We’re already bombarded by too much marketing, right? But…

Ads on buses, ads in school gyms, ads on urinals nowadays, for goodness sakes. Isn’t all the marketing and advertising a bit much sometimes?

Yes. But yesterday, I was nonetheless thinking of missed cross-promotional opportunities. See what an MBA does?! 🙂

Within half-a-block of one of the gyms I frequent, there’s a Jamba Juice. For those in the un-know, this is a chain that offers delightfully quick, healthy, refreshing, and yummy drinks… fruit and yogurt smoothies and the like… for about $4 each. Perfect for after a tough workout. And no, they didn’t just pay me to write that 🙂

So anyway, as I was enjoying a particularly delicious peanut butter / banana / chocolate / yogurt / fiber smoothie (can you tell I’m hungry tonight!?) after the gym at Jamba Juice yesterday, I wondered why I didn’t see more fellow gym folks there.

And that’s when something clicked. Wouldn’t it make sense for my gym (“24 Hour Fitness”) to do cross-promotions with Jamba Juice? Heck, one of the 24 Hour Fitness locations already has a Jamba Juice in-house; why haven’t the others made the connection?

* * *

At any gym, after all, you have a lot of rather health-conscious and thirsty people. At Jamba Juice, I’m sure one’d find lots of generally health-conscious folks who also like to (or at least tend to) exercise.

And yet, I see most of the 24 Hour Fitness branches dumbly trying to go about cross-selling other stuff directly. Buy this overpriced supplement here at the gym. Check out this paltry selection of (similarly overpriced) clothing, along with a rack of stuff we’ve had to discount because it’s collected dust for 18 months.

Wouldn’t it be smarter for my gym to offer $1 coupons to the Jamba Juice one block away, and a 10% coupon for the Nutrition/Vitamin store down the street? Heck, why not a Healthy Discounts card for members… get 10% off shoes, Powerbars, mineral water, etc…? Or, to keep it simpler, why not just cross-promote with a nearby store like Jamba Juice? Why try to (unsuccessfully) supply all of members’ needs directly in-house?

In return in my scenario, the stores featured in the discounts would then feature corresponding marketing initiatives inviting people to check out 24 Hour Fitness. Buying some new cross-trainers at Footlocker? Wear ’em in at some great kickboxing classes at 24 Hour Fitness with this free day pass and $50 off your initiation fee. Purchasing a smoothie? Now that you’ve fueled up, clock some miles on the bikes or relax in the hot tub at the 24 Hour Fitness down the block!

With such targeted cross-promotions, many folks would come out ahead, and of course, both 24 Hour Fitness and the participating partners would acquire quite a bit of awareness and likely new customers.

* * *

In contrast with the above-described cross-promotional ideas, intrusive marketing and advertising is annoying and often fruitless. All the damn mortgage telemarketing calls I regularly receive (during dinner hour, of course) are of no use to me, since I rent. And spamwise, my female roommate does NOT need a larger penis. Really.

Unfortunately, it’s crap like this that gives the rest of marketing and advertising a bad name, even when it’s creative, innovative, and thoughtfully targeted and executed… perhaps giving some large chains like 24 Hour Fitness cold-feet when it comes to extended marketing initiatives.

And that’s a shame. I’d much rather my gym throw some coupons at me than sic their uber-annoying sales droids at any guest I happen to bring through the door.

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