I get asked this question a lot…
How would you start a successful fitness business if you were just starting over.
Not how I would start one today with all the resources now at my disposal, but to rewind the clock and with all the knowledge (from all the painful mistakes I’ve made) how would I start out today (currently 2017) with limited resources?
The good news is, it’s cheaper and easier than ever. You have so much direct control over things that we never used to have, you can control expenses better than ever before and new customers are just a few clicks away!
In this video I share with your some of my thoughts of exactly how I would do it, I hope this gives you some direction.
What do you think? Did this video give you some ideas?
One of the things I’ve found is; that it’s easy to keep gathering information, it can be a pretty scary thing to actually go out and do it.
Something that seemed so simple suddenly becomes scary, or a lot more complicated.
Our industry is built on the fact that as people, as human beings, we need each other; we need support, community, confidence and accountability.
I love helping people, I love helping fitness professionals help more people, maybe I can help you.
From time to time I take on a few private coaching clients, if after watching the video above, if you’re serious about taking big action in your business maybe I can help you. Quite often I help fitness pros add $5000, 10,000, $15,000 a month in additional revenue in 60-90 days. If you’d like to know more about private coaching send me a message here.
Competition is fierce these days, having a strong point of differentiation is continually growing to be more difficult. Our approach is simple, help our clients develop such strong relationships not only with us but with one another that they never want to leave!
This isn’t as difficult as you think, this video will explain some of the systematic practices that have helped us do this (and some just so happen to really enhance your online authority and make all of your digital marketing efforts work better!)
December is a tricky month for fitness entrepreneurs.
Even though as fitness professionals we know that by beginning an exercise program now, even if you’re eating all the delicious treats and having the occasional alcoholic beverages, that metabolically you’re far less likely to gain weight through the holidays.
Even though we know that, it’s a tough sell for our would be customer.
They are worried about paying for something they won’t use. They’re worried about the cost with so much additional expense coming through the holidays, and usually some time off work meaning small or missing paychecks.
And that’s my point, whether it’s December or January or any month of the year, and whether it’s a fitness business or something else you have to, as they say, condition yourself to, “walk a mile in their shoes.”
Always consider what your audience is feeling in that moment.
How can you make it easy for them to begin working out in December?
Truth is the only way is to mitigate the cost for them.
They will sporadically make time the best they can as long as they feel no anxiety about losing money or wasting money on services they haven’t used effectively.
After all isn’t that how you would feel?
Now I’m not talking about your existing, well-conditioned clients with committed and good habits, but new prospects in the month of December.
I would suggest in December you use a long trial promotion (like a 30 day trial) for your most aggressive price point, one that makes it feel as though they are getting the month almost for nothing.
In fact it can be creative and work well to run a “2 Months for the price of one” to lock them in for January too.
Many people will logically see, that they may work out a little in December, and now they’re all set for their New Year’s Resolution start and that they won’t need you after that (you and I know otherwise but we have to help them get started to see that.)
Early January is tricky for us in boutique and premium fitness, because the consumer still feels the financial constrains of the holidays, and even worse they’re governed by the “clean slate” mentality.
They are so inspired to workout on their own, and price sensitive that the inexpensive gym membership is much more appealing.
You know this to be true, as you’ve undoubtedly been faced with the “February Rush” of new clients that are frustrated and struggling. And the objection of, “well I don’t know if I can afford it because I just committed to this 2-year gym membership.”
So what do I suggest?
Here’s the action plan I’d recommend for marketing your fitness business through Christmas and into the New Year:
- Extremely low cost trial or 2 for 1 special in December using PPC and small but steady daily budget.
- Use a “Membership Giveaway” as a big budget optin through the holidays. Because of their price sensitive nature everyone would love to win and will trade an email, it’s a great chance to grow your list.
- Run a New Year’s 6-week challenge. This is my favourite time to run a 6-week challenge as it fits the discounted, aggressive, start and stop mentality of the consumer and gives me the time to show them the value and need to stay.
- Toward the end of January get your regular marketing calendar back on track and run a big budget short term trial to capitalize on the 91% of resolutioners that are now frustrated and looking for help.
