Don’t Quit Just Yet…Facebook Marketing Still Works!

Many fitness businesses are rethinking their marketing strategies after news broke out that Facebook will be favouring user’s friends over businesses with its NEW algorithm.  But don’t throw the baby out with the bath water, instead get to know the recent Facebook change and make them work.

Despite facebook becoming ‘the most’ competitive platform available to market your fitness studio sending ad spend up, it still remains one of the best ways to target a specific audience for anyone with the ‘know how’.  Here are 3 ways that will help you dominate the Facebook platform and make it work for you:

1.SMART CONTENT.  Facebook’s new approach determines if your posts will be shown to users or not.  So blatant advertising no longer works. Instead, Facebook favour active interactions such as comments or shares over likes. Hitting the right note in your content to spark person-to-person connection rather than person-to-brand will improve your engagement.  The new algorithm aims to predict which posts users will like and engage with, so this means you should focus on posting valuable content, tips and any stuff that can spark a conversation, making it more personal.

2.NO CLICKBAIT.  Engagement tactics like “tag a friend that you think needs a free PT” or “like this post if you want to start eating healthy” used to work to get your numbers up, but this is shallow engagement and is in no way meaningful or valuable.  Remember that you are spending your money in Facebook to get leads and doing this does not get you close to this goal. The new Facebook algorithm recognises this as clutter and marks it as spam. Note – you can still request an action via VIDEO

3.THE VALUE OF VIDEO.  Video content sparks conversations and provide more meaningful interaction compared to images and links alone, so start posting regular videos content.  PRO TIP live videos generate six times more audience interaction than regular videos, so get on Facebook Live!

Change does not end here.  As a studio owner, you should always be on your toes and expect Facebook to roll out more tweaks in the future. So stay on top of these changes and adjust your marketing strategy to ensure your fitness business content remains relevant and engaging to your target audience.








The 5-Step Recruitment Process

I don’t know about you….but there was a point early-on in running my fitness studio, when I got tired of doing everything myself.

I was working crazy hours each week including weekends and I was reluctant to take holidays because I feared losing members, losing income and I feared un-doing all my hard work so far… so I just didn’t take any holidays and kept pushing forward ☹ but unfortunately you and I both know that can work for so long. There is a point where you just get TOO TIRED to deal with anymore customer complaints, you lose the ability to come up with any CREATIVE MARKETING ideas and when you miss quality time with your partner, kids and/or friends you start to question ‘is this all worth it?’ ……Well that was my experience anyway.


Like  “How do I build a team of hardworking staff who are ‘as passionate’ about quality service and member results as me? Slowly, carefully, and with much planning, I was able to achieve this. And here are 5 steps to help YOU reach this goal too:

  1. Attract lots of quality candidates – Hoping for good staff in not a strategy. Instead set up a career opportunities page on your own website, use your social media platforms, your email list, and newsletters to ask members for referrals. You can also go outside your network and advertise on job sites – my favourites FREE sites in Australia are, and my favourites PAID sites and which definitely get you more applications.
  2. Capture – Business owners often make the mistake of paying attention only to the first wave of applicants. Make sure to commit to regularly checking your new candidate information and connecting with previous applicants when new roles become available. The best candidates don’t always respond to ads on the 1st day and failed applicants can often be successful on second attempt after further training or experience,
  3. Interview and Hiring Process – It’s very tempting to rush the process of hiring a candidate and just go with your ‘gut’. But you cannot REPLICATE this. Instead take your time and record the specific steps you took to get a great person. About 3 interviews are optimal when evaluating a candidate and statistics suggest only around 7% of people actually tell the TRUTH in the their resume, so DON’T believe the HYPE. Do a quick screening via email questions and on the phone before inviting them to a group interview. In the Group Interview – ask questions that test whether or not they align with YOUR business Core Values. for example you might ask “In your previous role working at GoodLife Gym, please give me 1 example of when you demonstrated ‘over and above customer service’. During the Group Interview, use a 1 page CHECKLIST to confirm availability, travel time, willingness to participate in team training and events and ONLY IF they impress, invite them to 2nd stage Practical Interview (on the gym floor) to give you a better perspective if a candidate will be a good fit.
  4. Onboarding – Help set up your NEW team member for success. Be clear on the roles, processes and skills that they will be required to perform on a ‘week to week’ basis like phone enquiries, CRM use, audio, lighting, 24hour access, reporting, meeting times and requirements for wages etc. Invest monthly in professional development training and map out a clear CAREER PATH to follow for promotions and added responsibility for anyone motivated to do more.
  5. Continuous training and development – Developing skill is a continuous process. The best fitness business is one that is a place of learning and where staff are constantly trained to improve their skills. Make training on regular dates in your calender and set aside time and money to develop your staff as individuals and as a team. We train staff in customer service, nutrition, exercise prescription, weight loss, hypertrophy and much more.

