From concept to upkeep, a Miami gym distributer with New York roots is turning the individual needs of its customers into long-term partnerships.
Gym Source, the largest dealer of fitness equipment in the world is more than just a storefront offering the latest high tech gyms. Its full service expertise begins long before any purchase is made.
“Our customers value the end to end experience,” said Tom Richard, Chief Marketing Executive and Southeast Regional Director. “Customers bring us an idea about turning space in their home to a gym space, or need advice on the best way to put in the interior design and functionality. This allows a personal fitness design for every customer. We design it, build it, customize it and service it for years. It’s a decades long relationship that starts with an idea or a goal. It’s all these intangibles [that make the business model work].”
The 80-year old company does very little advertising and continues to thrive on word-of-mouth, said Richard. While its roster of high-net worth and celebrity clientele is unmatched in the industry, the company is also an economical choice for those workout enthusiasts looking for long-term value.
“A lot of people think [buying gym equipment] is out of their reach. Now you can finance a gym in your home and customize the solutions you want. It’s no more than a gym membership.”
All its equipment is covered under warranty and there are no out of pocket expenses.
“It’s so drastically different than anything else you can buy,” said Richard, adding that his staff painstakingly covers every detail of concern with clients, from planning through purchase and service. “Our design and service experts have a culmination of expertise that is an overwhelming amount of value. When people experience it they find it’s one of the best kept secrets in the area.”
Headquartered in New York, Gym Source began its presence in Miami ten years ago in Pinecrest. According to Richard, the company owned by UM Holdings is undergoing an aggressive expansion plan over the next 24 months and reopened near Dadeland Mall on S. Dixie Highway after studying the potential of the local marketplace.
“We want to be near the customers that typically benefitted from our presence,” he said. “We’ve reopened in Dadeland because that community is underserved with a lot of potential with fitness-minded customers.”
Unlike other fitness equipment companies, Gym Source doesn’t hide behind a website but instead offers information online to help customers prepare for their shopping experience, Richard said, adding live chatting online with equipment experts brings that expertise directly to the customer.
“Its buyer beware out there,” Richard warned about competitors more concerned with sales than building longer-term relationships with their customers. “We are brick and mortar− every single transaction is our foundation.”
The Gym Source customer base is typically 40 to 60 years old, and while cardio equipment remains one of the biggest buying trends, there’s been a lot of business resulting from “a return of the basics,” he said. “Strength [training] is making a comeback. People realize they need strength if they want to make a difference in their health. A lot of us live in an increasingly fantasized world to contrast the standard 9 to 5 world.”
To muscle out the competition, Gym Source buys in volume and has years of experience to draw on, Richard said.
He advises people on the fence about getting in shape to try before they buy, and to make an educated decision before making the plunge.
“Choose a plan that speaks to you,” he said. “We had one customer buy a high-end treadmill for $40 a month with a warranty and free in home service.”
Customers often don’t know they need a part or service until they actually need it. Some come to Gym Source after they’ve been burned.
“Come and learn from us before you buy. In the age of the Internet, if you can’t try it physically don’t buy it. If you are willing to invest in it in person that will eliminate 90 percent of mistakes you can make—many companies drop it on your curb and say good luck.”
For more information about Gym Source, call (888) 656-7374 or visit gymsource.com