10 Personal Trainer Marketing Secrets To Build Your Business

For most of the fitness industry professionals I’ve met, a good personal trainer marketing system was the biggest difference between the $30,000 they were making and the $2.4 Million I was making. Sure, there are personal qualities that have made me more successful than the average person – like my insatiable desire for knowledge, my inability to settle for less, my confidence and my positive attitude. Yet, I truly believe that I can help your business ten-fold by teaching you the personal trainer marketing secrets I know, showing you how to implement them, and following up to make sure you’re employing the best tactics for your market.


Over the past 20 years, I’ve worked in the trenches as a personal trainer and fitness business owner. In fact, I STILL train clients every week because I straight-up ENJOY it. I’m always learning new things that I can share with you, but the personal trainer marketing secrets I’ve amassed will save you $1,000 or more a month in expenses right out of the starting gate and help you get more paid-in-full contracts than you thought possible for your market.


My blog has over 768 posts devoted to helping you assimilate all the secrets of personal trainer marketing. On top of that, I also have downloadable manuals, business coaching calls and mastermind programs designed to maximize your understanding of this under-taught and under-utilized area of the personal training business. There is no doubt in my mind that you know loads of information about exercise science and nutrition, thanks to your trainer credentials, but I’m here to deliver the missing components of your success. I can’t go into everything I know here, but if you dig it, feel free to shoot me a line to get more personalized one-on-one business assistance.


Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #1: Focus On Direct Response Marketing.

You’ll hear some old-school marketers tell you to spend on ads for magazines, newspapers, billboards, radio spots or TV. The fact of the matter is: these methods have very little place in personal trainer marketing. With so many analytics programs out there for online advertising or direct marketing, it’s crazy to waste your time, effort and money on these dated dinosaurs.


Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #2: Use The AIDA Formula In Your Copy.


When you’re creating your direct personal trainer marketing materials, use the AIDA formula: Attention, Interest, Desire and Action. Your opening remarks should captivate the reader’s attention with an interesting offer. By explaining the value, you should create desire to take you up on your offer, and then end with a strong call-to-action, explaining how prospects can act.


Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #3: Decide How To Leverage Your Time.


Deciding how you use your time is extremely important. Some of my competitors decided to stop training and focus 100 percent on marketing. In my opinion, this was a misguided approach because you lose touch with the common everyday obstacles that come up in this business and you become trapped in your own little marketer bubble. Every day I train, I learn something new. Besides, no amount of personal trainer marketing can give me the feeling of satisfaction I feel when I help someone lose 100 pounds or regain their self-confidence!


At any rate, even if you’re not sharing personal trainer marketing secrets, you will still need to decide which activities are worth your time. For instance, if you hate writing and it feels like a chore, find yourself a good reliable copywriter! If you’re not into getting on camera, find a spokesmodel who can more effectively deliver your messages. If you’re not a number-cruncher, hire an analytics person to draw up succinct reports that summarize the effectiveness of your personal trainer marketing campaigns. While it may cost money to outsource certain aspects of your business, you will typically find that you actually save money by freeing up time to spend more productively.

Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #4: Go Viral.


Social media is a great tool for personal trainer marketing because it encourages that coveted word-of-mouth advertising we all desire. You should promote your Facebook page on your blog, your website and at your club. This is how you’ll gain more friends. Posting worthwhile content can lead to reposts, which expands your viewing circle – especially now that Facebook has installed the “share” button.


We find the most success when we develop a direct personal trainer marketing program specifically for Facebook – where we’ll offer our fans a “21 Day Fat Burner” Program for $21 or a two-week trial membership with nutrition counseling included for free. You can promote these offers through your community. To get more fans, you might say “Every new user who LIKES this post in March will get entered into a raffle to win two free weeks of boot camp. Tell your friends & family to LIKE this post so they don’t miss out!”


Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #5: Manage Your Leads.


Not every trainer is crazy about keeping a detailed log of all the leads they get, but this is an extremely important part of doing business. You’re bound to get a lot of leads from out-of-state people that are unusable, so you’ll need to sort through these to avoid wasted time, effort and money. You’ll want to use software to manage your contacts easier. (If you want specific suggestions on my favorite programs, shoot me an email!) You want to keep an eye on what programs people are signing up for, what programs they’ve rejected in the past and their survey responses to get inside the mind of each prospect. It may seem like a lot of work, but once you have an automated system, it will automatically group people for you, so all YOU have to do in your personal trainer marketing is roll out your pre-made targeted campaigns for each demographic. Trust me, managing leads is much easier than it sounds. All the big name companies in the world do it and customize their campaigns accordingly: so can you!


Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #6: Remember, “No” Isn’t Always “No.”


Unsuccessful personal trainers let themselves get bogged down in negativity when someone rejects their offer. In about 80 percent of the cases, people are not outright rejecting YOUR BUSINESS – but rather, they’re saying “not the right offer,” “not the right price,” or “not the right time.” As you know, these are all variables that can be tweaked and modified for future personal trainer marketing offers. Approach these first round “No” responses with a fresh pair of eyes the second time around. Give it a few weeks or a month, but try again with a different offer and/or a different price. If people put up with several of your offers and have not “un-liked” or unsubscribed from your list, then reward them with something they might like to stay within their good graces. For instance, I give them a free download of my “Total Transformation Secrets” e-book.


Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #7: Consider Offline Strategies Too.


One of the oldest forms of personal trainer marketing is the community lead box. I don’t count on these to be my primary form of marketing by any stretch of the imagination, but I do feel that it’s a good way to increase your exposure in the area. Not every storeowner will be keen on promoting for you, but if you choose your partner prospects wisely, you can certainly end up with some profitable relationships. Many people will agree to put a lead box up at their business in exchange for a free week of training or cross-promotional efforts in your studio. For example, if you have a GNC nearby, they may agree to put up your lead box if you agree to hand out coupons to your clients. In that way, it can sweeten the pot for you, the GNC owner, and your clients too.


Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #8: Create Contests To Engage Clients.


Contests are an ideal way to keep you clients results-oriented and get them talking about you nonstop. You can extend the contest to your clients’ family and friends to get a bucket-load of new leads and money. For example, you might run a 28-day weight loss contest where you offer free sign-ups for your members and a special discount price for their friends, coworkers, and family members. Winners can receive some sort of exciting grand prize. You can also structure shorter contests – like an 8-week transformation – if you want to bring in a lot of money upfront.

Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #9: Advertise In Your Studio.

You might think you’re home-free once you have people in your front door. Maybe your program is totally amazing and all your clients quickly become rabid fans of your classes. Often people just need a little nudge to tell their friends all about it. So, for instance, invest a few dollars in banner creation at Office Max and hang a sign right over the water fountain that says, “Did you know… for every referral you bring in, you get free boot camp? Simply check-in on Facebook.” Or you can do a promotion where every 30 public check-ins people do, they get free stuff – like movie tickets, water bottles, t-shirts, etc.


Another way to advertise is to get a business card holder and some double-sided tape, hang the holder on your wall and fill it with plastic gift cards that are good for $100 off boot camp, personal training services, or whatever. On people’s way out the door, they’ll grab a few cards for people they know who might be interested. This method of personal trainer marketing is surprisingly effective.


Personal Trainer Marketing Secret #10: Invest In Relationships.


The best personal trainer marketing tool is simple: results. If you do a great job, then word will get around. So it makes sense, then, that you should invest in getting some amazing results for your clients. Results can lead to testimonials, which will boost your credibility. And even after you help your clients reach their initial milestones, you will establish a lasting relationship with them if you show that you care and are really invested in their forever success and maintenance stages as well.


One of the ways our personal trainer marketing emphasizes relationships is: we give new sign-ups a Success Journal full of nutrition information, workout suggestions, meal plans, inspirational sayings and spaces to keep food and workout logs. On the front of the journal, we have a sticker that says “Success Journal. Warning: Do not open before listening to this 24-hour free recorded message on how you can get free training sessions.” The message explains how people can get ½ off for each person they refer.


Another personal trainer marketing technique we often use is text messaging. Some people think that texts are just for coupons and special offers, but we like to mix it up. We’ll send out inspirational quotes or funny sayings, like “Hey guys, if you have a car that has a roof, you have no excuse not to attend boot camp. See you tomorrow!”


I  know some of these personal trainer marketing “secrets” are not really secrets at all, but I wanted to really emphasize some of these points because I’ve noticed – over the last 20+ years – that these are effective, tested-tried-and-true methods of building relationships, securing leads and improving one’s core business model. I know I throw a lot at you and it can be hard to know exactly how to apply all this new knowledge to YOUR business.


That’s why I’ve created the “Six Figures In 67 Days” download, which contains a step-by-step blueprint on transforming your business into one that garners six-figure income. That’s also why I run weekend workshops and masterminds to bring you physically here to me, where we can chat about your business and you can meet my crew of millionaires who would love nothing more than to see you shatter records and exceed your goals to join their ranks. Personal trainer marketing is not rocket science, but it is certainly an under-taught science in our industry, so let me guide you through the thick and thin of it to maximize your full potential as a trainer and entrepreneur.