Constantly getting people over the hump of being intimidated by the word CrossFit can be one of the hardest challenges you face as a business owner. You have probably heard every excuse in the book, but typically they all stem from fear.
Holly Leonard, the owner of CrossFit Peabody in Massachusetts, explained to overcome the intimidation factor, they started a 6-Week Challenge program.
“The 6-Week Challenge is really an opportunity to market a program to a group of individuals that are scared by the word CrossFit,” said Leonard. “It’s comprehensive. It is kind of like taking six months of our programming and condensing it into six weeks.”
The course requires athletes to train at the Box three days a week, follow a structured nutrition program and keep track of their progress in a workbook the Coaches go through week by week. CrossFit Peabody runs a morning and evening class for the challenge and it averages upwards of 60 new athletes for every six-week program.
“The majority of people that initially join the program, they are looking to lose weight or lean out,” said Leonard. “Because we don’t shy away from marketing that we are a CrossFit gym, I would say that at least 50 percent of people that do the challenge have been on the fence about wanting to try CrossFit anyways, but it has always seemed intimidating. The way that we market it as a whole package seems really doable to them.”
Leonard also explained on average 40 percent rate of students move from the Six-Week Challenge into a general CrossFit membership. However, they don’t try to force CrossFit on the potential members right away.
“We aren’t hard selling them on CrossFit, saying after they complete this challenge they must do CrossFit,” said Leonard. “We make it so in the beginning that they feel it is a natural progression, and it’s more once they get through the halfway point of the program we start talking to them individually about what their next steps are.”
Each Coach is given a different time slot on various days so that if a student wants to try out different Coaches they can. This helps students get to know the personalities and teaching styles of each of the Coaches at CrossFit Peabody.
“I think that is where we win, is on that family aspect where everybody knows everybody,” said Leonard. “On the same regard too, if you are coming in and don’t know if you like a Coach’s style, which happens because not everyone is the same, you can still get a variety of Coaches at different times.”
The Box usually takes between a one to two week break between each of their Six-Week Challenges as a way to get the students who decide to join the general CrossFit class acclimated to their new schedule.
“It is hard in a short time to onboard well,” said Leonard. “We like to get that week or two as a little bit of a breather to make sure everybody that is coming into CrossFit is being serviced really well. We have been doing it for the past two years; it has been amazing for our gym.”