Like any industry the fitness industry has ebbs and flows by the season, and coupled with unpredictable local and global economic factors those ebbs and flows will vary which is why you need a long-term plan. By having a set plan you can more effectively react when the plan doesn’t meet your expectation.
Wishing you the happiest of holiday seasons and much prosperity in the coming year.
There’s lots we can all learn about copywriting, in fact I’d argue you and I will spend our whole life learning. Just to be so-so copywriter’s at best.
We’re trainers, coaches, we understand the body. But we also understand people.
“Business” often intimidates us, sales is scary, and we negatively reinforce ourselves with fear thinking, “I don’t know what to do to get more clients.”
The curse I find is most of us way over think things when it comes to business. We’re worried about the right sale, the best offer to run at this time of year, what offer to run after we’ve done, this, this and that.
The list goes one.
Unfortunately it seems we wind up not seeing the forest for the trees.
Ever feel like that?
Here’s a little secret.
And you’re experiencing it right now in this blog post. What, huh?
I’ve found my best and most consistent marketing results by considering the following before I ever start writing the promotion.
What are they likely to be thinking about at this point in time?
Example. As I write this it’s November, two weeks before US Thanksgiving.
My American colleagues are likely thinking about the coming holiday, the food they’ll eat, the shopping and deals on Black Friday, and all the exciting times to come with Christmas.
In Canada we’re beginning to think about the coming Christmas holidays, those Christmas parties, the late nights, the great food, the “little black dress” and how out of shape we’re going to be come January.
So that’s what I’m going to write my promotion about.
The offer is the least important part, it’s more important to think about, “how will I connect with the reader?”
Can I get them nodding their head in agreement or thinking about how they relate?
Does this make sense to you?
If I can connect with them, if I can give them the feeling that I understand them or the feeling that I can peer into their mind I can get them to the next line.
It’s through this relationship on the page that I only hope to keep reinforcing in their own mind the thoughts they’ve already had.
That it’s time to change, it’s time to take control.
That it would feel great to look great in that “little black dress,” that by taking action now the New Year’s Resolution will stick and be a success for once.
The offer is the least important, if all of these other things make sense to them then the offer only needs to “fit” and feel good too.
Adding the elements of social proof, schedule information, directions, and of course a money back guarantee will further the cause but none of that matters if they don’t read past the first line.
You’re probably making the same mistakes a lot of fit pros make…
It’s 2015! Every fitness business should have a website. Yes, even if it is local! People may hear about you from word of mouth or recommendations but more often than not, they’re going to Google you!
If you don’t have a website you’re losing out on so, so much potential business that you may not even know ever existed.
A lot of fit pros have the wrong idea and mindset when it comes to their site.
Your website is a valuable business tool that should be used as a marketing avenue to collect leads for your email list.
It’s pretty simple.
So, before you go out and spend thousands of dollars on a website that has no real business value, learn about what a good website should contain first and then budget accordingly.
A good website should have the following things:
- A Clean interface and Easy Navigation
Conducting some research on what people are typically looking for when they search for a fitness business and making sure that this info is easily found and accessed can put you miles ahead of your competition.
- Your Story
Your story is a great way to let people know more about you. Personal training is a very, well, “personal” relationship between you and the client. So, explaining more about you, the type of person you are and your main values can allow the client to figure out whether you and they could be a good match. Personalities can often clash (as you’ll probably already know) and many clients are known to want to find out a lot about the trainer before contacting them.
- Your Results and the problem you’re trying to solve
Showing proof of the transformations of people that you have already done is a great form of social proof and is a really important factor when clients are looking for a trainer. If they can’t see any proof then it’s just a stranger’s word telling them that they will get results (to them anyway).
You need to outline the problem and then talk about how you go about solving it. If you want to take on clients that want to lose weight, then try to connect with them and get them “nodding their head” as you explain their problem… them come out with the solution – you!
- Lead Capture Forms
Lead capture forms are the next, extremely important asset to have on your site. If you can find a way to reconnect with a potential client (usually email) then you are well on your way to securing this person as a customer. If you don’t ask or provide a way 9 times out of 10, you’re not going to get.