So what does a successful team look like?

  • A passionate team of ‘good humans’ who are committed to building the business and providing members the best service possible.
  • Staff take most ‘day to day’ tasks required to service existing members, so you can more time growing the business than working in it.
  • You provide leadership using a clear ROAD MAP for where business is heading and how you will get there
  • You also spend quality time with the people you love and doing the things you love.






Increase Your Sales

In small businesses, there are very few things that GETTING MORE SALES can’t fix. But the challenge lies in making sure that every sale maximises your return AND will keep your buyers coming. There is so much competition out there, so your SALES PROCESS becomes critical to setting yourself apart from the crowd and making good profit.


  • Businesses that do not modernise or streamline their sales processes, or fail to add value, see themselves struggling with very low conversions. This means that people come in and leave without buying.
  • In the fitness industry, we offer an immediate product that is not expensive but offers a tremendous value, and yet people still walk away from it telling you that ‘they need to think about it’. So staff need training in overcoming this common objection rather than just being ‘order takers’. ‘Order takers’ help interested prospects through the admin process to become a member BUT have no influence over prospects small objections who are sitting on the fence.
  • Another challenge we face, is running HIGH value offers, paying BIG commission on sales and therefore running at a very low profit margin. The key is a) starting the sale in your marketing funnel, so you disqualify the ‘tyre kickers’ and ensure your team get more time with QUALITY prospects and b) you give prospects a genuine EXPERIENCE when they tour your studio, and make your ‘value proposition’ irresistible = more sales.
  • Gym owners often get frustrated with sales staff missing sales targets but take no responsibility for weekly training and development or for the poor quality of leads they attract from social media or Groupon style discount website. The quality of you leads and the quality of your team is both your responsibility as the studio owner – SO MAN UP!
  • Prospects should be clear on how your service will help them to achieve their goals. Your PROCESS should communicate HOW they will achieve their results FASTER and sustain the outcome LONGER when choosing you.






Creating a BIG group training Business

Studios and trainers I connect with around the globe are constantly looking for ways to increase profit in their clubs through 1on1, Semi Private or Group Training revenue, but why do some group training business pump, while others struggle?

Here are 6 key elements to creating a hugely successful Group Training experience:

-Understand the client’s goals and motivation – to be able to push your client to the right direction, you need to know what they are hoping to achieve. Having them complete a pre-training questionnaire will give you an idea on what programming, exercise choice and in class exercise will benefit them most

-Pre-training assessment – you can effectively plot a course for your clients once you know at what point they should start. Your pre-training assessment should be designed to provide as much information to the instructors as possible, to allow them to address individual injuries, hearing or sight restrictions while also funneling new people into beginner classes.

-Grouping program members – in order to ensure that clients are being trained at the appropriate intensity, grade the group from most conditioned to least. You should then group them into smaller, more manageable units to establish a consistent training schedule that doesn’t leave anyone behind.

-Periodisation – normally associated with athletes and sporting groups, Periodisation is also a core attribute to any successful group training program to ensure athletes don’t get injured physically or get bored mentally. For example- The step load method: one week low intensity, one week medium intensity, one week high intensity, repeat, gives time for your body to recover and replenish. Alternatively you can add variety around volume, speed and strength which also works well.

-Correction and Skill acquisition – people usually sign up for Group Training because they enjoy the energy of exercising with other people, plus they like someone choreography the workout for them. But don’t forget members want to learn too. Be sure to include exercise revision and new skill development sessions to emphasis correct technique and fulfil the human needs of Growth and Variety.

