Now that you’ve gone through all the effort and testing required to be a certified trainer, the business of being in business as a trainer is not as simple as just posting an ad on Craigslist.
As much as some people would benefit from having a personal trainer come into their lives, most won’t pay for one. The common advice given to new and struggling trainers is to give “free” sessions and classes in hopes that people will then pay for your service. I do not agree with that method. There are several profitable ways a personal trainer can increase the income they make. Essentially, the more ideas you can come up with to provide a helpful service – the more you can generate.
You may have heard the adage “Give more to get more” which is true. BUT –
5 Top Income Generators for Personal Trainers
1. Get more clients
2. Sell more to the clients you have
3. Generate residual income
4. Set up profitable MSI’s
5. Incorporating recurring income methods.
1. Get More Clients
Rule #1 – As stated above – NEVER offer your services for free! This may go against what others have told you but there is no value in a client who isn’t willing to pay. You need to position yourself as an authority in your fitness niche.
This doesn’t mean you have to charge $100/hr at the beginning of your career. If you are new to the personal training business, then focus on creating a venue where you will be noticed, and paid. This is a good place to start strong. For example:
Low Hanging Fruit
Pick the low-hanging fruit. By this I mean, find your clients in a place where the people most likely to use your services will be found. These will be the people already investing in some aspect of fitness. One profitable method I liked to use was to contact some of the local diet groupe. The people attending are on a diet, but not engaged in fitness. Often these groups were very open to a fitness class during their group meeting.
You can do this simply by checking your local paper or on meetup.com. You will find there are many diet related groups. Work out a deal with the organiser to make a presentation and charge the members a nominal fee to attend – maybe just $5 each.
You might think that there isn’t much difference between a FREE session and $5, but there is. It is a BIG difference.
The focus of importance at this time isn’t the amount of money you get, but to actually charge, and collect a fee. This will establish you as a
From these special events you can learn to sell from the back of the room. All you need now is a product to sell. In the beginning preparing a bundle of your services will be fine. Go into these group sessions with targeted bundle offers like “Ab Blast 6 Week Package $679.”
Using the Referral System to Grow your Personal Training Business
From the group presentations you can offer other classes or personal training sessions directly to the gathering. You can establish your pricing plus get referrals by offering a “bring a friend” session packages.
Have your package deals prepared and printed on a flyer or brochure before your fitness presentation. Make sure they are also targeted and named appropriately. Do your homework. People buy for results and not for cute-sy names. Name your product for the desired result.
For example: you can offer a “Muffin Top Burn Off” program. Make it a 6 week personal training program and “bring a friend” for a couples program and the friend comes for half price. Women love to work in groups and see the benefit of having a friend join in.
You then offer your clients a “group presentation” special for their office group. Office fitness is a big deal now and very well received. Once you have one corporate presentation you can use the photo’s and excitement from that group to sell your event to other businesses.
2. Selling MORE to the Clients You Have
One of the best ways to increase your bottom line is by having MORE stuff your clients can buy from you. This goes far beyond printed water bottles or Tshirts. Find a cool new product and
Listen to people, what do they want? Find what they want and give it to them. If they like you and trust you, they will happily buy from you. Do not just sell one session at a time though.
Consider this example: Fitness centres sell yearly and in some cases three year memberships. They know that within a few weeks the majority of people who buy will stop showing up to the gym. This is why January at the gym is super crowded and weans out by mid-February. A smart gym will “oversell” and still not have a full gym in July. If they sold only monthly memberships they would have very little money in the bank and constantly have to chase new clients. This will be the same for you. No matter how motivated YOU are, theirs will wane.
A very simple method of selling more is to sell more of the same. Rather than sell one session at a time, sell 3 months or 6 months worth of training packages.
3. How to Generate Residual (passive) Income from Personal Training
A “passive income” is where you do the work once and the thing you created continues to generate sales/income. For example – this website generates an income for me 24 hours a day. People book appointments with me and pre-pay. I also have books and products that people buy. These processes and sales do not require my active involvement. Once these products were created they have continued to generate sales. As a fitness professional one of the quickest and simplest methods is – to find or create things to sell on your website. Have a look at what you are already doing and find ways to make it generate income without you needing to be there.
For a general idea of products you can quickly create try converting a fitness program you have developed for your clients into video’s and a book. You can publish it on Kindle or make it downloadable using Shopify or PayPal.
Now that you are in business you should be collecting your clients contact information. This includes emails. While you are maintaining your fitness blog you should be sending your customers helpful updates as well as selling your products, special bundle deals, and more.
4. Set up Profitable MSI’s
MSI should stand for Magic System Income, because once you get the hang of it it really is like magic. It actually means Multiple Sources of Income. This is where you take advantage of the variety of ways to generate income and put them into application for your business.
The business building exercise here is to consider everything you already do now figure out and how you can multiply the profits. What do you have, already in existence, that you can make into a residual income?
There are many products you can create. Think like an entrepreneur. Now that you are training people why not put what you do into book form. You can then take that book and turn it into video’s. Take the book and video’s and put them into a course. Put that course into an ever refreshing private membership (see #5). The video can be split into a podcast series and so on.
As previously mentioned you can sell products and equipment. Set up your website to incorporate all the fine benefits of having an online business. Make it a place where you can blog helpful articles and where people can buy your recommended products (including sessions) from you. The eCommerce platforms are simple to set up and will allow you to sell online.
5. Personal Trainer Recurring Income Ideas
The major drawback to having a personal training business is like any business that requires you to be present. You have only 24 hours in a day which means you can only conduct a limited number of training sessions. No matter how good you are, or how much you charge, once you have so many clients you become limited on time. Fortunately a solution to that is to tie in all that you’ve read so far so you can add recurring income to your business.
Put together recurring income packages to add to your bulk sales to increase profits. Now that you have several long-term packages as discussed in #2 you can add another MSI that will generate a monthly income. Come up with ideas that doesn’t require they participate too much. Remember their excitement to workout can fade over time so offer a “done-for-you” monthly service as an Ad-on service (upsell) when they bought the bulk sessions from you. For example; maybe your clients would like to have home visits to clean out their cupboards and learn a new way of cooking healthily. Perhaps this service would only be available with a monthly membership package.
Who wouldn’t enjoy an evening with their trainer cooking and eating a healthy and festive meal?
These services should be sold at a premium price and not cheaply. Position these as an upsell service. If you are interested in knowing how to present your services so you can sell them at premium prices, then contact me and I will send you the PDF “How to Get More Money out of your Personal Training Business”.
Other profit generating ideas include:
Combine the MSI with passive income and set up a monthly online membership website. The online site can train people at home. Sell general courses as a passive income or establish “custom” video trainings for clients anywhere in the world. You can also combine passive with MSI and recurring income with a reseller business selling something like a supplement or vitamin club.