Wow, it feels like for the past few months all I’ve been doing on the blog is promoting stuff – either other people’s or my own …
It’s time to get back to what this blog is known for – the real world strategies it takes to get out of the gym and gain leverage as an independent Personal Trainer.
On thinking over the subject recently, I was able to boil it down to three things. This is what separates the winners from the losers in this business. You might think it’s over-simplified to condense it all into 3 strategies, but if you get them right, it’s hard to see how you could screw it up.
Each one comes from the categories of how to get new leads, how to convert them into clients, and how to keep them for high rates and a stream of ongoing referrals.
You can use them all right now to start and grow your training business, so let’s get right into it:
Killer Strategy #1: How To Make Your Website Perform At High Levels
Using the web is the strongest and cheapest way to get new training leads. That’s because most new clients will search for a trainer on the web. Add to that the fact that most trainers have no idea what they’re doing with their websites, and you see a nice window of opportunity for you to step-in and get established quickly. If you learn to get it right, you can be the trainer everyone calls.
Getting your site to convert at high levels is actually pretty easy. You don’t need to pretend you’re a multimillion dollar business – all you have to do is give visitors to your site the information they’re looking for.
And what is it they’re looking for from you? Credibility, experience, and proof of results.
And there’s one fool-proof way to establish all three – through client testimonials. Your testimonials are the most important piece of information you can have on your website. Just by making your site full of testimonials, you’ll probably end up with the most potent Personal Training website in your area.
Use before and after pictures, quotes from clients talking about what they’ve achieved with you, and information that highlights your expertise. Let every one of these quotes and photographs focus on a different part of what makes you an outstanding trainer. One person may talk about the weight they’ve lost, another one talk about your training knowledge, and another about your personality. To make sure every area gets covered, just give your client a heads up of what type of information you’re looking for.
Why does this work? Because people don’t believe what we say about ourselves, but when someone else says it, it’s considered fact. Be sure to use your keywords of “Personal Training” and the name of your area as much as possible, and you’ll have a website that ranks very high in the search engines in your neighborhood, and gets tons of people calling you, both at the same time.
There are of course a few other important things to have on your website, like a good call to action and a clean presentation, but the message in your testimonials is the most important part. It simply can’t fail.
Killer Strategy #2: How To Close More Training Sales
Do you hate selling? Good. You don’t have to do it anymore.
When it comes to interacting with new potential clients, you should forget the selling part. Instead, seek to understand this new person in front of you, and build a relationship. Selling Personal Training is completely different from the wam-bam sales techniques in other fields. You’re selling a personal product, so it must be sold in a very personal way.
Unfortunately, this is where a lot of trainers screw it up. They try too hard to get the clients money, and forget the most important part – the relationship. Even if the client wants to make “money” the primary factor by asking you the price up-front, don’t answer them.
That’s right – do not answer them.
There are two rules of selling to always remember:
1. The one asking the questions has control in the sale (you want to make sure that’s you).
And most importantly …
2. If you quote your price too early, before the client knows what you have to offer, you will always kill the sale.
So then what do you say?
You ask a question yourself, and it’s a special one – it’s the first thing that should come out of your mouth every time you start talking to a prospective client. It sets you on the road to closing nearly every new high-value client that comes your way. It’s what I call it the $100,000 dollar question, and it’s this:
What are you looking to accomplish?
That’s it – doesn’t sound too complicated does it? But don’t be fooled because it accomplishes a few very important things.
- It gets your customer talking about their favorite subject – themselves.
- They start telling you what’s wrong with them and why they’re not happy.
- If you follow up with some well placed questions like “how long have you had atproblem”, or “what are you doing now to fix it”, you’re creating an even greater satisfaction gap and setting the stage for the sale to close automatically.
The best part is you’ll get almost no resistance at the end of the sale – they did the entire job of telling you what they’re doing now is wrong, and where they want to be in the future. And through listening to all of this, you’ve built trust. Building that satisfaction gap and trust is all you need.
Killer Strategy #3: How To Charge The Highest Rates
Now the last part of the equation is the quality of you training sessions. If you have good sessions, your training sells itself – you’ll get tremendous word of mouth and you can charge the highest rates for your training. When you get this part right, one client can turn into ten clients very quickly.
What’s the one technique we’re talking about here to build session quality?
It’s taking only a couple of minutes to plan your session before you meet your client, remembering to jot notes during the session, and summarizing the session at the end. But it makes a world of difference in the perceived quality of your session in your clients mind and to any outside observers. This technique might seem very simple and obvious, but it adds tons of value. This little extra bit of consistent effort will allow you to charge as much as double what the trainer standing right next to you is charging.
And it has personal benefits as well – you’ll feel more relaxed, more prepared, your work will be easier, and you’ll be happier. This technique will also help keep you organized so you can train 2 or more people at once. Getting up to the $100 per hour level becomes much easier once you have this weapon going for you.
The best thing to do is make-up your own standardized system of tracking sheets – one that’s easy for you to work with, and gives you all of the key information you need in a way that’s easy for you to review.
And where does training knowledge fit in to all of this? Well that’s a given. If you actually like fitness, gaining training knowledge should be fun and easy for you. It’s the little things, like these three tactics I’ve just talked about, that separate the real winners from the losers – put them in action and you’ll rise to the top!
The blog is just the beginning!
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Kaiser, Thank you for these excellent tips on increasing my personal training business. I look forward to utilizing your expertise. Keep up the great work. Esron
Yeah no problem Esron – welcome to the blog – I’ll be focusing more on quality content in the next few posts so stay on board –
Basics, good points Kaiser, glad to see your back offering some info and not trying to sell me something.
Yeah point taken Bill –
But everything I’ve promoted here I stand behind 100% –
If my readers have learned to trust and value the info I give here for free, they can make the leap to believe in any paid products I talk about – there haven’t been a lot, so if I plug it, believe that I have reviewed it and it must be valuable –
It’s very important to invest in your career, and because the type of info you may need is highly specialized “niche” info, you might have to spend a lot of money on it –
But if you don’t, you’ll find yourself doing the same thing for years on end, and at a certain point you’ll wind-up bitter because of it –
So pick and chose wisely, but every now and then make sure you whip out the credit card – your sanity depends on it –
point taken, so far havent found anything I need.
I’d like to add to your second point. “What” they want to accomplish is just as important as “why” they want to accomplish it.
A performance athlete can say he wants to increase his vertical jump by 3 inches. But the “why” may be to make it to the next level where he may be picked up by a pro team. He lands a whopp’in contract and has some cash and pays off his mom’s mortgage. That is the real why behind the what.
The entreprenuer wants to lose 15lbs of fat. The “why” is deep. It may be to have better confidence with spouse around intimacy. It may be to lean down to make a first impression while networking – then land the contract which brings in more $$$.
I hope I’m not detracting from the discussion too much. These are some strategies I use to attract and qualify the ppl I want to work with. HTH
Best of Energy!