Is it just me, or has this little blog and the few products or services we’ve put out there created just about as many real success stories as anyone?
I just got to thinking about that because of a wonderful email I got out of the blue from a trainer out on the left coast, Roxie Beckles.
Roxie is an owner of the SIX-FIGURE TRAINER MANUAL, but other than that, I’ve never heard from her before. She’s just been hustling her hard little bunz off, taking action, and exploding her income in just a few short months. I’m glad that I was able to play some part in that.
Here’s a look at the email Roxie sent me – I ended up replying to her, and she replied back, so you’ll get a look at our back and forth here. I also have thrown in a few annotations on some of things that Roxie has done right that everyone can replicate and take action on.
Kaiser I just wanted to personally thank you for this site, and for your manual. From the moment I read the first post since finding Super-Trainer.com (and all of what you’ve posted actually) I have felt this fire to get the hell out of slavery and be emancipated! LOL.
I’ve been training for 12 years (hey I’m not that old though), and for the first time I am SUCCESSFULLY out on my own. My company RoxStar Fitness has opened its doors as of Jan 2010, I brought a majority of my clients with me from my former club [Gym Name Eliminated To Protect The Guilty] , and the situation couldn’t be any better.
I’m normally not into “stealing clients”, but if they want to follow you, don’t stop them. Depending on how many of your clients come with you, and if you’ve done your homework and found a good environment to train them out of, this alone will at least match all the way to double your income instantly.
This experience and situation has made me an even better trainer (and I was pretty darn good before), because now I am happier in my situation and can fully inspire and motivate my clients since I fully experience these feelings myself day after day. My income has already increased, and this with not much of a change from the hours I was doing before (never really had a desire to train more than 15-20 hrs/week since I give my all to my clients, so understandably, “full time” status would be draining).
I wanted to share with you some things that I have found out about that other trainers may want to consider to make their business end a little easier. Maybe you can look into them and share the info if you feel it would help your readers.
In the area of prospecting, I found a cool way to:
1. keep my membership in one of the more exclusive clubs in LA and NY,
2. set my own schedule and get paid to be in front of people to promote my own service,
3. be almost self managed and work when I want…
It’s all provided through group ex. I really didn’t want to give up my free access to [Gym Name Eliminated To Protect The Guilty] , I’ve been spoiled to death by the posh locations. So I decided to become a sub for group ex classes, and I still get to access the club for free.
Additionally, I get paid more than they pay the trainers (which is sad since they ARE the money makers in any club situation), I can teach when I want to or when I’m available as a sub – if I wanted to I can lock down to teach 1 class a week (or more) at my choice.
Additionally, what subbing does (if you teach a good class) is gets you in front of a large number of people. And since you present yourself in an “exclusive” situation (meaning they may only see you on occasions) you can easily pique people’s interest, let them know you are a trainer who works independently, direct them to your site, and take names/info of those interested.
I’ve been able to get quite a number of leads, and now new clients, this way. It’s like stealing candy from a baby. With group ex, you hardly have managers breathing down your back (if at all) so it’s so easy to get away with soliciting clients.
Exactly – to establish a strong, stable, and high paying roster of clients, it just takes one “in” somewhere. It’s up to you as a trainer to find out what that is for you.
Also for trainers who teach private bootcamps or other group ex classes independently as part of their service, it’s an excellent way of getting out there and directing people to your site to sign up for your private classes. If you’re good, again people will follow you.
Of course they will have to make sure to have business cards and nicely designed postcards/brochures to hand to people beforehand so that when they present this to the class, they can professionally handle business. It leaves an even greater impression.
Subbing presents the best situation because you can do it on occasion, and when YOU have the time. A lot of clubs pay teachers $50 and up for classes depending on experience, and you work for like less than an hour (50-55 mins). It’s not as high as one’s private rates, but again, it’s paid time for prospecting and spreading word about who you are.
In addition to other methods, it’s a definite overall revenue driver. I would suggest against teaching a regular class at a gym though. Because then people will just opt to follow your class and not train, because in their mind they get to see you for free. Target clubs that have the type of clientele you want to market to. I stick to high end gyms and locations, places where I know people can afford my $95-100/hr rate.
