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Show Me the Money! Finding Clients for Your Small Personal Training Business

Turning Over Rocks

Getting your personal training business off the ground can be a challenge. Many new trainers struggle to strike a balance between building up a large enough client base to quit the day job, and finding the time and energy for both. Generating new clients is often the most daunting task for new trainers, and you may feel like you have turned over every rock to drum up business. But the truth is, you sell a product that every human being needs, and that makes everyone you meet a potential client. Physical activity, wholesome nutrition and positive lifestyle behaviors are fundamental to human health, and you possess all the skills and tools you need to help others succeed.
Ceiling or Sky?

While the limitations you are facing seem very real, they may be rooted in your thoughts. We often impose limitations on our own success without realizing it. When you look up, do you see only the ceiling, or do you see the sky and the infinite universe beyond? To be more specific, you may be making assumptions about others based on your own limited experience. For example, your child’s teacher has mentioned more than once that she wants to lose weight, but you know teaching doesn’t pay well, and you assume that she cannot afford your services. Or your elderly neighbor uses a walker to get around, and you assume that he would not be interested in exercise. You may fear rejection, but if you don’t ask others to buy your services, you already have no for an answer.
Infinite Solutions
Another way we limit ourselves is by thinking there is only one way to do something. The truth is, every problem has infinite solutions. Perhaps you know someone who really wants your services, but cannot afford your fees. Consider bartering your services in exchange for something that you need. I have bartered personal training for cars, facials, tax preparation services, dance lessons and more! Bring clients with limited financial resources together for small group training. Get involved with youth athletics and offer coaching services. Team up with your local health food store and offer free consultations during busy times of day. In other words, think outside the box, and come up with creative solutions to building your client base.
It’s All About Referrals!

Fitness always has always been and still remains a referral business. Instead of focusing on money, pour your energy into giving your clients an amazing experience with superior results. As your clients move toward their goals and the compliments start pouring in, they will sing your praises to friends, family and co-workers. Offer incentives for client referrals, like free sessions, t-shirts, and fitness equipment. Take before and after photos, or keep a monthly photo journal of each client. Use your clients’ successes to build a sales portfolio, and never stop rewarding them and telling them how much you appreciate them. As the beloved guru of sales, Zig Ziglar ,used to say, “You can have everything in life you want, if you’ll only help enough other people get what they want.”

A positive mindset is key to business success, and feeding your brain with continuing education will help keep you focused and motivated. W.I.T.S. offers many courses geared to Business, Sales and Marketing, all specifically designed for fitness entrepreneurs. Sink your teeth into a new certification like Fitness Management, Older Adult Fitness, Youth Fitness, or Lifestyle Fitness Coaching. Beef up your Social Media skills with our Social Media Marketing series. Or dive into our Fitness Business Institute to learn savvy skills for business success!

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