Marketing Your List, Checking it Twice
The holidays can mean a slow down. Be prepared if it happens to you. Then you can be prepared to enjoy it knowing you’re going to need that time to gear up for big and busy time in January!
Get ready for marketing that makes a difference to the people that matter. Your prospective January customers..those who will put on 10 pounds between now and then, want to know that you have helped people like them. In fact hearing that from people like them instead of from you is the best method of delivery.
Market your success stories. Word of mouth advertising, testimonials from regular folks, real people who get up early in order to reach their goals and find the time to exercise, that’s what people need and want to hear; that it’s worth it.
1. Decide on a format. Will you use photos, quotes, or video? Will you place these in frames on the wall, on your website, or in a scrapbook where waiting customers can flip through it?
2. Check with trainers in your organization. Sift through all your client files past and present to find possible transformations among the listings. Don’t overlook someone who outwardly may not have changed drastically. It might not be a size or weight loss, but a radiance or confidence, a performance they hadn’t known was possible or was better than ever before. Perhaps it was recovery and survival of a disease that they attribute to training and fitness.
3. Draft a letter that relays not just your request for their testimonial but the sense of value and rewarding feeling that their success provides to you as a trainer and the inspiration it provides to those wondering if they can.
4. Attach a list of questions and space to your letter that allows them to include the important changes for them. Include weight, inches, body composition, medications, blood pressure, cholesterol, resting heart rate, race paces, activities they’ve participated in, etc. Be creative. You’re not trying to put words in their mouth but you are trying to suggest things they might not have realized in assessing their progress!
5. Arrange to take a photo of them for your wall of fame. Leave them the option of submitting a “before” photo to you. (You can scan it if it isn’t digital.)
6. Make it all simple for them. Send the letter in the mail so it is personal as well as hand-addressed and signed by you. Include a stamped return envelope. And also make sure that you’ve included a way to both congratulate them on the success you’re acknowledging and thank them for sharing it with others publicly. Ideas include a complimentary one hour session from their trainer, or for another service, say they’ve never tried the Pilates reformer but always been curious. Or, if you offer massage, let them choose a complimentary massage or training session.
Sitting in the lobby even if for a few minutes before a session can tell a prospective member a lot about your business. If they are staring at smiling faces full of pride from their accomplishments and satisfaction with your service, once their appointment begins they are already more than interested! Statistics say those that come into see you are 70% sold already. Add some icing to that cake with testimonials.
Next…select one or two with a lot of impact and put it in your external advertising campaigns.