How to Sell Personal Training without Really Trying
Posted by stevehochman on Tue. Oct. 30th, 2012
Everyone knows that they key to owning a successful business is the ability to attract leads and convert those leads into paying clients. It doesn’t matter if you’re selling tangible products such as home furnishings or clothing, online or off, the principles are pretty much the same.
It’s down to finding a proven fitness selling system that works.
If you’ve ever taken a good internet marketing course from someone who actually makes money from marketing online (and not just from selling courses), you’re given a specific system to follow.
You start with learning how to find the best places to promote your business, how to interact with people, gather high quality leads and then convert those leads into sales. Online, that closing will culminate in a purchase.
To work effectively, the whole process has to involve building relationships with people, via a blog, or active and regular participation on social media sites. It’s all about promoting you, your knowledge and expertise and building trust. A fitness selling system is no different.
But I Hate Selling!
The actual process of selling probably conjures up thoughts of high pressure car salesmen or situations where you’ve been persuaded to purchase something that you didn’t really want. It’s never a pretty picture, especially if you’ve walked away unhappy or dissatisfied. Selling doesn’t have to be like that.
A good car salesman knows that if he builds a relationship with his customer, he’ll be recommended to friends and family members. He will talk to his new client and find out exactly what she wants and what she can afford.
The client gets the keys to his new vehicle and walks away happy and relaxed – not feeling like she’s just been pressurized. She’ll be ready to share her great experience with anyone who asks her.
Forget selling per se. Knowing how to sell personal training is about building and maintaining lasting relationships and has very little to do with selling.
You have to start with the right mindset. Don’t think about projected sales figures; think about the best way to help your prospect achieve her goals. If you’ve had preset ideas and phobias about selling, start with a clean slate and resolve to find out how to sell personal training effectively.
Sell Benefits not Features
So you’re approached by a potential client. Which of these statements is more likely to move the conversation along to a successful closing?
Trainer: I’ve just purchased a Commercial Four Stack X4
Client: You what?
Trainer: You’ve expressed an interest in weight loss classes. How long have you been trying to lose weight?
Client enters into a conversation with trainer. Again it’s not about selling; it’s all about asking the right questions and offering helpful answers. The secret of how to sell fitness is getting inside the prospect’s head, finding out exactly what she wants and persuading her that you can help her to fulfill her needs.
Start building that relationship by finding out why she wants to lose weight, what she’s tried in the past and why she’s failed. Then go on to explain the benefits of joining your program. It’s also a good idea to find out what your prospect’s weaknesses are too.
Perhaps she buys an expensive cup of coffee on the way to work every day. Maybe she spends 2 nights a week at the local casino playing slots. This is all knowledge you can use later. Knowing how she spends her disposable income will not only give you insight into your prospect’s personality, you can ultimately use that information to help overcome any objections about the cost of your services, or if she says she doesn’t have the time.
The Closing Process
Your new prospect has told you everything about her struggle with losing weight. By asking the right questions you will know exactly what she needs, and that may often involve help with her daily calorie intake.
At closing all you have to do is turn her responses into questions. You will have noted her pain points, for example if she’s been exercising for 3 months every day and hasn’t lost any of the 20lbs she needs to lose.
Here you can explain that you can help her plan a calorie controlled menu, and offer her an exercise plan that you have tailored precisely to her needs.
Trainer: If I showed you a way of losing 20lbs in two months and how to keep that weight off, would you be interested?
These pre-qualifying questions will move you both comfortably towards the end of the sales process – closing.
Having a calculator in front of you is a helpful tool, especially when cost is an objection. Her daily coffee adds up to $120 a month, trips to the casino, another $600.
That’s over $700 a month that could be invested in your services, to her benefit. She could spend the rest of her life chasing the illusive jackpot, but by investing that time and money with you she could look and feel the way she wants in just a few short weeks and that’s priceless.
Now ask her “Don’t you think it’s much wiser to spend that $700 on training, so you can lose that weight and keep it off?”
You know the answer will be yes. If you can promote the idea that spending money on training is an investment, then you shouldn’t come up against too many objections. But try to leave any detailed money discussions until last.
Listen to any objections she may have, and as you become more comfortable with the sales process you will learn to turn those objections into questions. Address each objection and take mental note.
Let her feel like she’s in control of the conversation and she may actually close herself!
Using and learning the steps in a good fitness sales system will help you get a feel for whether your prospect is serious or not.
It will also teach you ways of overcoming objections by using a certain amount of psychology. If your prospect is sitting in front of you, then she already knows she needs help and that’s what you’re there to offer.
Once you know how to sell personal training effectively, you will discover that closing is a two-part process.
You must get a commitment from the prospect that she wants to sign up for your personal training services, so first you must ask for that commitment.
The second step will be to get her to commit financially. How many sessions does she want to commit to? This is where your bulk discount rates look far more sensible than paying full price for each session.
Collecting daily payments from dozens of clients is a pain. The discount will look extremely attractive to her and will be an added convenience for you.
Don’t be afraid to ask for payment up front for multiple sessions, because the savings will be substantial for your new client, making it even more of an incentive. Show her the savings on your calculator.
Ask for the Sale!
In all types of direct sales, the inexperienced salesperson will often fail because he doesn’t do one simple thing: ask for the sale. Your main closing question will go like this:
“Other than your concern about price/other objection is there any other concerns we haven’t covered?”
If the answer is negative you should then ask for the sale. You will never find a fitness selling system that doesn’t tell you to do this. You must get a commitment, or your time has been wasted.
“Based on our discussion I can see how much you will benefit from taking the classes. When would you like to start?”
You may word your closing question slightly differently. It doesn’t matter. If you don’t ask, you won’t get, so that final closing question is essential.
If you meet with an objection and you don’t get that prospect to sign, remember that prospect is still a prospect. Get an email address and stay in touch, send her newsletters that contain success stories of other people just like her and other information that is relevant to her needs.Keep cultivating that relationship.
Knowing how to sell personal training effectively can mean the difference between subsistence and a six-figure income.