If your fitness business is struggling right now, then this is for you. I am going to share with you my three tips to create rapid change in your business and get out of the red. First things first, let’s agree on the three ways to make money in your business. The first is to cut an expense. The second is sign up a new member. And the third is to sell a current member something new.

With regard to cutting an expense, we can’t be like our clients who know things are bad, so they avoid the scale. It’s time to look at the numbers and make a plan of action. Hopefully, you are generating a monthly profit and loss (P&L) for your business, and if not, then it’s time to start. Typically, the largest controllable expense on the P&L is the compensation line, especially for those with employees, so this could mean tough decisions when budgeting the allowable number of workable hours.

If you are a one-person show, then it might be time to stop spending money on marketing that doesn’t work or on certain supplies that you can’t afford. The important thing here is that we need to look at our numbers and a P&L is just the beginning. We have to look at leads, appointments, sales and budget numbers, and create a strategy to achieve the profits that we want. We can’t wing it. Peter Drucker said it this way, “What gets measured, gets managed,” and looking at numbers is our way to manage.

Now, let’s talk about signing up new members. Where are you applying your time? Are you so busy training clients that you don’t have time to schedule things that have to do with recruiting new members? We can’t hide behind marketing that we can’t even afford, hoping it will bring sign-ups through our door. Right now, if you are in the red then you need more than a few new members. It’s time to consider a corporate challenge. This is my most successful form of marketing and it’s FREE. We organize 21-day team-building weight loss challenges for large corporations, bringing in as many as 150 prospective members at a time, and our goal is to convert 60%. How would 100 new paying members change your business?

Finally, when it comes to selling a current member something new, don’t forget that your current members are your biggest fans. They love you and they want to help you be successful. Yet for some reason we often think of business loans before we think of them as a resource. Consider how you would reward these members if they paid for a year up front. Give them a special opportunity to add someone to their training. Create a VIP membership and I promise you some will upgrade.

Being a fitness business owner can be tough, but it is also so rewarding. Don’t stop learning and growing in this industry; it is an important part of your journey to true success. I’m going to be a featured presenter at the IDEA World Club & Studio Summit this June in Anaheim. I will be joining other successful fitness business owners to share best practices and come together to learn and grow. I would love to see you there! I will be presenting two sessions: PROFIT: Get Savvy. Get Leaner. and CREATE“Rapid Change to Get Out of the Red. Visit the official event website for more information.

Travis Barnes

"Travis Barnes is a certified personal trainer who grew his multimillion-dollar fitness company, Journey 333, to five locations in less than 4 years. He started at less than zero, building his future with an unemployment check while living in a FEMA trailer. Now, his company is known for its exemplary customer service and business systems, and he is franchising it across the globe. Travis is a co-author of two books, 52 Amazing Journeys and Journey Fitness."

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