-Regular assessment and adjustment – every person react differently to training. Make sure to re-assess members regularly and adjust their grading and grouping to ensure that they continually improve.


To grow a BIG Group Training Program?

Book a free $100K Game Plan today & start growing your members fast!




The 2 Mistakes Fitness Pros Make in Leadership Roles

In the quest for profit and success in the fitness business, do you ever think about your image—the way you project yourself to your team or to your members?  As the owner, it’s easy to  overlook that you are your brand.  YOU represent the gym and its culture.


Many gym owners fall into the trap of following strategies that work for other business owners. But BEWARE: doing this may not always work for you, especially if you are unclear about your financials, or if you are not 100% clear on what your clientele ‘really’ wants in a fitness facility and what they need from its staff.


One of the most important things to consider is how you are with your employees. As gym owners, more often than not, we don’t realise that we implement things that WE think would be effective, without asking for the opinions of those who are actually on the battle lines—your staff.  Your personal trainers and group class instructors know firsthand who your clients are and what they want.  Listening to them will be your best strategy for getting more of your target market in the door.


With that in mind, here are the Top 2 mistakes that fitness pros make when they take leadership roles.

  1. Being a manager that is dominant, overbearing, and passive-aggressive. Your clients and employees will not be able to stand you for long and they will be out the door even before their contracts expire.
  2. Being the passive leader who hires someone without giving direction, any tools or training, and not setting goals or KPI”s. Your inability to provide your employees with the right tools and framework will halve your success rate.


So how do you change this and lead your gym towards success?

  • Set Goals: weekly expectations, targets for group classes, number of member phone calls per week, number of gym tours and face to face consultations, targets around conversion % in sales, and make sure you develop a specific follow-up system.
  • Require people to report. Make it clear that this is part of their job and that you should be kept updated regularly of their progress. Daily, weekly and monthly reporting.
  • Set clear and defined roles for each of your team. Being a great leader means being able to confidently delegate tasks. Doing so allows you to have more time to create new programs and products or services for the gym. Delegate easy tasks and save your energy for more important work and bring in more business.  Doing this will also allow staff to feel more invested themselves in the business and will make them feel that they are important to the growth of the brand.







The Ultimate Fitness Business Referral

Imagine for a minute you are about to take a jog with a good friend when before you start, you wince as you get up from a stretch with a sore back, then your friend tells you, “You should see MY physiotherapist….She is amazing with backs and helped fix me” Let’s face it – The ULTIMATE business referral is when one of your members mentions you to a friend as “MY” gym or “MY” trainer with a personal recommendation right?


The “my” statements show ownership and a testimony that we stand by what we recommend. It’s a language that we use when we own our opinions, and we use it to refer to people and businesses that we trust. It demonstrates a high level of trust and faith in your ability to do what you do.  Of course, the benefits of this to your business is very obvious and works the other way too. When you become someone’s “my” you work extra hard to keep that trust and never let them down either, because they are such a good pipeline for referrals.


According to Oxford Psychology Professor, Robin Dunbar, there’s a limit to how many stable personal relationships that a person can maintain.  These are people that you know on an individual level and to whom you can relate to personally.  He added that the mean size of individuals in a community is about 148 and it’s at this number that a community has the highest probability of remaining together.  Anything higher than that allows for relationships to break down.


This means that its not possible for you to be everyone you know’s “my”, and actually this isn’t such a bad thing.  Being someone’s “my” needs to be authentic, this simply can’t be faked.  If you want to be your client’s “my” here are 3 key things to keep in mind:

  • You should maintain a genuine interest in that client’s life and work
  • There should be a genuine emotional investment in their success and well-being
  • You should always be dependable, and NOT indispensable


Being someone’s “my” is built on respect for your craft.  Although its impossible to be the “my” guy for everyone you know, what’s important to remember is that you have to nurture the “my” clients that you currently have not only to make sure that you maintain a beneficial relationship but as a social proof that you and your fitness business are as good as you claim it to be.



Need help building Authority and getting better quality leads?