The other thing I wanted to bring up is a great web based software program called Mind Body Online management software. The address is http://www.mindbodyonline.com/en/products/personal-training.
I needed a way to track client sessions easily, I like having stuff inputted right into a program and calculations done easily for me. This program allows you to set up your client’s schedule, they can have access to it online and schedule/reschedule appointments once approved by you (you can set the permissions as to how much they can control information). It does EFT, and has the funds available for you very quickly.
The most important feature for me was being able to set up the packages, having the clients sign up (through EFT only), set them as recurring monthly packages based on the number of times they train per week, and most importantly, every time they sign in (or no show/late cancel) it deducts the session from the package automatically. So paperwork isn’t necessary, and everything is simplified. No assistant needed, you can just manage it yourself as the program does all the work for you. It’s accessible from anywhere as well, so you can literally do it all from your laptop or home computer. Also clients cannot cancel EFT’s themselves like one can do on PayPal, so it makes it all so simple.
Yes, getting your clients on EFT is one of the best things you can do. It feels a little new and funny at first since it hasn’t totally caught on for private services, but if you frame it correctly, the client will get used to it and not question it. You’ve just stabilized your income.
This program was specifically designed for gyms, studios, and fitness professionals, so it’s really a valuable asset. For training staffs up to 1-5 people, there is no set up fee. It’s just $65/month. But as we know, that honey is a tax write off for it being business related. Therefore it’s damn near free, lol.
Ok this is turning out to be a long email. I just want to thank you again SO DAMN MUCH. You rock my socks off. Anyways, I will be around the site, I follow your blogs every week. Keep up the amazing work.
Wow – what an email! She sure packed a lot of value in there. Here was my response:
Hey Rox – I’m real glad the site could help – you’re really living it up as a Super-Trainer as I can see, so good job –
Good info here – do you mind if I share this in a post on the blog?
You did an awesome job with your website – did you do it yourself? It’s so funny, because it looks almost exactly like my first website.
Talk soon – let me know about the post – ciao
Hey Kaiser. Thanks for the response. Well I’ll let you in on a little secret… My site (Los Angeles Personal Trainer Roxie Beckle)looks exactly like your old one because I redesigned it from the glorified self adoration flashy site that most trainers have, to one that you suggested in your Six Figure Manual. To the “t” I guess you can say, only with my own flavor and story. I put it together with the potential client in mind, and in a way that it of course does all the selling for me, so all I have to do is
1. follow up,
2. give them my all in the initial 3 sessions,
3. seal the deal.
When you go into google and look up the trainers who are listed as 1st page, they all follow the same format (in addition to other traffic driving links, which I’ve gotten into as well ie. blogs, articles, youtube, etc etc). So there’s a lot of weight to what you’ve said. I’m constantly updating it (I did it all myself, from the logo design, to the site design, and all photo editing. I’ve been using Adobe Creative Suite for about 10 years, so no need to hire folks to do what I can do on my own). In fact I updated it today to add my graphic to promote my package, and to promote my online store for all RoxStar Fitness gear. Makes me seem important to have shirts/bags/etc that clients can purchase – and it’s all FREE to create and maintain, and again drives traffic to the site (plus for every item purchased I get a kickback). I use CafePress.com. I even designed my uniform shirts that I train in from the site. Very nice casual/fashionable items. Low cost/high quality too.
In any case, please by all means, I’d love it if you would post the info on your blog. Paying it forward is what it’s all about. Just don’t put the name [Gym Name Eliminated To Protect The Guilty] in the post. I don’t want to be found out, lol. But feel free to use my name.
Thanks so much! You Rock!
There you have it. I have to say that email made my day. And as you can see, Roxie is a serious action taker and very driven.
If you’re a reader of the UNDERGROUND NEWSLETTER, you know my belief that to adopt a new level of success, you need an entirely new paradigm. You are seeing things the wrong way, doing them the same way as everyone else, and that’s precisely what’s stifling you.
In Roxie’ s case, it was the message of this blog that was able to take her to the next level. In your case, whatever it is, make sure you keep your eyes open – you might be missing the obvious answer that could be the key to your success.
Wow thanks so much Kaiser for the blog post. I’m gonna add, now technically I did not steal my clients, in fact I only invited a VERY small handful from my client list of those whose lives I dramatically changed whom I knew for sure that if they were aware that I was still training, they would want to be there. And as expected, they opted to follow me (I did give them the option to be set up with other trainers at our location AND I also encouraged them to maintain their memberships to enjoy the amenities that they joined the club for. Additionally they continue to work out there on days I don’t see them, and some use other services like group classes and Pilates/Gyrotonic privates). In fact a great number of my clients were referred to other trainers, I only wanted to work with those who embodied me and my new found company.
All of my new clients have been gathered through the above methods, online (through Google organic search, Google Ads, personal training directories, Facebook, Twitter) and the almighty client referrals.
You’re doing such a great thing with this site and your book! I always look forward to what you have to say, so thanks!
That is what’s up Miss Roxie! Question: After reading your post, I’m now interested in subbing to teach group classes in some health clubs as well. The thing is, I’ve never worked in a health club therefore I don’t have any “clout” there. How would you suggest or recommend a good way to approach them with this sort of proposal? I appreciate it. Keep up the good work!
Thanks so much Rickey. Honestly, this is where networking in this industry and knowing people is so key and helps in this situation.
The first couple of things I would say before approaching a gym about subbing/teaching is having a knowledge of what your specialties are. So if you have a background in sports, martial arts, kickboxing/boxing, dance, and obvious you’re experienced in fitness it will give you a lot more leverage when starting out. Having a strong sense of your strengths will help you to “sell yourself” to your potential group ex managers. Knowing exactly where they can fit you on short notice is what they need most when it comes to a sub. So the more you know about what you can actually teach (and TEACH WELL, heck I even say teach BETTER THAN the current instructor) the better.
Next I’d say to first ask around to friends you know who already work in health clubs (anyone from trainers, to managers, and group ex instructors themselves), because having that “in” will again give you leverage. However if you know no one, I’d gather a group of clients, rent out a studio space, get a video camera, and get some footage of you teaching. You can use programs like Movie Maker, or Mac’s video editing software (I think it’s called iMovie), and put together a collage of work. In short, a demo reel. I have an example of one I put together when I first started out:
It was a collection of classes, and I threw in client testimonials (they were originally for my website, and they were actually just my private clients. However they were a testament to the quality I provide to those who work with me), and some random footage of me performing exercises so the potential group ex manager sees my form. I used a basic camera (although now all of my footage is shot with a commercial HD camera, the ones they have on the market are really competitively priced), and I edited it myself, put it on YouTube. I emailed it to every studio/gym I wanted to work with, and got amazing responses. This from PEOPLE WHO NEVER EVEN HEARD OF ME, and for whom I had NO referrals. Now I’m on their sub list.
It’s just about creative marketing, knowing who YOU are, and what you have to offer. It’s about identifying your niche and being the best at you can. Then the next step it just letting others out there know, particularly the ones you want to hire you ;-).
Pretty cool. Nothing like earning it.
Good for you Roxie! Great to here that you stepped out on your own and are making it happen. I just recently did the same after working in the health club environment for so long. It’s the next step if fitness is truly your career. I’m a Super-Trainer Licensee and am very happy with my site. Thanks Kaiser. And thanks for the info Roxie.
AWESOME!! Thanks so much for posting this, you two are both very helpful! :)
Great tips and great to hear others are doing so well with the help of your blog and manual Kaiser… and from being confident and taking action.. go Roxie!
Congrats on all your success Roxie…
Kasier, congrats on another success story!
Kaiser & Roxie,
Very encouraging post. Thanks for sharing the great tips with us.
I always look forward to reading your blog.
Good post guys, keep up the good work!
Awesome post – you go girl!
Awesome post! I don’t believe this is my first time seeing this! Totally goes to show what you can accomplish when you get off your butt and take action! And I’m glad to see a female out there really kicking butt – you’re an inspiration to all of the trainers like me Roxie that are still trying to make the jump and head out on my own.