People often talk about how it takes 21 days to start a habit. But did you know that it takes just 10 days to drive new revenue and raving fans into your business? Creating simple, replicable 10-day group programs can be a moneymaker in any fitness business. Learn how to execute this format from takeoff to touchdown, and get ready to increase your bottom line and deepen your impact in your community.
Starting the 10-Day Format
We implemented our first 10-day challenge more than 2 years ago as an experiment. We wanted to amp up our year-end revenue and help our clients shed weight before the holidays. In less than 2 weeks, we planned, promoted and kicked off the program, which features one 30-minute workout per day for 10 days. Clients loved it and wanted more. We realized that we were onto something.
So we replaced our traditional 3-week boot camps, which ran sporadically, with a 10-Day Fat Blasting Boot Camp at the end of each month. We cut costs by reducing the number of workouts from the 3-week camps, eliminating advertising and cutting material. Yet we doubled our enrollment. We have never had fewer than 30 participants, and we often top 60! Why? Quite simply, people of all fitness levels love 10-day programs and can easily commit to them. Clients keep coming back and bringing new faces with them. We change the theme of the camp, the prizes and the location of the workouts, but participants know to expect an amazing experience.
These 10-day camps attract an equal blend of “regulars,” who repeat them several times a year, and newbies, who are taking the first step into fitness. One local teacher has participated in 14 consecutive camps. She exercises between camps, but finds that committing to 10 days of healthy eating and tough workouts each month keeps her motivated.
When you run your business consistently, you save money by avoiding guesswork and you make money on results. Last year, the 10-Day Fat Blasting Boot Camps generated $32,000 in program revenue for my business. We charge only $50 (members) or $75 (nonmembers), and we average 40 people per camp.
However, the financial impact applies to more than just the enrollment fee. I attribute over $160,000 in annual revenue to the program for three main reasons:
1. We retain new participants as long-term clients—they’ve tried us and they like us.
2. We increase client retention—clients who get results stick around.
3. We increase our referrals—happy clients attract other clients.
Other fitness pros have found that the 10-day format works for their businesses as well. “We use 10-day programs as a feeder system into our business,” says Vito La Fata, owner of Fitness Evolution in Laguna Hills, California. “They are the perfect way to get a prospect ‘to date you’ before asking for a bigger commitment. You get people in the door at an easy price point and deliver quick results. They get to know, like and trust you.”
At the Maryland Athletic Club, CEO Tim Rhode implemented the 10-Day Fat Blasting Boot Camp within a month of learning about it. His team sent a mass e-blast to the club’s members, announcing the new offering. “We received 37 calls and 14 sign-ups within hours of announcing this first camp,” he explains. “We capped it at 40 and filled it within one week. Wow!”
Here’s how we schedule and run the 10 days of workouts.
We meet Monday through Thursday at 7:30 pm, Saturday at 8:00 am and Sunday at 6:00 pm. I selected the 7:30 pm time slot during the week for logistical reasons: that is when the facility is most available. As it turns out, people like that time. Parents can enjoy dinner with their families and head out while everyone is watching television or doing homework. For your program, pick the time slot that works best for you and stick with it.
Many trainers participate over the 10 days, and each of us leads our favorite style. Think low-resistance, intense workouts that offer low-impact modifications.
Create an itinerary with 10 days of consecutive 30-minute workouts, each with a different name and theme, for example, Power Blast, Strength Blast, Team Blast, Pool Blast, Core Blast and Turbo Blast. Clients love the variety! We use our own facility and a school gym, the public pool and the beach. We love getting people out in the community and not just inside our walls.
If you don’t own a facility, build relationships in your community. Get access to a school gym, a church cafeteria, a dance studio, the YMCA or a park. There is a place waiting for you.
The 10-Day Program Experience
What is a 10-Day Fat Blasting Boot Camp? It’s an experience. In addition to the workouts, we offer coaching. We stay in touch with participants daily with a quick, motivating email or a private Facebook Group message.
We also offer some extras. We help clients succeed by arming them with daily fitness homework; simple food guidelines; and a journal to track their meals, snacks, water, homework and workouts.
We weigh and measure all participants and then deliver a motivating “locker room” speech to set the tone for camp and get them fired up. We have them introduce themselves and share their personal “Why?” for choosing to come to camp. (Note: The kick-off and the finale each last an hour.)
Get clients invested from the start. I don’t use notes. I speak from the heart and make eye contact. I get everyone in a circle to capture the energy of the group. I explain that for these 10 days we are all part of a team. I say that they will work harder than they have before, and I explain my expectations of them. I ask them to try things that they wouldn’t normally try. I end with something like this: “You can do anything for 10 days. You can feel better about yourselves in 10 days. You can be happier in 10 days. Let’s do it.”
The night before our final meeting, we weigh and measure everyone, tally results and personalize certificates with weight and inches lost. People average 3 pounds and 3 inches lost, but we often see people lose 8 pounds or more, depending on how much exercise they had been doing before and how much they needed to clean up their diet. The idea is not to promote unhealthy weight loss, but rather to jumpstart people so they are motivated to continue exercising.
On the last of our 10 days we run a 15-minute workout, followed by an awards ceremony and a roundtable discussion with everyone. Our recommendation to you: Make the final presentation about the clients, their journey and their results; resist the urge to plug your services or your next camp before this camp’s participants have had their fair share of fame. We share results because they are fun and exciting, but we recognize that numbers are just one way to measure success. We finish with a team photo—both for future promotion and to email to the participants as a gift.
We give each group member a chance to share. We hear from people who kicked their soda habit, made new friends, dropped a clothing size, discovered an inner athlete and realized that exercise makes life better.
People are often very emotional at the finale, and we witness many personal breakthroughs. Participants realize that they deserve 30 minutes per day. They are nicer to their kids when they exercise, and they are more loving to their partners when they feel better about themselves.
At the end of the last night, I remind them that in just 10 workouts, 30 meals and 240 hours of feeling better about themselves, they impacted their psyche and their body.
Your 10-Day Program, Your Way
You can create your own version of a 10-day camp, whether you’re a solo trainer or a studio owner. Distinguish yourself from others who offer only long-term contracts or weekend warrior boot camps. You can empower people to take 10 days of their lives and do something meaningful with that time. With this easy system, you can simplify the way you do business, deliver great results and increase your revenue.
The key to publicizing the 10-day format is simply to have consistent dates. We always start on a Monday and end on a Thursday at the end of each month. We promote the program primarily on Facebook, in our monthly e-newsletter, on our group exercise schedule and with e-blasts to our membership. We offer $5 off for current participants to sign up for the next camp.
Here’s some sample copy we’ve used for an effective email blast:
“A 10-DAY FAT BLASTING BOOTCAMP—NEW SESSIONS MONTHLY
Sometimes . . . you just need a kick-start to get moving. MACBLAST will do just that. Burn mega calories for 10 days straight, working at your strongest, with the energy of a group. Your MACBLAST adventure will consist of 10 straight days of a combination of Cardio, Strength, Sprinting & more—all in JUST A 30-MIN WORKOUT! You’ll get measured and weighed and receive a healthy, enjoyable meal plan. It’s Easy,