Posted February 16, 2010
Have you ever wondered why some Trainers renew their clients consistently and for large packages that can often exceed 200 sessions? The obvious answers involve great personality and energy, consistency and professionalism as well as getting the client results. These are of course very important variables in the process but I can guarantee you that if you utilize these 5 suggestions you will immediately double your renewal percentage as well as your package size.
Sell Time Slots
If you want to maximize your earning potential you have to control your schedule. Never make the mistake of leaving open ended appointments and allowing your client to call you when they are available. You need to dictate the terms of the relationship from the start and get your client in the habit of training at the same time on set days. It's easier for them to remember and it ensures that you have maximum availability for new clients. If an individual is conditioned to working out Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 6am, think how much easier it will be to let them know that they need to book more appointments to maintain their time slot because your Fitness Consultant has informed you that there are a few new clients who would like to work out with you during that hour.
Dictate the Terms of the Training Relationship
I know numerous Trainers who work under the Pro Fitness personal training system that have six figure incomes because they simply dictate to their clients how business will be conducted. Some of them have put themselves in a position to take only clients who work out 3 times per week. They emphasize that their success relies on the fact that clients attain results and therefore they need full commitment in terms of training frequency and consistency. Many Trainers will not allow clients to cancel more than once per 12 sessions with notice. In fact our Pro Fitness personal training agreements have several clauses built in that we require the member to initial to ensure their commitment and success. It's not beyond some of our elite Trainers to fire their clients who cancel frequently. If you're clear from the start you're going to develop a reputation for being serious and you will have a client base who will be getting amazing results, renewing more frequently and referring more friends as a result of their success.
Provide Information Prior to the Renewal
With our personal training business system, our Fitness Consultants are trained to sell periodization programs, or in simple terms phases of training. A successful Trainer should provide a road map of the phases and routines that will take a person to their goal at the beginning of their first session. Regardless of how many sessions the client has committed to the focus should still be on the bigger picture. With 3 - 5 sessions remaining prior to the renewal, a Trainer should be handing the client information on the next phase of the program that outlines what the client can expect in terms of routines and results. This will give them time to take the information home, digest it and start imagining what the next step will look like in terms of goals and results. They will be far better prepared to accept your renewal offer when the time comes.
Variety is the Spice of Life
I just finished a 2- day training seminar at the River Valley Club in Hanover New Hampshire. Cindy Summer, their top Trainer in 2009 for most sessions completed, shared her secret of success with the group. The fact that she is a group exercise and pilates instructor in combination with her numerous personal training certifications allow her to bring a variety of workouts and experiences to her clients. The routines and workouts are always changing and the client is the ultimate winner in terms of acquiring strength, flexibility, function, endurance, etc., and most of all the variety to keep things fresh and exciting. This is one of the reasons why our company is a huge proponent of the Movement Training Specialist Certification Program that provides a dynamic and exciting new way to train and progress clients. From a business standpoint the workouts are unique and attract members who are typically used to training on equipment. Click here for more information on the MTS model that will easily boost your new and renewal personal training sales.
Assume the Renewal Sale
Have a personal training agreement completely filled out on the day you're going to ask for the renewal sale. If you did your homework and prepared them with information on the next stage of their training, the client is more prepared and will not be surprised by your assumptive approach. I can't begin to tell you how this one tip alone has easily doubled renewals for Trainers in our PFP clubs. Simply hand them the agreement prior to the start of your session and ask them to authorize the next phase of their training program. And please, whatever you do, have a system in place like our on line web based PFP Track program that easily identifies when clients are up for renewal with at least 3 sessions remaining. Don't wait until the final session to ask for the renewal because if the client needs some time to think about it, as many do, you have no follow up appointments to ensure that you get another chance to finalize the package.
Posted January 07, 2010
in News, Blog
It took us 6 years working with the River Valley Club in New Hampshire to get their personal training sales over 2 Million for the year. With the advancement of our management and sales training systems and the introduction of our web based personal training business software we were able to achieve that number in just 2 years at the Athletic Club in Guelph Ontario.
Prior to hiring our organization the club's best previous year was $475,000 in total PT sales. Our organization would like to congratulate Director Ryan Flesch for an outstanding effort in managing the department as well as his entire team of Fitness Consultants and Personal Trainers. In a recession year, the Pro Fitness Program continues to be the number one personal training sales system in North America with more than 50% of our clients having their best sales year in history! If you want to know how we can increase your club personal training business by over 500% in 2010 contact us for a free consultation and assessment of your department and program.
Posted December 15, 2009
in News, PFP Track
Technology is constantly evolving, and nowhere is this more true than on the web. When PFP Track was first launched in 2006, it represented a leap forward for club management software systems: it was a web application in an industry that was still primarily reliant on desktop applications.
