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Tips and Tricks to Sell More Personal Training


A post on tips and tricks to sell more personal training by Ryan Ketchum

Selling personal training is often times one of the biggest obstacles that you have to overcome in your personal training career.   It seems that unless you came up in the industry in the big box gym environment where high pressured personal training sales tactics were used you are probably not comfortable selling personal training. 

Overtime selling personal training becomes easy.  It is a lot like working out, the more reps you do the better you get at it.  However there are a few tips and tricks to sell more personal training that you can use immediately. 

 The first problem with selling personal training is the negative approach that most trainers take with selling.  They are either (1) afraid to ask for money or (2) they are much too focused on just selling.  

If a trainer is afraid to ask for money most of the time it is because they don’t truly feel as if they are the best training solution for their clients or that they don’t believe that their personal training is worth the amount they are requesting.  In either case it is usually a lack of confidence.

Tip #1 for selling more personal training

Be confident in yourself!  Make sure that you are the best solution in your market for the people that you serve.  If your personal training clients come to you for fat loss then make sure you are the best in your market at getting them the results they want.  This means educating yourself on training, nutrition and probably even some psychology. 

When you know that you can get them results you will not be afraid to offer them the solution for their problems.  That is what they reached out to your for in the first place, to solve a problem.  

Focus on being the best in your market and being confident in your product and you will sell more personal training.

Many trainers get really focused on the sales process and trying to figure out a “cover-all” offer to make to prospects that walk in the door.  This outlook on selling personal training is exactly what you don’t want! 

Tip #2 for selling more personal training

selling personal training

Develop a connection and start building a relationship with your client!  People buy things from people they trust.  The first step in getting someone to trust you is building rapport.  

To build rapport with your clients, or prospective clients, it is important that you find something in common.  This is the reason that hotel staff have their hometown or college they attended on their name badges.  They are hoping that you will find a way to connect with them based on that information.   

In personal training sales you have a bit of an advantage because you know a bit about the client already.  You know they are looking for a solution and you have the opportunity to ask them questions.  Start off your sales process with asking questions about the prospective client. 

Find out what they do for a living, learn about their family and get to know them a bit before moving into their goals and assessing them. 

When you start off your personal training sales process with small talk and asking questions about the prospective client you will immediately get them to bring down their guard and start communicating with you.  Once you have started to connect with them a little bit it is much easier to find out what they really want and get them to open up to you. 

When you are selling personal training it is really important to ask open ended questions that require more than a yes or no answer from the prospective client.  Don’t allow them to stay inside their comfort zone.  Build trust by developing a connection with them and then make it your job to dig into why they are sitting in front of you in the first place.  

Tip #3 for selling more personal training

Find out as much about the prospective client’s goals and situation as you possibly can through asking open ended questions.   This used to be called “finding their pain” but I think of it as finding their solution. 

To me selling personal training is nothing ore than coaching people towards the right solution for their problems.  It is my job as the personal trainer to find out what their goals are, how we can best get them to reach those goals and then provide them with a solution for it.  

To find out the information that you need to know about the prospective client you need to ask a lot of questions and, most likely, continue to dig into those questions with follow up questions.   You will continue to do this until you get the information that you need. 

It might go something like this:

Trainer: Mrs. Jones, tell me why you are hear today?  What can I help you accomplish?

Mrs Jones:  I would like to lose some weight.

Trainer: That is great!  I think we can help with that, but I need to know a bit more information.  How much weight do you want to lose?

Mrs. Jones:  I am not sure? Maybe 20 lbs?

Trainer: Okay, that is a great start.  Let’s look at this another way.  At what weight do you think you would be happiest, and maybe it isn’t  weight it is a “look”?   Do you have any idea?

Mrs. Jones: Well, I would sure lover to get back into my old college jean size of a 6.  I am at a 12 now, so I guess that is a goal.

Trainer:  Great! That is a perfect goal.  Now, could you tell me a bit more about why you want to fit back into those jeans?  What is motivating you?

