February 15, 2022
Creating a successful fitness Instagram page has become a real balancing act and a full-time job in itself. More often than not Instagram fitness channels run out of ideas and end up being repetitive which leads to losing followers. To avoid these pitfalls we have gone over a number of ideas and examples which will help you achieve marketing success and keep your audience constantly interested. But first, you need to define your core targets.
This is probably the most important part of your Instagram account and you need to constantly check that your content is staying within the goals and objectives that you have set yourself. If not your content will end up being irrelevant to your core audience and you will lose followers as they will lose interest.
Your most likely core goal is to get more clients so you want to target followers that you can convert into clients. As we will see later on, you can offer your followers to make them interested in the service you are providing. But it is important to keep within the framework of your goals. For example, if gaining clients is your core goal then selling fitness supplements or athlete wear won’t help with that objective and just confuse your followers.
The same goes for endorsement and sponsorship. If you’re an athlete looking for endorsement and want to get noticed by top brands your goal is to get as many global followers. It is no longer about offering personal training to local clients. In fact, you will even want to get some brands to sponsor your page for your target audience.
This doesn’t mean that you should totally exclude the other objectives but just be careful to keep the core goal always in focus in the majority of your posts. Let’s look at some ideas that you can use for your posts.
Below is a bullet point list of content ideas for your fitness marketing strategy that will really help you get started. We will consider some of these examples in further detail later on:
While these ideas might not all be adapted to what you are aiming for you should find that most of them are useful to you such as posting about your workout routine.
A common pitfall that some fitness accounts fall into is posting about being fit rather than showing followers how to get fit. Remember, you are not selling a fashion or lifestyle image as an end product but rather how to achieve that image.
Show a person how they can eat the food you eat and get the results you want or the exercise regimen they are trying. So, focus your efforts on showing people how you can get results and keep the focus where it belongs: on fitness.
Your target audience isn’t following you because of your looks. They want to see the work that goes on behind the scenes to achieve the fitness level you have reached.
Before and after photos are your best form of marketing. They prove that the clients you train are actually seeing progress with your personal coaching.
The best way to do this is to use Instagram’s carousel feature, but don’t simply use the arrows to move between photos and stories. You want to be creating a story that shows the client’s progress and your connection to them.
The carousels can be used to reveal what you are working on and what your training has helped you with. If you’re using photos, use them in the form that works best for you.
This is where you can provide additional training or insight to your clients. You want the carousel to start with a simple photo of the person and then move to a picture of their life. Instead of simply telling your story using the arrow keys, add a description or a timeline that describes the journey your client has been on. Add a photo to show the progress you’ve made together.
You want your trainees to see progress because they are learning from you, not you from them, and you will continue to progress through your career. By telling the story of your journey and how you have helped the other person become better, the trainee will be inspired and motivated to continue on with you in your coaching program. The end result will be that it will be much easier for them to identify with one of your clients and see some tangible results.
Every fitness Instagram page should include some meal plans, meal preps, and protein products which will be a way of reminding your followers to keep eating healthy while following your fitness routines and tips. You may want to show off different types of diets to appeal to a wider audience and not limit yourself to only the type of food that is appropriate for your training. Different people have different metabolisms so make sure to keep that in mind when you are posting meal plans.
However, no need to panic, you don’t need to cook up a nutritionist’s meal every time you make a meal for this type of content. No one can make up perfect meals all week long. Just make sure it fits in with your overall Instagram marketing strategy. You can use food images and tip-style graphics with hacks for high-protein meal ideas. To make it more interactive you can use short videos of you making meals and use workout and nutrition statistics as a base for offering advice.
Having a fitness Instagram page doesn’t necessarily mean that all your posts have to be about working out or being at the gym. Your followers will want to get a peek at what you do outside of your workout time. This will make you look a lot more relatable and add a human element to your brand. For example, you might want to share videos of your favorite food spots and events that you attend. This will help build engagement with your followers.
