Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Finding or creating good deals for workout space

Last time, we started chapter 2 with a discussion on how to find and secure the best locations, and we began with a list. Today, we are reviewing that list and then drilling down a little further.

The easiest thing to do is do a Google Maps search on the area. You will want to make a list. From my experience the most useful types of locations to investigate are the following, in order of preference:

  1. Parks (for the outdoor option)
  2. Schools (public and private… more on this later)
  3. Indoor soccer and indoor turf sports facilities
  4. Gymnastics or cheer facilities
  5. Your garage
  6. Martial arts schools or studios
  7. Community centers or senior centers
  8. Grange halls
  9. Boys’ and girls’ clubs (depending on location this may or may not be viable)
  10. Churches
  11. Industrial warehouse spaces
  12. Unused rooms in commercial and retail spaces
  13. Gyms (last for a reason)

Monday, November 28, 2016

How to Find and Secure the Right Locations

We now move into chapter 2 of How To Build Your Own Fitness Boot Camp. Specifically, we will talk about how to find and secure the right locations. If you missed the last post about Targeting Your Market and Finding Your Ideal Customers, you can read that here. You can also start from the beginning here.

This section covers the importance of your fitness business real estate. The chapter includes finding or creating good deals for workout space, indoor vs. outdoor strategies, the combination strategy, lease negotiation, how to market a location, how to partner or cross promote with the location, how to market within the location to an existing client base, how to market with the location in the community, and getting help with negotiating the deal.

Finding or creating good deals for workout space

Friday, November 25, 2016

How To Build Your Own Fitness Boot Camp: Targeting Your Market and Finding Your Ideal Customers

In the last post, I talked about how to establish your name and your brand for your fitness boot camp and personal training business. Today we cover how to find the ideal customers and perfect target market as a personal trainer.

Many trainers go about business in completely the wrong way. They are self-focused, rather than others-focused. Here’s what selfish trainers say to themselves, and sometimes even aloud:

“You pay me $40 and then I’ll help you.”

 “As soon as I make a bunch of money I’ll invest in my clients.”

 “I want to have everyone at my Boot Camp loving me and I want to look cool.”

 “I want everyone looking at me as the best and smartest trainer so that they want to pay me money to work out with me.”

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

How To Sell A Boot Camp Business, Part III

This is a continuation of a coaching conversation I had with a consulting client of mine who is working on selling his successful personal training boot camp business. You can read part I here and then part II here.

I have again removed his particulars to protect his identity, but the lessons contained are very instructive.

If you are thinking of selling, or if you are still planning your business, this post will be essential in developing your fitness boot camp business exit strategy.

Hi Jesse,

I hope you're well.

I was hoping to get your opinion on some pricing options as I am about to speak with trainers this week and this is an extremely difficult thing to go through.

How to Build Your Own Fitness Boot Camp: Your Name and Your Brand

In the last post, we talked about the legal form to start your fitness business, and why. Today we talk about naming your personal training business.

As soon as you go to register a new company, the first thing you need is a name. I want to warn you not to get hung up so much on this that you don’t get started. I started with ‘(Name of the county) BOOT CAMP’ since my business model revolved around my region and there were plenty of cities there. This can be an advantage or a disadvantage in that you can get awesome search engine rankings and also recognition, but it may limit where you go. I might pick a universal name, but still get the ‘(name of city) Boot Camp’ just as domain names if I wanted to go this route and capitalize somewhat on search engine rankings by having those words on my website in the content, but still have a brand name that can be expanded to other areas.

Monday, November 21, 2016

The Legal Form to Start Your Fitness Boot Camp Business With and Why

This is a continuation of part 4 of How To Build Your Own Fitness Boot Camp. In the last post, I covered Creating a marketing budget for your fitness boot camp business.

Before saying anything at all about this topic, it is first very important that I tell you that I am not an attorney, an accountant, nor do I have any legal background whatsoever. You need to check with an informed professional in your area first before you make any big decisions, and don’t hold me liable for anything that resembles ‘legal advice’. I don’t give that kind of advice. What I am giving you here is something general for you to bring to a professional so that you have some basic understanding going in. It may save you time and money since I already went down this road multiple times.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Part 4 continued: Creating a marketing budget for your fitness boot camp business

Today we are going to continue our conversation about budgeting and expenses, with what is probably the most overlooked and most important area: Marketing. In the last post, we talked about the other basic expenses and budgeting concerns of starting a fitness boot camp business. Every personal trainer and group fitness instructor needs to understand these ideas.

How do you create a marketing budget for your fitness boot camp business?

This includes a website. I created my websites for free with Google Sites. You can also use WordPress. In the beginning, don’t spend a lot of money here, as you can easily get sucked into spending $3000 for some crazy awesome site that won’t even matter until you get bigger. If you want to hire someone to help you, that is fine, but don’t spend over $200 here. You also may want to buy some things like plastic gift cards for referral generation and get flyers made, but all of this should cost under $300 in the beginning. All in, $500.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Step 4 of your business plan; reality check… Expenses and Budgeting

No business plan would be complete without at least basic financials. It will take some money to make this work, even if you are starting on a shoestring. Last time, we talked about whether it was better to have an indoor boot camp or outdoor boot camp.

