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GAME ON: How to Grow Your Personal Training Business


A Post On How to Grow Your Personal Training Business by Pat Rigsby


Of all the questions fitness professionals ask us, I’d guess that 75% revolve around this:


How To Grow Your Personal Training Business


And with good reason…growing your personal training business can result in:

  • More Impact. Most trainers and coaches that we know got into this to help people.
  • More Income. You work hard and deserved to be compensated for your efforts.
  • More Opportunity. If there is anything we’ve recognized, it’s this: the more success you have the more opportunities come your way.
  • More Freedom. Grow happening the right way will result in more freedom to focus on the parts of your business and your life that you want to spend your time and effort on.

So to better educate you as how to grow your personal training business I wanted to share a campaign that Toyota used a few years back to focus their entire organization on growth and improvement:


GAME ON is an acronym that stands for:

Gain Advantage

Monetize Everything

Overlook Nothing

It was a powerful initiative that Toyota used to reduce costs, improve efficiency and increase profits…and the result was an increase in over $235 Million Dollars in increased profitability.

Not bad, right?

So, to adapt GAME ON to show you how to grow your personal training business I put together this checklist / guide.

GAME ON For Fitness Business Growth

Gain Advantage – Here are the Top 4 Ways To Grow Your
Personal Training Business By Gaining Advantage:

Positioning – If you let yourself look like every other training business in your community then, not only have you allowed yourself to become average, but you’re now competing on price alone.

To position yourself you need to identify:

  • Who your ideal client is.
  • Who you enjoy training.
  • Who you can be the best at serving.
  • What makes you unique in the market
  • Why people should choose you over all other options available to them.

If you do this you’ll position yourself as a ‘Category of One’ in your market.

Do this and you’ll more effectively stand out in the market, have a laser-focused approach to marketing and be able to build your business to a position in the market where there are no true competitors.

Play To Your Strengths – We all are better at some things than others. We all enjoy some things more than others. The more you can shift your business success to relying on those strengths, the high the likelihood you end out with a business that has the impact you want and provides you with the income and freedom you deserve.

Some examples of how to grow your personal training business
playing to your strengths:

    • If you enjoy training people in a more intimate setting, focusing on personal training / semi-private training rather than larger groups.


    • If you enjoy networking and relationship building, making that the core of your marketing efforts.


  • If you enjoy social media or writing or video then making that a core piece of your marketing plan.

Playing to your strengths is really as simple as letting the things you are good at shine though in the parts of your business they can have an impact on. Do enough of that and you’ll become known for it and it will allow you to have a competitive advantage no one will match.

Stay Ahead of the Crowd – Like positioning, if you want to be different you need to be willing to lead rather than follow. That means continually educating yourself.

It means attending events and seeing what the best in the industry are doing rather than just seeing what your neighboring businesses are doing.

It means being willing to be proactive rather than reactive when it comes to everything from the way you brand your programs and the service you provide to your pricing strategies and the way you reach the market.

What can you be first at or best at?

Have A Team Behind You – The best answer I know when it comes to ‘How to grow your personal training business’ is this:

Don’t even try to go it alone. Ever.

Join a Mastermind Group or a coaching program. (If you want to know more about what we offer in this area, just email me at

Attend live events.

Model the success of others.

Employ the best Operating System in the world for a training business…Fitness Revolution.

The best fitness professionals in the world do this…we see them every day in the program, events and franchises that we’re part of…and you need to be doing it too.

But the second piece of this is not allowing yourself to be a one-person show forever.

If you’re just starting up, fine. You likely must wear all the hats.

But unless you’re a superhero, you probably have areas where you are great and areas where you aren’t so great. For that second category, get help. Delegate. And when the demand for your services exceeds the time you want to provide, groom other coaches to deliver services for you.

If you want a great business having a team behind you is not optional.

Grow Your Personal Training Business

Monetize Everything – Here are the Top 4 Ways To Grow Your
Personal Training Business By Monetizing Everything:

Your Relationships – Your relationships are the key driver for your business. You should be constantly focusing on them to maximize their value – both from a quality standpoint and a monetary one.

How can you do that? Here are some ideas:

    • Referrals – referrals come from relationships. Are you systematically facilitating referrals? Are you creating an environment in your business where clients are so thrilled that they can’t help but share what you offer with those close to them? Those two things will result in much greater monetization.


