Busy Personal Trainer

March 31, 2015     /    Personal Trainer Marketing    /    Liam Thompson

It's not that hard to find clients for your personal training business if you know how. However, if you are struggling and wondering where your next client is coming from or whether you want to get a few more clients, here are some of our popular client getting strategies.  You can implement these right now in your fitness business.

1. It should be a given for any personal trainer but you should get amazing results for each and every one of your clients and get even faster results for your clients than your competitors are getting with theirs.

2. Know who your ideal client is (your avatar) and focus your marketing energies on attracting them into your personal training business, while at the same time repelling people you don't want to work with.

3. Ask for referrals from your current client base. In fact, you could even make it a condition of them working with you that they refer you to their friends and colleagues. Offering incentives for your clients to refer their friends is also a great strategy. Most personal trainers make the mistake of leaving it too long to ask for referrals, you should ideally do this early in the relationship.

4. Deliver Flyers and Leaflets in your neighborhood. (Have them professionally designed though with good sales copy and a great headline)

5. Use Gumtree in the UK and Ireland or Craigslist in the US to place free ads. Even better pay for the ads and get placed at the top of the free ads. Most other trainers won’t be prepared to pay for ads, so this is a great way for your training business to stand out and get noticed.

6. Consider Joint Ventures with Local Business in your area, especially the ones who serve the same clients as you do. Think hairdresser, physiotherapist or even your local beauty parlor or nail salon. Send clients to them before you ask for referrals. Remember the “Give first to get later rule.”

7. Stand out in your local area by being different to other personal trainers and having a niche. Be exclusive and be the go to personal trainer in your town for this.

8. Build an email list using your website and email your subscribers on a regular basis. (If you want help with this check out our SWAT website system)

9. Re-activate old training clients by picking up the phone and calling them. Make them a special offer, give them a free session, do whatever it takes to get them back working with you.

10. Offer to do lunch and learn sessions in local businesses. Give a 10-15 minute presentation on nutrition or exercise or weight loss. Hold a short questions and answer session at the end and then make them an irresistible offer like a free trial or low priced trial or even a guinea pig trial (see number 34)

11. Offer a low barrier to entry trial or free consultation to get clients in the door and allow you to showcase that you are a great trainer.

12. Post blogs on your website at least once a week. Not only will this help you with Google Rankings but also you can track people who visit and read your blogs so you can send Facebook or Google ads to them later on. (This is called retargeting). Blogs can also be used to educate and indoctrinate your potential clients and take them a step closer to working with you.

13. Use Google Adwords to pay for placing your website at the very top of Google for searches in your local area. Again most trainers won’t be prepared to do this.

14. Setup and Optimize a free Google Map Listing to get free leads from Google to your Personal Training Website. Get your clients to leave you reviews and watch as your website climbs the ranking in your town.

15. Use Facebook ads to target and market to people in your area. This is one of the most cost effective ways of marketing your personal trainer business there currently is, purely because again most trainers won’t pay to play on Facebook.

16. Post regularly on social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. Use a program like Hootsuite to manage all these from one place to save time. You can even schedule your posts to go out on autopilot. Be sociable on social media instead of trying to sell all the time. Always give first.

17. Send Direct mail to past clients. These could be birthday or holiday cards. Don’t even try to sell to them, just remind them that you are there and still thinking about them.

18. Build a client generating website packed with social proof.  Before and after pictures and videos, as well as testimonials from past clients are powerful. You should also have  a relevant lead magnet (a free giveaway to exchange for their email address), and a strong headline, all focused on how you can help your avatar or niche.

(If you need help with this then click here)

19. When you do get leads into your training business from your website, you should call them personally and as soon as possible. A personal phone call gives you a chance to get to know the potential client and for them to feel comfortable with you. You are also more likely to get them to commit to a consultation or to work with you while you’re on the phone together than if they have to call you back. It’s all about building rapport and trust.

Phone clients back

20. Give to receive. Send your current clients surprise gifts, birthday cards and handwritten thank you or appreciation cards. You will be surprised that the positive effect this will have on your personal training business. Free t-shirts also work great, and you will find that your clients will wear them as a badge of honor.

21. Get in the local press. You can offer to write articles for local magazines and newspapers. Give your best information away for free, and position yourself as go to person for health and fitness in your town.

22. Learn how to be better at selling. Most personal trainers hate selling, but the truth is that we have to be able to sell our services to have a thriving fitness business.

23. Offer results based packages based around solutions for specific demographics and specific problems rather than just selling personal training sessions.

Example: A 12 week program to help busy moms in their 30’s drop two dress sizes.

24. Give your personal training programs names or turn them into your personal branded training or transformation system that makes it difficult for your competitors to replicate and copy what you do.

25. Get your car wrapped to promote your training business complete with your website address, email and before and after pictures. Even better, get a super cool vehicle like the one below from John Bruno from John Bruno Total Training in Cardiff.

john bruno wrapped

26. Network with other businesses in your area. Attend local networking events like BNI and business breakfasts. Connect with connectors who are likely to promote you and introduce you to others.

27. Sell the benefits of working out with you, not the features. Clients will buy your training services based on emotion so your marketing should reflect that. Usually, they will justify the purchase with logic (features) but it’s the benefits that will get them in and the more emotional they are, the better.

28. Charge more for your services. It sounds counter-intuitive, but the truth is that charging more will make you more attractive to clients and in particular clients who will pay more, stay for longer, complain less and be more compliant to your training and nutrition program. Most Personal Trainer's undervalue how much they change people’s lives and don’t charge anywhere near what they are worth. Don't be that trainer.

29. Offer a lower priced package (but not cheap) for potential clients who maybe can’t afford your top package. This could be semi-private or group training where your time is leveraged, and you could even earn more per hour as a trainer by running this business model and get to help more people at the same time.

30. Join a mastermind or spend time with other successful personal trainers. The people you hang around with and spend the most of your time with will directly correlate to your success. Always aim to be the dumbest person in the room, and there is only one way to go. Straight to the top.

Don’t be the trainer that hangs around other broke trainers complaining about how they can’t get any clients.

31. Hire a trainer yourself to help you get closer to your own fitness goals. It will also help you understand the process far better and help you keep your clients for longer. It will also allow you to see the value in hiring a trainer and improve your conversion rates from sales calls and consultations.

32. Work out your clients average lifetime value. The easiest way to do this is to look at your last ten clients and calculate how many months each one stayed for. Multiply that number by how much they pay you each month. Work out the total number by adding the value for each client together and then divide by ten to give you the average client lifetime value. This will tell you how much financially each client is worth to you and give you an idea of how much you are prepared to spend on your marketing to acquire a new client.

If you knew each client was worth $1500, how much would you be prepared to spend on your marketing to acquire them? $200, $300, $500?

33. Focus on keeping your current clients for longer. It’s usually easier and cheaper to keep a client than it is to invest in a new client.

34. Offer what we call a guinea pig or paid free trial, where you work with a new client or group of clients for free for a month in return for them promoting your business on social media, attending your boot camps or group sessions, leaving reviews for you on Google and providing you with before and after picture. This works really well with group training and boot camps as it doesn’t take up a lot of your time. The idea is that they pay you a deposit at the start of the training and you return it when they finish the 4 weeks and have fulfilled the criteria. Usually if they get great results they will stay on board, in fact some of the guinea pigs I have in my boot camps are now my longest serving clients.


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