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Staff Retention 101

Finding the right people to work in your gym can be described as jumping on a treadmill that’s cranked up to the highest level. It can be really hard work and i know that firsthand. While mastering the skill of staffing can take time, IT IS THE ONLY WAY TO SCALE YOUR BUSINESS BIGGER. Lets face it..until you get it right, you will forever be frustrated with staff, working big hours yourself, struggling to take holidays, and ultimately unable to confidently delegate important roles.


1.What not to do – THE UBER LESSON

Uber is a ride-sharing company that’s recently had employee problems.  Many say that Uber allowed employee discrimination resulting in female employees feeling undervalued and blocked, which is why they didn’t stick around, resulting in a reduction in drivers and in UBER’s overall talent pool.


In the fitness business, not only do we have diverse clients, diversity also exists in our employees.

We need to create an environment that will attract and retain, not only our clients, but also our staff. Aim to create a working environment where employees get regular opportunity to provide open and honest feedback and where staff feel like management care enough to genuinely listen. UBER lost a large chunk of market share to companies like LYFT as they learnt this lesson the hard way.


2.Non negotiable and setting standards

When setting up your gym, one of the first things we often do is write up a list of member policies. However, it’s also important that you set up rules for your staff and enforce them vigilantly. In my gym, we attract staff who share in our ‘6 core values’ and we revisit our list of ‘staff non-negotiables’ every single week to ensure high standards. As the gym owner, it’s also our role to deal with issues that arise quickly, to prevent the development of a negative staff member or toxic atmosphere.


3.Staff Retention = Member Retention

When you keep your staff happy, growing and challenged guess what?….. ‘drum roll……’ they stay longer! And when staff are happy and stay longer this has a direct correlation with increased member retention.  So map out your calendar for the year and think about ways to develop you staff, book in opportunities for social get togethers, and create a career path for your best staff to take on new roles and responsibilities as they grow.


4.Have a Strong Onboarding Process

Having an orientation process and framework to welcome new people is vital to their success and long term happiness. This goes beyond accomplishing paperwork and signing the usual HR forms, and should instead also indoctrinate new people into your unique selling points, your core values and give them training around key areas of the business they need to know. Use this chance to teach the CRM, the sales process, reporting, and explain your expectations for the role.


5.Build Morale and Connection

Share with your staff your bigger vision for the business and make them feel that they are part of something great and that their contributions matter. Employees like to feel that they count and that the growth of the business will also translate into success for them. Money is rarely the no. 1 factor determining staff satisfaction.


6.Be Proactive with Resignations

If an employee expresses their desire to leave the company, then make sure you find out why.  The goal should be to keep them if possible. Move quick – set up a coffee or informal chat off site and be open to feedback. I USE QUESTIONS LIKE – What are you unhappy about? What can i do to help? What could you do to help? We would love to keep you involved with the team – would you consider working with me to improve the situation and see if we can’t make it work?


In conclusion, as a studio owner mastering STAFF RETENTION will save you not only time, but also money.  When good staff stick around longer, you will have more time to grow your business and sanity in the workplace 🙂








Do you have your Ideal Clients in your Gym?

I remember when I first started….I was just grateful that anyone walked through my gym doors. However, it’s very important to reach a point in your business when you get clearer on what type of members you actually want. Ideal clients are more fun to work with, they stay longer, they spend more, and they refer more people – so the goal in marketing is not to attract ‘just anyone’, but instead to specifically target those people who you really enjoy working with and those people you are best at helping. This is when business becomes more FUN and also when you start making more PROFIT.


To start using laser focused marketing strategies, you must first clearly define your ideal customer avatar. So to help you with that, here are some great ways to precisely define who your ideal members are, plus quick tips on how to attract more of them


1. Cheaper isn’t always better

When you market your fitness business as being cheap, you attract customers who are looking for cheap. They will tell all their cheap friends about you and before you know it, you own a studio that struggles to make money because of all your cheap clients.  Remember that members who look for ‘cheap stuff’ are rarely loyal and will often go elsewhere if they find a better deal.


