Taking care of social media marketing for gyms is one of our most popular agency services. But we know that not everyone can afford to hire a marketing company, so we’re sharing our top tips in this guide.

In this article – we outline 10 effective gym social media ideas that have proven to be the most effective with our fitness marketing clients.

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 personal trainers to successfully promote their businesses using social media, so our marketing strategies are tried and tested.

Social media can be an invaluable marketing tool for gyms, health clubs, and fitness studios. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok can aid brand awareness, lead generation, and retention. With the right approach, social media marketing can make a real difference to your bottom line.

But many fitness businesses find social media a bit frustrating. They know it can be a powerful marketing tool but it’s just not getting results for them. Most fitness business owners don’t have the time to learn about the latest best practices, keep up with marketing trends, or create content from scratch daily.

So we’ve collated the most effective gym social media tactics into one handy resource. These ideas are proven to work with our fitness clients. So you can save time by avoiding the trial and error approach that most gyms take and skip straight to the strategies that actually work.

Social Media Content Bundle – 400+ Fitness Posts

10 Ways To Promote a Gym on Social Media

Here’s a quick overview of how to promote a gym on social media using proven strategies and marketing best practices…

  1. Post video content
  2. Run competitions & challenges
  3. Celebrate member achievements
  4. Share lead magnets
  5. Encourage interaction & engagement
  6. Drive shares & referrals
  7. Post educational content
  8. Invest in promoted posts
  9. Provide exclusive content
  10. Promote your audience (over your brand)

Now let’s dive into how to promote a gym on social media by exploring these ideas in more detail…

List of Gym Social Media Ideas
Save or pin this list of social media ideas for later.

Post Video Content

Incorporating videos into social media marketing is the most impactful strategy that gyms can use in 2024. Research shows that…

  • 66% of people think that short-form video is the most engaging type of social media content [Sprout Social].
  • Instagram reels have an 11x bigger reach than image posts [Statista].
  • 96% of people turn to videos to learn more about products or services [The Social Shepherd].
  • 87% of marketers say video has a direct, positive impact on sales [The Social Shepherd].

These stats show how vital video is for any gym’s social strategy. So what should you be creating videos about?

The key is to come up with video ideas (whether they’re reels, stories, or shorts) that’ll support your overall marketing goals.

So if you want to sell more memberships, then videos of gym tours, member success stories, and ones that address common objections will all work well. If your goal is to promote a new class or increase participation, then behind the scenes videos are a really effective option. And if boosting personal training sales is your aim, then exercise technique and client testimonial videos will help convince people of the benefits.

Here are some of the most effective video ideas for gyms to use on social media…

  • Exercise technique videos
  • Backstory videos
  • Fitness myth-busting videos
  • Objection handling videos
  • Behind-the-scenes videos
  • Top fitness tips
  • Customer case study videos
Fitness Instagram Growth Roadmap Hero LR

Fitness Instagram Growth Roadmap

Grow your fitness Instagram, increase engagement & generate leads.

Run Competitions & Challenges

Running a social media contest can be a powerful way to generate leads (as well as increase brand awareness).

The key to running a successful contest is to pick a relevant prize. It’s important to choose something that’ll be appealing to your gym’s specific target audience.

If you select something that’s generically appealing (like an iPad or Amazon vouchers) then you might attract a lot of entrants, but they won’t necessarily be interested in your products or services.

So think about what your ideal client or member would be interested in… a yoga weekend? A month of free training? Customised Nike trainers? Then collect email addresses from all the contest entrants, so that you can follow up with them afterward.

Wellness-Marketing-Instagram-Partnership-Example

You can also use competitions on social media to grow your following by partnering with complementary brands. Team up with other health and fitness businesses to give away prizes in return for follows and shares. This is what Fable Yoga, Sweaty Betty, Trip Drinks, and Farm Girl Cafe did in the above example.

Social marketing platforms like Hootsuite and Rafflecopter make it easy to run contests and collect emails. For more guidance on exactly how to run a successful contest, check out this handy article.

Fitness Challenge Ideas Tile

Celebrate Member Achievements

As a general rule, self-promotional content should be limited to a maximum of 20%. This means the remaining 80% should be educational, entertaining, and interesting.

A great way to make your fitness content less self-promotional is to switch the spotlight onto your members. Promote their stories, successes, and achievements – anything that makes them look good! Posts that highlight people achieving personal bests, winning challenges, or overcoming obstacles all work really well.

This type of content gets great engagement, lots of positive comments, and helps develop a supportive community. It also demonstrates the results that you help people achieve, and encourages others to stick with it over the long term. Success breeds success, so showcase your member achievements as much as possible.

QUICK TIP ⇒ Tag the person being featured so that their circles see it too.

Share Lead Magnets

Fitness-themed lead magnets make excellent social media posts for gyms and personal trainers. They provide value to your audience and people will often share them with their friends. They’re also a great way to capture email addresses and grow your client list.

All you need to do is create something of value, that people will hand over their email address for. Here are a few ideas to get you started…

  • Ebooks
  • Video courses
  • Challenges
  • Meal plans
  • Cheat sheets
  • Workout guides
  • Email courses
  • Shopping lists
  • Checklists
  • Recipe cards

If you make your lead magnet valuable enough, then people will naturally share it. You can also pay extra to ‘boost’ it with a Facebook ad or promote it as sponsored content on other social sites.

Marketing tools like Podia, Get Response, and Sumo make lead magnets easy to set up. Check out our fitness email opt-ins article for more lead magnet suggestions.

