6 Ways to Get New Fitness Training Clients
Your career as a personal fitness trainer depends on having customers. No matter how good you are at getting results for your customers, you have to actually have customers or you won’t have a business for long. Gaining new fitness training clients takes perseverance and some marketing smarts. These six tips can help you succeed.
1. Develop unique programs
Chances are you aren’t the only fitness trainer in town, but you can differentiate yourself from your competition by offering unique programs that are on trend and in demand. Make a point to get certified in modern fitness techniques to stay relevant, or choose a niche that you know no one else in your area offers. Just be sure to keep furthering your professional skills. Your area of expertise is your specialty, but being versed in other skills can serve you well if a client asks for something specific. Failing to further your education and training will only work against you. Unless you offer people what they want, you’ll become irrelevant to the new fitness training clients you’re trying to attract.
2. Establish a brand for yourself
Having a personal trainer certification isn’t enough to set you apart. You need to brand yourself as one of the best. Do you have a slogan for your fitness business? To create one, ask yourself what you want to be and what you want to deliver to your customers. Be honest about what you can offer and how it can help your customers fulfill a need or solve a problem (or a potential problem, such as the effects of being inactive). Once you’ve got something, ask the opinions of your closest confidants and then begin using the slogan in your marketing materials. Most importantly, you must live up to what your brand or slogan declares.
3. Word of mouth
The competition for fitness trainers is high, making word-of-mouth marketing all the more important. Ask a few of your satisfied clients to give testimonials that you can use in your marketing materials. Maybe you have a client you could feature as a before-and-after success story, with photos and their testimony. When it’s a service you’re selling, the more potential customers can see how you’ve benefitted others, the better.
4. Referral program
Referrals from your current customers are one of the best ways to get new customers. Establishing a referral program as incentive for your customers to refer their friends and family is a great way to get the referrals coming in. Even if you don’t have a formal referral program, it can benefit you to routinely ask for referrals. If you’re great at what you do, your customers will be happy to send referrals your way. Just be sure to live up to those referrals.
5. Marketing, marketing, marketing
It’s a reality for every business: you must spend money to make money. To gain customers and get your name out there in your community, you need to put dollars toward marketing. You may be better qualified or have more proven techniques than your fellow fitness trainers, but if you don’t properly market yourself and your business, you may be less financially successful than they are.
Marketing can take many forms and often involves a lot of trial and error. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- If you have a storefront, it needs to be noticeable. Get creative with bright and bold signage to make your business location more visible from the street. Consider window decals or feather banners to draw attention. Neon signs work great, too.
- Purchase a list of people who have moved into your area and send postcards welcoming them to the neighborhood and inviting them to come in.
- Consider different monthly promotions and use them in all your advertising. Offer a free trial or a buy one, get one deal. If customers have the chance to experience your services at a reduced rate, you have a greater chance of enticing them to come in and stay on.
- Post flyers at nearby grocery/health food stores and fitness or sports-oriented retailers.
- Build a website. There are a number of free or low-cost, easy-to-use online systems that enable you to build a website quickly. Or you can hire a firm to do it for you if your budget allows. Your website doesn’t have to be complex, but it needs to include information about you, what you offer and how you can make a difference for your clients, where and when you are available for classes or training, and how someone can contact you. Be sure that your website includes the words and phrases that potential customers in your area would use to search on Google, Bing or other search engines for the services you offer.
- Be present on social media outlets under your business name. Choose a few that you can dedicate time to a few times a week and then post relevant and helpful information, in addition to sale-oriented offerings, for the benefit of your audience. Encourage your clients, friends and family to engage with you on these social platforms.
6. Be visible in the community
Being visible in your community is a vital part of making a name for yourself and gaining new customers. Your community’s Chamber of Commerce and Better Business Bureau are good places to inquire about health and fitness expos coming to town that you could attend as an exhibitor, sponsor or participant. Joining a professional association is also a smart way to network in the industry. Associations typically have their own referral systems organized by locality, adding to your visibility.
Finally, when you get some new fitness training clients through your doors, always ask how they heard about you and keep track of the responses you get. That way you can use the information to determine how to better market yourself in the future and focus your advertising efforts on the things that are working.
Thank you so much for your prompt response. Might I add, Veronica was a delight to work with and her professionalism and attention to detail made this an overall pleasurable experience.