I’m Lacey Stone, celebrity trainer from E!’s Revenge Body with Khloe Kardashian. As a long-time small business owner, one of the questions I get asked most is,
“how do you build your clientele and how do you keep them?”
It’s a subject I take seriously, and I’ve seen serious results. Today I have clients who work out with me on my virtual training platform and on Zoom, at my home studio THE WALL in Los Angeles, and who even get training tips from me on Instagram.
My method for building strong relationships in the fitness realm with clients may be a little unorthodox, but it works! There are three main components.
1. Cultivate the relationship with your individual clients.
Building a strong clientele is the same as building a strong relationship with anyone:
you have to consistently be there.
You have to listen to each person with care, and you have to support them through the good times and the bad. I know this sounds a lot like a healthy marriage—because it is. Ha! In my opinion, you should get to know your clientele as much as you can because at the end of the day a squat is a squat is a squat—am I right? What sets you apart is the relationships you have with your clients, which in turn will build your business.
One of the main reasons people come to trainers is that they don’t feel like they’re “enough.” They don’t think they are fit enough or look good enough. When you’re teaching your clients how to get that strong body they want, you also need to be their safe place. Be the brightest part of their day, listen to them when they need someone to care for them, and love them as if they were your family. This way, you’ll help them feel like they’re enough while getting the results they want, which will create sustainable change and a long-term business (and likely personal!) relationship.
2. Inspire your clients to share their experiences with other potential clients.
You hear the phrase “building a fitness community” a lot, right? Building a fitness community is about building a place where people can come and feel at home… a place where they feel welcomed, heard, safe and loved. That’s what a trainer needs to provide for their clients. The beautiful thing about creating a great relationship with a single client is that it typically has a trickle-down effect.
Once you’ve created a true fitness community, people will naturally tell others about what you’ve created.
That’s how it begins. So many of my long-term clients have come from word of mouth referrals by clients who have worked with me and have made huge personal strides. They want to share their not-so-secret secret with their own communities and bring them into ours. And when that happens organically, it’s *chef’s kiss*.
3. Walk your own talk.
I believe fitness starts in the mind, not the gym. You have to get your clients inspired to work out, eat well and improve their health so they will come and work hard for and with you. How do you do that? You better be in good shape yourself first off, strong and healthy, and you better walk the talk so your clients have respect for what you say and ask them to do. If you tell them to eat a ONE Bar after a workout because it’s a quick and delicious blast of 20g of protein, you better be eating a ONE Bar yourself after that workout. If you tell your clients to limit alcohol, get eight hours of sleep, run at a level 10 and be a good person, you better be able to do all those things or they won’t trust you. Just like a marriage, when the trust is gone the relationship is over.
These three points have been pillars of my method for over a decade—and they really work. All the e-mail blasts and fancy marketing campaigns in the world will never outperform a real coach-to-client connection. And isn’t connection what we’re all looking for?
All statements, views and/or opinions expressed on this blog, and all articles and responses to questions and other content, other than the content provided by ONE Brands, are solely the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of ONE Brands. ONE Brands does not control, and is not responsible, or liable to you or any third party, for the content or accuracy of any content provided by any third parties.