The fitness industry can be a highly competitive space. Being able to stand out and find your ideal clients can be one of the most challenging parts of running your own fitness business. But taking on board these networking tips for personal trainers can help you get your fitness business out there and in front of the right people.
In this article, we'll learn what you can do to put your name out there, meet potential new clients, and industry professionals who could recommend you.
Tip #1. Partner UpAre there other fitness or health professionals in your area whose techniques can complement your own? Can you team up to offer joint services, classes or workshops for people to benefit from two areas of expertise at once without signing up to different places?
It can be a case of trial and error to find like-minded individuals in your area but say, for example, you offer a weight-loss focused course lasting 12 weeks. You might want to consider teaming up with a nutritionist, psychologist, or even a life coach. Their service and skills can prove to be invaluable to supplement your workout plans, give participants extra support and ultimately better results.
The benefit of partnering up and marketing the programme via multiple channels is that you will reach two or three audiences and people looking for a more comprehensive service than training.
Tip #2. Try Other Fitness ServicesYou probably wouldn't want to work with your direct competitors, but you can enjoy the services of other trainers and instructors in different areas of fitness. For example, you can try yoga or pilates classes in your area, attend water sports events or even join a walking or cycling club if you're interested in them.
These can be one-off occasions for inspiration, or those that fit with your own fitness goals might become regular events in your calendar. Being connected to others in the fitness industry can raise your profile and help you expand your visibility amongst peers and within your local community.
Share your experiences with your clients or via your social media channels, and you might find they return the favour and do the same for you. We're not suggesting you visit every different class in your area, but picking some that complement what you do and fit with your methods will show your clients and new acquaintances that you promote a multi-disciplinary approach to fitness.
Tip #3. Harvest Social MediaWe talk about social media in a marketing aspect very often. In a way, networking via Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn can be part of a successful marketing strategy. Still, it can also just be a sincere interest in widening your horizon and getting to know professionals with similar business interests, better yet, learning from mentors and coaches who have already walked your path.
Browsing networking events on Facebook or LinkedIn is a great way to find your crowd and meet others on a similar journey to yours as a fitness owner. Other attendees don't even need to be from the fitness industry. You can hang out with wellness, health, or even design or IT professionals.
Online personal trainers might want to get on this bandwagon as they may not have many opportunities to network locally. Whether you join the free weekly Presidents Summit Masterclasses to learn about specific topics within business management or maybe find a more particular community on Facebook like the PT Distinction and The Online Trainer University, you'll be able to connect with other business owners, ask questions and learn from others on a similar journey to yours. While not all networking efforts translate into getting new clients directly, interacting with peers and learning from them will help you develop your skills and become better at finding new ways to get in front of your ideal clients.
Tip #4. Host EventsEvents that bring together potential clients and industry professionals can be a massive draw for both sides. It doesn't have to be a fitness only event either. You can focus it around a specific topic, like "Weight Loss for Life" and invite a range of services as 'exhibitors', like a nutritionist, life coach, yoga and pilates instructor.
Another idea is to hold a small business event and bring all the local businesses together to offer something for the local community. You will be supporting other business owners just like you by simply holding the event, thus raising awareness of your fitness business and who you are.
Tip #5. Be Involved In Your CommunityOnce you get to know your local community, you might find opportunities that no other local personal trainers would recognise.
You can build a professional relationship with charities or businesses and offer unique services such as exercise support classes for companies who want to help employees improve their health or charities looking to support people into work.
Another way of being involved in your community is to connect with your local council and find out what fitness schemes they offer and what you can do for them and locals living in your area.
You can also attend local fitness events like park runs or local races, including 5k, 10k or half-marathons, where you can contribute and make your name widely known. You can take on the task of warming up the racers, offer free stretches afterwards or work together with the organisers to help participants prepare for their events.