- This 4 step plan has a very successful track record
- Get someone to ‘raise their hand’ with interest
- Typically a lead magnet, often a book
- The books are written with target market in mind
- Requesting a book signals likelihood to read, most of Pat’s marketing is written
- Give something useful to get contact info
- Consistent follow-up is critical
- Use whatever you’re best at with your email list
- Every lead is a potential client until they say no
- Give them attention and build relationships
- Pat “coaches until he’s paid to coach”
- Be valuable and general. When they sign up, get specific
- Get people to a conversation
- A consultated selling environment is a 1st date
- Where you going? How you getting there? Can I help?
- Not everyone is a good fit
- Make it about your clients
- Different people have different needs
- Have different offers for different clients
- Don’t cram people into wrong boxes
- Help in a way that the client will enjoy
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Hey, Pat Rigsby here and in this episode I want to talk with you about the four step process that I have consistently used to build businesses over the last 15 plus years. I’m gonna break things down and tell you how they work and how you can use them in your business. So let’s get started.
Welcome to The Fitness Business School podcast – the show for fitness business owners who want to grow their income, increase their impact and improve their lifestyle. Be sure to listen til the end of this episode, because we have a brand new special offer exclusive for listeners. So stay tuned.
Over the past 17-ish years I’ve owned or co-owned upwards of 30 different businesses, pretty much almost exclusively in the fitness and sports performance industry. And the, the interesting thing about it looking back is that virtually all of them have been built with the same kind of pipeline in place. And in fact I, if I’m being honest, the, the pipeline that I used there very much resembles the pipeline that I used as a college baseball coach. And so, so I wanted to kind of pull back the curtain on that and show you how I do it, how I kind of think about it and show you how it can work in your business, because it, you know, in my businesses, it’s generated at this point gosh, upwards of 50 million in gross revenue, it’s built franchise wide sales back. When I was the CEO and COO of franchise, you know, a couple years, we did upwards of 55 million annually in franchise wide sales. It’s helped consumer business. Like my wife’s business really you know, grow to a really massive scale. And it it’s always kind of been built off this same general premise. And it, it’s not at all complicated. You, you have to a fine tuning based on the business based on your goals, but man, it, it works. And maybe more importantly, at least from my perspective is it largely stands the test of time. It’s not one of these kind of fly by night tactical things that, you know, you, you put all your eggs into this basket and, you know, three months later it doesn’t work anymore.
So the first step in this pipeline is we, we do something to get somebody, to raise their hand and indicate an interest. Usually in my world, that’s, that’s a lead magnet. I’ve used books more than anything else. Books that I have written that are kind of specific to my target market. And honestly, when I’ve used books, I’ve gotten the best quality of lead for a couple reasons. One you know, the, the book was usually very specific to being a business owner. So it wouldn’t be quite as attractive to people who might not be business owners who you know, might just be personal trainers or whatever else. And, you know, personal trainers are, are, are fine. And we’ve all either been there or employed personal trainers. But for the purposes of my coaching business, it’s always been centered around business owners. And then the other thing about it is a book is kind of by nature, a, a device that requires you to have a willingness to read. And because most of my follow up is in text, right? I mean, obviously I’m doing this podcast now, but in the whole kind of 17 year scope of things, the, the follow up has definitely been far more text heavy than audio or video or anything else. So it, it’s all started with this kind of hand raising thing. Now we’ve used other lead magnets I’ve given away. My online coaches certification, I’ve away, bundles of newsletters for some of the other businesses that I’ve owned. You know, we’ve given away things that would be specific to that target market, but it’s always been lead with something very valuable, give something away that would be useful to somebody, right. And, and, and let them raise their hand and indicate an interest.
And then that’s step one. It it’s never been go directly to like an application to fill out something for a call. It’s never been a webinar. It’s always been, I’m gonna give you something useful, something valuable, and hopefully it makes your life, your business a little bit better, and it causes you to be willing to, to be attentive to me moving forward. And, and at least give me the opportunity to earn more of your time and attention. So always started with that and then consistent follow up now the consistent follow up thing. I think people probably know me best for writing the email newsletters, but, you know, I was probably the most consistent follow up guy, even dating back to you know, the prospects I had when I was a college baseball coach. And it, it’s just this mindset that every lead we’ve gone to the trouble of generating a lead this person that we’ve made an effort to connect with, we want to understand that they’re all potential clients until they’re not. And so if you view every lead as a tremendously valuable asset, maybe not an asset that would go on a balance sheet or something like that. But every lead is this business set that potentially could be worth thousands, maybe even tens of thousands of dollars to your respective business. You treat ’em a little bit differently. You, you pay more attention, you try to give them more value in the follow up. You try to build a stronger relationship with them.