Here are some common expenses that you are going to have to deal with. I am going to use rough-estimates and round numbers, since your individual situation and where you live can influence it wildly. You will need to shop around to get exact numbers.

This is simply for a ball-park to get an idea for your planning process, but should be refined as you get close to launch.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Is it better to have an indoor boot camp or an outdoor bootcamp?

This is a continuation of building your own boot camp business, fundamentals part three, continued from my last post.

In this post, I answer the question: Which is it better to have, an indoor boot camp or an outdoor boot camp?

Indoor vs. Outdoor

Here’s the deal with this subject…

There are indoor Boot Camp owners who slam the outdoor models because they are ‘amateur’ and because they have to carry their equipment back and forth from their car or because they are getting wet or because they are getting harassed by park rangers.
Now, these might sound like pretty logical reasons not to do outdoor Boot Camps, but the reality is that if it weren’t for the outdoor option, I would never have survived getting my business off the ground when I was new and broke.

Not only that, but it really depends on what area of the country you live in and what your available resources and connections are.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

How to start your own fitness boot camp business, Business Licensing and Insurance

As a part of my getting started course on the blog, I figured it made sense to explain the common question about what to do about getting a business license for your fitness business and insurance as a personal trainer. In the last post, I talked about Step 3 Of Your Business Plan: Which Model Are You Going To Model, which you can read here.

Next up, Is it better to have an indoor boot camp or an outdoor bootcamp?

Check out a proven fitness boot camp business model for you to use right here.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Step 3 Of Your Business Plan: Which Model Are You Going To Model?

This blog entry follows step two from a few days ago.

Do you build a cable company/cell phone company focused on customers, or build the chain-store model, like Walmart or McDonalds? Do you do indoor Boot Camps, outdoor Boot Camps, or both?
One big store, or many little stores?

You have a choice that you will want to start thinking about now, even if you don’t know if you truly want it yet. You have two basic ways you can go.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Top Ten Keys To Avoid Getting Scammed By Online Fitness Gurus

Quit giving fitness gurus all your money!

Today one of my brand new Action Fitness Camp owners and consulting clients called me up and was trying to get my advice on whether or not to give a fitness guru $4000.

He found this guy on Facebook... Of course. It was some very attractive ad promising to grow his business for him. All he had to do is change his mindset and then fork over $4,000 and a whiz-bang website would help him start rolling in the dough.

Of course, I talked him off the ledge.

I am in a bit of a hurry today, so I am going to get very quickly to the point.

Step 2 of Your Business Plan; Goals, Revenue And Timelines

(Yesterday, I covered the introduction to Starting Your Fitness Business. What follows continues along those lines)

From this, you can write out a plan on paper that is only a page or two and explains what your goals are and how you plan on getting those goals accomplished. What is your timeline? If you have no clue, it took me 2 years to build my business from a few clients to 4 cities. That was moving at a very fast pace for me, and it was really stressful. In general, I recommend everyone starting a business to give themselves 5 years to really master it and to become successful to the degree that matches their dream (remember Michael Jordan and Mozart?) and to give yourself time to perfect your craft as a business owner and to work out the kinks and hit the profitability level you really want.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Starting Your Fitness Business

A Start Up Guide For The Ambitious Fitness Entrepreneur

This Boot Camp Business Enterprise Course Manual is perhaps the most important, and most overlooked, section simply because things that start well are destined to end well, but things that start poorly… Well, you can figure it out. The topics include creating a business plan, deciding whether to go big or go small, what legal form to start your business in and why, getting a business license, how to name your company and create a brand, targeting your market and finding your ideal customer so you can build a business around that customer. The content here is derived from my book How To Build Your Own Fitness Boot Camp. For a more thorough treatise on everything you need to build your business, please check out my resources on the shopping page.

Step One to Building Your Business Plan

How To Sell A Boot Camp Business, PART II

This post is a continuation from a discussion I am having with a boot camp owner who is developing his exit strategy. You can read part one of How To Sell A Boot Camp Business here.

Hi Jesse,

Awesome answer!!! That is a perfect response and idea.

Here are my final clarifications on this and the main one I'd love your feedback on is question 5. Thank you:

Sunday, November 6, 2016

How To Sell A Boot Camp Business

I received an email the other day from a personal trainer and owner of a boot camp business, similar to the ones I created. I keep his name and contact info private, just in case.

Hi Jesse,
I hope you're well.
My name is R. and I read your great book 'How to Build You Own Fitness Bootcamp' which was a great read and resource.
I wanted to ask your opinion about selling a bootcamp business.
I've been running my bootcamp business for 8 years and over that time had some good highs and some big lows. I am at a point now where I just want to sell or move on from the business as it is underperforming and barely breaking even each month - has been for the last two years. I've tried different things, put a lot of money into it as well, and realized now more than anything that my heart just isn't in it anymore and it is time to move on.