You’ve been working hard for years. Other gym goers and fitness professionals ask for your advice in the gym…
If you care about health, fitness, and improving others’ self-esteem, then you might want to start your own personal training business.
Owning your own business and making people’s lives better is one of the most rewarding things you can do. Imagine showing up to work every day and inspiring others to be better, feel better, and live better. You have the ability to do this through the knowledge and insight you’ve gained.
If you’ve considered starting your own personal training business, consider these steps and explore whether or not this decision is right for you and your lifestyle.
#1 Consider If Being a Business Owner is Right for You
If you wake up every day and have the gym on your mind, there’s no denying that fitness is a pivotal aspect of your life. But how does being a personal trainer go beyond just enjoying being in the gym?
To be a successful business owner, you have to have people skills. You’ll have to know how to coach people effectively. Reading your clients will be essential, too. Some clients don’t respond well if you’re too harsh, while others will think you’re too easy on them if you’re not.
Be prepared to not make a lot of money at first. It takes time to build a client base and reputation. You will need to be prepared to make it by on very little in the beginning, but know that you will reach stability and make a decent living eventually.
You also want to consider if you have an entrepreneurial spirit. If you feel the drive to watch your business grow, grow, grow, you will do well. You have to be invested in your numbers, even if you don’t do your own accounting.
#2 Decide If You’re Ready to Branch Out On Your Own
While this can be tough to think about, you do have to consider if you have the experience and expertise to run a personal training business. People use personal trainers to encourage them, but to also keep their bodies safe and healthy. If you do not have a working knowledge of the human body or safe training practices, you will want to learn these.
You may want to work as a personal trainer at your gym for a bit or shadow another self-employed trained to learn the ropes. Maybe take a few courses, too.
Don’t rush going out on your own and risk your client’s health or your reputation. This can be devastating. And make sure if you do go out on your own, that you have liability insurance.
#3 Establish a Business Plan
While personal training doesn’t come with the traditional overhead of an office to rent or inventory, you still need a strong plan in place to be successful. You need to think about your business now and into the future.
- Set Goals: What do you want to accomplish in your first year? How about by year five or ten?
- Consider Potential Setbacks: What could come up that should negatively affect your ability to grow your business? What’s your plan if this happens?
- Establish Your Fee: How much will you charge? Do some research and decide on a fair cost. Think about how your prices will change over time.
- Define Your Brand: What makes you better or more unique than other trainers? Why would someone rather train with you?
- Find a Business Mentor to Model: Find a local trainer and befriend them. This can help you share business if they’re overbooked, but also give you great insight on how to be successful.
Once you’ve answered these questions, you should have a pretty good idea of what your company looks like and why clients will choose you over your competitors.
#4 Create a Web Presence
You need more than just a Facebook profile or a Twitter account. To have a successful business, you need to look and be legitimate. You should have a separate business Facebook account and you should create a website.
You’ll need a unique domain name to help customers find you and remember your URL. Register your domain name to secure your place on the web. And use a digital payment service to make bookkeeping and transactions easier. There’s no room in your yoga pants for nickels and dimes.
You will also want to try content marketing and share advice with your clients that they will enjoy. Start a helpful health and fitness blog. This also creates the opportunity for them to repost your articles and increase your presence and possibly clientele. Sharing knowledge also ensures customers that you are an expert in your field.
Avoid posting anything that comes across as negative or controversial. Remember, you’re the face of your business and social media has the unique ability to go viral.
#5 Make Sure Your Customers Come Back
This is where your personality and results really pay dividends. You want happy customers to return to you over the course of the year. Make sure you thank your clients and encourage them.
You can also offer promotional deals for free sessions. Try a referral program or the opportunity for clients to earn a free session after so many. Many people want to workout with their friends or spouses–think about package deals or holiday specials, too.
Celebrate your clients’ success. It’s important to remember where you and your clients started. Point out your clients’ achievements and congratulate them when you can. Positive reinforcement has a long-lasting effect.
Venturing out on your own can be risky and frightening, but giving up the opportunity to make what you love into your career can become a lifetime regret. When beginning your own business, don’t rush into decisions, and start small. As your business grows, you can expand by working with a team and hiring trainers to work for you.