- Call to action
Following on from the previous note, a call to action is essential. Whether it is to sign up via that lead capture form or to go ahead and call you / get in contact with you or potentially go in for the hard sale (not generally recommended) if you, for example, offer online services.
Facebook Pages – Something to note
A business Facebook page is not a website.
Nor is a twitter page, an instagram page or a pinterest account… or just anything social-media related.
If you don’t own it, it’s not yours and it’s not your website.
You don’t own it. Facebook can shut it down at any time without warning… although it doesn’t happen too much, owning your website gives you a valuable piece of real estate online something that cannot be taken away from you without reason or warning.
This is why it’s important that own the actual site.
Another Important Note about Website Ownership
Did you know that you might not own your website (technically?)
If you have used a website builder (such as Wix, Webs or Weebly, you do not technically own that website design) if the company went bust, you would lose your website as well as all of the SEO that you may have spent developing that site on search engines.
Although they are appealing and easy to create yourself, if you have the funds, it’s definitely worth getting a WordPress websites designed by a pro.
Why should I collect leads?
First, let’s define what a lead is.
A lead is someone who is potentially interested in your business.
As a Fit Pro, your job is to “sell” fitness.
Getting new leads for your business is important for your growth and profitability.
Lead generation is the first step into your sales funnel. A sales funnel consists of three parts: leads, prospects, and clients/customers.
Your fitness business should aim to collect as many leads as possible so that you can qualify them and turn them into prospects and ultimately into clients. Sales is the lifeblood of any business and for fit pros this isn’t any different.
However, make sure that you do aim for quality over quantity in a lot of cases. Although fitness is very generic and almost anyone can be “sold” fitness, it’s important to choose people that you actually want to work with.
For example, don’t go onto Facebook ads and target everyone in the America for your local training business! You need to find people locally, at an age range, gender and financial situation that you want to work with.
By doing this, you have more chances of, once a lead turns into a prospect, wanting to work with them and soon converting them into paying clients.
A fitness website should be set up to collect a website visitor’s contact information. It can be email, phone number, and address.
How do we collect vital potential customer information?
There are many ways to collect a user’s information. The simplest is to use a lead capture form such as the one here:
A lead capture form is a form designed to capture a visitor’s attention and then, contact information.
By strategically placing this form on your website you can start gathering leads.
If you’re using wordpress (recommended) you can use several plugins to help increase sign-ups and get more people’s attention.
Here’s a few that work well.
Thrive – A simple to use plugin that is designed capture leads and grow your email list. It has popups, slide in forms, and optin-forms.
OptinMonster– A popular lead generation capture software that can be used to build forms in minutes.
Every lead that comes in should be added to your email list.
In many cases, you will find that a prospect is not ready to buy from you yet, but if you get them to subscribe to your list you can get them to buy from you at a later time.
People need time.
They need to develop trust with you and emails are the best way to do this. Businesses, on average make a 400% ROI with email marketing. ON AVERAGE!
What’s the most visited part of any fitness / personal training site?
It’s usually the about me / us section.
If you take advantage and use this page to tell a compelling story, then you’re well on your way to converting more prospects into clients.
For example, if you specialize in weight loss, you can use this section to tell a story of one of your clients and how they overcame this problem and back it up with testimonials and before/after pictures.
Next, you should tell your story and provide valuable information on your experience and background.
If you experienced this same problem yourself and relate a story on how you overcame this problem.
This will significantly help you connect with your leads and ultimately, give your more sales!
What makes you stand out from all the other trainers in your city?
Why should a prospect buy from you?
What makes you different?
What makes you better?
Your website should include a section that answers these questions. This is typically included in the about me section, too.
Star – It should start with your client’s name and a background information on him/her. The idea here is for the client to be able to relate to this person (a previous client) on a 1-1 level. After all, they would have both been in the same situation.
Story – This part highlights their story and how they had a problem with their fitness. Each testimonial should be a different problem / story (if you generally work with clients with different problems) if you just specialize in weight-loss, make sure the problem is always, of course, weight-loss.
