When gym members go past due, you can consider sending these cases to gym collections. Nonetheless, we find at Aldous & Associates that it works best for gyms to carry out first-party collections for around 90 days before escalating the case to third-party collections. Before sending a case to a gym collection company like Aldous, here are some best practices to keep in mind.
As soon as a member’s payment declines, reach out to them directly. This is good practice, as many members mean to pay but face an issue like a declined credit card, forgetting the due date, or a personal problem. Your gym has the chance to remind the person about the payment and give the opportunity to fix the problem in an understanding way, which provides positive customer service.
Reaching out quickly keeps the problem front of mind to encourage payment. It also alerts the person to a problem they may not have known existed. In this initial communication, include relevant information associated with the lack of payment, such as a declined credit card.
Have a consistent process that your gym follows with each member. Each person who goes delinquent should be treated the same, following a clearly laid-out plan that all relevant staff members carry out. It’s best for new members to be made aware of the avenues you will use to contact them (texts, phone calls, emails) and have them agree to it. Also, it is very helpful to capture consent for you and your third-party vendors to contact your members using all the methods mentioned in the signed agreement.
The consistency of the collections process also includes ongoing communication that escalates in importance. If the initial contact directly following the lack of payment was unsuccessful, your gym can send consistent follow-ups. You’ll keep the connection and the doorway open for the member to return.
It may be helpful to start with a reminder that the payment has not been made and then shift to persuasive tactics, such as reminding about gym benefits and talking about your gym’s frictionless process of getting reinstated as a member.
If the member continues to ignore your communication attempts or doesn’t follow through with making the payment, the last step is to give a final warning before sending the case to a third-party collections process. Here is relevant information to include with the notification:
- Communicate that you plan to send the person’s case to a third-party collections company if you do not receive a response or a payment.
- Make an offer to lower the balance if they sign up again.
- Let them know the deadline for the offer/date sent to collections.
- Consider including the information that collections can affect their credit score eventually.
Hopefully, following these best practices will get your gym results. If these efforts still fail to recoup the lost membership dues, that is when you can send the case to a gym collections company like Aldous & Associates.
You spent the time providing good customer service and giving members fair warning, so if there is a lack of response, it’s reasonable to move forward with third-party collections. At that point, we continue to work together with gyms, so your gym is encouraged to take the payment if a member comes directly to you after our team reaches out. Together, we can achieve the best results from best practices.
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