Theinternet is strange in that you can express desires you couldn't or wouldn'tadmit to anyone else, anywhere else. Googlehas become everyone's best friend.

Thismatters because we can get accurate and almost real-time data about what's goingon in the general populations' heads at any given time. It's a really uniquelook into what people are thinking and what they're looking for, and if itapplies to what you're providing (i.e. personal training), you'd be real smartto jump in front of the trends.

A bookI read last year that specifically talked about these search patterns and howthey relate to people's weight loss goals was CLICK: What Millions of People Do Online And Why ItMatters, by Bill Tancer. The book had an entire chapter devoted tohow the populations' weight loss ambitions are played out online through theirsearch patterns, and the info may be useful to you.

With personaltraining and fitness in particular, here's some of the data:"For a brief period of time, four days at the beginning ofthe New Year to be exact, there is a surge in weight loss and fitness interest(and coincidentally, online and search engine marketing.). Estimates are thatbetween 40-45% of all Americans make New Year's resolutions each year."

Thebook points out some of the psychological ramifications of this, but we won'tget into that here. Of all the choices out there, I think we as trainers andethical marketers are the only ones that really provide a meaningful servicethat can educate people and help them achieve real results.What wecan really take home from this is a piece of strategic info that serves, thefact that "theyearly pattern of visits to online dieting sites is one of the most predictablein the realm of all Internet behavior. "That doesn't apply only to January 1st, but the period we're in NOW too:

"In fact, by charting dieting and bikini searches together,we can see that we're thinking in advance, as early as March and April of eachear, before the need arises for swimwear, with bikini search acting as a greatproxy for swimsuit interest, which begins in late May and ends in the Augusttime frame."

Thegraphs in the book show a search trend not quite as high as the four-day peakin searches after New Years, but more prolonged, lasting for several months. Forthat reason it appears that the window of opportunity to take advantage of thebusiness around this time is more prolonged (a period we're in now, by theway).

And incase you were wondering when to cut back your advertising dollars and marketingefforts, that would be leading up to and on Thanksgiving Day. That's the lowestpoint of the year when it comes to people's searches for nutritional guidance(but probably the time they need it the most).What'simportant about this info isn't just that people are going online to get infoabout health and fitness. It's that these numbers reflect what the populationas a whole is thinking in general. It's a look into their brains in a way thatyou wouldn't get as accurately on a survey form.

You canuse this info when you're presenting a deal to a potential joint venturepartner, whether it's offline (partnering with a gym or other business for apromotion) or online (creating a program and working on releasing it to a wideaudience specifically when people are searching for it).

Knowingwhen people are looking for what you're selling is vital to getting the bestresults out of the time, effort, and money you're putting in to getting newbusiness. Right now is one of those times, so go get 'em!