Solution – The final part should provide the solution and how the client used your training to overcome the problem they had.
Note: A good testimonial should always highlight the benefits they received by training with you. Make sure to add any extra bits and pieces that you did with them to make you stand out from the crowd.
Video testimonials work really well and can provide tremendous value to your site.
Before & After Pictures
A great example of before/after pictures is from Andy Morgan’s results page here. Before / after pictures provide proof of your training results. The best testimonials include before / after pictures and provide a story of your client. Selfies work really well due to the fact that your leads can often relate, once again, at the same level… it’s all about making these very down to earth and “normal” but at the same time, impressive.
Locations – Easy to find address on your site… you can even add this into the banner of your site (at the top where your logo goes) and this means that it can be seen from any page.
Contact Us – This section should include your contact information. Emails, telephone numbers, Skype ID’s and Social Media accounts are all good examples of this.
Why Use WordPress?
WordPress is the best content management form in the world.
If you’re starting a site, WordPress is a robust but cheap solution that has many powerful features.
Due to the fact that anyone can create a plugin there are thousands of developers creating all types of innovative plug-ins for you to easily add to your site….Wordpress is based all on code so the possibilities are practically endless.
If you’re starting out its content management software is the one that I recommend.
There’s a reason the top marketers in the world use WordPress and specifically the genesis theme. It’s simple to use and powerful enough to satisfy all your needs.
In order to capture a website visitor’s information we have to “bribe” them.
We do this with a lead magnet. A lead magnet is a free gift that is given to them once they opt in and provide you with their contact information.
An example of a lead magnet could be one of the following:
- Cooking Recipes
- Grocery Shopping Lists
- Video workouts
- Free Workout Report
It’s important that the free gift has meaning to your potential client and that it’s something they would want.
The free gift should capture the attention of the reader by providing a benefit rich headline.
- How do I provide a benefit rich headline?
- By finding out what your clients deepest problems and desires are.
You must ask yourself:
- Why do clients train with you?
- What problems are they trying to solve?
- Emotionally what is the reason they want to train?
- What myths do a lot of people have of trainers?
Once you know the answers, you can come up with a headline that addresses these types of questions.
A few good examples are below:
- Personal Trainer Secrets Finally Exposed
- 3 Myths of Fat Loss Finally Shattered
- Achieve Victory with these 5 Fat Loss Strategies
Call to Actions
Every lead-capture form must have a Call to Action button. A call to action button is used to provoke an action by the website visitor.
A call to action is absolutely vital if you want your leads to take action.
Online, people are very easily distracted and if what you want people to do is not crystal clear and easy with no technical bugs or issues, then the amount of people taking the action you want them to perform will decrease… simple.
Often, marketers will add more than one call to action on their website. You need to make sure that a call to action is visible, wherever the lead is on your site. And make sure this isn’t in just the one place.
I hope this gave you a good understanding of the most important elements of a good fitness website.
Most fit pros don’t have a clue of what makes a great site. Unfortunately, thousands of dollars are spent on unnecessary design elements that don’t have much value.
Now that you have the tools and knowledge to make sure you don’t make the same mistakes, go out there and create the best fitness website your city has seen.
Beat the competition, create an online presence and build your brand!
This guest post brought to you by Mauricio Cardenal; creator of The PT Advisor. He’s been helping fitness businesses grow online since 2014. He loves fitness and marketing and currently lives in Miami but is planning on taking a world tour in 2015.
As trainers we’re still people and as people we have certain behaviours that are consistent no matter what. First we live in an instant gratification world. Our clients are looking for a near instant solution and without immediate success coaching them becomes a lot more difficult. That need for instant gratification becomes a huge factor for trust with our clients.
I’ve learned that as entrepreneurs we’re much the same, and unfortunately for many entrepreneurs acknowledging this in an effort to keep it in balance can be their undoing.
You see most fitness professionals I talk to or begin coaching are always looking for that next big marketing idea, the one that will produce massive sales overnight. Even though this may be possible that immediate success, much like your fitness clients, has little bearing on long term success other than a sense of trust from mentor to client or a smile of satisfied instant gratification.
