What does every fitness professional want? A full schedule of clients who are as committed to achieving their health and fitness goals as you are to helping them. But finding new clients is hard, and not being able to build a book of business is the number one reason fitness professionals give up on their dreams prematurely. In today's digital world, there are a seemingly infinite number of tools, websites, companies, consultants and services that claim to be must-haves to your professional success.
It can often be difficult to cut through the noise and make things simple and practical so that you can be successful.
Here are the top 6 ways that are proven to convert prospects into clients in the digital age.
1. Make Sure the Price Is Right
Pricing is one-part art and one-part science. First, understand your market. Research and track the pricing of your competition. When setting your own pricing, also take into consideration your experience, certifications, and expenses (e.g. gym rental fees).
Remember, when pricing your services the goal is to find the right session price that will fill your schedule and help you make a living, not a price so high that only a few people can afford you or so low that people become skeptical of your quality.
And lastly, make your pricing and packages simple. Don't overthink it - having fewer options is usually the best strategy. The last thing clients want is to whip out a calculator or take out a second mortgage to afford a trainer.
2. Have Reviews and Testimonials
In the age of Amazon, Uber, and Yelp, we expect reviews of just about everything and almost always check them out before we buy anything. Before Igo to a new restaurant I always read the reviews. No reviews? I'll probably let others check it out before I invest my time and money being the guinea pig.
Finding a trainer is no different. Prospective clients expect to see reviews and testimonials as to how great of a trainer you are. No reviews or client testimonials? Expect a tougher time getting new clients. Taking a chance on a restaurant with no reviews is one thing, taking a chance on personal trainer where my health and safety are in their hands - that's a much bigger risk.
Reviews and testimonials are not tough to get - just ask existing and past clients for testimonials and get their permission to post them. Happy clients will always help you with a review.
3. Make Scheduling Easy
Think of your schedule as your bank account - the fuller it is, the more money you're making and the happier you are. You need to make filling your schedule as easy as possible for potential clients.
You'd welcome someone making deposits into your bank account without you lifting a finger, so use an online booking platform that shows your up-to-date availability and let new clients schedule and pay for their first session anytime. Most personal training websites use "Contact Us" forms - in today's world of instant gratification and on-demand everything, filling out a form and waiting for a reply is almost as bad as having to call a 1- 800 number and listen to terrible hold music.
4. Use Photography that Makes you Look Like a Pro
A picture is worth a thousand words, so make your photos great! All photos you use to market yourself should be high resolution, in focus, representative of YOU, and look professional. A great headshot of your friendly and smiling face is always a crowd pleaser. Shots of you doing activities and things that you love and enjoy help make you relatable. Absolutely. A shirtless, grainy selfie? Not so much.
A small investment in great photography will pay handsome returns.
5. Write a Thoughtful Bio
Prospective clients really do read your bios. Your bio, like your photos, should be completely reflective of YOU. Have fun with it. It doesn't have to be dry and boring and stale. If your style and personality is funny and clever, then make your bio funny and clever.
Spend time with it. Spelling and grammatical errors can be deal breakers for some clients. Ask a friend or two to proofread it and make suggestions.
The most impactful bios that I have read aren't too long and always include the ''Why." Tell people WHY you've made the choice to be personal trainer. WHY it is important to you to help people make life changes. WHY people should work with you.
6. Be Responsive and Timely
When a prospective client is ready to start, they are ready to start! When they email or call you with a question or to book their first session, reply ASAP. Chances are, the prospect has reached out to multiple people and the first one to reply may very well be the recipient of a brand new client.
Timeliness demonstrates a high level of service and what the client can look forward when training begins. The faster your response time, the more likely you are to gain a new client.
These 6 must-do's to gain new clients in the digital age are all very doable. Make the investment in yourself and you'll reap the rewards.