By diversifying your content you will promote the results of all the hard workouts. This will also help your followers to see where you are going, whether you’ve stayed in it or plateaued, or perhaps you just haven’t gotten to the point you would like yet in different contexts. As we all know one’s body looks very different during a workout when muscles are fully engaged so showing how you look during your downtime will put things in perspective.
However, remember to keep a good balance between your fitness and personal content. Generally, a 30/70 ratio (personal to fitness) works but ultimately it’s down to you and your brand strategy.
Let’s be realistic, coming up with new content is hard work so why not do what most big companies do which is re-use people’s fitness Instagram content (asking permission of course) and then tagging the original creator into the posting.
This has the advantage of providing a steady flow of different fitness Instagram content without having to actually create it yourself. By posting other people’s content they will be happy with you promoting their account and will create great user engagement with your audience. Don’t forget that you can also use other people’s videos in your feed.
While you might find you have too much content you could also use several online tools to schedule your posts which will help you keep posting at regular intervals to keep your page engaging.
Finding a good balance between content and promotions is very important because too much promotion and your Instagram account will come across as a spam selling channel that everyone hates. Content should be always the top priority about how to find the right balance.
This is where the 80/20 rules come into play and in practice means that every fifth post (20%) can be promotional. The other 4 posts should be centered around adding value to followers and be content-focused. If you include too many promotions your audience will feel that you are spamming them and they will hit the dreaded unfollow button. Always keep in mind why your followers decided to follow you in the first place.
To get your followers to comment, like, share or tag friends on your post you could offer the prize of a free trial of your personal training app or even partner up with a local business and offer a cool prize. It’s a nice little incentive to have, plus it will help you get more followers, which is a win-win situation. Also, it can get you a good review and feedback from other users.
It’s important to note that you can’t get positive feedback for all your comments and likes. You might get some positive reviews for some comments, however. Just be sure to keep your feedback positive, constructive, and not spammy. Keep your profile up to date with your workout log and photos.
And be patient. If your goal is to gain followers and fans, not just a bunch of likes, then you need to be careful about using social media to the fullest. In addition to your regular social networking activity, consider adding a blog.
As we mentioned previously your goal is to gain followers and clients with your Instagram account. Another successful marketing strategy that is often overlooked is developing collaborations with fitness brands.
There’s a common misconception that it is too hard to get noticed by fitness brands. When you’re starting out, simply draw up a list of the fitness brands that you like most. This can be clothes, health supplements, training equipment but also locations and events that you attend to do your workout. Then you can simply purchase their products and integrate them into your workouts.
Every time you post some content make sure to take the brands that you are using. The brand will be notified that you have tagged them and there is a high chance that they will repost your content to their account thanks to the free advertising you are giving them.
The added value here is immense for you because it is very likely that the brand has a lot more followers than you so you will get lots of exposure thanks to this.
With time you will be able to develop a relationship with specific brands. You might be able to collaborate by offering promotional discounts, give-aways and might even be able to get paid for advertising from the brand which will be an additional source of revenue for you.
Your audience will be following your page because of the great fitness content you provide because you have great deals on fitness brands. Then your followers will share these deals with their friends giving you more exposure.
At some point, you will reach the stage where you get recognized by the social media manager of that brand or another. Together you will create a buzz by offering a discount. Your post should be focused on why you love the brand and what makes it unique compared to other products.
Most often, most of your content will come from either your house or the gym but this might look a bit repetitive. A good way to mix it up and make your content more interesting is to seek out local fitness events or challenges for influencers.
There will be several additional influencer marketing benefits to doing this. Firstly it will be a great place to network with the local fitness community and find influencers who you connect with and plan to work with in the future.
Every event is sponsored by a gym or brand owner so you’ll be able to connect with them face to face to discuss collaborations, possible sponsorships and even become a brand ambassador.
By meeting the sponsors in person you’ll develop a relationship with them and stand out from the rest who are just blasting out messages on Instagram asking for sponsorship.
