This a positive rant… ABOUT YOU. Yes YOU!
Just being in the health and fitness business is pretty cool. And, if you are a club, studio or any kind of health-related business owner, well, that’s even more cool!
Listen, not EVERYBODY is meant to be a business owner. Not everybody is meant to be an ENTREPRENEUR.
How many people do you know who are stuck in a dead-end job with no real ability to increase their own income. In fact, most are just trying to hang on to their jobs!
NOT YOU! You have the potential to EARN AS MUCH MONEY AS YOU WANT! That’s power!
But, it does require one thing. To make big money you’ve got to TAKE ACTION. It doesn’t just happen.
So… if you are an ACTION TAKER, then, THIS is probably already a “banner” year for you!
I’ll start with the obvious... getting new clients or members is a given. You and I both know that you are in the business of selling new memberships or gaining new clients. It is your #1 profit center. And, for most businesses, recurring revenue is the life blood.. Every month it all comes in like a “cash flow” drug. It’s no wonder that everyone focuses on it!
BUT, new member/client acquisition costs are HUGE.
So, it’s important to have a disciplined system as a way to get new clients and members.
After all, if you are like most fitness business owners, you received your training in life sciences… not marketing and sales.
I know this is going to sound a little self-serving, and, well, it is. But, it’s also the TRUTH.
Secondary profit centers that deliver positive cash flow consistently every month are crucial to the growth and success of today’s fitness business.
And, of course, (here’s the self-serving part) the more you can BRAND your secondary products and services with your logo:
- The more professional you look.
- The more committed to your business you and your staff become.
- The more loyal your clients become.
- The more confidence you’ll build among clients, staff and vendors.
- The more referrals you generate!
Listen, when I visit some of my big consulting clients the first thing I do is visit the pro shop (apparel, supplements, coffee mugs, water bottles, DVDs, etc.). I look to see if the club logo is strategically positioned in front of the members.
I interview members to investigate if there are any “underground” MLM programs or other member or staff-based shenanigans going on that could sabotage the club in any way (you’d be surprised how many people set-up “shop” inside a big club).
Admittedly, I’m a bit extreme.
There are a few stories floating around about me tearing down the apparel racks in pro shop because it was full of Nike, Adidas, UA, Reebok and EVERYTHING BUT apparel with the CLUB LOGO.
And, they still talk about me posting BRANDED weight-management posters on the urinal walls and on the inside toilet stall doors at a club in Seattle…!
But, hey…. I am a “brand evangelist” and if you are growing your business, then, you should be a brand evangelist, too.
Don’t let your brand become passive. Don’t let it be a slacker.
PUT YOUR BRAND TO WORK!
Here’s a test. What are you wearing RIGHT NOW???
Does your shirt have your logo on it..?
Our most successful fitness partners — from independent trainers to huge, big-box 100k sq. ft. multi-purpose clubs understand the added “perceived value” role that their brands play in their businesses – especially in the eyes of both existing and potential clients, members and patients.
Being BRANDED is what differentiates you from the competition and elevates your business to the highest level.
It’s incredible to see people all over his neighborhood wearing his apparel. Many of them don’t workout at his garage, but wanted to support their neighbor…! Talk about word-of-mouth and walking billboards…!
What to Offer
There are all kinds of secondary offerings to increase your cash flow. There are promotional items that can be purchased online or at Staples/Office Depot/Kinkos etc. Every town has a T-shirt shop that can screen print or press some custom T-shirts and Tank Tops for you.
I know, these things may seem trivial… but they’re not. As one business mentor put it, “God is in the details!”
- Supplements – with your brand
- Polo Shirts – with your brand
- T- Shirts – with your brand
- Hoodies – with your brand
- Other Apparel with your brand
- Journals – with your brand
- Cookbooks – with your brand
- Reference Manuals– with your brand
- Energy Bars – homemade with your brand
- Fitness Video – starring YOU!
- Weight-Management University-101 with your brand
- Water Bottles – with your brand
- Coffee Mugs – with your brand
- Calendars – with your brand
- Home Fitness Equipment (balls, bands, dumbells,)
- Vending Machines
The Ultimate Brand: Harley-Davidson – Just think how powerful this is…
People actually tattoo their bodies with the Harley-Davidson brand.
Did you know that Harley Davidson generates more revenue through branded accessories and than the sales of actual motorcycles…?
I call it the Triple “T” because that’s what it is. And, it’s happening more and more. The best way to describe the Triple T is to give an example of how this “catch phrase” came into being.
