Marketing a fitness boot camp isn’t rocket science. You don’t need to be an Einstein with a business degree in order to succeed, but you DO need to use common sense and be willing to work hard.
I have done both these things, and seen major success which is why I am going to share with you some key tips to market your fitness boot and improve your client base.
So let’s start with the most simple and effective way to market your fitness boot camp called boot camp lead generation strategy. Like everything else in life, you need to give a little in marketing in order to get back. This is why I suggest offering free, short term, trial giveaways in order to spread the word about your boot camp and make it well known. Providing risk free, no strings attached offers proves the legitimacy of your camps to the people who take advantage of the offer, and hey, who doesn’t love free stuff?
That being said, there are a few steps involved in conducting the most effective free trial giveaways in order to make it worthwhile…
Step #1: Determine the optimal free trial period
It is vital to determine the ‘sweet spot’ of how long a trial period has to be in order to convert the most people into paying clients. The most popular ‘sweet spot’ is a week…but let me share with you why I totally disagree with this method…
I’m assuming if you’re running a fitness boot camp, you’re probably in decent shape, so it may be difficult for you to relate to someone who lives a very sedentary lifestyle. So let’s use this as an example instead…
Have you ever gone on a holiday? I mean a sit-on-the-beach-and-drink-beer-all-day kind of holiday? I have. And although I preach about living a healthy, active lifestyle, I also believe that every once and a while, you deserve a break. So let’s pretend you go to an all-inclusive resort in Hawaii for 7 days. Likely, the most exercise you get is walking to the buffet, and doggy-paddling to the swim-up bar. You drink lots, you eat lots – you enjoy yourself and forget about the lifestyle you usually live.
When you get home you jump on the scale and realize it’s time to clean up your act. Now, I know most of you have been here at least once in their lives: the week of getting back into healthy eating and exercising after taking a week holiday is BRUTAL. You feel like you’re going to throw up for the first couple of workouts and you’re sore as hell afterward. But, once you get back into the routine of things, you begin to notice your Hawaii weight to fall off, you realize you feel better and begin to like it again. Am I wrong?
So, let’s put this into perspective. While it isn’t always the case, many people who start boot camp live fairly sedentary lifestyle. That being said, the first week of boot camp for them is probably going to suck just as much as your first week back from your Hawaiian getaway – they’re going to feel like they’re dying during the workout, and afterwards they’ll probably wish they were dead because they’re so sore. Now, if I was in that situation, I’d probably finish the trial week of boot camp and never even want to say the word ‘boot camp’ again because realistically, you’re not going to be able to see very noticeable gains in the first week.
This is why I suggest giving away free 2 WEEK trial boot camps instead of just 1 week.
As cliché as it sounds, the night is always darkest before the dawn – although the first week of boot camp may really suck, by the second week your clients will start to see some noticeable gains: the warm up will start to feel like a warm up instead of the workout itself, they’ll start to notice increased performance in strength, conditioning, and flexibility, they’ll start to see visual changes in their body via the mirror and their clothes will start feeling looser…
If these are the conclusions your potential clients draw at the end of those two weeks, they have a clear understanding of something that is very important that leads to crazy conversions: your program actually works. If they can accomplish that much in 2 weeks, imagine how much they could accomplish in 6 weeks…or 2 months… See where I’m going with this?
If you want to take this great idea one step further, here’s how:
At the beginning of the 2 week trial period, let all trial members know that you have made available a limited time offer where they can trade in their free 2 week trial for a FULL FREE MONTH membership to your camps if they sign up for the next month before the end of the two weeks.
This is a goodie because it’s a win-win situation – your prospect saves money, and you ensure they will be in your camps for longer, which allows you to build a strong bond with them, and help them see bigger and better results. The more results your potential clients see, the more likely they are to become paying clients, and the more likely they are to become human billboards for your fitness boot camp.
Step #2: Create a free trial giveaway to distribute to the masses
Here are a few of my favorite ways to do so:
- Hand out promotional coupons at all fitness presentations, speaking engagements, etc.
- Provide local businesses with coupons in bulk to put in the break room, reception desk etc.
- Put together special giveaways in the form of auctions, charities, media contests etc.
- Provide family members and friends of current clients the opportunity to try your boot camps free of charge
In your promotions, make sure to include words and phrases such as the following:
- Number values – ex) $300 value yours for FREE!
- All fitness levels welcome
- Best training in your area for a fraction of the cost
- This limited time offer is only valid until _______ .
- Before and after pictures of a current client of yours that has seen a lot of success training at your fitness boot camp.
I love this form of advertising, because it allows you to compete with other health/fitness business in your area and it’s FREE. It’s very difficult to expand a boot camp if you only has a handful of members in it, but if your camps are always full (paying members and non-paying members included,) your business looks reputable and successful. The more successful your business is, the more people will be drawn to try it out.
Step #3: Create exclusivity with boot camp ‘tryouts’
Now, I realize I just told you to give away free boot camp trials to every Tom, Dick, and Harry in existence, and now I’m telling you that people have to ‘tryout’ to be involved in your camps – kind of an oxymoron, right?
Well here’s what I mean by exclusivity:
People like thinking their part of the elite. People like to think they’re a part of something special.
For example, let’s look back on our little tyke days…
Think back to when you were young; there were the competitive soccer teams, and the recreational soccer teams…there were competitive baseball teams, and recreational baseball teams…competitive gymnastics clubs, and recreational ones. Whatever your sport of interest was growing up, (if you were involved with sports at all,) there was most likely a competitive league and a recreational league. Not to say the recreational leagues weren’t cool, but all the kids knew deep down that the competitive leagues were the place to be. The competitive leagues took commitment, dedication, talent, hard work – not to mention they got the coolest jerseys and the bigger metals. Only the crème of the crop were on the competitive teams.
This is the sort of ambiance you want to create for your boot camps. Even if the people in your boot camps were on the recreational teams as a kid, you want to provide them the opportunity to finally be a part of the ‘elite’ group.
That being said, treat the 2 week trial period as a challenge for your campers. Explain to them that the next two weeks will be grueling and only those with determination, dedication, and perseverance will be successful. Explain that if they are able to make it through the next two weeks without quitting, the sailing will only get smoother if they choose to become an exclusive member of the best boot camp of your area.
Now, I guess I’m using some form of reverse psychology here because TECHNICALLY SPEAKING what I’m telling them isn’t one hundred percent accurate…
In all honesty, I have a multitude of different people ranging in fitness levels and dedication in my camps and if someone wanted to become one of my campers, I would never turn them away because they’re not ‘up to my standards.’ After all, everyone has to start somewhere. That’s the beauty of boot camp – you can have all fitness levels in one camp just by modifying exercises to make them easier or more difficult.
However, if you can make people believe that just by making it through the 2 week trial period they are the best of the best, they’ll be motivated to complete the trial period and sign on as paying clients. Make sense?
So there you have it folks, how to market a fitness boot camp. I can guarantee to you that by utilizing these strategies you’ll see nothing but success and growth in your business.