Marketing is most successful when praise comes from the customer, not the organization. For example, a bunch of great Yelp reviews are huge for a restaurant just like a friend’s referral is best for a doctor’s office. Parks and recreation agencies and YMCAs put on great programs and classes, and they help lots of people get in shape. That’s a winning formula for marketing!
Now it’s time to gather up those great success stories from your customers and use them in your marketing messages. Here are a few examples to get your creative juices flowing:
Oregon Live tells a story about 93-year-old Willa Asbjornsen who lives in Portand. Five years ago she was at an assisted living facility but didn’t feel she belonged. So she started working with a personal trainer at Portland Parks and Recreation and five years later lives with her daughter and continues to work out two to three times per week.
Takeaway: Do you have any stories like this? Ask your older customers for their stories and consider making a YouTube video or approaching the local press for some coverage.
Jason Little is the Recreation Manager for the City of Cottonwood in Arizona. After watching The Biggest Loser, Jason thought up the idea for ‘Looking Good Cottonwood’ – a community-wide weight loss program. The 1st Annual Looking Good Cottonwood had over 400 individuals participate. The contestants lost a combined total upwards of 3,000 pounds and the winner lost one third of his body weight.
Takeaway: If you hosts similar competitions or events, be sure to use the stats and quotes from participants in your marketing materials. Encourage participants to share their stories and invite their friends.
The YMCA of Honolulu put together a video of inspiring stories from their members. In one story, a father and husband had a heart attack, spent 6 weeks in a coma, and came back to full health by recovering at the YMCA.
Takeaway: You impact people like this every day. Ask for them to share their stories and collect them for your upcoming marketing plan.