A boot camp training and business guest post by Georgette Pann
Avoid these 8 Fitness Boot Camp Mistakes to Ensure Satisfied Customers and Maximum Profits…
While many of us are sick of watered down boot camps popping up at just about every park, beach, gymnastics studio, cheer center and industrial parking lot… with bad form, poor posture and $5 workouts being the norm .. …and trainers giving away the farm on every daily deal site you can imagine… that portion of industry is kind of a mess right now … and lowering prices to four dollars or two dollars or fifty cents a workout is not the solution
While our industry is growing like crazy, as this Yahoo Finance report from today shows, the amount of personal trainers in The U.S. is up by 44% from 2001 to 2011, to 231,500, while the overall number of workers fell by 1 percent, according to the Labor Department…. Boot Camps have become a commodity, and when people think personal trainers, they think of some moron in the health club holding a clipboard, counting reps and checking himself out in the mirror.
Unfortunately many of these new trainers have NO IDEA what they’re doing
Now even though the industry is up in terms of jobs, it’s a little ugly out there right now, and while the average wage for trainers is less than $15 an hour, Boot Camps can STILL be very profitable and are a great way to help a ton of people at once and minimize your hours spent trudging away in the trenches …
In fact, I know quite a number of Boot Camp trainers who make STRONG six-figure net incomes, and only train five, ten, fifteen or twenty hours a week AND are able to help a TON of people in the process… often helping between 40 and 150 clients on any given week… and some are helping two to three times that… and that’s a lot of damn people to be helping … sure they’re not ALL getting results, but a bunch of them are, at least most the ones who are eating right and giving it their all are… plus often times they’re being helped in more ways than one by these programs.
Personally I have many of my mentoring clients calling their group training programs anything but a boot camp, seeing how many boot camp shoppers are bargain hunters and coupon clippers have “discount” on the brain when searching for a boot camp… and by doin’ little things like just changing the name of your program and giving the clients a little more personal touch to separate yourself from every ‘Super Body Discount Boot Camp’ and ”Super Discount Booty Boot Camp” and “Discount Body Super Boot Camp” out there … damn they all sound the same... so anything you can do to separate yourself the better.
DIFFERENTIATE DIFFERENTIATE DIFFERENTIATE
That said, just like I mentioned above, I still have a number of friends, associates and clients who run extremely successful fitness bootcamps … and to give props to a few people in the industry you can trust to get your boot camp ( or group training ) advice from, are Group Training Specialist Callie Dubrow ( who has an awesome system coming out to help personal trainers transition into group training) along with Boot Camp Marketing, Training and Business Specialists BJ Gaddour, John Spencer Ellis ( my boy JSE), Carrie and Alicia The Boot Camp Girls and Georgette Pann…
There’s a lot of fluff, watering down and B.S. goin’ on in the industry… but there are also some people who really know what they’re doin’ and Georgette Pann is one of them
So if you train groups, bootcamps, or a bunch of damn at one damn time ( no negative connotations here, I just like the word to use the word “damn” sometimes) … then you DEFINITELY want to hear what Georgette has to say
So without further ado… Boot Camp Specialist Georgette Pann…
Everyone wants their fitness boot camp to be successful and profitable. But there are some mistakes frequently made by trainers that sap the life and profit from an otherwise excellent program. Avoid these eight mistakes to make the most out of your boot camp:
1. Not giving yourself enough time for preliminary planning – Not planning well enough in advance!
When you are thinking of starting a camp or group training you must plan well enough in advance.Even though you may have the best bootcamp starter kit on the planet, like Sure Victory you still need to do your own planning…here are the specifics:
Who -who are you targeting? woman?,athletes? baby boomers? etc
Where- where are you holding your camp? indoors? outdoors? You need to find a place!
If its a park…do you have permission from local parks and recreation?
If it’s indoor have you secured a spot?-yoga studio,gymnastic center,martial arts studio,church basement,your back yard..etc
When- what times are your camps and what days are your camps. Are they 3 x’s a week? 2 x’s a week? Are they 6 AM or 6 PM?
How Much- what are you going to charge? you must charge enough to be profitable and competitive in your area.
Do you have your workouts planned? See number 2 below
Now you can start marketing…and putting your business model or bootcamp kit into practice.
2. Not planning your next session before your current one starts
Do you have your workouts planned? This is my suggestion -plan at least a month of workouts in advance if not two months,written out ..meaning on paper.:) Do not wing it.
If you run your boot camps in sessions, like a four-week boot camp for example, you should have the next month session scheduled and planned before the current one starts. This way your bootcampers know what to look forward to, which increases retention rates.But more importantly,You will also feel more prepared and ready especially if you are new to group training. I recommend new trainers to have a month or two of workouts pre written even just to use as a guide.
3.. Failure to promote your boot camp often and regularly and far enough in advance
Running your ad once or only a week ahead of your next boot camp or sending out one round of flyers or postcards is not marketing. It is a waste of money. Your prospects need to see your promotions three to five times before they begin to notice you. Send out marketing regularly and often. Start marketing four to six weeks before your boot camp begins.
4. No back-up plan
What happens when your outdoor boot camp gets cancelled by inclement weather? What if you’re too sick to show up yourself? Do you have a back-up location? Can you get someone else to run your camp? Do you have a plan to make up cancelled classes? How do you contact bootcampers to let them know what’s going on?
5. Failing to evaluate customers’ fitness and help them set goals and objectives
If you can’t show customers how their fitness and health have improved by attending your boot camps, retention rates will be low. Measure customer fitness at least once a month and help them establish fitness goals so you can show them the success they’re experiencing.
6. Not having a niche or Unique Selling Proposition that makes your boot camp stand out in marketing
Give your boot camp a personality that is memorable or specialize in a certain type of exercise, like TRX system workouts or circuit training. Or specialize in boot camps for certain goals or sports, like a bridal boot camp or runners’ boot camp. Find a way to differentiate your program from other fitness programs and stand out.
There’s no bigger waste than a satisfied customer with nothing else to buy. Always have something else to sell besides the next session.
Here are some suggestions:
T-shirts, water bottles and related items with your logo and boot camp name
Books or journals—either your own, even if it’s a hardcopy of your eBook, or some you recommend (but be sure you buy them at wholesale prices).Blank journals are another excellent choice at low cost.
Training gear, like TRX systems or exercise mats or resistance bands, they can use at home
Individualized personal training sessions that “fit” the customer’s goals better
Bottled water and meal replacement bars for use during or after class
If your boot camps are at your personal studio or gym, have a store or table of items for sale. If your boot camps take place in a park or other outdoor setting, take along a crate of merchandise and let customers know what’s available.
8. Not locking in your location for at least a year
If you don’t hold boot camps in your own gym or studio, make sure your location is available and dedicated to your boot camps for at least a year. Having to move your boot camp because the location is being used by someone else is unprofessional and will diminish your reputation among customers.
Bottom line is know matter what bootcamp business model you have or purchase ..If YOU don’t plan ..you will fail. No bootcamp product or workout program or any other magic will get your camps running and packed….if you do not plan ahead.
About the Author – Georgette Pann: owner of NutriFitness LLC. She has 20+ years experience in the Health and Fitness field with expertise in fitness bootcamps.She is author and creator of the best selling “Sure Victory Fitness Bootcamp Kit” which you can see here as well as The Ultimate Book of Boot Camp Workouts