Breaking the 150-Client Barrier

Breaking the 150-Client Barrier

The Class Ceiling Effect

 

“Every time our membership reaches 150 people, we drop back to 130!”

“We hover between 110 and 125 members. We never drop lower, but we never seem to reach higher, either.”

“We’ve been at the same membership for 2.5 years even though we get new people almost every month!”

There’s a simple reason you reach a maximum member limit and can’t break through.

It’s not them: It’s you.

Here’s the real problem, how you’ve created it and how to finally smash through that Class Ceiling Effect.

 

The “Icon” Problem

 

Each of us can maintain around 150 interpersonal relationships. After 150, we start forgetting their kids’ names and their Fran scores. We simply can’t spread our personal care any further. This is called Dunbar’s number. Into that 150 people, we have to cram our families, friends, staff and clients.

Every client is a relationship that must be managed. If that relationship is a personal one with you, then you’ll never get above 150.

But if every client has a relationship with your brand—independent of the client’s relationship with you—then you can grow to far larger than 150 clients.

A relationship with your brand means your clients don’t care who owns your gym. They don’t get upset if one of your coaches leaves because they know they can depend on the same excellent service from any coach at your gym. And they don’t measure the value of your gym by how much time they get to spend with the owner.

 

You’ve Made This Bed

 

If you’re the only person who talks to your clients between classes …

If you’re the one who explains every rate change or starts every conversation in your Facebook group …

If your name is on every greeting card and your face is on every video and your caption is on every social post and your byline is on every blog post …

… you’ve gotten yourself into this.

Here’s how to get yourself out:

 

Create Redundancy

 

Your clients should receive the same excellent care even when you’re not there, right? If they don’t, you simply don’t have a business.

That means you have to create systems to replace you and then teach those systems to other people.

For example, every coach should deliver to the same level of excellence. Every coach should be replaceable with another of your coaches. And you should have a relationship “safety net”: a CSM who maintains every client’s relationship with your brand.

(Need a full job description for the Client Success Manager role? Click here.)

Many military leaders say, “Two is one and one is none.” They’re talking about redundancy: always having a backup for the stuff that really matters. Your clients’ relationship with your brand matters more than anything else. Are you really going to put that fragile little bird into the hands of your least-likable coach?

 

Shift Coaches on Purpose

 

If a client can’t work out with another coach, then how can that coach ever take a vacation?

If you make the largest mistake of all—referring to a client’s personal trainer as his or her “coach for life”)—how will you ever keep that client when the coach leaves or retires?

It’s in everyone’s best interests to occasionally have clients work with other coaches. I don’t mean a full schedule shuffle every six months. I mean this:

Personal-training clients should do at least two sessions with a different coach each quarter.

“Hey, Maria, I’m out of town next week! But I have a treat for you: I’ve asked Paul to meet with you at your regular time and coach you through your workouts. I’ve shared your future programming with him, and I know you’re going to love hearing someone else’s voice in your ear for a change! But I’ll be back the following week and I’ll stay in close contact with Paul while I’m away.”

Groups should be exposed to other coaches at least every few weeks.

“Class, I am super excited for this: Coach Paul will be here tomorrow! Paul is an expert in weightlifting, so I’ve asked him to spend some extra time working through your second pulls and finishing positions. You’re going to love him, and I’m going to be jealous that I’m not here! Have fun!”

And even nutrition clients should be exposed to other nutrition coaches.

“Aarav, I have something special for you. I’ve asked Coach Jennifer to meet with you during our scheduled appointment time next week. Jennifer is a real specialist in nutritional diversity; I’ve asked her to help you expand your diet while sticking to your goals. I want to make sure this plan is something you can stick to for life, and that means never getting bored with your food—or with me! Haha. I’ll meet you again in the following session!”

The key in shifting coaches is to tell the client how it will benefit him or her.

“I’m going to be away on vacation, here’s a replacement” doesn’t tell the client anything.

“Here’s a free special bonus just for you!” does.

 

Push the Spotlight Away

 

This is one of my wife’s favorite stories about our gym.

After a full week away talking to other gym owners, I returned to my beloved Noon Group on a Monday. I burst in at the last minute to find the group already in a big circle doing some calisthenics. I hopped into the closest spot and got warm. Robin was across the circle from me.

When the coach said, “Everyone come over here and get a stretching band,” the woman on my left turned to me and said, “Hi, you must be new here. I’m Sarah. Welcome!”

Robin laughed. I was struck dumb—but then I was thrilled because Sarah was having a great time at my box even though she had no idea who I was.

If Sarah had joined my box between 2008 and 2013, she would have seen me every single day, probably teaching her class or leading her 1:1 sessions. I’d made myself redundant. The great clients were finding my box, fitting into my box and loving my box without me.

And that’s when we broke through the barrier.

When the spotlight was no longer on “Chris Cooper, fitness coach,” people started to love the other coaches at Catalyst. People started to brag about Catalyst the gym, not Chris the trainer. They started to bring their friends to CrossFit Catalyst instead of 1:1 sessions with Chris or Mike.

The more I bragged about Coach Mel or Coach Charity, the more clients came to train with them. We all benefitted: the gym, the coaches and the clients. Because let’s face it: I’m not the best coach for everyone, and I never will be.

There are around 150 people who want to train with ONLY me. There are around 1,500 people who like me but just want to see me around. And there are over 15,000 people in my little city who want to get fit, have never heard of me and don’t give a damn about me personally.

But they can still come to my gym.

There’s room because I’ve removed the ceiling.

Need more advice on common problems? Click here to book a free call with a certified Two-Brain Business mentor.

The Island of Misfit Toys

The Island of Misfit Toys

How (and Why) to Say No to Great Ideas

You can’t do everything. But you have ideas.

In the Founder Phase of entrepreneurship, you’re busy. You’re delivering your service. In the tiny cracks of daylight between coaching clients, eating and sleeping, you might eke out some time to work on new ideas. These could be:

  • Making a new schedule.
  • Adding a nutrition service.
  • Selling more PT.
  • Designing new T-shirts.
  • Reorganizing your schedule.
  • