27 December 2018
4 STEPS TO GETTING NEW CLIENTS FOR PERSONAL TRAINERS
I get it, you want more clients. And as Veruca Salt would say, “I want it now, Daddy”… In an age where fast, quick, easy and convenient is the norm, personal trainers, like most are always seeking the fastest route to a full client roster. Even those who have been in the game for a…
I get it, you want more clients. And as Veruca Salt would say, “I want it now, Daddy”…
In an age where fast, quick, easy and convenient is the norm, personal trainers, like most are always seeking the fastest route to a full client roster. Even those who have been in the game for a while are in constant need of new clients, myself and the JPS staff included. It’s the nature of the game. Clients come, they go, and sometimes they come back. So today, I wanted to share with you all some insights into how I established myself as a coach in an era before instagram and funnels, and the simply strategies I used to see a full client list within 12 months that led to the establishment of my company which now sees 15 coaches take over +400 sessions per week across our two facilities.
STEP 1: YOU’RE NOT WORTH MUCH, YET…
If you are fresh in the industry, and are just starting out as a coach, you have no business charging an arm and a leg for your services. I see this all the time, coaches who charge well over a $1 per minute who have noting more than basic certifications and minimal experience. Some are fortunate enough to dupe folk into paying high end rates, but most are not and are left scratching their head wondering why they have no clients.
Don’t base your rates on industry standards or what other coaches in your facility are charging. You are not them, and if you do charge the going rate, you’ll price yourself out of the market.
Remember, if you haven’t earned your stripes, you have no business charging near $100 per session.
Think about it this way. The minimum wage is $18 p/h, and although you have some basic certifications to qualify you to provide a service, you must consider the value of your service along with what is fair and reasonable for potential clients to pay someone given you’re not yet in demand.
I know you need to make a living, but making your service affordable initially is the key to developing a client base. As demand increases, price should be scaled accordingly as supply gradually decreases #economics101.
Start by charging less than $1 per minute, even $20 per 30 minute session makes for $40 per hour, which is over double the minimum wage.
Once your roster is filling up, you can begin to increase per session rates, but be careful of charging existing clients more. Respect and value for loyalty goes a long way!
When I first started out coaching, I offered 10 sessions for $250, just $25 per session. It was pivotal in allowing me to:
a) obtain clients; and
b) actually gain some experience.
Overtime as demand increased, I slowly increased the price of sessions. Currently, our packages start at $550 for a 10 pack ($55 per session) and to work with me, if you’re not a loyal customer or referred by close family and friends, it’s $70 per 30 minutes.
Worst case, if things are slower than you’d like, obtain a second job that doesn’t interfere with your coaching hours whilst you build your client list. Better yet, secure a position at the local cafe and word up the customers ordering their large frappucino that you’re coaching around the corner!
STEP 2: YOU’RE NOT A GURU, SO START SMALL
A huge mistake many new coaches make is looking far and wide for new prospects. Thinking you’ll be able to attract new clientele in the ocean of individuals looking for fitness advice/coaching and amongst the thousands of hungry sharks (trainers) eager to catch their pray, is a fools errand. Instead, zoom right in to your close network of friends and family and focus on working with people you already know.
Train a few friends or family members for free.
In return, ask them to refer 2-3 friends or family members who have the same or similar fitness needs/wants that they have, and ask them for their phone numbers/emails and to word them up that they referred you and passed on their details. Give them a call, reach out in a meaningful, sincere and honest way and help them find solutions to their fitness problems.
Also create free trial session cards for them to hand out to these 2-3 people goes a long way in helping them take action and make the next step to booking in a consultation with you.
When I started coaching, I trained several family members and friends for free. I took videos of their lifting, tracked their weight loss and posted their results on my social media. Before I knew it, I had multiple inquiries daily from their friends, family, colleagues and so forth inquiring about my services.
Hey presto, I now have over 80 active clients and a humungous waiting list…
STEP 3: GIVE A F***, ACTUALLY TWO.
Care more about the results and quality of service you offer than anything else, especially money. It sounds ludicrous to not care about finances, and you’re right in thinking that. However, this is NOT what I’m saying at all.
What I am saying is that you must give several f***s about the people you are fortunate enough to work with. Your priorities should first and foremost be to do a great job and avoid putting the cart (money) BEFORE the horse (coaching). Understanding that you’re a coach first, business owner second, is crucial to success in the fitness industry, or any career for that matter. Money is a by product of doing a great job, not the other way around.
Better yet, care most about your current clients (paid or not) instead of marketing and sales. Another powerful tool in building your business.
Over time, if you become a master of your craft, the results will speak for themselves and people will talk.
Caring about your service involves not just wanting to help your clients, but also wanting to further your knowledge, skills and education to enhance the value you offer those who you work with. Continual upskilling and education is a worthy investment that will pay huge dividends long term. If you’re interested in learning more, you can enrol into my online mentorship course HERE.
My career has been solely driven by taking pride in the work I do. For years I couldn’t tell you how much I was making (even though it turned out I was making a 6 figure salary by the age of 21), but what I did know was what macros my clients were on, how many times per week they trained, their cats name and their biggest hang ups.
STEP 4: SHOWCASE YOUR WORK.
You cannot sell what you don’t do. Don’t make promises, just get results and avoid making profound claims or constantly marketing offers, deals and your services. The likelihood of a potential prospect hiring you because you incessantly market and sell your packages is slim to none.
Whatever solutions you are providing your clients need to be highlighted to the public eye, so that they can see what you have to offer and gain an insight into what it is you do and they better understand what they are signing up for and why you should be the coach they hire.
Stroke, stroke, strike.
A simple theory in economic is to first expose your value (stroke), then deliver (stroke) and then market/sell (strike).
So first, highlight your results with clients, your knowledge and your experience. Then deliver value to your existing clients, and reinforce through further exposure.
Instead of focusing purely on sales and marketing, show your work to the world.
This means you must measure and track your clients progress.
Whether it’s technique improvements, reducing pain, scale weight changes or before/after photos.
Share your clients success via blogs, social media posts, YouTube or whatever means you can and use a variety of platforms to do so.
If you don’t have clients yet, share your own personal journey through fitness. Educate, be informative and for heavens sake, just do what you can to gain experience with yourself before applying your methodologies to your clients. It goes a long way in not only refining your approach, but also being relatable to those you work with.
Take a look at the JPS social media. It isn’t filled with selfies or ANY advertisements of what we offer, yet here we are with a truck load of clients and several inquiries coming through daily… Go figure!
Repeat steps 1-4 for 12 months. I guarantee your client base will grow.