Exclusive: How Equinox is using data to win back rogue gym members

By Melissa Locker

One of the worst parts of going to the gym actually comes before you peel yourself off the couch, strap on some Spandex, and drag your body out of the house. The worst part of the gym begins before you even sign up for the gym, with the relentless marketing material flooding your inbox. And if you happen to quit a gym? The email onslaught is unforgiving and enough to make you never, ever sign on the dotted line at a gym again–and, instead, just burn calories by pogo sticking in the comfort of your home.

Equinox, the high-end fitness company for treadmill enthusiasts and luxury travel fans, wanted a new way to lure people back to their gyms without being overly aggressive, and sending content that would likely end up in would-be members’ junk folder. Equinox used Adobe Analytics to pore over offline and online data about former members and craft personalized content that would appeal to them–not just as potential gym prospects, but as actual human beings. It turns out basic things like making sure former members received email offers that were tailored to their actual fitness preferences (say, boxing instead of barre) made a huge difference in getting people to read the emails.

It’s not just wayward members either: Adobe’s data analysis helped Equinox market to individuals who had visited the Equinox website only once, as well as people who visited the website repeatedly but never quite signed up. First-time visitors were given information about the many benefits of Equinox, while repeat visitors were invited to stop by an Equinox location and have a look around at all the smiling, happy, sweaty people.

Personalizing marketing through data is working, too: Equinox recorded a 500% jump in conversion rates and an 80% jump in digital sales over Black Friday and Cyber Monday.


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