The fitness assessment is a tough art. Most times, you have an hour to build rapport and history, measure, plan and sell to your potential client, who may or may not know what to expect from the process. Hopefully, if you have time, you also try to educate the assessee so they have a better understanding of the measurements, plan and ultimately, value of your services. Even if you don’t sell them the first time, if you leave them with some knowledge that proves true as they start out on their own you have built trust for them to come back when they realize they need your help.
The summer is here, which is usually a means for excitement, however it’s also the toughest time of the year for the fitness industry. It was always difficult for me as a trainer and manager to hit even modest goals in these lean months. But difficult times were also a good time to experiment to try to mitigate these realities; from varying training packages, to group programs and different marketing initiatives, with varying degrees of success.
Workout? Write fitness programs? Work toward your latest CEC? Or is it more like: Nap? Shop? Facebook? There are many ways to spend the downtime in between clients, and depending on how you manage your business as a trainer overall, there may be more of it than you would like. Similarly to how you encourage your clients to take a long term perspective instead of a short sighted approach with their fitness goals; our aim at Trainer+ is to encourage you to adopt new solutions that allow you to take a more effective and long term approach on how you manage your business.
The key to the approach I use is changing the sales mentality that is often preached of aggressively closing, into one of aggressively caring. The service you are trying to sell is one of support after all, so how better to build your value continuously than setting that relationship up even before they purchase? The best way to demonstrate that care is to take your time to work through the key steps of the assessment and planning process, and make sure there is a follow up system in place that has been communicated to the potential client. I know this is unbilled time for the most part, but it just has to be looked at as your investment in securing a future sale, or at least retaining a gym member (who could lead to or refer a future sale).
Welcome back to our 4-part series about how fitness professionals can save time and make more money by taking a long term approach to managing and executing your business. In the first part of the series we talked about the language of your relationship with your clients: their fitness programs. In this part we will focus on the mechanism that sets out the expectations and measures progress of that relationship: the assessment.
Trainers are always too busy for their own good. In fact, even given a tool to help trainers save time, I have found that most of our first users are too busy to adopt a tool to get less busy. At least, that seems to be how they feel given the realities of being a personal trainer: selling time in one hour blocks and not getting paid for all of the unbilled time managing your business before, after and in between clients. But the reality is that it is this unpaid time that crowds the schedule with trainers balancing the common activities to manage your business, with maintaining your own fitness and ongoing education.