Meet Mary.

Mary is 38 years old, she lives in a nicer-than-average home in the suburbs. She has two wonderful children, Alec and Maryanne, they're 16 and 14. Mary wishes she could lose 30 pounds, but of course she's been saying that for over 14 years. It seems when the kids came so did the weight, for good.

The kids are old enough to manage well enough in the mornings, and after they leave she goes about getting ready for her day. No one in her family realizes she cries for a minute most days when she's standing in front of her closet; thinking about what to wear. She still has that cute little dress her husband bought her forever ago, but she can't even get it over her hips now.

She thinks about that, she can't help but feel uncomfortable, she knows her husband loves her but she doesn't feel he looks at her the same way.

Throughout the day she'll tidy up the house in the morning and then meet her girlfriend for coffee in the late morning. Her girlfriend Sally has just met a new 'Mr. Right' she's anxious to tell Mary about. They're going away this weekend on a romantic getaway; Mary is happy for Sally but she can't help but be a little envious. Mary and Sally have been friends forever. Sally has no kids and has always been a workout fanatic, that's probably why she's never struggled with her weight. Mary feels it's too late to start now and with a busy household can't seem to make time for herself.

Of course, Mary is fictional but I think about her often. In fact, I even have a picture of what I think Mary looks like saved on my desktop. You see this is just a couple of the intro paragraphs of what I call my 'Most Likely Customer' activity.

I really encourage you to complete your own most likely customer profile, but it shouldn't stop at the above. You might find it will extend across a couple pages as you consider: Where Mary might go next, what places she stops at for errands and shopping (groceries, family items, personal items.) What services she uses, what kind of vehicle she drives, her interests, hobbies, kids activities, what things she might be thinking about, and the items or experiences she wishes for and so on.

Defining your customer is so much more than the basic demographics many trainers often consider. It's one thing to consider a family's household income, home value and geographic location as qualifying parameters for your services but rarely do those help you to understand the language and feeling by which you need to communicate with this individual.

It's safe to say just by reading the brief information above that you would use different language, vocabulary and likely have an altogether different conversation with Mary than you would with Sally.

You should review this profile at least once every 90 days and it's often useful to go through the activity of re-writing it. Re-read your profile each time you're working to create a new marketing campaign, this will help you choose images, language and even the very offers that will be the most appealing to your desired prospects.

Walk a mile in their shoes, know them like they know themselves, gain their trust and change the world!

After struggling for eight years as a personal trainer, Cabel McElderry challenged the typical gym setup and created quite a reputation for himself. His 7 figure studio, now five years old, has won multiple awards for business excellence. Cabel has been recognized as one of the top 100 fitness entrepreneurs in North America and is currently one of 50 nominees for Optimum Nutrition's Canadian Trainer of the Year. He now mentors fitness professionals worldwide in an effort to help them achieve similar or better results than his own. Cabel's advice and writing can be found amongst some of the biggest blogs online and he is constantly called upon to offer his advice and strategies at some the largest fitness events worldwide.


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