Sports facilities enrich communities and enhance the quality of life. But behind the scenes, they’re not the easiest business to manage. Sports facility owners have to deal with hefty staff costs, lighting, maintenance, and so on. Not to mention, long off-peak hours can cause serious dents on cash flow.
Fortunately, there are several initiatives you can try to ensure your sports center’s survival. Here are four ways to maximize revenue and attract more patrons.
Sponsors can bring big money to your facility. In return, you may have to hang their posters in corridors, bathrooms, entrances, and the sides and back of your courts and pitches. You might also give them ad space on your facility’s website, newsletters, and social media channels.
That said, be selective about accepting sponsorships. Only take support from brands or organizations that you feel reflect your own values and personality.
Upgrade your amenities
Sports and fitness enthusiasts are drawn to establishments with modern equipment and interiors. Disinfect sticky basketball floors, replace worn-out backboards, and provide comfortable seating. Trade squeaky treadmills and rusty dumbbells for the latest models. Consider a bowling center modernization plan complete with synthetic lanes and new scoring software.
Also, consider the current needs of your community. It’s possible that your community now prefers basketball games to soccer matches. Or the demand for yoga classes has increased while aerobics has gone down. Upgrade your facility based on local preferences, and you’ll attract new patrons in no time.
Open an in-house cafe
Food may not be your passion, but it can undoubtedly fund your facility.
Keeping a simple menu of fries, soda, burgers, and coffee is a great way to start for people. You can even take it up a notch by installing an in-house cafe. Consider taking a healthier approach by offering nutritious sandwiches, low-carb snacks, and high-protein meals for health-conscious members. The more variety you are offering and the more visible and easily accessible it is to passing footfall, the more sales you will land.
Of course, running a cafe will come with its own challenges. You’ll need to hire efficient personnel, purchase necessary equipment, and have the ability to stock the cafe with fresh ingredients. You also need to optimize your processes to avoid long queues and waiting times. It may seem like a major endeavor, but a cafe can also bring massive returns.
Maximize off-peak hours
Filling up your facility during the slower hours or days of the week requires creative thinking and transparent budgeting.
Collaborate with nearby schools and offer educational opportunities like fitness seminars or class coaching sessions. You can even offer to host their sports day. During weekday mornings, offer tai chi or running classes for retirees, graveyard workers, and stay-at-home parents. You can also rent out space to do pilates, yoga, or Zumba.
These special activities will be dependent on the neighborhood you live in. Take a look at your area’s demographics and tailor your offerings based on their needs. Advertise your off-peak activities through your website, newsletters, and table-tents. Consider handing out flyers and buying paid ads to target local customers better.
Running a sports facility requires patience and an unwavering ability to adapt. Just like with any business, it takes trial and error before you finally hit a strategy that works. If old marketing tactics are not as impactful anymore, then it’s time to try something new.