Home > Personal Selling > Something I have NEVER seen! But why not??

Something I have NEVER seen! But why not??

I am pretty new to the "sales" field. I am a personal trainer in a local gym. Last year when I started I didnt realize I was also going to need to be a salesman. I figured, ya know, you post some flyers in the gym in strategic spots and the business would come to you. Boy was I wrong.

So now I am trying to learn about selling. (we have to get our own clients in the gym....due to the specific situation i basically will receive no help from the front desk. )

So I have read some good books, listened to some nice motivational and sales tapes, watched some speakers in conference settings. All very good and useful btu there is one thing I have yet to see: ACTUAL SELLING!!

Why not? Doesnt anyone video or record actual sales calls? I mean, people film sex, they film open heart surgeries, they film themselves cooking...but no ACTUAL videos of the sales process in action??


How is a fella going to learn if he has no model? (no, there is no model for me in the local gym, lol) - by Fitness Trainer
Why not? Doesnt anyone video or record actual sales calls? I mean, people film sex, they film open heart surgeries, they film themselves cooking...but no ACTUAL videos of the sales process in action??
Hmmm... formal sales training programs could have what you're looking for. - by Mikey
I personally love audio sales training programs. Authors like Ziglar are always giving examples of sales situations. Rarely will they deal with exactly the industry you are in, but you will be able to apply the concepts to what you are doing.

People want to look good and be healthy.
You know how to get them there faster and safer than they can do on their own.

I'd think coming into the new year, (resolutions and all) that you might be able to offer some gift certificates to get people to come on in and try it out.

If you are good, they will stick around once they have results, and then the opportunity for referrals kicks in once you are found to be a top notch performer.

PM me for some audio programs you might like. or call me. I might have some that will help. - by Telephone Guru
well, here is the situation I find myself in.

So far I havent really been able to even solidly picture what a proper sale would look like from start to finish. Generally I approach people who look new and ask if they have ever worked with a trainer...and it usually goes downhill from there, lol. I am just clueless basically and I am no natural salesman.

Its not even feasable for me to tru to remember 50 things like "build trust, qualify 'em, yada yada, do this, do that"

it would be great to actually SEE how its all supposed to work...or at least some possible models.

the thing is, its different than a car dealership. people come TO BUY A CAR....the car isnt optional, its the only thing being sold. People join a gym but the trainer is optional. I am just a freelance trainer so basically I am some dude walking around going up to people.

How does it get from there to them making an appointment to train?

As I outlined in my introduction, some of the other trainers have some solid advantages over me, but DAMN it would seem like there is enough business there to where I could at leats get 5-7 steady clients. - by Fitness Trainer
So far I havent really been able to even solidly picture what a proper sale would look like from start to finish. Generally I approach people who look new and ask if they have ever worked with a trainer...and it usually goes downhill from there, lol. I am just clueless basically and I am no natural salesman.
Prospecting and selling are not the same. With prospecting you want to identify and/or create opportunities.

On a base level identifying opportunities could be nothing more than asking every single member in the gym if they want the kind of service you offer. Creating opportunities on a base level could be nothing more than being professional and approachable. Either way the end result is the same... you having a sales conversation with someone who has an interest in talking with you about personal training.

How does it get from there to them making an appointment to train?
On a base level, once you're in front of a qualified prospect ask for the appointment. Not everyone who has an interest in talking with you about personal training is a good prospect. You'll have to come up with your own qualifying criteria.

I gave base level examples to give you an idea of how simple, not easy, the prospecting and sales process can be. - by BossMan
Prospecting and selling are not the same.
Your post was excellent, BM. And I think the sentence I quoted above is a good reminder to all of us. Prospecting is to find sales opportunities (and some salespeople don't have to do this or don't have to do this much, particularly retail, etc.), and selling is what you do once you have those opportunities. - by Skip Anderson
the way it happens in 99% of gyms is evidently that people go to the front desk to inquire about training. In most gyms the trainers are actually employed by the gym so the gym doles out this or that trainer to the client.

