Does your fitness program include a running community? More often these days, gyms are offering clients the opportunity to work with a running coach, join group jogs, and even track their progress online.
Why? Running offers a slew of health benefits and people are taking notice. According to the recent National Runners’ and Walkers’ Health Study, the advantages include reductions in BMI, improved cholesterol, reduced cancer risk, and decreases in gallbladder disease, cataracts, cardiovascular disease, and respiratory disease.
As a fitness professional, your value lies in offering clients what they need and in helping them achieve both short and long-term goals – and by focusing on 5Ks, rather than longer races, you can aid them in becoming healthier without risking injury.
If that’s something you think your clientele would value, keep reading! We’re going to walk you through how to offer more value to your clients and how you can use your website to create an in-demand running program.
What Makes Your Program Valuable?
Anyone who’s ever worked with a personal trainer can tell you that it’s an experience. Clients don’t want a robotic instructor who’s just running through the motions.
Sure, they want results. But they also want to work with someone who’s going to get them pumped up and motivated to do what they wouldn’t otherwise do on their own. That’s why they’re willing to pay the big bucks.
In the end, the value of a personal trainer comes down to two things:
- Do you make your clients feel important?
- How do they perceive your services?
These two principles must be applied to all aspects of your business, from the first contact on your website or social media to signing the contract, to crafting daily workouts.
With those perspectives in mind, here are some tips for keeping clients happy and engaged.
Make Communication a Priority
Interactions with clients and potential clients happen all day long, from Facebook to face-to-face.
No matter how someone is reaching out to you, it’s important to make them feel heard. What you don’t want to be is the trainer who gets a reputation for being difficult to contact.
Use these best practices to help clients feel appreciated and valued:
- Create clear channels of communication. That means make the ‘contact’ page easy to find on your website and provide a phone number or email address on all of your social media profiles.
- Set up an email autoresponder so when someone contacts you through your website, they ALWAYS get a response, even if you’re busy. WordPress offers several plugins, like Autoresponder, for this purpose.
- Don’t let your phone ring off the hook. If you can’t personally answer, or you can’t hire someone else to answer, at least provide a voicemail box so callers know that they’ve reached the right place.
There are lots of fitness experts and, due to the necessary certification process, they generally have the same basic technical knowledge.
So, what do you think makes a client choose one trainer over another?
Relationships. The investment that a trainer is willing to make in them personally, and the way that makes them feel. Don’t just ask a client about their ‘goals.’ Ask them why they want to achieve those goals. Find out what difficulties have prevented them from reaching those goals in the past. Ask them why those goals are important to them.
Use that information to not only improve your fitness plan for each individual client but also to provide valuable content. For example, start a blog where you can address common concerns about diet and fitness.
Use social media to run group challenges. Start a running group and then send a weekly newsletter with progress updates and upcoming training schedules. Anything to make your clients feel like you understand (and value) what they need.
Turn Your Website into a Valuable Resource
Your website can be a valuable tool in keeping clients engaged and active. When it comes to creating a running club or offering 5k training, there are several things you can do to up your online game:
- Give clients personal login information so they can upload workout information, run times, and routes to keep better track of their workouts.
- Keep customers motivated by setting weekly goals and showing progress on their profile page.
- Create customized fitness and diet plans that they can access through an online portal.
- Set-up virtual challenges where several clients can compete against each other for most miles logged, best time, and more.
- Use a map plugin to offer suggested running routes.
These tips are applicable in any fitness business, whether or not you include 5k training as part of your program. If you’d like to find out how you can update your website to better motivate and engage clients, reach out today.