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Reply To: Hi there,I own a corporate a corporate boxing gym called Boxing Alley.  Some of you may know it as Monty is a huge part of it.When we went into lockdown all of our direct debit memberships were instantly placed on hold.  Since then I’ve managed to get around 20% of our members to voluntarily start up their membership payments again to support the gym.  Our lockdown strategy was to keep our community engaged by going online.  We are now running over 20 online boxing classes a week via zoom.We have had over 500 registrations and are actively training over 100 people a day.These classes are free for all however we do have a ‘donate’ PayPal button on our online webpage.My question is related to the donate button.  How hard should we be pushing this?  It is awkward asking for money…  Especially since we did get a lot of people into the classes by offering the for free.Cheers 

That’s an excellent question … with no easy answer.
On the “push hard” side is the fact that you probably need the money to keep the gym going until we emerge from the lock-down (whenever that will be), and to survive yourself. All of your customers will appreciate the online offering, and some will be in a position to pay, so you should encourage them to do so.
On the “softly softly” side is the fact that some of your customers will not be in a position to pay due to their own financial constraints. They will, however, appreciate your services being available AND free. Many companies with a service that can be offered online are choosing to make them available for free, counting on the goodwill generated to transition to paying customers when we recover.
Being too hard on the “Donate Now” message might make them feel bad about not being able to pay, and therefore reluctant to participate.
So the key is in your messaging. Point people clearly to the donate button, explain your rationale for requesting some payment, if possible, and stress that it is not required.
Good luck!