In my gym we r independent contractors so we "supposedly" get our own clients. I say supposedly because people still generally go to the front desk and since 2 of my competitors, a husband and wife team, run the desk at night, im screwed on that angle.

That doesnt seem to leave me much to work with.....then again all I am currently looking for are 5-7 clients, lol. I have 2.

I am sure its a classic situation that all have faced...but to me it seems like if I dont close in the first conversation that someone else will be training them the next time I walk in. Thats already happened to me one time.

In any case, right now all i am gettign is table scraps so I am looking for ways to drastically improve my leverage. Probably what will have to happen is that I improve my professional appearance (read---"get a killer 6 pack" lol) and my sales skills etc and then i make a move to a more favorable environment. - by Fitness Trainer
I am sure its a classic situation that all have faced...but to me it seems like if I dont close in the first conversation that someone else will be training them the next time I walk in. Thats already happened to me one time.
When a prospect you've talked with later decides to give personal training a try what are you doing that would inspire them to seek you out instead of asking the front desk for a referral? - by Mikey
Have you considered alternative methods to helping people with interest find you?

Listings on Craigs List are free, and they do draw response. I'm sure quanitity is different for ever field, but hey, it's free.

Have you considered putting together a killer introductory package? Can you post it on the front desk or in the locker room? Why not offer a free session? If people like you, what you show them, etc, they will most likely be hooked.

Just a thought. In the business, they call that the puppy dog close. Put your product in the hands of the client with no commitment to pay "right now", and if they like it, they can keep using it. I would think that coming up on the holidays there will quite a bit of opporutunities.

Oh, and I hope you are in shape yourself. Nothing worse than a personal trainer who is out of shape trying to sell you on the benefits of being fit. shds;

Good luck! - by Telephone Guru
Have you considered alternative methods to helping people with interest find you?

Listings on Craigs List are free, and they do draw response. I'm sure quanitity is different for ever field, but hey, it's free.

Have you considered putting together a killer introductory package? Can you post it on the front desk or in the locker room? Why not offer a free session? If people like you, what you show them, etc, they will most likely be hooked.

Just a thought. In the business, they call that the puppy dog close. Put your product in the hands of the client with no commitment to pay "right now", and if they like it, they can keep using it. I would think that coming up on the holidays there will quite a bit of opporutunities.

Oh, and I hope you are in shape yourself. Nothing worse than a personal trainer who is out of shape trying to sell you on the benefits of being fit. shds;

Good luck!
nah, im in pretty good shape, lol. At least I think so and I get some compliments fairly regularly. Of coruse, im not quite in the shape of someone who has been in jail working out everyday for 10 years on the taxpayers dime.


I already thought of the introductory package. A little "Welcome to the world off fitness" package with basic diet and workout info....and then of course my info and contact info.

I hate to say it...but what I figure would happen is that the owner would simply put EVERYONES business cards in there with mine. thats whats so frustrating....it really feels like the situation is such that self initiative and/or professionalism is almost pointless. The gym is so UNprofessional that to be professional just looks weird to everyone.

Im already looking for other options..unfortunately it takes time to make a move and im just sick of the whole gym management scene.

Like, we have a front desk where the owners daughter usually hangs out and its her new husband that is being so heavily promoted...well he USED to just use the front desk also. but now he has started usign the "trainers room" which is a tiny little thing barely bigger than a broom closet. Only room for one person. So where does that leave me when I come in and his stuff is the trainer room? that leaves me going to the bathroom with 30 people changing clothes and im trying to get my training stuff together etc.

thats how marginalized I am, lol. That sort of thing doesnt inspire one to do the tons of work required ot put together a welcome package etc.

Tough situation - by Fitness Trainer
There is a simple problem with tapping actual sales calls, apart from the information that is confidential (can you imagine anyone admitting they were thinking about a personal trainer because of the rolls of fat on their body and having that distributed later?). And that is the prospect will not act the same.