Fitness Lead Magnet Ideas Pinterest

Encourage Interaction & Engagement

Although it’s super-simple, this is a surprisingly common mistake. Sometimes we can be so focused on promoting our own content, that we forget the ‘social’ aspect of social media. But interaction is the key to building an engaged community, and this is a crucial ingredient to keeping members loyal.

To encourage a two-way conversation, post open questions that require more than YES/NO answers. You can ask followers about their weekend plans, favourite healthy snack, or how they motivate themselves to workout consistently. Then reply to every single comment with a tailored response, so that you continue the conversation even further.

Social-Media-Engagement-Posts

The examples above are taken from our Social Media Strategy Bundle and should give you an idea of the types of questions you can ask.

This is a great way to crowd source content for your blog too. By collating people’s answers you can quickly create ‘top tips’ posts and ‘how to’ articles that address members’ needs. It also gives you an insight into what people are struggling with, so you can tailor your offering to help them.

QUICK TIP ⇒ End your posts with a call to action that encourages interaction, such as ‘double tap if you agree’.

Quick polls and surveys are a great way to invite feedback and encourage more two-way interaction. The key to making this approach effective is to share results afterward – keep people in the loop about how you took action on their feedback.

By demonstrating that you value your members’ opinions, they’ll feel more connected to your business and invested in your brand.

Ask followers for their opinion and start a conversation. You could discuss fitness-related topics like their training preferences, ask for business feedback, or get them to vote for your next blog topic.

QUICK TIP ⇒ Always respond to comments promptly, and announce the results of any polls. When followers see that you’re actively engaging, it’ll encourage them to share their opinions too.

Social Media For Fitness Professionals Tile

Drive Shares & Referrals

Referrals tap into the holy grail of marketing… word of mouth. There’s nothing people trust more than a recommendation from a friend. So if you can get people sharing your digital marketing content, you’re A) increasing your exposure to a wider circle of clients, and B) improving your credibility too.

The simplest step is often overlooked… we neglect to ask. This is easily solved by adding a call to action at the end of posts such as ‘share with someone who’ll appreciate this’ or ‘share with friends who might like to try this’.

The next level is to incentivise referrals. On social media, this means making your audience look helpful, as well as giving them something in return. You could create online vouchers for your followers to share with friends and family, such as…

  • Swim & Sauna Day For 2
  • Group PT Session
  • PT Starter Class Pass
  • Buy One Get One Free On Smoothies

Post Educational Content

You can also use your gym social media posts to help members achieve their goals. You might only get to see them for a couple of hours in your facility – that’s not much time to cover all the aspects of a healthy lifestyle. But social platforms give you more channels to provide additional education and support.

So make educational content a key component of your gym social media strategy. Creating posts on correct exercise technique, nutritional tips, or answering FAQs can all help your members achieve their goals faster. And if they feel supported and see results, then they’re far less likely to cancel their membership.

QUICK TIP ⇒ Think about what your members struggle with most, and then create content around that topic.

Example Fitness Social Media Posts

Invest in Promoted Posts

Investing in advertising will multiply the reach and impact of anything you promote. It’s incredibly effective since you’re able to target your ideal client very precisely.

If you’re using Facebook, you can choose to boost posts, such as the ideas we’ve listed above. This will increase the number of people who see or interact with them in their news feeds.

Alternatively, you can create adverts with a specific offer, that links to an email capture form. The key here is to establish a follow-up process for the leads you collect.

One option is to set up an email auto-responder, that sends a series of emails to nurture your prospects. Alternatively, you can follow up directly by phone or email, ideally within 24 hours of them submitting their details.

Gym Advertising Ideas Tile

Provide Exclusive Content

Another way to encourage loyalty is to make your followers feel part of something exclusive. Give them special access or behind the scenes sneak peeks that aren’t available to the general public. Offer tangible benefits or perks to being part of your tribe.

Some gyms create private Facebook groups that are accessible to members only. You can run Q&A sessions, exclusive monthly challenges, or member-only competitions and giveaways.

QUICK TIP ⇒ Ensure your gym social media provides additional value and supports your members so they see it as a membership benefit.

Personal Trainer Facebook Marketing Tile
Social Media Content Bundle – 400+ Fitness Posts

Promote Your Audience (Over Your Brand)

People love to share social media posts that make them look good. So help them look good! Promote their stories, successes, and achievements – anything that makes them look smart, successful, funny, or helpful.

Posts about people achieving personal bests, winning challenges, or overcoming obstacles, all work really well. Your followers will be much more likely to share this type of content, especially if they know the person being referred to.

Social Media Engagement Gym Example

This social media post by East Park Gym is a great example of showcasing members and celebrating their achievements. It also demonstrates the community they’ve built and is likely to entice new members who want to be a part of that.

The key to this approach is to always include a ‘call to action’ that links back to your business.

So end your post with a phrase like ‘join the challenge’ or ‘get involved here’, plus a link back to your own website.

Social Media Marketing for Gyms

Our gym social media services make it easy to drive leads, engagement, and loyalty for your business. We offer ready-made post bundles that’ll save you time and effort (ideal for busy gym operators and studio owners).

Fitness Instagram Growth Roadmap Hero LR

Fitness Instagram Growth Roadmap

Grow your fitness Instagram, increase engagement & generate leads.

We also offer bespoke social media marketing for fitness businesses. Our consulting services include an audit of existing content, competitor analysis, and custom strategy development. Benefit from our marketing agency expertise and receive ready-made social posts that are aligned with your business goals.

If you’re looking for more tips on social media for gyms and fitness centres, then you might like our articles on motivational Instagram posts and fitness hashtags. You can also join our email list and follow us on Instagram for regular tips and tricks.

Gym Social Media Ideas Pinterest

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.