You may be starting out at a new facility, new city or growing a business. The need to gain clients will be steady and constant. You always want a model of growing your base and have a plan for training at a frequency of at least once a week with all clients with the possibility of bumping up certain clients when a hole comes open.
Where do you start? With the actions, not the thoughts. There is a time and place for sitting behind a computer but if you are trying to grow your business so that you have clients next week in order to stay in business you need to get up. Go out and network, shake hands, create relationships and ask for business. There is nothing bad about asking for help.
If you don’t ask no one knows you need it or have an opening. People are thrilled to help when they can. Especially if they benefit. Below you’ll find several ways to turn helping you into helping them.
1. Tell everyone new that you meet you are new. Let them know you want to experience the environment and you currently have no clients. Let them know you’d love to meet with them for a free consultation or complimentary session to get used to your new space. Know your hours. Give them two days and a block of times. Make it clear that there is no charge but that you are saving this spot for them. If you set two days of three hour blocks aside to do this and make 45 minute appointments you’ll see eight new people. From that you should sell at least one! If you are a good match and they said yes, chances are they need or want help with something. And you should gain a referral from every single one of them so you can follow up.
2. Make calls to your niche. I, for instance, work with older adult fitness as one of my niches. First day at work in a new city I phoned eight retirement communities after I got off work. I offered to come and do a presentation on recent research and show a video if time permitted. From that I made an invitation to a special group training session to be held early afternoons twice a week. From the eight communities, two responded positively. From that two, out of 22 attendees I have 5 older adults in a small group.
3. Post a sign about a free back pain prevention seminar. For me that’s what it was, for you it may be something different. Foam Roller use, pre-natal fitness, yoga for families, the possibilities are endless. Think smaller and more unique niche, rather than big. That’s not intuitive. But if you are the new kid on the block, you need to be specializing. From the free seminar, provide a coupon for a discount on small group offered at the same time you got your crowd to the seminar.
4. Either begin working in membership or become best buddies with the membership team. If there is a free personal training session given with new memberships, ask to get the best fit ones. Tell the membership staff exactly who you work with best. Get specific on how you help them. The membership staff want to look good. They want the customer to have a great experience. And if you make that happen, they’ll refer more. If 5 new members join a day? That should provide at least one new client every day for you. Talk to your membership friends early and often.
5. Get close to the front desk staff. Let them know that you are able to help with (and name three specialities). That could be strength training routines, core exercises, or upper body tone. The more specific information the front desk staff have the more able to help you they will be. At least two or three people come up to the desk asking about personal training. Do also post a sign for those who didn’t take advantage at joining time of their free sessions. You can acquire a great deal of interest for those for whom now the time is more right.
6. Work out. Use the space. Use your unique style of working out and you’ll attract attention of someone using the club at the time you want to train and wondering what you’re doing. Open up conversations. Don’t wait for others to do it. It’s your house, your party. Get familiar and comfortable in your space.
7. If you have a few minutes, as I did while you’re waiting for training time to begin or a staff meeting. Strike up a conversation with the people milling in the lobby or at the cafe. Ask them about why they joined the club, what they love about it, what they do and what their goals are. People love to talk about themselves. They’ll be friendly faces, and potentially new clients or referral resources. Think middle aged and older adults for this. They are secure in their lives, love to help and have likely been in your shoes. Keep your card handy and use it. Ask for theirs.
Do all, not just one. Keep doing them. A waiting list is a what you want!