As trainers we're still people and as people we have certain behaviors that are consistent no matter what. First we live in an instant gratification world. Our clients are looking for a near instant solution and without immediate success coaching them becomes a lot more difficult. That need for instant gratification becomes a huge factor for trust with our clients.

I've learned that as entrepreneurs we're much the same, and unfortunately for many entrepreneurs acknowledging this in an effort to keep it in balance can be their undoing.

You see most fitness professionals I talk to or begin coaching are always looking for that next big marketing idea, the one that will produce massive sales overnight. Even though this may be possible that immediate success, much like your fitness clients, has little bearing on long term success other than a sense of trust from mentor to client or a smile of satisfied instant gratification.

Much like the success of your fitness clients your success as an entrepreneur is about long-term sustainable practices that yield consistent and measureable results. 

I know when I was still training clients I insisted that they weigh and measure their food and keep a food journal. I used to joke that we could diet on chicken and Froot Loops if we had to; but they had to measure and keep a journal. The point is that as trainers we know that consistency of behavior is a key element to long-term fitness success for our clients, yet often we don't adhere to the same logic within our businesses.

Since most immediately think of marketing when we think of growing our businesses let's start there. Every month you should have a consistency of behavior when it comes to marketing, an example would be an online offer and an offline offer each month.

Your online offer might be a Facebook campaign designed to generate new leads. That doesn't mean it has to be the same offer each month. Specifically we're discussing one online channel in which we can present an offer, though I do suggest focus on that one channel for a few consecutive months to be able to better measure the results. What I mean by that is it's not enough to just run an offer, you must also be able to measure the results (just like fitness clients measuring their food.) I want to be able to determine how many people seen it, how many people interacted with it and ultimately how many people inquired further and/or bought something from me as a result. 

Each month we have a goal of an average of 45 new qualified leads (20 is a good place to start for smaller operations) and we try to attain those through our online and offline efforts. Now if our goal for the month is 45 we try to attain 70% of that by mid-month so that if we're behind we can spring into action to make up the difference with an immediate campaign, this is a great use for email marketing, and much like a short-term program change to stimulate a burst of results with a fitness client.

Most trainers I talk to tend to just be using this last component, realization dawns on them that they need to grow so they throw out a haphazard email campaign to make up an immediate shortfall. But think about what happens with your fitness clients that follow their nutrition plans really well until the weekend, on a larger scale this is much the same thing.

Long-term success in business is much more about consistency of behavior than it is the next big sale. I believe this is why anyone can succeed, if you keep doing the same thing and measuring the results allowing you to fine tune for better and better performance (just like training) success is only a matter of time!

Cabel McElderry, now known as the Profitable Personal Trainer, struggled as a solo personal trainer for nearly eight years before learning the strategies he needed to transform his barely six-figure business to a seven-figure (and growing) training studio in just a couple years. His studio (One-to-1 Fitness), now 5 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. Cabel still trains a handful of clients as his passion to help others will never fade but has also evolved. Cabel now also mentors fitness professionals in an effort to help them achieve similar or better results than his own.

Topic: Entrepreneur Web Column

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