Journal Entry: Weeks 18-22 (How I Got 7 Fitness Coaching Clients in One Week)

What if you had to fill your client roster in 7 days but with two key constraints…

  1. You could only use your existing social media profiles and/or tiny email list

  2. You couldn’t get on the phone with anyone in order to sell your program

…is that even possible? Yes. Yes it is.

In this week’s video, I want to share with you the approach I used to do exactly that so you can implement it in your own coaching business.

Let’s dive in…

What went well:

Went from 3 to 10 clients in one week. Earlier this year I signed up for a course called Online Trainer Academy*. The focus of the course is to help online fitness coaches get clients and deliver a better experience to those clients. Even though I’m the guy who helps coaches fill their client roster, I still found the course useful for a few reasons:

1. It’s always a good idea to go back to the basics when you feel overwhelmed. And it’s easy for me to get overwhelmed because I know some pretty advanced stuff.

2. It’s nice to have a step-by-step structure to follow. This course allowed me to just put my head down and execute on someone else’s system.

3. There are some nuances to working with fitness clients online that I wanted to learn more about.

After the course was over, I got an email from the creator, Jonathan Goodman, about a free challenge he was running called the Founding Client Challenge.

Here were the rules:

  • You post on social media three times a day (one of them has to be a FB live)

  • At the end of each post you include a soft call to action that looks like this:

“And, just so you know, I only have one spot left in my program starting August 12th. This is specifically for women who want to lose 10 pounds in 60 days. It’s a remote program, so you can join from anywhere in the world.

I’m looking for one last woman to test it out at a BIG discount, help me work out the kinks, and get amazing results that I can use as a case study.

If you're interested, shoot me a message and I'll send you the details.”

  • When people message you for details, you ask them some questions and invite them into the program directly for $197 (you don’t get on the phone for this)

  • You do this for six days and then, on the seventh day, your posts talk explicitly about the program and mentions that enrollment is about to close

Here’s one of the posts I put out that got me a lot of inbound messages:

This challenge isn’t magic. It works because it gets you posting content regularly and it forces you to put out a specific offer to your audience. If you do those two things in a strategic way, you’re going to get clients.

The twist that made this challenge interesting is that you’re getting people in the door with a really low end offer - just $197. I probably converted 7/10 people who messaged me into paid clients. The idea is that some of these people will likely sign up for a more expensive or longer-term package once the 60 day program is over, and that’s when it really starts to become profitable.

Up until now I’ve focused my messaging on men, so a side benefit of this challenge is that I get to test whether or not I want to work with women long-term.

I’m not sure if Jonathan is going to run this specific challenge again, but if you want to become an online trainer, I’d definitely recommend signing up for Online Trainer Academy.

Continued posting daily content. After I finished the founding client promotional week, I considered creating content weekly instead of daily. But I found that it was easier for me to procrastinate if I was working on one longer post each week. For now, I’m going to continue with the habit of creating and posting content Monday-Friday. You can definitely make the argument that posting less frequently allows you to put more time into promotion and create more thorough content. But at the end of the day you have to go with the process that you can adhere to.

Continued my nutrition certification. I’ve been working through an online program by Precision Nutrition. I could care less about the certification - I just want to be able to serve my clients better. When I initially set up my schedule for the course, I blocked off time on Fridays to go through that week’s chapter. But, similarly to my content creation habit, I’ve found that it works better for me to do a little bit each morning Monday-Friday instead of trying to digest all that information in one sitting.

What I learned:

Follow up relentlessly with referrals. A few weeks ago one of my existing clients spoke with his brother about doing my program and sent me his brother’s info so that I could get in touch. This is obviously the best type of lead you could get because they’ve already been pre-sold on your coaching. But when I sent the brother a text message offering to hop on a call, I didn’t hear back. The next day, I sent him an email saying the same thing (in case he had forgotten to respond to the text). I didn’t hear back. So yesterday I finally just gave him a call and was able to get through. He apologized for not getting back to me and we scheduled a strategy session for next week. It’s a good reminder: when you don’t hear back from someone, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re not interested. You may just need to reach out one more time or in a different way.

What I’ll focus on next:

Create success stories. Out of the seven clients I got during the Founding Client Challenge (see above), five of them are going to be working with me in a group coaching format and two of them will work with me 1:1. The benefit to doing this is that I can test which delivery method is most efficient and which one gets the best results. You might assume that 1:1 is the most effective and the least efficient, but I haven’t always found that to be the case. You’ve got to test your program structure before you settle on the best delivery method. I’m also going to test the coaching software I use to deliver my workouts and nutrition coaching (some people will use my existing software and other people will use this new one I’m trying out*).

Get more traffic to my site: It’s all well and good to grow your social media audience, but at the end of the day you want to have people on your email list. Here’s why: when you build a business based on social media, you have to continue posting content regularly and hoping that the Facebook or Instagram algorithm doesn’t change. But when you have articles on your blog and guest posts on other sites that people find organically every day, and then those people sign up for your email list, it’s much easier to make sales and create passive income. This is how I was able to do $7,061 in online course sales at last month without putting in any time or effort. I already have the traffic sources and sales funnels set up. So now the mission is to figure out how I can do the same with with

*A star indicates an affiliate link. This means that if you purchase paid versions of the product/service listed, I receive a small amount of compensation. It won't cost you anything extra (in some cases you'll actually get a discount), but it will help support the free work I do here on my website. I only recommend resources I've personally used and believe in.