You should look for someone with a huge following or a big following for your certain influencer marketing campaign. Your Instagram page should meet the standards of your influencer who is currently working as a brand on Instagram. Select somebody for your niche and don’t choose only purely by popularity.
By reaching out to multiple fitness influencers in your business you will be able to collaborate and gain traction with your Instagram users. This has two benefits.
First, it will add diversity to your page. Always keep in mind that followers get bored with always seeing the same content on social media. By collaborating with other fitness influencers you will mix up your image and video posts by adding another trainer to the mix and using each other’s training locations.
By collaborating with another fitness influencer you will both benefit as you will get those creative juices flowing by exchanging content ideas such as fun workout routines, giveaways, behind-the-scenes videos and simply having fun and trying new things together.
Secondly, you will be able to cross-post to each others’ Instagram feed and pages which means that you will gain from being exposed to their followers and they will be exposed to yours.
Keep in mind that it’s always good to make sure that you are not necessarily directly competing with each other but even if you are having the same amount of followers it will mean that you are on an equal playing field.
Broadcasting live on Instagram will make your account stand out from the crowd as it sends out a notification to your followers that something is happening right now and creates FOMO (the fear of missing out).
It will create a much more dynamic interaction with your Instagram users as they will feel motivated by the rhythm of your workouts. Remember to save your Instagram live to your story.
Another under-used feature is Instagram’s IGTV channel. IGTV is a piece of real estate on your Instagram page where all your IGTV videos will live separately from your regular Instagram bio or story highlights. With IGTV you are creating something similar to a Youtube channel since it was created by Instagram to compete with that platform.
IGTV will enable you to create much more structured video content while not being limited to the 15 second time constraint that Instagram stories have. While you might prefer to put these more extensive videos on Youtube don’t forget to put them on IGTV as you will be able to channel your followers from your IG page to your Youtube page, therefore, gaining more followers on that platform as well.
Try and make a fitness Instagram handle that is following these rules: avoid fitness Instagram pages that have numbers after it or ones with symbols after it such as the Yogafit 3. Many are confusing these accounts and result in members taking the wrong username.
At the end of the day, you need to increase the visibility of your Instagram account. Consistent quality branding ensures that the followers you want to attract know this is a professional account and may carry good quality content to engage with. You might know your username and some variation of PT by name as an instructor in the course.
Use the best Instagram fitness hashtags in your posts and remember where to place them. Most people put them in the text with the images they share but you can also add them to your profile bio or even Instagram story.
There are several tools available online which can generate hashtags for you that you can add to your Instagram posts. Simply put the main keyword into the Instagram hashtag generator whether it be motivation, exercise and gym, healthy eating and weight loss, running, bodybuilding, yoga, CrossFit or sports and the tool will give you the 30 most used hashtags with this keyword. This will help increase the visibility of your brand
Discover more fitness influencer hashtags here.
To keep your audience hooked on your page and build up anticipation for the next posts a good strategy is to add some consistency and certainty to your account posting. By programming social media content you effectively tell your followers what to expect from your account. By scheduling weekly or daily content that will inform, educate and engage your audience you will give your followers the feeling they are actually working out with you.
Popular themed Instagram story ideas for fitness brands include for example:
With innovative themed content that you post regularly, you will see new users flock to your profile even without the need for active promotion. You are effectively setting the expectation and delivering it while leaving a long-lasting impression and keeping yourself in the mind of your followers.
There are some things that you will definitely want to set up on your Instagram and account and these apply to all business accounts in general:
As we have seen, the key to a successful Instagram fitness account is to have a clearly defined goal and build Instagram content around this objective. Creating innovative content requires thinking outside the box but as we have seen there are many different ways to add content without necessarily making your own.
This will maintain user engagement and help you build a sustainable business with a steady flow of customers by using the many tools that Instagram has to offer with hashtags, feeds, and posts with well-timed images and stories that will keep your audience coming back.
Fitness, Influencer, Personal Training Business