2.Define your ideal client

This will take a few minutes – but is a super value exercise

  • Go back to last year’s figures and see which customers have brought in the most profit. Remember, these are not the ones you have spent the most on, but those that have given you the highest earnings.  Obviously, we want more of these people.
  • Think of all the fitness programs and promotions you did last year — which ones worked? Where did you get good customers who paid well and worked well with you and your team? Who were they? What industries were they in? What do you think made everything go smoothly?
  • What are the current trends in the fitness industry? Doing regular research about emerging market trends keeps your business competitive.  Markets are evolving fast and you need to keep yourself updated to keep up with the times. You don’t want to wake up one day only to find that your class attendance is down, drop-out number are up, and you have less people joining each month.


3. Target your marketing

Once you have a clear picture of who your ideal clients are, you can now define your niche and tailor your marketing strategy clearly so you can write develop specific services that will suit the needs of your target customers. The ad copy or TEXT you use when marketing should speak to your target market’s needs, wants, and frustrations, The IMAGE choice and also WHERE you choose to market will also vary depending on your who your ideal client is. GOOD LUCK!



Book a free ‘$100k Game Plan’ call HERE




Dress like a Winning Team

Your Website, your Reception area and your staff Uniforms are 3 of the first ways a new enquiry will visually experience your brand. So, if we want to be viewed as clean, professional and organised to a prospect looking for the first time, then it’s crucial that your team all look the part. In this blog article, I share 3 reasons why you should consider investing into great uniforms for your staff and difference it can make.

1. Brand Association

Having a successful branding strategy means putting both your visual and written materials on one framework. One fundamental factor of this marketing strategy is having a consistent color scheme and a gym logo that you become recognised for.

Many gym owners are not aware of this less tangible element of MARKETING and how it effects your ability to attract your target audience. Prospects pick up on your uniform’s social cues subconsciously so when you have employees who look scruffy, shabby or present in ill-fitting uniforms, they subconsciously associate this low standard to your gym. They start to doubt whether you or your team can offer a clean workout environment or a professional service, if you struggle to even look professional …. make sense?

So, who is working? And who is working out?  Group Trainers sometimes get annoyed when they want to train by themselves and they get interrupted by a member, but how would a member know if you are working or not working, if they don’t wear a uniform when you work?

Personal Trainers sometimes complain they cannot pick up enough new clients, but how would a member know they are a trainer or looking for more work, if they don’t wear a uniform?

1000’s of ‘1-week free trial’ people go to gyms every week and leave without a membership. Many of them missing the support and answers they required to feel at home in that gym, so they try another gym – So how would a ‘trial member’ know who to ask for help if your team are not in uniform?

2. Have a Big Gym Business Future in Mind

When there is a coherent branding strategy in place, your business looks BIG and more professional. Having a standard uniform for your employees is the final touch to your branding strategy that shouts out that your business is headed for bigger and better things.

It is a known fact that consumers associate corporate brands with successful operations. This is not a conscious association but more of an assumption that good branding means stability and that the business will be around for a long time.

Look like an expert. When your staff has a more professional look, it helps them look like they earned certifications and that they are qualified to give expert advise in fitness. Putting them in uniforms is one way to effectively achieve that. Make sure that you have a range of sizes available and styles for male and female staff because one size does NOT fit all.

Increase Sales.  When employees represent your brand, they should be able to project authority. It’s a proven fact that it’s easier to upsell or offer new products and services when you are in your uniform.

Establish brand recognition.  Having a recognizable uniform will help develop your brand image. Its like sending a message. Your uniforms should not be available for your members to purchase. If you sell fitness merchandise, create branded clothing that complements your uniform design.

Having staff uniforms is the perfect way to go if you are aspiring for a certain look for your employees and your gym. This is why franchises are so popular because their selling point is having prefabricated images that have already established that we are professionals, we know what we do.

3. Team alignment

Sporting teams and supporters around the globe use a uniform to connect the tribe and make people feel part of something. Earning your jersey during the interview process and wearing your jersey proud to team lunch and industry events helps bring teams together and feel united. Don’t forget – members love wearing a uniform too and representing at things like running events and taking photos in your brand while on holidays so empower them to do so – by giving new members a singlet, selling hats, jumpers etc. at reception – just make sure the uniform is different to staff 😛

Remember that dressing the part is an integral part of sending the message to your prospective clients and current members of the value and culture of your fitness business.