You could access it in a browser, and that, along with the many features we built into it, made it cutting edge.
A lot has changed since 2006. Many other software development companies have made the move to the Internet, although many club owners are still using desktop applications to run their clubs.
The state of fitness club management software has moved forward, and so has the state of web development in general - very much so.
New software development tools have eased the development of complex web applications. New technologies in the browser and faster computers have extended the limits of what is possible online.
We've also heard from an increasing number of club owners that they want simple, easy-to-use software that can handle replace the software they are using alongside PFP Track in their clubs to improve their personal training business.
PFP Track has always been focused on managing personal training departments according to the principles of the Pro Fitness Program, but there's room for growth into other areas of the club, including managing memberships.
We're paying close attention to trends on the web. We're also listening to you. We know many of you are frustrated by the clunky desktop applications you're using right now. We know you want to avoid having to enter data in twice, or more than twice, in various systems.
We know you want great software and we know we can provide it.
That's why we've set out to take PFP Track to the next level. We've commenced building the next version of PFP Track on an entirely new platform. We're rewriting the software from the ground up, we're expanding it, and we're making it a lot better.
But to make this happen, we need your help. We need your suggestions and comments. (You can leave them here if you wish, to get started, or contact us.)
We will also be commencing a beta program that will allow selected clubs to try out the software in advance to provide feedback. Preference will be given to clubs who commit to spending time with the new software in order to test it and provide substantial feedback. Let us know if you're interested by contacting us.
The tentative launch date for PFP Track 2 is at the end of March, 2010. We'll keep you posted on progress in the weeks ahead.
Posted December 02, 2009
in News, Blog
Every month our organization emails out a monthly newsletter to our PFP clients. And every month we receive the same inquiries about why the same Fitness Consultants (FCs) continue to produce consistent personal training sales results and why others continue to fall short of the mark. It's not unusual for our top FCs to convert 30% or more of all new fitness club members to a package of one on one personal training of no less than 12 session and in many cases anywhere from 36 sessions right up to 144 sessions. In fact last month Denise Reid at the Athletic Club in Guelph Ontario wrote $55,000 in personal training sales out of her little Fitness Consultation Office combining two 144 session packs, three 72 packs and an amazing 208 session renewal program along with her other sales. Time and time again our top FCs write more personal training business than entire fitness departments because they take their position and career seriously and they focus on selling truths.
Our FCs make no apologies for the fact that they love to sell what they're most passionate about and what they most believe in. They're all about selling truths and making the best possible diagnosis and prescription for their clients. They understand that clubs that only sell memberships and do not disclose the total picture of what it takes to get real results for life are doing a tremendous disservice to their communities and to the fitness industry as a whole. Pro Fitness Program FCs simply sell the truth that results come out of a combination of motivation, intensity, education and technique, safety, flexibility and mobility and fundamental nutrition and that a coach will provide guidance, support and an overall plan that will be executed over a specific period of time to ensure the most effective and efficient path to real lasting results.
If you ask me it's imperative that the number one focus of our FCs is completing as many quality Fitness Consultaions as possible in the course of the month. It is also a must that whoever fills this role is fully committed to the postion on a full time basis and derives the majority, if not all of their income from this role. In many of larger facilities our full time FCs complete over 100 consultations per month. In smaller markets and smaller clubs that number should never fall below 2 consultations daly or no less than 50 per month. That always involves going beyond waiting for members to walk through door and buy a membership. It requires a marketing plan and strategy that targets existing and former club members, corporations, local businesses, trade shows and simply the desire to go out into the community and educate people on the misconceptions of diet and weight loss and what it really takes to develop a healthy lifestyle.
Our PFP Business Consultants are qualified and full trained to work with your FCs and Trainers in developing a marketing strategy to increase traffic to your personal training departments. We have been extremely successful recently in using Craig's List to recruit qualified individuals who are eager to start a career in the fitness industry. Our 4 - part, industry specific interview process guarantees that we uncover the right fit for the position from the start. We follow that up with our training manuals, DVDs, phone and email support along with conference calls with other experienced FCs in the PFP family of clubs. If you are truly a club that wants to have a large impact on your community's health and wellness and at the same time are in business to be profitable and grow your personal training business, allow us the opportunity to directly work with your FCs to set goals and marketing strategies thereby ensuring the best possible member experience as well as full time rewarding careers for your fitness team. At the same time please allow us to take a page out of the Jack Welch shool of business and either transition those who are not performing to another area of your club or towards another career choice that better suits their skill set. We owe it to our organizations and to them to constantly give feedback and make sure they're in a position or occupation that best expresses their passions and skill set - let's not deny anyone that.
Jeff Russo - The Motivational Guru
Posted November 23, 2009
in News, Blog
Over the past decade, I have had the opportunity to work with (and within) countless different fitness organizations. Add to this the extensive exposure which I have had to prospective PFP clients, companies for whom I have conducted sales and motivational seminars, as well as all of the individuals and groups which I have spent time with at conferences, training seminars and fitness and sporting events. During all of this time I have had the cumulative pleasure of getting to know a great many fitness organizations and their cultures.
But what do I mean by Personal Training Business Culture?
Every workplace in the world, regardless of industry or intent, is a completely unique sum of all of its moving parts. It is impacted in infinite ways by its locale, community, managers, ownership, products, clients, level of success, attitude towards growth, sales approach, so on and so forth. In fact, if you were to interview different individuals who comprise your organization, and ask them what motivates them to be a part of the team, you would certainly get a variety of answers.
Perhaps some are building a career in an industry that they love, others will be there simply in exchange for a paycheck, and others are only there until something better comes along.
Your corporate culture is a sum value of all of these interconnected attitudes, personalities and contributions. Each of the individuals in your team, from your most junior part time receptionist to your most senior Personal Trainer, have the ability to impact your club business culture and therefore your bottom line profitiblity.
Over time, the culture of your organization will change and evolve as a result of maturity, growth, key personnel changes and management initiatives. In order to evaluate Personal Training Business Culture within an organization, I ask two simple questions.
Firstly, do you have a monthly revenue or sales target for your organization or department? It is rare that I see anyone who doesn’t have some type of a monthly goal. However, the answer to the follow up question really separates the wheat from the proverbial chaff.
What are you doing to ensure that you reach that target number?
Wow. The seconds that follow that question reveal more about an organization, it’s key players and its potential for growth than anything else I can imagine. In fact, more often than you can imagine I hear things like:
“We’re hoping that the current marketing piece really makes an impact.”
“I hired a new Trainer who says he really drove numbers at his last club.”
“We’re hoping that the economy has finally turned a corner!”
More often than I wish to admit, I have even heard:
“I’m crossing my fingers that we have a big month.”
You may be asking yourself what these two questions have to do with club culture or PT Business Culture. In short, these two questions reveal nearly everything about the effectiveness of your management strucuture, the motivation of your sales and service providers, as well the general motivation of your team to be successful.
At the end of the day, it has everything to do with expectations of success and motivation. Does your team want to be mediocre? Does your team expect to fall short of targets? Are they motivated to be the best?
These are the questions that you need to ask yourself. If you don’t have individuals that are doing everything possible, every month, to exceed goals and expectations, then you stand very little chance of growth and success, and therefore you do not have a strong Personal Training Business Culture.
I don't know how many times I have heard senior club managers jump to the defense of underperforming team members who are completely negative in their approach to their jobs, claiming that they are "really a great Trainer"!
Why are you in Business?
A very savvy Club Owner and Business Consultant once stated to me, early in my career, that I would be surprised by how many people out there are not in business to make money. It seemed like a ridiculous idea, but my experience has proven his theory to be correct time and time again. I repeatedly find myself exposed to operators who seem to be in business to a) indulge their own ego’s b) cater to staff ego’s or c) just keep the doors open. None of these motivations can possibly lead to a successful Personal Training Business Culture.
If operating a fitness facility were a game, then net income would be on the scoreboard. Are you winning?
With no further ado, I would ask each of you, regardless of whether you own a chain of clubs, or if you are an Entry level Personal Trainer, to ask yourself:
What are you doing to ensure that your company exceeds expectations this month?
If there is no answer to that question, than I think that you need to take a long look at your company’s Personal Training Business Culture. Do you have the desire, need, approach, personnel, management etc. to win? If not then perhaps to is time to make some changes.
Sean Walpole CPT, MTS
Posted October 13, 2009
in News, Blog
On Saturday December 5th from 9am -5pm The River Valley Club in Hanover New Hamphsire will be host to the Movemement Training Specialist Conference.
There will be 4 guest speakers and you will be eligible for continuing education credits. Topics will include Functional Flexibility and Warm Ups, 3 Dimensional Training, Zero Resource Exercise Training and Utilizing Effective Nutrition Plans for Weight Loss and Performance Living.
If you are a club owner who is interested in improving your personal training business, a certified trainer or Fitness Consultant or a current MTS Certified Trainer, this is the ideal setting to network and bring some new and exciting tools to your clubs and clients.
For a complete list of topics and presenters and to receive your regisration form either email your PFP Fitness Business Consultant or go directly to www.mtspecialist.com. Canadian clients have a great opportunity with the strength of the Canadian dollar to get a first hand experience of the personal training culture and system that exists at RVC.