Patagonia, REI, and Pieminister.

As a rule of thumb, we recommend using promotions every 3 months to take advantage of trends or holidays. Spacing them out quarterly allows you to boost your sales at opportune moments – for example running gym membership promotions in advance of the financial year-end. But without overdoing them which can devalue your brand and train customers to expect a discount as standard.

The key to running effective gym promotions is to plan ahead. Identify your promo ideas at the start of the year so you can create the marketing materials in advance and communicate the plan to your team.

If you’re looking for other ways to promote your gym business then check out our list of fitness marketing ideas. It covers 25 of the best fitness marketing tactics that are proven to be effective for gyms!

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Fitness Marketing & Lead Generation Roadmap

Your All-in-One Toolkit to Attract, Engage & Convert More Clients

Get The Fitness Marketing Roadmap

Your All-in-One Toolkit to Attract, Engage, and Convert More Clients – Tailored Specifically for Fitness Businesses Like Yours!

The Fitness Marketing & Lead Generation Roadmap is a comprehensive resource designed for gyms, personal trainers, and online fitness businesses. It’s packed with video workshops, marketing templates, step-by-step guides, cheat sheets, and more. We cover:

  • Fitness Marketing Strategy: Build a solid foundation and plan for success.
  • Lead Generation: Attract more clients with effective tactics.
  • Social Media: Boost your online presence and engagement.
  • Email Marketing: Nurture leads and convert them into loyal customers.
  • Advertising & Promotion: Get your message out there efficiently.
  • Content Marketing: Create compelling content that resonates with your audience.
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Caroline @ Wellness Creative Co

Qualified personal trainer (BSc Sports Science) & nutritionist (MSc Human Nutrition) with 15+ years of fitness & wellness marketing experience working with global brands.