Mrs. Jones: This is kinda embarrassing….but, I am jealous of my former classmates when I see them out around town.  I never feel good about myself when I meet up with them because I feel fat.  I think if I could get into those jeans or at least that size again I would feel more comfortable around them.

Now this conversation would go on for a bit and you would want to find out more about how the client feels, what their schedule is like and what will keep them motivated.  But, it is easy to see how open ended questions can get your prospective client to open up and will lead to more personal training sales.

Once you have compiled all of your information about the prospective client it is time to provide them with the solution.  When presenting the solution, or selling your personal training, to the prospective client you must make it simple and tie it back to their goals.  I like to refer to this as “connecting the dots”.   It is when you show the prospective client how you are the best solution for them reaching their specific goals.  

Too often we see personal trainers get nervous when it is time to close the sale and they start preaching about their programming, assessments and all the bells and whistles of their training.   This is where you risk losing the sale.  When you are ready to close the sale simply restate how your program will help the client reach their goals, explain why you are making the offer and then give them two options.

Here are three tricks to make selling personal training easier.

Trick #1 for selling more personal training

Connect your program to the clients goals.  This doesn’t mean telling them all about your metabolic training or how skilled you are at assessments.   This means showing them how you will help them get rid of that 20lbs of fat, tighten up their stomach, help them complete a 5k faster, or even get them in great shape for that wedding that is coming up where they hope to make all their cousins jealous.  
When you explain exactly how you will help them with their specific goals you will start win them over.  It becomes a very easy choice to make if you can show the prospective client the path to their success.  

Trick #2 for selling more personal training

Give them two options and two options only!   This is called the A/B close in the sales world.   You present the two best training options for the prospective client and let them pick between those two.  

A big mistake is laying an entire price sheet out in front of someone and asking them to pick an option.  Lots of options means less sales!   To increase your personal training sales make sure you are using the A/B close.

If you did your job and asked the right questions you will have all the information that you need to provide these two options.  You should know about their schedule, what type of exercise they enjoy, how many days per week they have available, and what time frame they want to reach their goal in.   

Trick #3 for selling more personal training

Assume the sale!  If the person is sitting in front of you they are interested in buying.  No one comes to a meeting with a trainer not ready to buy something.  It is your job to figure out what they are willing to buy and if you are the right solution for them.

In a few cases you will be sitting down with someone that can’t afford your services or that isn’t a good fit.  That is okay!   Don’t let that rock your confidence.  In most cases you will be able to provide an option to your prospective clients that fits their fitness and budget needs. 

So, as you are offering your A/B close make sure that you are assumptive of the sale.  There are plenty of sleezy tricks you can use but the most effective is the confidence that you asked all the right questions and that you are the best solution. 

Trainer:  Mrs. Jones, I am really excited to start working with you.  After looking at all the information you gave me I have two options for you that will help you get back into that size 6.  

To get there as fast as possible we need to have you in here working with us 3 days per week.  Based off your schedule I know that you can make that work.  So, we are going to start with a 3 day per week program. 

We can get you started today on our 3 month, 3 day per week personal training membership for an investment of $399/month.


We you can choose our most popular membership option which is 12 months, 3 days per week for an investment of JUST $299/month.   The majority of our clients end up staying with us to continue their progress after reaching their original goal so if you would like to save $1200/year this is the best option for you!

Which one would you like to get started with today?

In this scenario the trainer tied the programs back to the client goal, established the reasoning for the recommendation and was assuming that the client would buy.  There was never a chance to say no.  The only answer was yes or to provide a reason for not wanting to start today.  If a reason is presented for not wanting to start then you can easily overcome those objections with an alternate offering. 

Using these tips and tricks to sell more personal training makes your job much easier and will add to your bottom line.


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Facebook comments:

  • Felicia Starks

    This was a great post with perfect real life examples!

    Thanks for sharing!

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