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5 email marketing tips to grow your online fitness business

Build Your Business
5 email marketing tips to grow your online fitness business
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Read time: 5min

If you’re working hard to promote your fitness business, you’ve probably used social media to drum up attention. Maybe you’ve run video ads on Instagram, conducted a giveaway on Facebook, or even put your own twist on a TikTok trend.

Social media marketing can do wonders, but it’s easy to forget about one particularly powerful form of marketing: email marketing. Let’s go over 5 email marketing tips to help grow your online fitness business. 

Wondering how your email marketing stacks up to other knowledge creators? Watch our video covering the 2021 Knowledge Creator Marketing Study:

Why your online fitness business needs email marketing

Email marketing seems almost archaic at this point. Sure, everyone still has an email, but isn’t it nearly useless in comparison to social media marketing? The short answer is no.

In 2019, HubSpot surveyed marketers and found that 78% of responders had seen an increase in email engagement over the previous year. That means that people are actually more responsive to email marketing than ever before.

If you’re not paying attention to email marketing, you’re missing out on a potentially huge audience and high levels of engagement.

But you have to do email marketing the right way. Just like any other marketing strategy, you have to get better over time.

Make sure your emails tick all the legal boxes

If you want to avoid penalties and ensure that you make it into your readers’ inboxes, you need to follow the relevant laws.


Your emails will have to be compliant with both CAN-SPAM and GDPR (if any of your email recipients are in Europe). Additionally, if you’re in Canada, your emails need to follow the Canada Anti-Spam Law (CASL).

These rules ensure that readers are protected from misleading or malicious tactics. For example, under CAN-SPAM, you must provide an easy opt-out for readers, and under GDPR, you need to provide information about data collection and use.

Chart with differences between international anti-spam and data protection laws


Again, this tip might seem obvious, but if your emails aren’t compliant, none of these other tips will be effective.

Personalize your emails

Personalization is nothing new, but thanks to technology, we now have more ways to personalize content than ever before. That’s especially true when it comes to email.

It’s also incredibly beneficial for fitness businesses specifically. Think of how you’d train someone in person. You’d be right there giving them 1-on-1 attention. Why should your emails be any different?

Kajabi makes it easy to do this with personalization features built into its email marketing software

Chart demonstrating that personalization increases email open rates by 26%


Personalizing your emails will not only increase your engagement but also create a meaningful connection between you and your readers. (Of course, you have to back that up with your email content.)

Here are three excellent ways to use personalization in your emails:

Use your name in the sender field 

Everyone knows that the subject line is important, but fewer people consider its counterpart: the sender field. Usually, companies will set up their emails so that the sender field tells the reader which company is emailing them.

Screenshot of an email with the business name in the sender field

That’s all well and good, but it’s not the most effective approach. Using your name in the sender field not only initiates a relationship with the reader but also boosts visibility. We’re wired to notice names, so when you scan your inbox, you notice emails that were sent from real people. That’s the psychology at work here.

You can even have the best of both worlds by using a format like [Name] from [Company].

Screenshot of an email with a person's name in the sender fiels

Use the recipient’s name in the email body 

All good email software will allow you to pull the recipient’s name and use it within the text of the email itself, and this is a powerful tool for email marketing.

Using the recipient’s first name dramatically increases the level of personalization. We notice our own names even more than we notice others’, so this is even more powerful than the previous tip.

Screenshot of a personalized email with the recipient addressed by name


This is especially useful if you use a conversational tone in your emails. It helps you sound way more casual and down to earth.

Create a dialogue with the reader. 

It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking of email as a one-way conversation from company to reader. Sometimes, this is appropriate, but there are other times when you might want to encourage people to reply to your emails.

For example, when someone first signs up to your list, you might want to get some additional info about them, and the best way to do this is to just ask them directly. So when someone signs up for your emails, they’ll get a welcome email that encourages them to respond and tell you a bit more about themselves.

You can also get valuable feedback by asking your email subscribers to complete a survey or questionnaire.

Screenshot of an email from Powergym asking for feedback


These are just a couple of ways you can use the two-way nature of email. You can conduct surveys, give away prizes, offer subscriber-only exclusives, and much more. 

Regularly share testimonials

Testimonials are important for any kind of product or service, but they’re especially important for fitness businesses.

