Growing a fitness business is never easy and building a loyal community is one strategy to success.

If you’re looking to take your fitness business to the next level, building an army of followers is essential in growing your business. There are some tried and tested ways to building a following but there are also lesser known tips and tricks to help boost your client base and continually grow your business.

Do a good job!

OK, this is not exactly a secret. Nevertheless, you cannot underestimate how important it is to simply do a good job – this is your mission first and foremost.

What does that include exactly?  

Provide a great service, not only on the gym floor but through regular ‘check-ins’ with your clients when you’re not training them. Offer them great, original content; or even take note of a current problem they’re having, research it, and surprise them with an article or study you found just for them.

Always remember to under-promise and over-deliver. Word will get around and people will be pointed to you for advice and training.

Brand your clients

Building a community amongst your clients has many benefits to you, your business as well as your clients. You can build a community in a number of different ways. Provide t-shirts with your branding on. When your clients walk around with your business name on their back, everyone sees it – it becomes a continual stream of local advertising.

You should also ensure that your clients all have at least 5 of your business cards. Encourage them to hand them out, especially when someone asks them where they train…because they read your client’s t-shirt, with your branding on, at the markets.

A male personal trainer doing up boxing gloves on a female client. creating a community for your personal training business.

Organize social events with your clients. This doesn’t have to be a simple catch up at the pub or local restaurant. Get creative.

There are more and more obstacle style challenges and endurance races organised every month. These events all attract like minded people, who are willing to challenge themselves physically and mentally, which also requires a lot of training and preparation in the months preceding the event.

Isn’t this the exact target market for a fitness business?

Imagine sending a client army, all with your branded t-shirts, towels and water bottles to this event. You just placed your most courageous, high performing clients in front of hundreds or thousands of like minded people whilst promoting your own fitness business.

Be social

Social media is taking over everyone’s lives and there are more and more people with their eyes glued to the little screen that fits in their pocket. If the eyes and ears are there, you should be putting your fitness business right in front of them.

You can easily make use of this fact to build an amazing community. Leverage the popular social networks of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and don’t neglect the new kid on the block, TikTok, either. Each platform has its own peculiarities and methods for engaging with an audience.

And if you’re unsure if TikTok could work for your business, take a read this article.

Make the effort to read up on the best strategies for each social platform before starting out and repurpose your content for each platform. It is not a case of the ‘same size fits all’.

The first thing you should do is make sure everyone knows that you’re an amazing personal trainer, and that you have services on offer. Regularly post useful content on your social media streams that will be of value to people.

Short and sharp daily tips are always a winner.

A simple example could be: “Avoid flavoured or sparkling water – add a slice of lemon or lime to your water instead.”

Following this, as a way to build a community, create a private Facebook group for your clients. Encourage them to ask you questions, share their stories and generally offer support to each other.

This helps your clients see that there are other people who experience the same barriers as they do. It will encourage and motivate them to continue training and they will see that your other clients have been getting results despite difficult times they may have faced.

Not only that, the next time your clients pass each other in the gym, they will start to say “Hey” to each other, maybe grab a coffee and you will be the one who looks like they have created a great community amongst your clients, making you and your team the envy of the gym.

So here are three great ways to build a community of followers, making sure that they stay with you for longer, as well as attracting more clients to build your business. Even better still, the strategies above are all inexpensive, relatively easy to incorporate and you can start today!

For more further information on marketing for personal trainers, see here.

For in-depth advice into how to run a bootcamp business or outdoor fitness group, read this.

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