And, there are legal issues with doing it without the person's knowledge.

Xerox had a sales training program where they hired actors but it is not quite the same, while good experience. I highly recommend taking an interactive training session.

You could hire a sales guy to do some calls with you but I doubt very much that is what you need. Seriously, is your problem either marketing or prospecting relate? Aren't you just not seeing enough prospects???

Usually, the issue is not learning closing techniques it is having enough prospects to practice sales skills on ... !!! - by Gold Calling
Instead of saying; "have you ever worked with a trainer", try this; "I know a few techniques that can help you get into shape a lot faster, help you feel much better and look tremendous too! Would you like me to share some with you?"

Your question is about you, not about what is of interest to them. They want to work out to ... what? Look better? Feel better? Get into shape for some other reason, like running a marathon?

After the opening, maybe show them one or two things, then lead close for the sit down; "You know, of you really want to feel good there are a few things that you should do first, one is a full physical assessment. From that we can build a plan to make sure that you reach your goals as fast as possible but do not risk injury, which can set you back." Then (do not pause); "why don't we take a moment, sit down and talk, so I can show you just how easy it is to accomplish this!"

Think of everythign they may have forgotten but never knew, hydrating, how to work different muscle groups, assessing weaknesses or whatever, these are the reasons why they need your help. when you sit down this is what you want to see that they accept as a reason why you should help them.

But you are going to have to find out have aggressive they are. After all, what reason is there to hire a trainer if you are not really serious about getting into shape? This is called qualifying your prospect ...

Now you are beginning hopefully to see how to structure a sale. - by Gold Calling

But you are going to have to find out have aggressive they are. After all, what reason is there to hire a trainer if you are not really serious about getting into shape? This is called qualifying your prospect ...
thats the major hangup right there. Im sort of a serious dude..focused and intense when I am into something. I dont need anyone to hold my hand etc. But 95% of people in a gym arent really like that. They dont HAVE any real goals or vision and they sort of just go thru the motion. its really pitiful if u sit back in a gym and observe people how little effort they actually use.

some trainers fall right along with that and they make big $$$ and all they really do is entertain the person with their great personality as they do some mild workout.

Thats not me really.

I would probably do better workign with athletes but thats a tiny % of the population ESPECIALLY in my dead end town.

Obviously some move one way or the other is vital at this point. There is another gym in town who has a few more of the college athletes there..then there is a town 45 miles away with 5x the population and several colleges etc.

in my gym its all about being "in the clique" and getting that approval/referral from the owner and I am simply not in it, lol. I hope that my people skills do improve because im just not a "clique" guy...I tend to always be an outsider....perhaps PT'ing is just not a good fit for me - by Fitness Trainer
Hey, we teach sales people the importance of being able to navigate an order form, believe it or not.

In the similar way, being unfamiliar with the machines in a Gym is intimidating. Just knowing what they are and how to use them, plus having a plan for workouts, this is a service you can offer everyone. The more serious will want you to work with them.

Good luck. - by Gold Calling
in my gym its all about being "in the clique" and getting that approval/referral from the owner and I am simply not in it, lol. I hope that my people skills do improve because im just not a "clique" guy...I tend to always be an outsider....perhaps PT'ing is just not a good fit for me
It sounds like a frustrating situations, Fitness.

Have you had a heart-to-heart chat with the owner to discuss the situation? - by Skip Anderson
Bossman's remark that prospecting and selling are not the same is very accurate and shows exceptional insight. - by Joe Closer
It sounds like a frustrating situations, Fitness.

Have you had a heart-to-heart chat with the owner to discuss the situation?
not really a heart to heart but I dropped some hints which werent recieved......I figure its totally pointless and not worth my time and emotion to open that can of worms. When u have a family operation with the mother owning, the daughter managing and her new husband training, you may as well keep your complaints to yourself. Its totally inbred

but, I am going to make the best of it while im there, with the knowledge that whatever good comes TO me will be FROM me, lol - by Fitness Trainer
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