The Judgement Free Generation: Planet Fitness and Boys & Girls Clubs of America and STOMP Out Bullying
In 2015, Planet Fitness had hit a pivotal moment in its growth. Poised to go public and about to open its 1,000th club, it had helped more than 7 million people find the courage to join a gym. Through its non-intimidating, Judgement Free Zone and No Gymtimidation policies, the Company saw firsthand the amazing things that were possible when people felt like they belonged.
Planet Fitness had found new footing as an industry leader, and with it, a deepened sense of responsibility. Key stakeholders felt the time was right to expand Planet Fitness’ impact beyond its clubs and into its communities and embarked on identifying a national cause focus.
As a franchise organization, Planet Fitness franchisees were passionate about wide-ranging causes and served a broad consumer target – the diverse 80% of the population who did not belong to a gym so a signature cause would need to strike a unifying chord to succeed.
In 2016, Planet Fitness launched The Judgement Free Generation, a pro-kindness, anti-bullying initiative and the brand’s first-ever national cause effort. Supported by leadership and franchisees alike, the team had successfully identified a brand-aligned issue that it had a unique and authentic license to tackle. In addition, the topic resonated with all people— whether bullied, bystander or bully, this issue has touched everyone.
The goals were to:
- Raise $500,000 for the cause Reach 100% of staff, franchisees and clubs with campaign messaging
- Acquire at least the number of new members to raise the target donation and
- Engage 10,000 existing members to give to the cause.
Planet Fitness partnered with Boys and Girls Clubs of America and STOMP Out Bullying to develop a bullying prevention toolkit and training curriculum for BGCA staff on fostering a climate of acceptance.
In November, a week-long cause promotion was held across 1,200+ clubs with the $10 club registration fee benefitting JFG partners. Members were also able to “buy” a pinup for $1 to support the effort. Planet Fitness supported the effort through kick-off trainings and events; written tools; a recognition program; strong visual identity and supporting materials, paid advertising and media relations as well as video content.
As a result, the campaign exceeded all goals and raised $1.13 million for partners; reached 780 BGCA staff in 264 clubs as well as 47 teen leaders. In addition, they exceeded the new membership goal by more than 50% and increased the number of new members by 56% during the promotion.