So I’ve provided as much value as consistently as I could through follow up, but with some certain parameters in place. So the, the first thing that I’ve always tried to do is think in terms of, Hey, I’m gonna coach people until they pay me to coach ’em. And so, you know, you can listen to these podcasts, you can read my newsletters. And if you, you know, are adept at kind of piecing it all together or stitching it together and applying it to your business, you know, I don’t hold things back. I don’t have kind of one methodology of business that I teach and then pull back the curtain, you join the program and we teach something different. It, it’s just when I’m sending a newsletter to 60,000 people, or I’m creating a podcast for, you know a, a group of listeners that I, I don’t know all the new nuances of their business, I don’t know their location or, or if they’re a private or semi-private business or whatever else. You know, I have to be a little bit more general. So that’s really the, the only downside is making things a little bit more general, but I’m gonna give as much valuable information as I can and be consistent. I’m gonna show up every day because I know that being consistent is a competitive advantage.
Most people just don’t stay the course. There are so few people that if I look back not 17 years ago, even 10 years ago that were doing this professionally, then most of them aren’t doing it now. And if I look at the people who are doing it now, they’ve not been around very long for the most part. And so me being willing to stay the course and show up, I don’t need to be somebody’s first pick as a business coach or for any of the other businesses we’ve had. What I wanna do is be their best pick and their last pick. I want to be the person that they say, Hey, you know what I’ve looked around, and this is the best option for me. And then we earn that business in a continual way. So the, the follow up for me is critical. You know, but a couple other things about the follow up, I, I try to be, as you know, authentic is probably an overused word these days that I try to be as authentic as I can be. You know, the, the podcast that that we’re doing now is me having a conversation, the same conversation that I would have if you were sitting in the chair across from me you know, the, the way that I may write in emails rather than not gonna make an English professor very happy, but it’s very much the way that I talk.
And so my, my thought is I want to be exactly the person I am in the follow up that I’m going to be when somebody meets me, when they hire me as a coach, when they show up at my house for a mastermind meeting, whatever it’s gonna be, I wanna be that same person, because a there’s nothing worse than the internet version of somebody and the real version of them being anything but congruent. But then more importantly, it lets people kind of self select. If they’re like, Hey, he’s not for me, his approach. Isn’t the, the, the funny accident he has, isn’t whatever, you know, they can kind of take the off ramp at any stage of the journey and that’s okay. It saves both of us time and effort, and they can go find the right person. And so can I, so we’ve got a very simple approach to getting people to connect, give ’em something valuable. That’s very specific to who our ideal client is follow up like crazy, trying to coach people until they pay us to coach ’em and then most everything for me, if it is anything other than kind of a one time product, and one time products are fine.
Sometimes you buy a one time product to solve a very specific product problem, or learn a simple tactic, or get a couple tools. But most of what I’ve done over the, the years and most of the businesses, I’ve had an ownership stake in have had a coaching component from kind of lower end membership sites to even franchises. And so my goal in, in that is to get somebody into a conversation, the same way that I knew I needed to get somebody on campus as a baseball coach. I knew that I needed to get somebody to walk through our door for training facilities and gyms that I’ve owned. I need somebody to get on a call with me or get on a call with my a team so we can just talk and make sure we’re a good fit. It’s kinda like a first date and this consultative selling environment, you know, I approach it very differently than most people do. It’s not this kind of beat you over the head with a script and kind of try to talk you into something and guilt you into buying and make you feel bad. If you don’t buy type of thing, it’s more or less just, Hey, where do you want to go? What’s in, what’s holding you back. What’s standing in the way. Here’s how I think I can help alleviate those problems and accelerate your journey. And if it works, it works.
And if it doesn’t that’s okay, but what’s cool about it is I’m. I feel good about those conversations. I look forward to those conversations. It’s not a, a antagonistic, I win you lose type of thing. It, it’s more of a, Hey, does it make sense for us to start a, a much deeper professional relationship? And so that’s the third step in the process. And then the fourth step is to give people what they need to go, where they want through an experience that hopefully they’re gonna joy and it’s gonna be positive. And that’s probably why I don’t only have kind of one program. Always. We’ve got a couple different things because, you know, I interact with a lot of people and they have different visions and they have different goals and even in some cases needs. And so, you know, we may have a program like our business growth accelerator program, which is really designed to get people to you know, a, a, a 20 to $30,000 a month offline or hybrid training business. And then we’ve got a boardroom coaching program. It’s for people who are a little further along who may be at those benchmarks and want to, to scale, they want to grow. They, they want to kind of evolve their role in the business. And, and then even you know, I’ve got a, an online coach’s mastermind for are people who just want to build out the online component of their business. Sure. I could probably lump everybody in together and do do everything in that way, but I don’t know that that’s the best user experience either. And so you know, I think you just coach people like crazy, but you make it about them. It’s not about you. It’s not about doing exactly the thing that you want and fit people into you know, the wrong box for them, so to speak.