Much like the success of your fitness clients your success as an entrepreneur is about long-term sustainable practices that yield consistent and measurable results.
I know when I was still training clients I insisted that they weigh and measure their food and keep a food journal. I used to joke that we could diet on chicken and Froot Loops if we had to; but they had to measure and keep a journal. The point is that as trainers we know that consistency of behaviour is a key element to long-term fitness success for our clients, yet often we don’t adhere to the same logic within our businesses.
Since most immediately think of fitness marketing when we think of growing our businesses let’s start there. Every month you should have a consistency of behaviour when it comes to marketing, an example would be an online offer and an offline offer each month.
Your online offer might be a facebook campaign designed to generate new leads. That doesn’t mean it has to be the same offer each month. Specifically we’re discussing one online channel in which we can present an offer, though I do suggest focus on that one channel for a few consecutive months to be able to better measure the results. What I mean by that is it’s not enough to just run an offer, you must also be able to measure the results (just like fitness clients measuring their food.) I want to be able to determine how many people seen it, how many people interacted with it and ultimately how many people inquired further and/or bought something from me as a result.
Each month we have a goal of an average of 45 new qualified leads (20 is a good place to start for smaller operations) and we try to attain those through our online and offline efforts. Now if our goal for the month is 45 we try to attain 70% of that by mid-month so that if we’re behind we can spring into action to make up the difference with an immediate campaign, this is a great use for email marketing, and much like a short-term program change to stimulate a burst of results with a fitness client.
Most trainers I talk to tend to just be using this last component, realization dawns on them that they need to grow so they throw out a haphazard email campaign to make up an immediate shortfall. But think about what happens with your fitness clients that follow their nutrition plans really well until the weekend, on a larger scale this is much the same thing.
Long-term success in business is much more about consistency of behaviour than it is the next big sale. I believe this is why anyone can succeed, if you keep doing the same thing and measuring the results allowing you to fine tune for better and better performance (just like training) success is only a matter of time!
There are many ways that you could make more money in your business- like selling supplements, adding in more face-to-face programs, holding workshops, and creating higher-end packages. This said, all these money makers require your time, energy and effort to create, implement and manage.
The goal of running your own business is to create more time and financial freedom for yourself, not to be a slave to your business with little monetary gain to show for your efforts.
As you scroll through the Facebook newsfeed, you can’t help but feel a knot in the pit of your stomach as you read about all of the online programs being offered. These programs are bringing in extra profit without the business owner having to trade dollars for hours.
Sure, there is upfront work to be done but once it is done, it is done! The program brings in money on autopilot. If you want to stop trading dollars for hours by offering a nutrition program online then make sure to read this article right until the very end.
Lori Kennedy RHN is revealing the step-by-step formula (for free) on how to make money online. She’s created and launched half a dozen online programs and operates her multi-six figure company from her kitchen table. She knows a thing or two about how to make money on autopilot.
How to Sell A Program Online
By Lori Kennedy RHN
Creator of The Holistic Weight Management System
There are many courses and trainings you can take to learn how to create a program that is offered online but most don’t include how to sell the program.
It’s wonderful to have a done-for-you program but without fully understanding the formula to sell it or anything else online you are not to get a return on your investment. I want you to be able to grow your business and make more money without having to feel overwhelmed or stressed out because no one is buying your programs.
Follow these 7 steps to selling your program online.
Step 1: Identify who your ideal client or customer really is.
Remember that you can’t please everyone so think about who your program is really for. List the ideal client’s demographics and their major pain points. Create a profile of where they hang out online and offline so you can market directly to them.
Step 2: Create a social media marketing campaign.
Randomly posting on social media doesn’t lead to more clients or money in the bank. Craft a social media marketing plan using graphics, quotes and status updates that educates your ideal prospects on what you are offering and what’s in it for them. Always include a call to action in each post.
Step 3: Drive traffic (ideal prospects) to a lead capture page (AKA landing page/squeeze page/opt-in page).
