3 Steps to Simplify Personal Training Sales & Land More Clients

3 Steps to Simplify Personal Training Sales & Land More Clients

I love helping people…

But I don’t love selling to them.

When I started training, I thought I’d spend all my time training clients and writing programs.

I was wrong.

After working the fitness floor hour after hour trying to make ends meet (with barely anything to show for it), I realized something:

If I wanted to be a successful trainer, I would actually have to sell my services to people.

At first, I didn’t even like the thought of it. 

I didn’t want to turn into a sleazy used car salesman or someone selling a bullshit infomercial product.

But that fear was gone when I realized this:

I was the product I was selling.

And I knew it was a damn good product…

But there was still a problem:

Even though I understood that I was the product I was selling…

Even though I knew I was fairly priced…

I still didn’t have enough clients.

So I devoured information about business, sales, and marketing...

I listened to podcasts…

I read articles…

I learned from mentors at my gym...

Then tested some strategies…

Then tweaked them…

And, after figuring out what worked —  

I developed a system. Now, this system isn’t entirely original to me.

I didn’t create the whole thing.

It’s more of a puzzle than an original painting:

I took other people’s ideas, found out what worked for me, then smashed those ideas together into the 3-step process I’m about to show you.

My hope is that this process will help you sell your services better and get more clients.

It’s worked for me. Here it is…


The Simple 3-Step Process I Use To Sell My Personal Training Services


Step 1: Bring Out Their Emotions


Potential clients will almost always say something like:

  • “How much does this cost?”
  • “How do I [insert goal they want to achieve]?”
  • “I know how to do everything. I just need a program.”


Don’t answer these questions. This is your chance to set the tone for the conversation.

Instead, ask:

“What do you want to achieve?”  

Then shut the hell up.

Like for real, DON’T TALK.

Give them all the space in the world to say whatever they want.

And then, when they’re done…

Wait for at least 5 seconds — in complete silence.  Yes. It will be incredibly awkward. BUT THIS IS THE KEY.

These 5 seconds are pure gold. Here’s why…

Because it will be awkward, they will try to break the silence. And they’ll typically tell you the most important thing you need to know.

WHY they want to achieve their goal — the emotional reason behind it.

At that point, you know both WHAT they want to accomplish and WHY they want to accomplish it. John Goodman, a fitness sales and business expert, had a quote in his book, Ignite the Fire

“Emotion is what drives action and logic justifies it.”

Which sets us up perfectly for Step 2…


Step 2: Justify Their Emotions


At this point...

You have everything you need to justify why this person should pay you to train them.

You’ve just tugged on their heartstrings…

You’ve brought out their emotions…

Now, you just need a plan.

You need to show them how you are going to help them reach their goal and satisfy their emotional need.

By this point, they understand emotionally why they need your help.

So your goal is to help them understand it logically.

Here’s the key to getting this right:

Pay attention to the signals they’re giving you.

If they want to know how fat loss works—

Great. Tell them.

If they don’t—

Then shut up and keep it simple.

Clients don’t need to know you’re a walking fitness encyclopedia.

They just needed to know you’re competent enough to help them meet their goals.


This is about them, not you.

This plan does not have to be super specific or detailed.

Just give them an overview of what they’ll have to do to reach their goals.

At this point, something scary will happen:

Objections will start to fly in.

“I don’t have enough time for all that…”

“I can’t afford meeting with you 3 times a week…”

And the list goes on.

But the reality is—

This isn’t really scary at all.

In fact, it’s the perfect place to be.

Keep reading to find out why.


Step 3: Be The Solution To Their Problems


You’ve just found something HUGE that will help you close the sale...

You’ve discovered why they haven’t been able to achieve their fitness goals yet.

Now, provide some solutions.

Give them specific solutions to the specific problems that prevent them from achieving an emotionally-driven goal.

If they can’t meet with you 3 times per week…

Offer to meet with them twice a week.

Then give them the program to do on their own for the third day.

If that doesn’t work for them…

Adjust their expectations. (This often means they will reach their goal slower.) If they don’t like that, one of two things will likely happen.

  1. They will find a way to fit in that third workout each week
  2. They will find the cash to meet with you 3 times per week


If you have…

  1. Reminded them of an emotional reason for the change...
  2. Provided a logistical justification for their emotion...
  3. Laid out a plan to help them make that change...


…you have drastically increased your chances that this person will work with you.

There is one common problem I see in this step.

And it’s super-important to understand this if you want to retain clients:

Trainers will change their solution but not their expectations.

If a client needs to be in the gym 5 times per week to reach their goal…

Then that’s what needs to happen.

If their schedule doesn’t allow for that…

Then you need to adjust the timeline.

So, instead of shedding 15 pounds in 3 months with 5 workouts a week…

It might take 4-5 months with 3 workouts a week.

This can be scary, but I promise you they will respect your honesty.

Client satisfaction with your services is based on their expectations of their results.

So, if you promise lofty results without the required amount of work…

You will likely lose that client when they don’t get the results they wanted.

It’s estimated that it takes 5x – 7x more time and work to attract a new client than to keep a current one.

Setting realistic expectations is the first step to retaining as many clients as possible.

Provide solutions to their problems, and be realistic about the results they can expect.

That’s how you turn potential clients into satisfied, paying clients.


The 2 Things Potential Clients Need To Know Before You Can Help Them

I’m not a salesperson.

I don’t think I will ever consider myself one.

But in order to help people, you have to make them realize 2 things:

  1. WHY they need your help
  2. HOW you can help them


I’ve used this process to show potential clients those 2 things…

And it’s worked.

I hope it works for you too.

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Jordan is an Athletic Trainer and strength coach based out of Richmond, VA. He earned a Master of Science degree in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Sports Medicine from Indiana University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Athletic Training from Franklin College. Jordan holds certifications from the BOC and NATA as a Certified Athletic Trainer (ATC) and the NSCA as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). Jordan’s goal is to bridge the gap between rehabilitation and performance by combining both rehabilitative and strength and conditioning principles. Contact: jordansmuts@gmail.com or at jordansmuts.wordpress.com/about

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