Every business has competition, and it's no different for personal trainers. You're likely to be competing for new clients with other fitness professionals and gyms in your area. If you'd like to attract more of your ideal clients, you will need to know how to stand out and position yourself in a way that they will choose you instead of Sam next door.
For online personal trainers marketing an online personal training service is even more challenging, because you have a much bigger pool of potential clients, many more competitors and it's more challenging to build trust without having face-to-face interactions with your prospects. So, how can you make your services different and show potential clients that you're the one that they should pick?
You don't want your fitness services to look exactly like anyone else's. If there's no difference between what you offer and what five other trainers offer, why should people choose you to be their coach? Working out just how you can be different might seem hard, but there are easy ways to stand out using various methods. Here are 5 ways you can shine the light on your unique services.
1. Focus on a NicheIf you haven't chosen an area to specialise in yet, you should start building a strategy to help you find one. This exercise is not something brand new trainers will likely be able to do easily since they don't have enough experience with enough clients to understand what their coaching strengths are, whom they enjoy training and what their preferred service delivery method is.
However, if you've been in the industry for a few years and gained experience with a variety of clients, you will likely have a better idea. When someone asks you who your target audience is, you should have a clear answer if you'd like your packages and your marketing efforts to bring results.
You can identify a niche to focus on based on either or a combination of age, gender, fitness goals, delivery method and type of workouts. Some trainers educate themselves in nutrition so they can also throw that in the equation and help their clients get amazing results.
If you are not there yet, go out and do some research about what's already available in your local area, talk to people about their goals and preferences so you can identify something that's in demand but that no one else is offering. Are people with health problems or even disabilities in need of a personal trainer who can design a coaching programme around their needs? Maybe there's a demand for a female personal trainer who offers woman-only group classes.
In the online space you could join related forums, Facebook groups and flick through Instagram feeds as part of your research and see with what type of people you resonate.
Of course, you need to consider your skills, knowledge and qualifications to ensure you can deliver an excellent service. However, if you feel you'd like to provide a service or a feature you lack the expertise and knowledge, you can always invest some time to develop them.
2. Promote Yourself in PersonOnline marketing is slowly taking over the whole of the advertising sector, but gaining trust is easier if you've met and connected on a personal level.
One of the ways to promote yourself in person is to set up a table or station at your gym or another convenient location, perhaps a local business, where you can meet and greet people and offer them advice. Of course, ask permission from the owner of the premises first!
You could give out free advice or even fitness assessments and spend your time speaking to people one-on-one to become the go-to guy or girl in the area. Focus on being helpful at the first few contacts and while there is no harm in mentioning your services and classes, give them time and space to make a decision.
3. Stay FitIt should go without saying that a personal trainer needs to maintain their fitness to a standard that will show your potential clients you don't just talk the talk, but walk the walk.
However, trainers can often get complacent when spending all their time running a business. I have been there, and I get it. When you're not coaching a client, you're trying to drum up more business, getting some paperwork done or preparing for the next day.
Showing your ability to keep yourself fit will help potential clients to feel more confident in your skills. They want to see that you're capable of maintaining your fitness before they trust you with theirs. It doesn't mean you have to show off a six pack at all times, but appearing healthy, fit and lively is key to making a good first impression when meeting prospective clients. If you are a local personal trainer, pretty much anybody walking around in the area could be a potential client. Remember that.
4. Over Deliver on Your PromisesWhen people receive more than they were expecting, they are usually delighted and surprised by the service they use. If they get less than they were expecting, they may stick around until their patience runs out. Managing expectations from the start is just as crucial as over-delivering on them regularly.
If you only deliver an average service, it's more difficult to predict what your clients might do. They will likely keep training with you while it's convenient for them but would leave at the first obstacle like changing work schedule, a holiday or a slight financial frustration.
If you delight your clients and make them feel amazing all the time, they will stay loyal, and they will keep coming back. Even when it becomes more challenging, they will do their best to make time and have the resources to keep training with you. Give it your all whenever you conduct a training session. Offer your clients extra support, especially when they have a tough week, whether you link them up on a mobile training an app and give them homework, email or text them encouraging messages between sessions or pay attention to the personal issues they share with you and check back in to find out if they managed to overcome them. The little things often count much more than a significant discount or a gift card.
5. Include Unique Features in Your ServicesThere are many great features you can add to your services that your clients are sure to appreciate. You can draw people in by offering something unique and that your clients might not know they want until they see that you provide it. You can think of ways to go the extra mile as an included extra or consider some add-on paid services too.
You may be able to help your clients with their nutrition by going grocery shopping with them, by employing a nutritionist to create a meal plan, or by visiting them and helping to clear out their kitchen cupboards to make room for healthier ingredients.
Drip-fed educational materials can also make a big difference in how your clients perceive you. Sending them nutrition guides and drip fed habits to work on can be very helpful for them to make an informed choice and get better results.
Sending clients home workout videos via an online app like PT Distinction will help them maintain proper form and make it easier to complete your workouts and feel confident about it.
The more knowledgeable you come across, the more they will trust you. The more they believe you, the better they will adhere to the program and follow your advice. Adding extras to your service that helps your clients achieve their goals will go a long way in client retention and referrals.
There are many ways to make your PT services stand out. Find what works for you and let your skills, and imagination be the limit of what you can provide.