Instead of sending traffic directly to a sales page you want to send prospects to a lead capture page that is offering them a piece of free content in exchange for their email address. This way you get the prospect from social media onto your email list where you can get them to know, trust and like you before pitching them on your program.
Step 4: Make use of the Thank You Page
The thank you page is a piece of prime real estate. You can add a welcome video on the thank you page and also social sharing buttons. When you use the thank you page to build rapport your email open rate will increase.
Step 5: Craft an email autoresponder campaign
Email marketing is the best way for the newly subscribed prospect to get to know, trust and like you. Email autoresponders are pre-written emails that are loaded into your email-marketing platform (like Aweber or Mail Chimp) that take the prospect through a multi-email sequence educating them on who you are, what you have to offer and the results you are promising them.
Step 6: Send email subscribers to your sales page using calls to action in each email
Each email should include a CTA or call to action. This is a results based phrase that tells the reader what to do next. When you don’t explicitly state the action you want your subscriber to take they will likely take no action at all.
Examples: Click here to order. Hit reply and let me know what you think about XYZ.
Step 7: Have a sales page with an irresistible offer
In each email autoresponder you are directing the reader to click on a link that takes them to your sales page. This is where you describe the program, share the benefits and what’s in it for the client and ask for the sale.
When you ask for the sale you should make the offer so compelling and irresistible that the client easily says YES. You can do this by adding bonuses or creating a limited offer that expires.
If you don’t have a done-for-you program to sell yet check this one out and then come back to follow the 7 steps to sell your program online.
I find most trainers are very afraid to spend money on marketing, yet when they do it’s often on high dollar, unpredictable, hard to measure things that seem to “feel right” or make sense at the time. Things like direct mail, print ads, billboards and flyers.
Personally I much prefer more direct response driven channels where I have nearly instantaneous measurability and control. Things like social media ads, pay per click, and email marketing.
But no matter the medium you choose there are some basic things you should understand:
- Leverage group programs. For group programs your cost of operation is generally near static whether you have one person or twenty five, which means that you can technically “afford” to discount a trial to any dollar amount you choose, even free, without occurring a flurry of additional cost.
- Realize you have to use compelling offers that appeal to the world’s desire for instantaneous gratification. Low cost and high value trials, the ability to book instantaneously, the enticement of an additional desirable gift if I take action right now.
- Combine with tangible items to drive up the cost of your service trials. Because we can’t see, touch or feel a service as a consumer it’s normal to have a hard time conceptualizing it’s value, but add a tangible hard good and that changes entirely.
- Understand the basic metrics of conversion. How many people see the ad, how many people take the next step (such as contacting you or leaving contact info), and finally how many people purchase your short-term offer as a result. All the people that see your ad divided by those that pay is your conversion rate, there’s not a right or wrong number, but the goal is to meet or beat your previous best each time you use that medium.
- Most importantly understand your upfront cost per lead. Take the total number of purchases and divide it by the total cost of the campaign. Any time you can breakeven or nearly breakeven you are doing great. It’s usually here that many people get squeamish, they cringe at the cost of the ad without realizing that when total sales are considered (and combined with group training in particular) each lead may have only cost a few dollars or in cases if only mediums may even have generated a small return.
Beyond the initial response of the promotion authors like Jay Abraham will get you thinking about the lifetime value of each client. So each one of those leads that moves from a trial to a long-term client brings tremendous value to your business.
Previously if the costs of marketing have frightened you, as you follow along here you might be starting to think that all this is suddenly a lot less scary. Well truth is, it is, at least conceptually.
The problem arises when you spend to the edge of your budget on that campaign that’s a zero performer; we’ve all had them. This is why I love most digital mediums so much. Most digital mediums allow you to progressively change budget and make nearly real time changes periodically through your campaign, talk about increasing your chances of success!
At the end of the day all you can do is make your best guess, try and try again, but the great news is with a little application of simple math and a basic understanding of the items above you can greatly reduce your margin of error.
Hope this helps, the more successful you are the greater hope that together we can change the world!
