Word of Mouth is Not A Personal Trainer Marketing Plan

by glenn on January 4, 2012

Let’s be honest.  Word of mouth referrals is not a marketing plan.  It is a testament to you being a great trainer and helping your clients reach their goals.  Your best clients are the ones who refer you to others.  Having those great long-term relationships with your clients, means working with the type of clients who match up well with your skills and experience.  Those who don’t may not stick with you for the long haul, leaving you with the task of finding another client to fill that session time again.  That takes work.  But what about when a client finds you?  They see your skills match their areas of need.  They see your experience matches their plight.  These are the people who stick with you and call you a “lifesaver” or a “life changer.”  They speak of you often and with great appreciation.


Visualize a tree root system and how it fortifies the tree’s foothold in the ground.  As a tree grows, it’s roots grow thicker and deeper into the ground seeking water and nutrients.  The thickest roots are always those that sprout from the tree’s base.  As the thick roots grow, smaller roots sprout from the thick roots so they can absorb more water from the ground.  From those smaller roots, offshoot even thinner roots, but eventually the roots become to thin to split off again.  If the tree is to continue its growth trajectory, it needs additional thick roots to come from its base and produce new roots from it.  Can you see the correlation?  Each root is a client, that can produce additional client.  The thicker the roots, the stronger your client relationship.  These can grow over time.  However, sometimes just like in tough economic times, eventually the soil can dry up and the root begins to shrink.  If the tree roots cannot attract any water they will die.


What does a tree root system have to do with your personal training business referrals?  A lot if you can picture it.  No matter how busy you are, ALWAYS be marketing.  “I get a lot of my business through word-of-mouth referrals.,” is what personal trainers often say.  That’s great.  That is the mark of a successful business, but what about when the referrals dry up?  What is your plan B.  Every great plan needs a plan B to sustain success.


Why do you always need to be marketing even in the best of times?  Because strong roots can help you set off a growth spurt.  Growing your personal training business is your goal.  Also, because nothing is guaranteed. what if one part of the tree’s root system dies or becomes sick? The recession hurt a lot of fitness businesses.  Lastly, on a more positive note, you are always more in demand when you look like you are in demand.  People want what they can’t have.


Someone needs you in 2012.  But will they be able to find you easily online?  Many NYC personal trainers already have a facebook page, twitter account, and a Youtube channel.  However, their existence is separate and fragmented.  Give your clients one source for learning more about you.  Bring them all together, along with all of your skills and experience in one easily accessible online profile.


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