For help with branding for your GYM – connect with me HERE






The Ultimate Guide to Conducting a Year-End Business Review

It’s rare in business that we take time out to think about the bigger picture. We’re often so busy just keeping the business going (delivering for our members, managing trainers, keeping on top of direct debits, maintaining relationships with local businesses etc.) that the idea of taking time out for anything other than these core business activities can seem like a total luxury.

But review is a vital component for any fitness business that wants to continue to progress, prevent stagnation and even better, kick on and take it to the next level.

Here are the best guidelines to help you conduct an effective year-end review of your business

1. Draft an agenda – The purpose of a business review is to look at your business from afar and assess your current processes and systems from a different perspective. Decide on what aspects of your day to day tactics are due for review and approach each item, strategically looking for the most effective and efficient manner for the year ahead. 1 hour of planning can save you 10-100 hours in execution.

2. Create a questionnaire – Making a list of questions to ask yourself and your team will inspire all of you to dig deep for answers as well as solutions to problems that you may be currently facing. Questions like the ones below will help identify key pain points and things that you are good at that you can possibly capitalise in:

  • What are my biggest accomplishments?
  • What are my biggest disappointments?
  • What can I improve in?
  • What new roles can I take on?
  • What roles can I delegate starting this year?
  • How could we do this differently?

3. Start on a positive note – Make a list of the top 3 things that you are proud of, 3 things that you have accomplished this year. What do you think went right with these 3, and how did you achieve them? Beginning your review with a list of things that you didn’t do right will discourage participants and can not only reduce creative thinking, but also reduce the size of future goals that each person chooses to strive towards for the coming year.

4. Live and Let Die – Now make a list of the goals that you set out to accomplish for the current year. Ask yourself, are these goals still important to us, are they still worth chasing after in the coming year? If not, then let go of those stale goals. If they are still worth keeping, ask yourself what adjustments need to be made in order to make them more achievable. Keep in mind that as time passes, your business goals will keep on evolving, so it’s perfectly fine to adapt to these changes and let go of goals that you had in the previous years.

5. Establish new goals, while remembering why something didn’t work – Now make a detailed list of the stuff that you want to accomplish, including both long term (3 year) and short-term goals (3 month). Remember, because you didn’t achieve some of your goals for the previous year, you MUST change your approach this year if you want a better outcome. Think BIG and re-evaluate the steps required to get there.

6. Identify potential obstacles – For each new goal, brainstorm different scenarios that may realistically keep you from achieving them. Then, create an action plan on how to overcome each obstacle should it arise. Preparing in advance for the worst will save you time, money and unnecessary stress.

7. Set a realistic due date – Assign a final due date for each goal and create mini milestones for each element that will lead you to this final goal. Setting a deadline helps increase accountability.

8. Pick your Top 3 – Your business review shouldn’t end with a big to-do list. Instead, select no more then 3 major projects you wish to focus on first. Having too many goals will leave you feeling overwhelmed and confused.

9. Assess business values and culture – You do not accidentally build your company’s culture. If you do, you may not like what you end up with. Have a well-defined culture and set of core values for your company. Ask yourself – is this still what we stand for? How could be demonstrate these core values even better in the year ahead?

10. Regular Progress Check ins – Monitor your progress every month and make adjustments where needed. Don’t forget to note your wins and celebrate them with your team. If you are consistent in checking and following up with your team, you are 5x more likely to achieve your goals.


Need Help reviewing your Fitness Business and creating a clear road map for the year ahead?







Steve Grant is an expert in business coaching for gym owners with 20 years of fitness industry experience including 4 years as a Health and Wellness Lecturer at ACPE and 8 years as the owner of one of Sydney’s most profitable fitness studios.  

 Steve is first Fitness Business Mentor to deliver innovative Gym Marketing Ideas from around the world, that add an extra $100k profit to any fitness business. Gym Hub provides a buyers group to help gym owners reduce expenses, as well access to proven systems for staff recruitment and development, teaching members to become highly leveraged and work as little as 12 hours per week.