How To Grow Your Personal Training Business
AND Create Raving Fans
A Guest Post By My Long Time Mentoring Client Ben Longley
So if you’ve been following this blog for a while, taken action on a few things, you’ve grown your personal training business or boot camp by adding lots of value to your clients lives and deliver a kick ass training service that gets your clients results, you’re either already at the point where you’ve got too many clients to handle all on your own, or you’ll be there soon.
Now when you first start training clients, the business is all YOU, everyone is exposed to you and your personality, your training style, your phone calls and text messages etc etc.
One of the keys to growing your fitness training business though, is not diluting this experience too much as your client base expands. Especially as you get new trainers on board to train your clients and help you out, you’ve gotta make sure you stay on top of things, it’s easy for things to slip in the eyes of your customer:
- a little less caring (no one cares as much as you about YOUR business)
- a little less awesome training experience
- a little less customer service & follow up
- a little less relationship oriented
This can ALL add up to a completely different experience your new clients are now receiving, this isn’t the experience that helped grow your training business in the first place, you’ve gotta aim to not just match this, but to make it even BETTER through the systems you put in place
I run a personal training and group training business, as my client base has grown It’s no longer possible for me to over deliver to everybody.
Sure I kept up pretty well as my business grew but now its just not gonna be possible unless I work around the clock, and I’ve definitely had clients that have ‘fallen through the cracks’ and stopped training as a result.
After speaking to Adam Mckenzie, creator of Fitness Contests and Challenges, for a bit of advice ( who as you probably know is also one of Chris’ mentoring clients) , he gave me the idea for an awesome way to structure my business.
Adam runs an absolutely kick ass training business and boot camp just a few suburbs away from me and he is my local ‘go-to guy’ when I’ve got some questions to resolve – he is a very switched on dude when it comes to running and growinga fitness business and one of the nicest blokes you’ll meet
So this new model is gonna ensure all my current and new customers get a consistently awesome experience whenever they deal with my business, every one will get taken care of PLUS it free’s up a lot of my time dealing with phone calls and emails as the main point of contact for the business, so I can focus on other more important things I need to do
Here it goes – How To Grow Your Personal Training Business or Boot Camp and Create an Army of Raving Fans
In my case we’ve got 115 clients between 3 trainers at the moment.
We’ve split the clients up between all 3 of us – I’ve got about 50, they’ve got about 30 each.
So im actually ‘giving’ my trainers the responsibility of looking after their own ‘herd’ of clients (‘herd’ is not meant to be used in a derogatory way at all here). Its my trainers jobs to make sure that those 30 clients are treated like royalty, they’re always communicated with and followed up with, and they are their point of contact with the business if they ever need anything or have any questions.
Now most clients will actually train with a combination of all 3 of us, but we’ve split the clients up based on which trainer is best suited to take care of them. This could be because they train them more often, they’ve known them for longer, they have more in common or just ‘click’ better, whatever it is just choose the most appropriate trainer to take care of each client.
Send an email or hand out letters over the course of a week to all your clients explaining this new system and letting the clients know that if they ever need anything, or have any questions then ‘x’ is their go-to guy or girl, and here is their contact number and email address.
If you don’t have a big group of clients to restructure, then great… set this up from the get-go as you’re expanding, you’ll save a lot of time ‘putting out fires’ and will grow your client base a lot quicker.
Read the ‘Go-Giver and ‘Raving Fans’ and develop some principles by which to direct your trainers to behave in all dealings and communications with their herd.
Have a good chat to your trainers about this, they have to know that their job is to over deliver and create massive value.
Not only is this awesome from a clients satisfaction, retention, referral point of view, but it will also increase your employee satisfaction. All of a sudden your trainers have got some new responsibility and importance, they get the joy of actually helping others and being paid to be a great person, and it gives them a creative outlet to think of how to over deliver. When it becomes all about the money your trainers are a lot more likely to end up unhappy sooner or later.
But sure, money is still important everyone has to make a living, so employee pay will reflect how good they’ve taken care of their herd.
At 30-40 clients they get paid ‘x’ base amount with ‘x’ commission for group sizes
If they nurture and grow this group into 40-50 clients they get paid more
If they nurture and grow this group into 50+ clients they get paid more again.
So now they’ve got a carrot to chase as well, a bit of incentive is always good for performance…
(Obviously adjust the size of the clients ‘groups’ and the corresponding pay structure to what’s appropriate for your business at the moment)
When implementing this new system, you also want to sit down and spend a good hour designing your clients 12 month experience with your business.
Literally from the day they contact you up till month 12, you need to specify every single exposure or communication with your business.
This needs to happen for EVERYONE, and should be an easy to follow path for your trainers to follow. Specify ‘random’ phone call check ups, sending massage gift vouchers, birthday cards & gifts, 6 month anniversary emails, referral emails, all planned out to the day in your 12 month timeline, and provide templates for everything so your trainers can just plug them in when needed.
On top of this make sure that YOU make an effort to stay in touch with ALL of your clients so they are always tied into your ‘business’ and not the ‘trainer’, call a few clients per day for a check up, doing this you should be able to speak with all clients once every 4-6 weeks.
Jump in and train some people on days or times you might not usually be in, just to keep in contact with people you don’t usually deal with on a regular basis.
Writing blog posts, Facebook posts and regular emails will also help to maintain your relationship with all clients and keep them connected with the business and not just their trainer.
Using this system is a great way grow your personal training business and to:
- improve client experience & retention
- improve client results (retention = better results over time)
- Increase referrals
- improve employee performance
- improve employee satisfaction and fulfillment (and retention)
- outsource a lot of admin for you and free up some time
- create raving fans for your business.
You know when you buy something new or go to a new place and you’re just blown away by how good it is compared to everything else?
You can’t help but tell others about it and try and get them to try it?
There’s something about human nature where if you tell others about a product or service that’s awesome that they never knew about, it almost rubs a little awesome back onto you, people want to tell others about their little ‘secret’. Make YOUR training business one of those places and you’ll have an army of marketers working around the clock promoting and growing your business for you.
Ben Longley runs The Fit Stop – Personal training St Kilda where he specialized in semi –private training for clients who want to lose weight, tone up, and get real fitness results.
NOTE: If you’d like to grow a group a group personal training business, get started with this group training program
And if you liked this blog post, you might like this one too: How To Grow a Personal Training Business
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