I’ve been calling my friend Cynthia Conde a celebrity trainer for years (mainly because she’s been training major celebrities), but she’s really stepped into that role with her new show on VH1, Bridal Bootcamp, which aired last night.
I heard that she filmed the show two years ago, and I just assumed it already aired on some cable network that I never watch. I don’t watch much besides Sportscenter as is, and it’s not like I’m going to go seeking out a show about chubby brides (no offense) looking to get in shape.
What I was surprised to find out is that the show has been sitting on a shelf for the past two years, and never went to air. That’s just a funny look into what the television business is like, but what happens next is even funnier …
Cynthia gave me a call two weeks ago to let me know that VH1 bought the show, and not only that, but they were throwing it up on the air nationally in just two weeks! She went from business as usual, to now pretty much hitting the pinnacle of being a personal trainer. Having your own reality TV show? It doesn’t get much bigger than that.
After purchasing the original LICENSING PROGRAM, Cynthia wanted to find out what I could do for her to get her personal site up and ready for all of he major publicity she’ll be getting because of the show. I let her know that I’m working on a brand new top secret version of the LICENSING PROGRAM and showed her a sample. She pulled out her credit card and ordered that too on the spot.
Now, let’s give credit where credit is due. Cynthia is a tremendous personality who is perfectly cut out for the role of TV celebrity (which you’ll notice from her live interview on Super-Trainer). Now in case you didn’t know, let me quickly fill you in on the things she’s done right in her career to get to where she is:
1. Formed a private training agreement with a gym to start her personal training business.
Forming a private agreement with an existing gym is one of the best ways to have a built in base of clients and launch a training business in a very short amount of time. The truth is most gym owners go into the business because they think it’s a good idea, but have no idea of how to run a training department. If you can find a situation like this, what you’ll find is a gym owner that is more than willing to take a small percentage of the earnings just to get the headache of selling personal training off of their chest (if you’ll remember, my training career got off to a very fast start by making similar deals). This deal is what allowed her to start a training practice that had a half dozen employees, where she trained celebrities, and made well over six figures, without even having a website and doing hardly any outside marketing.
2. Created and defined a specialty for her personal training business.
In Cynthia’s case, it was creating a training business focused on brides to be. Now it’s not as if she turned down other clients, but her specialty made her the go-to choice for a hungry part of the population to whom price was of little concern. They sought out her services, and as you’ll find with most personal training clients, after they’ve hit their initial goals they stay on with the program because the results and routine is addictive.
3. Creating a personal brand.
Cynthia realized the importance of image when she started her training business. I’m a big preacher of this as well – you have to convey an image for your training business that people want to be around. Cynthia has always had a strong personality, and this seaped into every part of her training business, from how the sessions were held to the way the trainers dressed.
4. High standards and outstanding service.
Cynthia keeps a firm eye on whether the clients are being taken care of, whether new clients are coming in, and whether the money is stacking up as it should be. Paying attention to all of details in the business, working hard, and pushing yourself are essentials to separate yourself from most of the trainers in this business who aren’t accomplishing much of anything.
It’s true that I’ve done well for my training business with the scumbag persuasion tactics that everyone is teaching online these days. But a great deal of excellent marketing comes down to common sense and an innate knowledge for what’s hot and where a gap exists in the market. It’s always great to study trainers that have achieved success without overt psychological manipulation and hard selling as their core business tactics (it’s important to point out that the overwhelming majority of major fitness industry success stories and high earners have done so without relying strictly on marketing and persuasion tactics.)
That’s not to say in any way that marketing is not the lifeblood of a training business. As you’ll notice if you watch the show, Cynthia is an outstanding marketer, and views marketing as her primary function in her training business. You’ve got to be the driving force behind the marketing in your own fitness business as well. That’s the case even if you have the type of fitness business where a customer never even sees or hears from you (for example if you own a gym). But if you’re so inclined, by all means be the face of your business and express your own inner celebrity, and you might find that you take it all the way to the big time, just like Cynthia has!
If you missed yesterday’s show, you can see clips and watch full episodes of her Bridal Bootcamp here.