After all, the people on your email list are signed up because they think your services will help them. Showing your readers that you’ve been able to help people meet their fitness goals will skyrocket your credibility and engagement.

Here are a few types of testimonials you can include in your emails:

Before and after.
The most popular type of fitness testimony, the before and after is a good way to help people visualize the type of progress they could make. Ideally, you should include pictures so people can see the results for themselves.

Before and after photo of a young man who has become more fit


The tricky part can be choosing people who have made a certain amount of progress that accurately represents the results you can provide. You may have one client who lost 200 pounds, but if your average client only loses about 75, then using that exceptional client may mislead people. (After all, you want to be honest in your emails and your marketing.)

The blurb 

If you want a shorter form testimonial, go for the blurb. While a before and after will usually be the subject of an entire email, blurbs can go just about anywhere.

Think of blurbs as spices. They’ll instantly add more flavor to any kind of email and improve the overall content. You can even toss one in a fairly standard email, and it’ll work.

The case study

Sometimes, you might want to go more in depth with a case study. This is a great opportunity to show people exactly how you’ve helped others in the past (and, thus, how you can help them in the future).

Since case studies are longer, you’ll usually link out to them from your email. This can increase your engagement and CTR even more than a before and after or a blurb can. Case studies also make for great lead magnets, especially if you have several success stories you can share.

Test different introductory offers

You might already have a special introductory deal in place. Maybe it’s a free consultation or $30 off the first session. Or maybe you don’t have one at all. Either way, the question remains: How do you know what kind of offer works best?

One solution is to use email marketing to split test different offers to see which one is most effective. This is a great method because it’s flexible and scalable. It doesn’t matter if you’re a solo coach or a small gym.

Email is arguably the best platform to test different introductory offers. You can easily track the level of engagement (open rate, CTR, etc.) and see how many people take you up on your offers. 

There’s a lot of room for creativity here. For example, you might see that one of your competitors is offering a free week at their gym. You can segment your email list, offer them the same thing, and see how effective it is.

Or you might offer a deliverable (like a PDF) that contains specific types of exercises or tips.

Screenshot of an email from Classpass asking the recipient to check out their blog


There are also many ways to segment your list. You might segment by age, fitness level, or previous engagement history, to name a few useful metrics. (You’ll probably even change the way you segment your lists, so a lot of experimentation is involved here!)

Create compelling email sequences

Maintaining an email list means consistently putting out great content and offers for your readers. You can do that with a single email, but the power of email marketing can exponentially increase if you use autoresponder sequences.

Email sequences can be particularly potent with new subscribers. Ideally, you want to email people right after they sign up to your list, and that’s where an autoresponder sequence comes in. You can set up a sequence to stay in contact with people who just signed up and send them your time-sensitive introductory offer.

Screenshot of an email from Beachbody welcoming the recipient to the program


You can also create sequences for people who don't take advantage of your introductory offer. Some people will purchase right after that offer, but many people won’t. You can retarget those people by creating a new email sequence that, for instance, contains another special offer

There are so many ways to use sequences to bolster your engagement and conversion rates. You can set up an abandon cart sequence for people who start their purchase but don’t finish (these sequences are really effective). Or you can make a sequence that re-engages subscribers who aren’t interacting with your emails (commonly known as “breakup” or “goodbye” emails). 

Kajabi makes all of this a breeze. You can manage everything from the Email Campaigns tab, and you get a lot of options to tweak. The software makes it easier than ever to manage automation, so you can trigger entire email sequences based on users taking specific actions. The best part? You don’t need any previous knowledge of email marketing.

Screenshot of the Kajabi email sequence tool

With Kajabi, you can get extremely targeted with your email marketing. (Check out the demo to see this in action along with some other pretty cool features.)

Take your fitness business to next level with email marketing

Email marketing is one of the most effective ways you can market your fitness business. By using these 5 tips in your own email marketing, you’ll optimize your chances of staying in your readers’ minds and eventually converting them.

And you don’t need to be an email marketing veteran to start using these tips today. It’s just like exercise––the more you do it, the better you’ll get at it.

With Kajabi, you get powerful email marketing to take your fitness business to the next level. You also get a website builder, product creator, payments and more. Go ahead and try Kajabi today

Eventually, you could also start your own successful podcast.

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