Monica Langley, a personal trainer started teaching a Weight-Management-101 course long before we created the website version. In fact, it was 10 years ago while she worked inside a Gold’s Gym in North Carolina that she taught her first class of just 10 people (@$299 for 12 weeks).
She used the aerobics room from 7:30 – 9:00 on Monday nights where she set-up chairs, a whiteboard and a slide projector and presented the EXACT same materials that are in ONBOARD 101.
Word spread around the club and the next class was filled with 27 people. The class after that was over 50 people and 16 of them were NOT even members of the club!
A Triple “T” is Born
A few months later, Monica was invited to speak at a corporate health fair. This one event changed Monica’s life forever. Monica became so good at public speaking, health coaching and teaching – that she was recruited by a Fortune 500 company and began a whole new career as a “Corporate Health Administrator.” Her income TRIPLED. And, it all happened in less than two years.
- TEACH: Teach people how their bodies work. They are SO HUNGRY for CREDIBLE KNOWLEDGE that YOU HAVE!
- TRANSFORM: When you teach, you will transform the lives of all who listen. You also will transform your own life
- TRIPLE: To triple your income as a business owner, or individually, is not uncommon. Teaching people is incredibly powerful and has a residual effect on all aspects of your business and personal life. However, you will never know it… until you DO IT. (TAKE ACTION)
The Big Shift
In my 25 years in the fitness business… I’ve never seen such a fundamental shift. And, just like most big shifts, it is occurring slowly and, therefore, few people recognize it’s happening. What is it?
- It is a shift toward a more comprehensive holistic approach toward overall health management.
- It is a shift from fitness programming to lifestyle programming encompassing healthy eating, physical activity, stress relief, lifestyle choices, personal organization, in addition to other services including chiropractic care, massage, health-related field trips, spa services, etc.
- It is a shift from the 30-minute training session (“see you later”) to a lifestyle coaching relationship (“let’s stay in touch via Skype, chat, email etc.”)
Obviously, this shift is not going to apply to every fitness business. It depends on the type of club, studio and services you offer. And, of course, your target market.
Here are the ballpark demographics:
- Age: 38 – 80 years old.
- Gender: Female 60% Male 40%
- Education: College Graduate (4-year)
- Income: Affluent
If these demographics fit your business AND you are certified, personable and can speak comfortably with doctors, corporate executives and public officials, then, this is a GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY.
The First Adopters
This new shift is not a perfectly defined model. But it is beginning to take shape and gain momentum.
How do I know all this..?
- Well, for one thing, I’ve already signed a non-disclosure with a franchise that plans to head into this “holistic” direction.
- I’ve been contacted by two different hospitals (through my LinkedIn account) who are going to purchase the WMU-101 website for their Weight-Management and Healthy Lifestyle Programs. They both detailed their programs in terms of holistic health targeted toward that exact demographic.
- I speak with 20-30 fitness trainers, club owners and studio owners every day. It is surprising to discover how many fitness professionals are learning how to public speak by attending Toastmasters meetings or other public speaking training courses. They are doing this in order to speak at events, create online video courses and effective podcasts. They have already begun to transform themselves into professional, media savvy “Health Coaches” and “Lifestyle Coaches” and “Wellness Experts” etc.
- Some club and studio owners are going the same route by converting their facilities into Health & Wellness Centers or Lifestyle Centers. – It’s not just semantics.
These entrepreneurs are taking a different approach. They are learning to TEACH, TRANSFORM and TRIPLE.
This is “cutting edge” stuff that you won’t read about in the fitness trade magazines… yet. But, I can tell you, with certainty, there is a new model out there just waiting for you.
And it all starts with EDUCATION.
Why the SHIFT…?
Do you listen to the news?
What’s important is that HEALTH, in general, is in the news every single day.
I can not even begin to convey the amount of concern, stress and in some cases, outright panic within the corporate community over health, health insurance, health compliance, health policies, employee absenteeism, employee productivity, etc.
They ALL know that they need to do SOMETHING. But, frankly, they don’t know what.
A big part of the problem is that Health & Human Services (HHS) that oversees the ACA and the Insurance Industry have not concretely outlined the structure and protocol required of weigh-management, obesity, smoking cessation, and other programs in order to qualify for reimbursement.
What I CAN tell you after several inquires…. is that no matter what type of structure, protocol and compliance they outline, EDUCATION is going to be part of it.
And YOU should be the one to deliver it!
Here’s the Most Powerful Welcome Letter Ever Written… for YOUR NEW CLIENTS!