Why are Reciprocal Rights so important to Independent Clubs?
Prior to Anytime Fitness entering the Australian market reciprocal rights was not a major selling point in the fitness market. There were a number of limited national chains offering reciprocity, but to the average member the limited selection of clubs meant that being able to use all clubs was not a deciding factor in their choice of Clubs.
Anytime Fitness changed the game. The shear volume of Clubs distributed nationally meant that no matter where you traveled you were never far from from an Anytime Club. You could train with friends or family anywhere in Australia all on the same membership. You could go to the gym near work on weekdays and go to the one near home on weekends.
For a large proportion of the Club member population, this ability to train anywhere soon became a decisive factor in their choice of Gyms. And they have taken a large share of the market.
Advantages of Independents
Independent Clubs have always provided exceptional service to their communities.
There are an infinite variety of services offered by Independent facilities. No two offerings are identical and many have their own specializes: Yoga, Group Fitness, Pools, Squash, etc.
How to Compete on a level Playing Field
When 24 hour box clubs across Australia they had two distinct Selling points
Independents were unable to compete on a level playing field and many went out of business while others downsized. Over the last few years many Independents have introduced 24 hour access and reduced staffing levels to try to compete. Others have survived by focussing on significant offerings not provided by the BOX clubs, namely Group Fitness.
But despite this Independents are losing ground, despite providing higher levels of service.
Why? Because of the shear convenience of being a member of a large franchise chain allowing them to train anywhere.
What can Independents do? - Leveling the playing field
The AnyClub program has been designed to level the playing field and allow Independent clubs to compete directly with these BOX club franchises. In general they offer a higher level of service and greater variety than their competitors but they have not been able to compete on convenience.
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