Focus: To understand how to use the "free consultation" process as a successful tool to generate new leads and get more clients.
To successfully grow your client base using free sessions as a marketing tool, it's important to have a well-structured free consultation process to help educate people on the importance of why they need a Personal Trainer to achieve their goals.
The ideal result of a complimentary session is to turn the lead in to a client and help them achieve their goals faster and more effectively. Therefore, all the tools we use in this process should support your goal of achieving this result.
The tools required and supplied are as follows:
Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire
Print out of your packages (so you don't forget your numbers)
Diary, pen and highlighters
Gift Vouchers (optional)
Referral Slip (optional)
The Meet & Greet
If you've already established a time to meet your potential client, it's important to be on time and introduce yourself confidently.
“Hi [NAME] I am Dan, your Personal Trainer. Itt is a pleasure to meet you. How are you?
[WAIT FOR ANSWER AND REPLY ACCORDINGLY]
Let's go take a seat”
(Gesture towards seat with an open hand)
Ask them how their day has been and be sure to have your pre-ex form ready with their basic details already filled in.
Then Say “We're going to start by filling this out.”
Once they have filled in the form continue by sitting down NEXT to them open to them. Example if you are right handed you will sit on their right so they can see you writing.
Askignyour client to fill in the PARQ while you wait awkwardly is a missed opportunity to establish rapport with your new client.
It's your chance to learn about the history of the client, about any injuries, the lifestyle and personal information to more effectively assist them. We also need to learn about the goals and what people wish to achieve so we can determine the best path of action to take.
With that said, the intelligent thing to do is structure the PARQ in such a way that is conducive to achieving that outcome, to pick them up as a client and personally guide them to their goal by keeping them accountable.
Your clients is most likely going to be nervous. More nervous than you, so use the PARQ to ask questions and find out more about your clients because the easiest thing for anyone to talk about is them self.
Ask deeper questions about where they live, who they live with, their goals, their kids, pets, favorite food and music.
Find something you can connect with them on so you can position yourself in the same social circle as them and reduce tension.
Remember, if you're taking someone through a free session, there's a good chance they haven’t exercised in sometime, maybe even ever and it is important we leave them feeling good, not physically or mentally drained.
How you train your client will depend on their goals and your areas of expertise but as an example, here's what I personally used with my clients in their first session.
I'd get them on the treadmill or stationary bike depending on their ability and start off with some ascending sprint intervals.
I always chose ascending sprint intervals because it's a great way to both warm the client up and get the client lots of mini achievements. A sense of "I can do this".
Because of the 1 minute rest in between sets this gives you the chance to talk about their the science of training at them during the rest and coach them during the work phase.
Using the cool down phase to explain how their body has adapted can be a really effective way to show your knowledge and enthusiasm.
Next up, hit some big compound exercises that will help your client achieve their goals like squat, bench press, deadlift and pulls. Point out where your client is doing great but also point out where they could improve.
Be sure to teach the client why you chose certain exercises for their goals so the client can see how they'd benefit from your coaching.
Finally, get the client on the mat and for a stretch. Most people don't like to be touched all over by someone they've just met so be sure to handle them with care and be conscientious of where you place your hands.
The stretch should be specific to their goals.
Selling Your Packages
First up, selling packages Vs. selling single sessions. I always opt for packages because a client would never obtain a result in a single session, so why sell them that. That's like offering them a single piece of lego from a lego set.
Plus, with a package you can add loads of extras without any additional cost to you.
This is usually the awkward part for most PT's. A lot of trainers are told to go for the hard sell or squeeze as much out of the client as possible, which if we're going to be honest about it, is slightly unethical.
You should know your worth and be happy to say it out loud when anybody asks you.
It's also important to remember that sales are not bad. They're not evil. The client has approached you because they think that you can help them. They know it's not for free and in fact, paying for the service helps to increase their accountability.
To start with, ask your client:
So <NAME> did you enjoy the workout?
Can you see how by doing this on a regular basis will fast track your results?
Can you see yourself training like this on a regular basis?
During this time you want to prepare your laptop or tablet and have it open and ready to present the necessary packages. Then state:
“Based on what we have gone through today and the fact that you have said (relay 3 things back to them they specifically said themselves EG you want to lose 20kgs and you have given it a 10 out of 10 plus it is really important to you because...) I believe you need to invest in <<Name of the package>>.
Present the package and read through the solution all the package include items individually adding increased value to each item and why it is so important for them then ask:
“How does this look to you <<name>>?”
At this point the client will have a good idea as to whether they can afford your services, especially if they've seen your website beforehand.
Say to them “What I’m going to do is schedule you in for your next session and then send you away to think about everything we have talked about. From there you can give me a call or a text message to confirm you are happy to get started. It’s better to do it this way because I don’t want you to make any decisions while you’re here under pressure”.
Why not let them sign up there and then? I only wanted serious clients who could afford the sessions and had seriously considered personal training as a way to solve their problem.
If they're still not sure personal training can help at this point or they can’t afford it then they will forever associate your sessions with a bad feeling. Give them some space. You’re a caring, considerate PT.
The new client is then scheduled for their follow up and given your business card with their next appointment date written on the back.