Build member loyalty with UGC

May 27, 2024 | Marketing sports centres

In the competitive world of fitness centres, member loyalty is critical to success. But how can you keep your members engaged and happy for the long term? One effective strategy that is gaining popularity is User Generated Content (UGC). In this article, we will explore how you can use UGC to increase the loyalty of your sports centre’s members.


What is the UGC strategy?

User Generated Content (UGC) refers to content, such as photos, videos, reviews and social media posts, created by the users of a service or product themselves. In the context of a sports centre, this includes images and videos of users participating in activities, sharing their fitness achievements and demonstrating their commitment to an active lifestyle.


Benefits of UGC for member loyalty in your sports centre

UGC offers a number of significant benefits for the loyalty of a sports centre’s members. Some of these benefits include:

  • Increased engagement: When members contribute their own content, they feel more connected to the sports centre and are more inclined to actively participate in activities and events.
  • Community building: The UGC fosters a sense of community among members, as they can see and share each other’s experiences, which strengthens the bonds between them and with the sports centre.
  • Brand trust: User-generated content is perceived as more authentic than content created by the venue itself, which increases members’ trust in the venue.
  • Long-term retention: By increasing the commitment and emotional connection of members to the sports centre, UGC increases long-term retention.


Strategies to incentivise user content generation

How can you encourage your members to create and share content? Here are some effective strategies:

  • Competitions and challenges: Organise photo or video competitions in which members can participate by showcasing their achievements or participation in events at the sports centre.
  • Specific hashtags: Create a unique hashtag for your sports centre and encourage members to use it when sharing your content on social media. This will make it easier to find and follow UGC.
  • Incentives: Offer incentives, such as discounts on memberships or products, to members who contribute high quality UGC.


Integration of UGC into the marketing strategy

UGC can be a powerful tool to enhance your marketing strategy. Here are some ways to integrate it:

  • Website: Highlight the UGC on your website, showcasing photos and member testimonials to increase credibility and appeal.
  • Social media: Share UGC on your social media profiles to showcase the real experience of your members and encourage community participation.
  • Email campaigns: Include user-generated content in your email campaigns to keep your members engaged and motivated.
  • Paid ads: Use UGC in your paid ads to increase the relevance and authenticity of your messages.


Examples of strategy

The sports centre “ActiveLife” launched a weekly challenge on its social media called the “Challenge of the week”. Each week, the sports centre proposed a new challenge related to fitness or wellness, such as running a certain distance, completing a specific exercise routine or trying a new training class.

Members of the sports centre were invited to participate in the challenge and share their achievements on social media using the hashtag #ActiveLifeChallenge. To encourage participation, weekly prizes were offered to members who demonstrated the most commitment and creativity in completing the challenge.

The UGC generated through this weekly challenge not only inspired other members to participate, but also attracted the attention of potential new customers who were interested in joining the sports centre to participate in the challenges and be part of an active and engaged community.

This example demonstrates how a sports centre can use UGC to increase member engagement, create a sense of community and attract new customers through fun and motivating social media challenges. 


Measuring and monitoring impact

It is important to measure the success of your UGC strategy and track the impact on member loyalty. Some key metrics to look at include social media engagement, customer retention rate and new member referrals.

To evaluate the effectiveness of your UGC strategy and understand its impact on member engagement, it is crucial to track and use relevant metrics. Some ways to measure and monitor the impact of UGC include:

  • Engagement on social media: Analyse metrics on your social media profiles, such as likes, comments, shares and mentions. Increased interaction with user-generated content can indicate greater engagement and emotional connection of members with your venue.
  • Customer retention rate: Watch for changes in customer retention rate after implementing your UGC strategy. Higher retention of existing members may be an indicator that UGC is contributing to strengthening community ties and improving customer satisfaction.
  • New member referrals: Analyse whether there is an increase in new member referrals from existing members. Authentic and positive UGC can motivate members to share their experiences with friends and family, which can result in organic growth of the customer base.
  • Surveys and feedback: Conduct regular surveys or solicit feedback from your members to understand how they perceive and respond to user-generated content. This will give you valuable information about what works well and what can be improved in your UGC strategy.

By combining this data with your business and member retention objectives, you will be able to more accurately assess the impact of UGC and make strategic adjustments as needed to optimise results. Remember that measurement and ongoing monitoring are critical to the long-term success of your UGC strategy at your venue.



User Generated Content (UGC) can be a powerful tool for increasing member loyalty at your sports centre. By engaging members and showcasing their real-life experiences, you can strengthen community ties, increase brand trust and improve long-term retention.

And another tool to improve the retention rate in your sports centre is a loyalty programme. In this ebook you will find the fundamental keys to create a loyalty plan that will help you improve your retention rate. Download it for free now!

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