Wellbridge

National Fitness Club’s Digital Strategy Whipped into Shape

Wellbridge Athletic Clubs AdWords and SEO Campaign

Challenge/
Context

For more than three decades, Wellbridge has successfully managed fitness properties across the country. In the state of Colorado, they are well known for their Colorado Athletic Club brand. With an intimate knowledge of boutique, full-service spas and residential athletic clubs, to large-scale, employee- only corporate fitness centers, they continue to define the fitness industry’s best practices.

An Outdated Brand and Website In Need of a Refresh

The Wellbridge team approached Buhv Designs in a transitional phase of their company, as they were looking to improve their branding and online presence to stay current with the ever-changing fitness marketing. The website scope of work included the corporate site and 19 individual club sites. Buhv Designs was asked to improve the user experience and streamline the sales funnel for new memberships, reorganize the existing site structure, and to make the new experience mobile responsive.

How to Drive Quality Leads and Boost Memberships?

Wellbridge Athletic Clubs were spending an excessive amount of money on a paid
advertising strategy that struggled to increase club lead count. Buhv Designs was
tasked with an overhaul of the current Google Adwords campaigns, and needed
to drive better quality leads to the Wellbridge clubs through a combined effort in
advertising and SEO strategy.

desktop computer showing a website

Target
Audience

Finding the Demographic

Wellbridge currently operates 19 athletic clubs across the United States, each offering its own unique set of amenities, fitness offerings, and family programs. Additionally, individual club location plays a role in the demographics of each club and what the club offers. Clubs located in urban centers trend toward younger audiences with higher interest in group fitness classes whereas clubs located in suburban areas trend toward older audiences with families and higher interests in leagues, special programs, and traditional sports activities. Needless to say each club required individual audience segmentation and demographic based bid adjustments at the ad group level for optimal performance. The only consistent attribute in audience targeting was household income, where high income dimensions perform the best.

Website on iphone X

Process

Design

To refresh the dated look and feel of the Wellbridge brand, the Buhv team focused on simple yet elegant improvements to the color palette, fonts, and imagery used throughout the site. In order to elevate the community aspect of each fitness club, emphasis was placed on club members interacting with each other and with trainers. The new style guide set the stage for homepage and internal page mock-ups. Finally, wireframes were created to outline the structure of all pages of the club and corporate sites. Buhv utilized a modular approach to the page layouts and content organization in order to create efficiencies in the development phase of the project.

Content

As the branding and design work was underway, the content team at Buhv was simultaneously working on a content overhaul for all 19 clubs and the corporate website. Localized content was added to provide SEO value, and descriptions of individual club offerings were expanded upon to optimize for keywords. All efforts were aligned under the newly refined voice and tone for the Wellbridge brand.

Development

In order to create the desired network of club websites and connect them to the parent corporate site, the Buhv Designs team executed the build within WordPress Multisite. These websites needed to integrate with a proprietary BOSS API for member account information, the fitness class scheduling calendar MotionVibe, and the Wellbridge blog “Fit Like That.” Social accounts for each club location were integrated to drive user engagement. Finally, a club locator tool was built for the corporate site to direct users to explore the club offerings nearest them. The website builds also featured enhancements such as a custom header video, unique slider modules, and a promotional pop-up bar.

Paid Advertising

The paid advertising strategy implemented by Buhv was aimed at accomplishing two goals: reduce spend and increase lead conversions. In the rebuild of the Google Ads campaign, Buhv reduced the amount of broad match keywords being used, created additional segmentation of target keywords, focused geographic targeting, implemented the use of dedicated landing pages, and added display remarketing to the ad mix. Ongoing optimization efforts included promotional updates to ads, bid adjustments, keyword target adjustments, ad rotation scheduling, and A/B testing of landing pages.

Website on Mobile Device

Results

Let the Numbers Do the Talking

The launch of the new website garnered immediate positive feedback from the Wellbridge marketing team, the Wellbridge sales staff, and club members across the nation. The newly responsive site created a 33% increase in mobile traffic across all clubs.

Within the first 3 months of the new SEO and Paid strategy being live, Wellbridge attracted more qualified leads with a 27% increase in organic search rankings and a 39% Increase in maps rankings. Not only were more potential members finding the clubs in ads, maps, and Google search, but the improved strategy also created a 52% increase in ad conversion rate. Alongside a 6% reduction in overall spend, Wellbridge is saw an approximate 2% lift in club member joins in 2018. That’s less money… making more money!

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