Easy, Natural, and Enjoyable
Three words least associated with selling fitness. Yet, you could add fun to that list. Most trainers have a negative association with selling. They would gladly take a high commission and have someone else feed them customers.
Well, the dream of that is probably short-lived. An owner who can afford to give a trainer a high commission and who has to pay someone else commission to make the sale has little to no profit margin. The bigger the program and the more that type of model happens (if in fact it does…dreamer!) the less skilled a trainer – maybe you – would be at sales.
Working around or over or under the sales process to try to grow a business is almost impossible. Any entrepeneur or business person experiences the need to sell a service or a product. When you look at the ones who succeed long term, they’ve learned this thing called sales.
So where do you start?
1. Identify your personal relationship with sales. Really dig into your own past about your first experience with being sold. For me, it was vacuum cleaner salesman knocking on the door. My conservative step-dad bought at least two vacuums that I can remember that way. My mom claims it was three. My point? It works. We didn’t even want the vacuum cleaner, right? We weren’t out shopping at Sears getting a demo. The guy knocked on the door… got entry into our home ..dumped a bunch of cigarette butts on the carpet and showed us how well the darn thing worked. Then took a clean spot on the carpet and showed us how dirty it really was… hooked.
My other experience was with used car salesman. Sitting in the office with my mom and my step-dad with rules. I wasn’t to say anything. My mom wasn’t to say she liked the car. My step-dad was cool and negotiated. It was tense! The sales guy was kind of sleazy, too familiar but really didn’t seem to care about what we needed, just wanted to get the sale before the end of the year.
2. Realize this: you are not going to recommend something that someone doesn’t want or need. This isn’t about you selfishly selling something to get money. If you’re even here…bothering to get a few tips … you have a desire to help with a service that’s valuable. If you let yourself picture a high-pressure sales situation where you or your customer is pressure to make a sale – why? Where did you get that idea? Realize that this limiting belief is one you conjured up, it’s not close to the truth.
What you’re looking to do is find out what the customer wants. What have they tried before? How can you recommend something that is a solution they haven’t yet tried? Build the connection between the needs and the wants the customer has and how the service you have meets a specific need they mention.
You owe it to them to share with them how you can help them get what they want. There is no pressure.
3. Let your old bad habits go. There are two types of end-of-presentation statements that are most common among trainers who don’t like to sell.
“What do you think?”
“Let me know if you want any more information.”
Neither of these will ever work. Not unless someone is already sold when they walk in the door. Understandably, this is an attempt at a soft sell. Yet, it really isn’t any type of sale at all. Either don’t sell. Or do sell. Make a direct and specific recommendation for the person based on what they need. That’s being authentic.
Instead, let this be the start of your closing statement:
“Based on everything you’ve said to me, your best next step is….”
4. Ask them to take the next step. Still today 72% of trainers don’t ask for the sale. Do you know that right now marketers who don’t have a degree or a certification in fitness at all are outselling, out-marketing and out-profiting you if you don’t sell?
Because they know how to have a conversation with people about where they are, what they want, and can show a product or service that gets them those things, they sell. Pretty easily. By email.
I do it too. A customer never meets me except through videos, blogs or articles. I build their like and trust by giving them information that tells them I know their problem and have the solution. They buy via email and never interact with me.
Don’t you agree that face-to-face would be easier to sell? It’s the golden opportunity.
Recommend two options. With children it’s, would you like peas or carrots tonight?
With a customer, would you like to meet once a week for an hour, or twice a week for a half hour?
Would you like to do mornings or evenings?
5. Give them space to consider what you’ve said. Be quiet. Wait.
Stand up for your product or service. Someone may question you. What they want is for you to defend and know that you fully believe in what you’re doing.