For about 2/3 of the people that read my posts or newsletters, the biggest concern they have is simple:


How to get more clients.


With that in mind I wanted to put together a simple primer on how you can get more training clients in a step-by-step format.

I will warn you in advance though; this isn’t laden with gimmicks or tricks.

For the most part, getting more personal training clients is about sticking to the fundamentals and playing to your strengths.


Your Step By Step Approach…


Step One: Be very good at what you do.

This should be obvious, but it’s overlooked by pretty much all the marketing ‘experts’.  

If you keep this as step one in the process then everything you do to get more clients becomes more valuable because they stay longer and are more likely to refer.

But if you don’t get this step right then your marketing efforts are like pouring water into a bucket with a bottom full of holes.


Step Two:  What makes you different?

When most people think about how to get more clients, they take a shotgun approach.

They basically try to be all things to all people.

My suggestion – do the opposite.

Figure out what makes you different than all your competitors – not just in your eyes, but primarily in your clients’ and prospective clients’ eyes – and use that to have a far more focused approach to your marketing efforts.

Figure out:

  • Who you do work with?
  • Who you want to work with?
  • What makes you different from your competitors?
  • How your clients would describe you and what sets you apart?


Once you have that identified, dial it in.

Have a clear message to the market so you know who you’re looking for and so that when someone new finds out about you they can say ‘that’s perfect for me.’


Step Three:  Get the word out.

Once you’ve figured out what makes you unique and how to position yourself in the market, now it’s time to start getting the word out.

When most fitness business owners think about how to get more clients their first ideas are things like FB ads, Instagram or something like that.

My suggestion is to go the opposite direction.


Start with the people you already know.


Pull out your cell phone.

Do all your contacts know what you do?

What makes you unique?

Have they been invited in to experience it first hand?

Open up your email account.

Do all your contacts know what you do?

What makes you unique?

Have they been invited in to experience it first hand?

Login to Facebook.

Do all your ‘friends’ know what you do?

What makes you unique?

Have they been invited in to experience it first hand?

Now, if you have a LinkedIn account, login there.

Do all your contacts know what you do?

What makes you unique?

Have they been invited in to experience it first hand?

That seems simple, but my guess is that 80% of the fitness pros I interact with overlook this approach almost completely.

Of the remaining 20%, I’d say that about 2/3 of them only do a haphazard job of harnessing the power of the network they already have.


If you really want to know how to get more clients, this is your untapped goldmine.


Make a master list of all of these contacts and one-by-one reach out to them all with a personal call or personal message (no mass messages allowed) and connect with them.

Invite them in to experience what you have to offer at no cost to them.

If you do this (most won’t) I will promise you that you will get new clients out of it.


Step Four: Referrals

The fourth step is actually the answer that most fitness pros would give me if I asked them how to get more clients: Referrals.

Well, kind of.

I think referral marketing in the way that it’s typically approached is weak at best.

“I’ll pay you if you go get clients for me” is great if you’re hiring commissioned sales people, but not if you’re trying to get your clients to help you grow your business.


What you really should be doing is more accurately described as relationship marketing.


What you should be doing to get more clients is getting your clients to introduce you and your business to the people they know.

That’s it.

You take it from there.

So try to create as many ways for your clients to introduce you to new people as possible.

Hold bring a friend events and charity workouts.

Ask for introductions.

Use social media to stay connected with your clients.

Host events that your clients can bring guests to.

When your clients invite you to events…go.

Your clients can be your best source of new business, but you have to help them do it.


Step Five: External Marketing Strategy

We all have strengths.  Maybe you’re an extrovert that can’t go anywhere without making friends.

Maybe you’re analytical and are a whiz at statistics.

You might be a good writer or a good speaker.

When you’re thinking about how to get more clients and you’re choosing your strategies – that’s a pretty good place to start.

After you’ve started to really make inroads into contacting all the people that are already in your network, I believe that you need a ‘Home Run’ External Marketing Strategy.


Something that plays to your strengths and that you’re not only willing to do, but you’re eager to do.


So if you’re an extrovert – something like networking or public speaking or FB live should be a great fit.

If you’re analytical, then direct response strategies like FB ads, Google ads or direct mail might be a good fit.

If you’re a good writer, then SEO might be a possibility or even an email newsletter.

My favorite Home Run Strategies are:

  • Networking
  • Public Speaking
  • Alliances With Local Businesses
  • Local Email List Building
  • FB Ads
  • FB Live
  • Direct Mail
  • Search Engine Optimization


So there is a simple step-by-step approach that spells out how to get more clients.  I didn’t mention the details of what you offer or whether you run Challenges.

All of this applies regardless of your format or offerings.

And it’s not overly complex, but I’ve never met anyone that took this approach and didn’t have a truly successful business.


By Pat Rigsby

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