The Fitness Zone
If you’ve ever worked in sales or dabbled in marketing, you might’ve heard the term ‘marketing funnel’ pop up a few times.
This consumer-focused marketing model is vital for building a client base and can prove to be a powerful marketing tool for personal trainers; it is certainly something you would want to be across if you are starting your own personal training business that’s for sure!
The marketing funnel is the process a potential customer has to go through before they become a client. It consists of 5 stages:
The model is likened to a funnel because it is designed to attract as many people as possible to your brand/services and push them through the funnel using different marketing messages until they are ready to purchase (also known as a conversion).
When you first start out as a personal trainer, getting your head around how to attract recurring customers to your business can be tough if you’re doing it on your own.
You should use the marketing funnel to make the process as straightforward as possible and effectively communicate with your audience wherever they are at within the marketing funnel to sell your value as a personal trainer.
Let’s have a closer look at the five stages of the marketing funnel.
Awareness is at the top of the funnel. At this stage, people become familiar with your brand through several types of marketing, including:
Content marketing, which involves creating assets that educate your target audience on their core needs and goals, such as ‘how to gain muscle mass’ or ‘how to improve running times’. For example, writing health and fitness blog posts and promoting them on social media.
eBooks and in-depth guides that people can download by providing their email
Creating video content to share on YouTube, Vimeo, and social media.
In the consideration stage of the marketing funnel, leads have turned into marketing qualified leads. It’s at this stage that your prospective clients are defined and have demonstrated they’re interested in finding out more about your product. This is when you can begin to send out more information about your services.
You want to provide your market with more targeted content that appeals to their needs. By doing this, you demonstrate that you have the solution to their problems. As a personal trainer, your next steps could include:
Emailing a client success story showing a previous client’s progress since embarking on your training guide.
A live webinar demonstrating your personal training services.
Promoting a free training program. For example, a ‘10 Get Moving Challenge’.
The goal of the conversion stage is to convince your prospective clients to become your personal training client. Once you’ve educated them on what you offer and how you can help them, next comes the delicate dance of convincing them why your services are better than your competitors.
Focus on the benefits of your service and create a sense of urgency to purchase. Be careful not to overwhelm your client or subject them to pressure marketing, as this can deter them from choosing your services. Instead, invite your clients to purchase by:
Inviting them to a VIP webinar where you show them your product or services
Offering a free session
Offering discounts for signing up
Providing rewards or gifts for the first 10 people to sign up
Creating an automated email that describes the different benefits of your personal training
Creating landing pages to attract more subscribers
Using Facebook ads to promote offers to a targeted audience, which you can break down by age, gender, location and interests
Creating competitions. For example, ‘Like and share this post to win a free PT session’ not only generates interest in your brand, but reinforces the sense of urgency needed when converting a new customer
Once you’ve gained a customer through the conversion stage of the marketing funnel, now’s the time to develop a plan for creating customer loyalty. Repeat customers or clients are more valuable to your business than new customers, particularly as a personal trainer.
It’s through creating loyalty that you’re gaining repeat sales, as well as opening yourself up to potential referrals and great feedback which can help to improve your business.
Here are a few valuable tools to create loyalty:
Giving your client access to exclusive deals, programs, offers, and discounts
Providing them with ongoing support through weekly video content, one-on-one mentoring, offering personalised programs, or giving them access to a members-only support group
Providing a 20% discount to members who purchase a yearly subscription to your training program
The key to loyalty is to ensure that your clients know they’re getting the best deal in addition to your high quality, professional service.
The final stage in the marketing funnel model is advocacy. It’s at this point where your client is more than a customer; they’re your biggest fan. This is the best stage as your clients are so excited about your offers and services that they begin telling their friends and family about you, they post their own progress pictures, they leave positive reviews, and they have nothing but belief in your brand.
In other words, they’re now helping you to create brand awareness by becoming ambassadors for your brand. At this stage, you can celebrate with your fans while enticing new customers by:
Sharing your clients’ progress or transformation pictures, and using hashtags to further promote your page
Sharing clients training pictures or health journeys on Instagram
Sending customer feedback forms or surveys to learn how to further improve your services
Asking your client for referrals and offering them incentives to do so. For example, free PT sessions for a week for every referral they give or ‘bring a friend to class day’
DO YOU WANT TO BECOME A PERSONAL TRAINER?
Before you start marketing yourself as a personal trainer by implementing these marketing funnel strategies, you need a good understanding of the fitness industry and a qualification to match!
Explore personal training course options with the Australian Institute of Fitness here.