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Increasing Personal Training Profit

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Personal TrainerMany centers do not focus enough of their energy on what it takes to have a successful personal training department. Are you doing the following to optimize revenue and profit?

Marketing
• Market your services both internally and externally, and present them in a “results-oriented” manner (before and after photos, etc).
• Proactively approach members who are not seeing results or who are doing things incorrectly to discuss how personal training would benefit them.
• Create a system to reach out to area businesses to help them keep their employees healthy, motivated and productive. Weight loss contests, injury prevention seminars, etc. are great ways to get your personal trainers out into the community and expand their universe of prospects.

Sales Process
• Be sure there is a cohesive link between the membership sale and the integration of the member into the fitness/personal training department to ensure follow-up with all prospects. Give new members a free personal training consultation to acclimate them to the center.
• During the consultation, prepare a PAR-Q and health history, explain the benefits of strength training and present success stories and testimonials. This shows that the trainer has a track record of success, supporting the concept that personal training is the most efficient way to reach goals. The trainer can use software to walk through the process, making it easier to stay focused and offering some visuals to polish up the presentation.

• Some example questions to ask during the consult:
1. When did you last feel happy with your fitness level? This shows that the prospect may be procrastinating or that they need help to reach their goal.
2. Why is that goal important to you? Get an emotional reason; this is more powerful than just doing a presentation of the packages without their “wish list.”
3. Are there obstacles to accomplishing your goals? Handle any potential objections early in the meeting before asking for an investment.
4. How much have you budgeted to reach your goal of ______? Get an idea of their budget and information for the presentation and close.
• Use software that can track measurements, weight, body composition, current resting metabolic rate, etc. to help with the exercise prescription.
• Take the member on the floor for a 20- to 30-minute customized workout. Make it fun, assist with form, promise results, give positive feedback and include stretching (stretching and weight training almost always require a trainer). This takes the pressure off the sales presentation and gets the member excited about reaching their goals.
• Make sure the number of packages you offer are not overwhelming. Provide a simple presentation with two or three different options and ask the prospect “which one is best for you?”
• Train your staff to acknowledge objections. Use the information gathered in the consult to answer objections empathetically and close confidently.
• Remind prospects of the money they could save by reaching their fitness goals — cutting back on poor nutritional choices, cigarettes and possibly medications and medical bills.

Simplify Administrative Chores
• Limit the time spent figuring out commissions by paying a percentage of trained sessions. Although simple, this payment method is motivating to your trainers. To make more money, they can train more clients or increase the hourly rate, guaranteeing a specific percentage of profit. Use club management software that easily produces reports of the redeemed sessions’ value by time period to make paying commissions easy.
• Ensure presentations are done correctly and that every new prospect is given a professional consultation.
• Provide a receipt from your software after each session to alert the trainer and client of the number of remaining sessions. Offer a variety of scheduling options—in person, over the phone and online—so members can book their sessions from wherever it is most convenient. Produce reports so your trainers can proactively approach renewals and set up a consult to demonstrate progress.

You need to have a plan to maximize your center’s personal training profits. If you follow these steps, you are almost guaranteed to improve your personal training profit and, in turn, the profitability of your center.

Len Bell is a Sales Associate for Twin Oaks Software. He can be contacted at 866.278.6750, or by email at lbell@tosd.com, or visit www.tosd.com

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