This was submitted by Bobby Zuniga. Amazing Stuff!!!
I have been doing one-on-one training for years, fighting the urge to move into semi-private only sessions because I was comfortable. I worried about if my existing clients would be willing to give up our one-on-one sessions to move to the groups. I worried, “what if I can’t get anymore clients”? I was stuck in my comfort zone but something had to change.
I decided to offer one time 3 days a week and recruited 4 new clients within a week to fill “test the waters” and see if this group thing was something I really wanted to do. It went great, they all got better results than my one-on-one clients were getting and the atmosphere was much more fun a full of energy. But still I was hesitant. I still worried about the same old sh!t.
I work closely with an awesome massage therapist who has been cool about referring a lot of clients to me. She put me in contact with her rep from a local daily deal site and told me to “quit being a pussy and go for it”. So I did.
I crafted an e-mail telling all my existing clients about this great new semi-private personal training program I was coming out with. I told them how I have been running a secret test group and the results were great. I created a special “members only” page on my blog telling them how awesome this new program is, that the clients in it were getting better results than my one-on-ones because of the energy levels, that they were having more fun, and that because of this I was soon going to be closing the doors on my one-on-one program because I only want the absolute best possible programs for my clients. I posted video testimonials from all four of the clients in the test group on the page. I finished off the page by telling them that the best part is, when they move over to the newer and better program, that they were actually going to be paying less than they were for one-on-one training.
I listed the starting date for the new program and the new scheduling procedure at the bottom of the page.
I was amazed! They were all so pumped from the video testimonials, the prospect of getting even more results, having more fun, and paying less that THE ONLY personal who even asked how much the new program was wanted to know so she could pay for the year in full. Not a single one of my clients didn’t love the idea.
As I said, my massage therapist put me in contact with her rep from a local daily deal site and we set up a promotion to run 3 days later. In the deal, they got:
- 6 Group Personal Training Sessions (to be used within 14 days of the first) ($300 Value)
- A Custom 14 Day Meal Plan ($47 Value)
- A 30 day interval training and recovery program to do on their off days ($87 value)
- and a gift certificate a free 30 minute massage with my massage therapist ($40 value)
I wanted to charge 50% of the total value but the daily deal sites like to keep the total under $97 so I went with that.
The next step I did was to set up a registration page. Those who purchased the coupon would have no way to sign up or schedule until complete this page where I offered them a “full body diagnostic” and “pre-workout goal assessment”, which was a fancy way of saying we are going to take measurements, before pictures, and review their par-Q and goals more in-depth. This was only $25. I also gave them the option of having the $25 refunded in full just for showing up in time, or they could turn their 6 sessions into 9. Their choice. They all of course chose the no brainer and went for 9. Before clicking the “checkout” button, they were asked to choose which of my programs they would like be enrolled in if they choose to continue after their initial sessions (this would be via EFT of course).
All my semi-private sessions run 45 minutes so I scheduled these assessments for 15 minutes before their next session and was able to knock out 3 in the 15 minute window. During this time period is when I executed my key to this whole idea. I asked them to stand by the door for their before picture and took out my phone. Without asking them to smile, I took their picture in a very candid (poor posture, belly sticking out, no smile) manner before they could pose. I took their before picture with my Blackberry, sat down next to them with the picture, and asked “what about this picture do you not like and what would you like to change”? As they told me, I typed in their statement to a text message, attached their picture, and said “what is your cell number, I am going to send this to you”. If they didn’t have a picture phone by chance, I just e-mailed it to them
I put each of them into an auto responder sequence and 17 days after their first session, they got the following e-mail from me via auto responder:
Hey there <fname>
I just wanted to say “Hi” and tell what a blast it has been working with you these last two weeks. You are kicking a$$ in the workouts and busting your but so big kudos to you! Liz (the front desk girl) even mentioned that she has noticed a little more zip in your step each time you come in.
I’m sure you have noticed your hard work paying off by now. With the way you have been busting your but in the workouts and the meal plan you have been following I’m sure your clothes are fitting a little less snug which has to be rewarding for you.
Remember just a couple weeks ago when we took your before picture? You talked about what you didn’t like in that picture and what you wanted to change. Well, I just wanted to reassure you that you are on the right track in working with me and I can’t wait to help you all the way to your goal!
Your guide to success
P.S. In week 5 of your program you are going to get your next crucial key to success. You wont want to miss it! It’s something that causes over 90% of people to fail in their weight loss goals about 6 weeks in, so keep your eyes peeled for another e-mail from me.
Each part of that e-mail had a very specific purpose but, the key element was to make them want to stay a client of mine, if for no other reason, to find out that crucial piece in week 5.
The final element to this whole plan was to send them a text the Sunday evening before the start of their 3rd week, around 7pm . It was simply the original text I sent them the day of their assessment. I wanted to drive home, emotionally, how much they didn’t like who they were just a couple of weeks ago and get them thinking about how much better off they are now.
I am happy to say that I have had over a 90% conversion rate off of this one single promo because of the steps I took. The next time I run this promo, I plan to make a few changes, like using text message marketing instead of e-mail during their first three weeks to make sure they get my messages in real time. I also, plan to offer each person a free month if they bring a friend that purchases the same deal as the daily deal site, from me prior to their 3rd session.
Bobby Zuniga is a Personal Trainer in Denver
and owns a Denver Personal Training
This is brilliant, great to learn, Thanks :)
What would bobby recommend to a trainer that does in-home training. I do not have the facility to do semi private sessions. Great advcie, thanks!
Priceless as usual Sam… Thanks so much for the fantastic lesson! I Keep learning, I keep earning ($$$)! :P
@Eric: semi private sessions don’t need to be in a facility. Maybe have a few clients that live close to each other meet at one person’s house?
@Kesia: THANK YOU and appreciate you commenting.
Great stuff! I know Bobby personally and he is a hell of a guy and a great trainer as well. Loved the article and definitely got my brain working on some fresh ideas!!!
@ Eric: I am no sure what you mean by the question but if you are wondering how to start doing group training, the way Sam put it sounds good to me. I actually know a trainer who does it that way. She, also got an “in” at an apartment complex and does a group session @ 6am and 7am in the complexes gym.
@Tim: If this is the Tim I am thinking of, it’s no shocker to me that you would be smart enough to be paying attention to a guy like Sam. Keep it up!!!
@Bobby Zuniga: You KILLED it on this one brotha. THANK you so much for your contribution.