Before you ask how much it costs, ask: what can it do for you? What does it have to offer? How can it make you feel?
Does it contribute to you living a better life?
One common mistake people make when it comes to personal training is offering discounted sessions or “deals” – especially during a time where people are laid off work, or in financial hardship.
The key to selling a product or a service is to highlight the value, and show how a client or customer can benefit from it in more ways than one.
How do you showcase value in personal training?
When you’re talking to a prospective client, you first need to get background on the client and what they were doing prior to coming to see you.
Questions you could ask include:
- Who was their trainer?
- Did they have a program?
- How long were they training at their previous gym for?
- What kind of training were they doing?
- What kind of training did they enjoy?
The reason why we ask these questions is to qualify the client for our service and highlight how we can help them achieve their goals. The more you can show the prospective client the value of training with you, the more likely it is that they’ll train with you. As with anything, selling to them is only the first part of the equation. You must follow through with what you promised to offer them, and maintain a high level of service.
Following on from the beginning, ask how your prospective client felt when they achieved their goals, or when they were training regularly. This allows you to attach a positive emotion or feeling to what you have to offer. Everyone wants to be happy and have a high quality of life. This is your primary objective as a personal trainer, to change lives and make people feel better about themselves.
If the prospective client had a trainer and benefited from their services, attained results and tells you what they felt like they got from the sessions, you can highlight the importance of this and show them that you can offer the same or better. The way to do this is to talk about what your services include.
A simple way to do this can be:
Client: “Yes, I had a program and trained with my old trainer once a week when I was training for strength.”
Trainer: “How did you find the training and what in particular did you enjoy?”
Client: “I liked the fact they pushed me a lot in the gym and kept me accountable by checking in with me when I was training by myself as well. We did a lot of free weights and I enjoyed it, just wanted a bit more variety in my program.”
Trainer: “That’s great, so you obviously understand the benefits of having someone push you and keep you accountable, right? One thing we like to do is to vary your program every month even if it is different rep schemes or subtle changes to the exercises. Sounds like what you’re after, doesn’t it?”
By asking questions and getting them to agree with you (this is called ‘tying them down’), you’re getting them to agree that you can provide them with what they are after.
Follow-through is important!
In order to highlight value or be a great and complete personal trainer, there are a few things that are needed as highlighted above:
- Exceptional customer service and professionalismWe are in the service industry, so you must under promise and over deliver where you can. You can still highlight value without overpromising.
- Explaining the rationale behind what you doThe client is paying you for your service and if you train them differently to their previous trainer, they may ask you questions about your training methods and programming. If you cannot justify why an exercise or training method is being used, it is probably best not to include it.
- Treat your client as a client
Recently I went to a coffee shop and the next day the girl who worked there remembered the fact that I was there again, and remembered my order from the day before. This shows attentiveness and builds trust. Everyone likes to be listened to and made to feel important.
So next time you are going to practice some scripting on someone or have a general conversation with someone, see how their attitude changes when you remember little things and listen.
You only ever get one first impression, so make it count!
Bryn Ealey is one of the tutors at Fit Futures Academy. Bryn was born in Japan and raised in Christchurch from the age of 2, to a Japanese mother and English father. His education includes a Certificate in Fitness and a BappSci in Sports and Exercise Science. Bryn is a competitive powerlifter with multiple titles in national level competitions, and practices martial arts when he isn’t lifting weights! Bryn’s key areas of interest include Strength and Conditioning, Mental Skills and Exercise Prescription. Having an extremely supportive and understanding partner in the same industry makes his job a lot easier!
Disclaimer: The exercises and information provided by Fit Futures Learning Institute (T/A Fit Futures Academy) (www.fitfutures.co.nz) are for educational and entertainment purposes only, and are not to be interpreted as a recommendation for a specific treatment plan, product or course of action. Read the full content disclaimer.