The summer represents some challenges for fitness professionals in that many of our clients are taking their summer vacation, saving extra money for fun activities for the family or buying that new home and moving while the kids are out of school. Whatever summer challenge you're facing, the bottom line is that we feel it in our paycheck!
Let me give you some suggestions to help you through summer and come out smiling at the end.
Look for the seasonal client. While we do have clients leaving for the summer on vacation, you will see some new faces that may either be vacationing in your own town or have a job that frees their time up in the summer, such as a school teacher. These potential clients may not have availability year round to work with you, but they are a great way to fill the time gaps while your regular client is out!
Run a "time sensitive" promotion. You can be as creative as you want to be on your own promotion, but for me, I had two goals in mind. The first goal was to fill the gaps in my schedule with a paying client. The second goal was to promote myself to touch new potential long-term clients. I would limit my special to begin only on the day school let out and end the day school started. My most effective promotion was the "Buddy Training Session." Basically, I would hold my regular rates but allow friends to train with some of my existing clients. The friends could split the cost of the session between the two of them and I would be introduced to a new potential client. Since word of mouth is the best advertising, I had my regular client singing my praises as well as giving them a great work out. I usually could add a few new regular clients every summer.
Use your time off for you! I am a huge advocate of taking time off in this industry. From the time the doors open to the time the doors close, I can be busy non-stop every day that I walk into the club. Eventually, you will burn out. You can only hear so many problematic situations, personal stories, family tragedies or frustrating stories from your clients without it eventually affecting you. At some point, we have to re-charge our batteries. If you have the ability to take a vacation, do it while your clients are vacationing as well. If you do not have the money or ability to go anywhere, use the time to get your CECs or a new certification. Adding a new certification, building your knowledge and increasing your value will only help you become a stronger trainer and help you climb to the top of the food chain in our industry. Be smart with your time off and make it work for you!
Summer is going to be as good or as bad as you make it, so make it great! When the heat of summer is gone, make sure your not left red in the face!
Mike McDanielis an authority of leadership, goal-setting disciplines, sales strategies andcorporate physical fitness. He has been a professional trainer for over 18years and owned two health clubs, employing over 75 personal trainers. Mike canbe booked for speaking engagements, sales training or consultant at www.askthewhyguy.com.