But, you know, my, my goals are, are always really simple. It it’s, you know, get somebody in the right seat on the bus and, and let’s help them build the business that they want build the, the life that they want, that the business is gonna support and do it in a way that, that they actually enjoy. I mean, sure. I’m gonna ask people to get outta their comfort zone, just like you are, but I want them to know that, Hey, you know what? You got a, a teammate in me and a, and a collection of teammates through not only our coaches, but the other people we bring in to kind of form our, our business family of, if you will. And you’ve got people who are gonna have your back, we’re going to make your life easier. We’re gonna make it easier to implement. And, and that’s the business model, right? It’s those four steps. It’s, you know, let’s connect with somebody. So you, if you think about your business, how this applies to you, who is the person that you want, and what’s gonna be really valuable to them and get their attention and maybe solve one problem for them, put that out there as your lead magnet. It’s okay. If you have to do a little bit of legwork to, to piece that lead magnet together, because it’s worth it. If it’s going to be something that lasts, I mean, I’ve used a, the same couple of lead magnets for the last five years. And, you know, so it’s not this thing where I’m switching every month and then follow up, think of that as not only the way that you build value in what you do, and you move people from, you know, a lead to a prospect to a client, but it’s also way for you to vet people, because if they don’t like your message, then you don’t ever have to worry about having a conversation with them.
You’re not gonna spend a lot of time talking to people who are completely a bad fit. And while I use writing most of the time, I mean, clearly I’m doing a podcast right now and you know, it’s not a perfect podcast. I mean, you’ve probably heard me clear my throat a couple times and you know, I’ll stumble along word here or there, but it’s just me coaching you through a different format. So if you’re better on video, do video, if you’re better on audio, do audio. If you’re better in text, do that, or do a combination of all of it and move people along and then provide consistent opportunities to get into a consultative environment where you can just see if it’s a fit, if it makes sense for you guys to work together at a deeper level. And you should think of these sales consultations as conversations where our goal is to move forward in the best possible way for both of us. Like, I think of it as my responsive ability, not to invite people into my coaching programs that are not gonna be a positive for the culture, because, you know, we do, like when we do mastermind meetings, we have the, the, the dinner, the social at my house when I have private clients come in, we do the meetings in my home office. And so I think of it very simply. If it’s not somebody I would invite to my house, then they probably can’t be a part of the program. And, you know, we, we create this environment where I’m not trying to really convince anybody of anything. I’m trying to let them choose the best path for themselves.
And hopefully I’m part of that. And, and finally, the biggest piece of this puzzle in many ways is just coaching people like crazy. And coaching is not the same thing as instruction. Coaching is not the same thing as creating a course and having a Facebook group coaching is actually taking some responsibility for this success of the person that you’re serving and making it a consistent process where you’re working harder to be better at allowing them to be successful or empowering them to be successful. I mean, we make changes continually. I keep adding new tweaks and trying to simp I things in our coaching programs to get people to their goals faster, to make it easier to lower the friction. And you should too, because what’s great about this is, I mean, I’ve got plenty of people. Who’ve been with me as clients for 10 plus years. I’ve got plenty of people who are, are with me as clients over 10 years ago that have kind of left and looked around and done other things, and then came back and that’s wonderful.
That’s the goal, right? Like I want to continually be improving. So I’m still valuable to those people years and years down the line. So that’s it, that’s my four step process that I’ve used to build businesses of any, like any style shape form in this industry, connect with people by giving them some kind of hand raise or a lead magnet. Usually for me follow up like crazy, get them into a consultative kind of selling or success session environment. And then coach them as if your livelihood depended on their success. If you do those four things, you can scale a business as big as you want. You can build a business that supports the type of life that you want, but if you spend all your time chasing things that, that are a few degrees this way, or a few degrees that way, and looking around for the shiny object or the magic bullet, that’s gonna get you, you know, a, a, a surge of a hundred new climb next week, or something like that. You’re probably gonna be in the exact same place. You are a year from now two years from now, three years from now or worse. So my recommendation is find a system that works or use my system and modify it to fit you, your personality, your goals, and then just work that system do that. And I have a feeling you’re going to get the same type of experience and results that I’ve had, which have far exceeded any goals I could have ever had when I started my first business. And I’m sure you can do the same in your business, too.
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