"So what does it take to build a large and successful weightlifting club and following in the weightlifting world?" was a question inspired by a conversation with another coach. So I thought the answered deserved an article that could benefit other coaches and clubs across the USA. Why should you care what I say or think on this matter.... with four years of coaching athletes and a little more then a year as an official USAW Club West Chester Weightlifting is now the largest club in the Mid-Atlantic LWC and is one of the top fifteen largest clubs in the country.
I feel running a successful weightlifting club requires the following three things (1) actual coaching ability (both programming and technique) (2) ability to market and generate interest 3) having fun/unique personality and ability to relate to your athletes. Not everyone has all three things in equal amounts but as a coach and club owner its important to identify your own personal strengths and weaknesses and work on the areas you are weak. In Part 1 we are just going to focus on (2) your ability to market and generate interest.To grow a weightlifting club you have to figure out how to generate interest in weightlifting, and specifically your weightlifting club! How do you go about doing that. A good portion of generating interest relates back to your (1) coaching prowess and (3) your personality as a coach, but lets just focus on the business/marketing ideas. Coming from a math and engineering background I don't like long drawn out and verbose articles so I am going to give a couple key points that helped me grow, specifically on social media. One can also get help from SEO services Austin, to enhance their marketing strategies.
- You need to be using both Instagram and Facebook. Use Instagram to crosspost to Facebook to save yourself time. Instagram generally hits the age demographic from 13-30 best and Facebook works best for 25 and up.
- On Facebook always tag the people in any pictures or videos you post, if it is your younger lifters tag their parents. Tagging people enables their friends to see the videos and they may become interested for themselves or kids! Also these gets more "likes" on your videos. A little known fact, once someone likes your video you can then "Invite" them to like your weightlifting club page.
- On Instagram always use plenty of hashtags. Use hashtags in your comments to avoid cluttering your posts. Research popular weightlifting related hashtags this will allow your videos or pictures to come up for others when they "explore" on Instagram. Look at what other big and popular clubs are doing on their Instagram, its not rocket science and there are great examples and precedence to study and review! On instagram you can choose the location where you checkin when you post, choose the athletes school or as opposed to your gym, this can allow you to get more views and follows.
- Use the search by places feature on Instagram to actively look for potential athletes. What sort of places to look: CrossFit Gyms, Gymnastics Training Facilities, Cheerleading Training Facilities, Local Gyms, Schools, Sports Training Facilities, icore and other ninja warrior type gyms - just think of places where potential athletes would be. If you see anyone you can then follow them and like a couple of their posts. Often times then they will follow you back and as they see your content and weightlifting videos they may eventually reach out to you.
- New things I have been experimenting with are Facebook Live for meets and training sessions and Instagram live for training sessions. In the new year I am look to do some podcast or Facebook Live Q&A or interview type things. I am still flushing out these ideas.