Think about that for a moment, as trainers it seems at first we’re all content to fight over the few people that are actively looking for services specifically like ours. At some point you realize there is a really big audience of people out there that have fears and problems relating to fitness and weight loss, they just don’t yet know that you could be the solution.
I’ve always felt that it was intelligent to be focusing on this much larger audience, knowing the more I did to catch their attention I’d naturally attract those people that were actively looking.
So how do we do that?
Well a wise mentor always told me, “be willing to give your best stuff away.” You must always be teaching people, providing real value to improve their lives and todays technology allows you to do that easier, better and faster than ever before.
The only downside is there is now a lot more content available. Here’s where it can be good to get a little tricky.
If you get a moment of inspiration write on it, or create a video, pour your heart into it because that true sincerity is key to your success. People will get to know you through your words and images and that will lead them to trust and ultimately asking for your help. Start to keep a list of the questions that you are regularly asked, these always make great content pieces. But here’s the icing on the cake…
What’s Dr. Oz talking about? How about MSNBC? Or maybe even your local newspaper or radio station?
These guys have really big audiences all the way to the local outlets in your community that have your local audiences (and often you’ll begin to notice they’re piggybacking off of the big network shows talking about the same thing they are.)
You need to follow suit, if you see something on the network shows or mainstream news media that you feel confident to express an opinion on you should, people are actively searching for more information on these topics right now. In fact you’re doing it too!
We all generally have the same trend of behaviours. Something catches our attention and we’ll go looking for more information, once we find that information then we’ll usually look at who the source is and decide whether we trust them if we do we may follow them more or if we find that their services may be something to assist with our problem we just might contact them.
If you’re looking to attract more clients this is just one of the ways I’d suggest you contribute to your own legend, don’t compete for the small number of people who are shopping you and your competitors right now, instead speak to that larger audience and everyone will come.
My focus on systems, planning and structure in addition to marketing and promotion has surely been what’s helped me establish myself as a fitness professional business mentor. Today however I want to remind you to get back to roots and be sure you’re keeping up with the simple things that every great trainer needs to do.
Recently I was attending a chiropractic appointment with my wife. I don’t know about you but over the years I’ve had dozens of clients who could really benefit from chiropractic care but were afraid to see one. Through the power of relationships I was able to direct a number to a trusted colleague who knew exactly what to expect when he was told they were referred by me. Together we were able to help many more people overcome physical obstacles that they may not have been able to achieve with the use of personal training alone.
While sitting in the chiropractic office waiting I looked to my left and noticed a framed photograph of three x-rays of a person’s neck. It had a caption that said “spinal correction of one patient.” It was nicely framed hanging on the wall and upon a closer look the change in the positioning of the vertebrae was miraculous. In fact as a fitness professional and massage therapist for almost 20 years I would have been reluctant to believe such a significant structural change was even possible. Seeing is believing!
We all know the power of social proof, or if we don’t we’ve certainly been told, yet still I find many fitness professionals really lack when it comes to before and after photos or powerful testimonials. I’m constantly surprised at how many fitness professionals are afraid to ask to take before photos, or struggle to get their clients to give powerful testimonials. Here’s some tips that may help.
1) Consider adding basic postural assessment. This gives you a good “reason” to take a front and side before photo of every client so you may review their posture with them.
2) If the client is uncomfortable with a before photo being taken ask them instead to find you a goal photo of what they wish to look like. In the coming weeks remind them that after the first session they are no longer the same person because of their decision to change. Once you gain their trust ask them to share with you an old photo from home so you may review their current progress with them.
3) Within the first week ask them, “what they love most about training? And what changes they feel?” At the very least write these things down, better sill have them say them on camera so you can add to them later making powerful testimonials.
4) When recording a testimonial with your client use emotional language, ask them what they feel is different, and remind them to be as specific as possible. Encourage them to tell a story.
5) Most important keep asking! Not everyone is comfortable at first but also remind them that something inspired them to make the difficult decision to inquire and get started, empower them to save a life by sharing their story with others and be proud!
My recent experience at the chiropractor was just a pleasant reminder that every industry benefits from social proof, and ours is often much to lax in this department. The continual display of new and recent social proof ensures the continual success of your business.