    • Retention – Are you creating an experience for your clients that inspires them to stay longer and really makes them feel like you’re the only solution for them? Get this right and they stay longer and pay longer.


    • Untapped Potential – Do you get to know your clients well enough to know what doors they can open for you? They might be able to do anything from get you the speaking engagements you want to opening doors for additional profit centers. Plus, each client likely has needs relevant to their fitness goals that you could address but aren’t…anything from supplements and nutrition to education. Every relationship likely holds an untapped monetization opportunity just waiting for you. It’s your job to find it.


    • List Monetization – Are you selling affiliate offerings? This is an easy way to monetize your list. For your current clients – sell complimentary offerings. For non-clients on your list, sell fitness and nutrition offerings you believe in.

Here are a few to get you started:

My Lean University

Fit Yummy Mummy

7 Day Meltdown

Your Time – This is pretty straightforward it seems…make your time more valuable. How?

  • Raise your rates.
  • Train more people per time slot.
  • Hire people to do your $10 per hour tasks so you can do more of the high dollar ones.
  • Position yourself better – as a specialist. You can charge more for your programs.
  • Get additional coaches as I mentioned previously.

Your Programs – I think you can better monetize your programs in a few different ways. Here are some ideas:

    • Position them to stand out. I know…this is a recurring theme. But if your program appears unique you can utilize premium pricing. Everyone has or had a bootcamp…that no longer stands out. Take the hint.


    • Make ancillary offerings either mandatory or recommended to maximize program value. If you run a transformation contest, are you recommending or requiring a certain volume of training? How about specific supplements or a complimentary nutritional program. You could.


    • Break them up. If you run a 12 week transformation program you could also sell 4 week programs individually to better monetize the work you’ve done.


  • Repackage. This is a lot like the positioning one I just mentioned. We’ve seen people successfully run the same basic 21 day program as a front end offer but simply change the name depending on the season or theme to keep it fresh and interesting from a marketing perspective – leading to more conversions.

Your Expertise – You can monetize your ideas in a number of ways…

    • The obvious answer is information marketing…but make no mistake, that’s a separate business…a full time job. But potentially a lucrative one.


    • The step down from this is finding a publishing partner. Through the IYCA we’ve delivered a few products from great experts that had incredible knowledge to share – and those experts could monetize their knowledge without the full commitment of a second business.

(If you have something valuable and unique that you think would be appropriate for one of our audiences and would be interested in discussing the route, email me at

  • Holding Workshops and Seminars. We see any number of fitness business owners hosting workshops and making an additional $500-1500 per month while sharing their expertise.

Overlook Nothing – Here are the Top 3 Ways To Grow Your Personal Training Business By Overlooking Nothing:

The Devil Is in the Details – The quote, “Shined shoes save lives” is attributed to General Norman Schwarzkopf. This quote means that being undisciplined, casual, and sloppy about seemingly little things inevitably permeates to affect all things.

So are you sloppy about the way you keep your facility clean? The way you handle follow up? How about client relationships?

You never know what item will be the one that could cause you to lose a client or miss out on converting a prospect. Be attentive to the details because all of them matter.

Connections & Community – You want to grow your personal training business? Don’t forget the ‘personal’ part. If you want clients to ignore the deals that show up in their inbox from Groupon or Living Social, connect with them. Make them feel like they’re part of something special and that you care about them personally.

If someone feels like they’re part of a community that is perfect for them, the new fitness fad will be ignored, they won’t price shop and they’ll be great ambassadors for your business.

So NEVER fall into the trap of believing that you’re business that provides just training. Cultivate a community and create deep connections and you’ll have a bulletproof business.

Hidden Opportunity – I touched on this when I discussed relationships…every business has a number of unrealized opportunities. If you’re overlooking nothing, this is a great opportunity for you to increase your profits. So, is there an opportunity to:

  • Tap into a different market?
  • Better position yourself to own the market you want?
  • Reach your target market more effectively?
  • Close sales more efficiently?
  • Maximize the value of the clients you have?
  • Better utilize the space, resources or people that you have?
  • Better utilize your knowledge and talents?

My guess is that the answer to at least a couple of those is YES! So act on it.

So there’s my take on GAME ON: How to Grow Your Personal Training Business. What do you think? Let me know below.


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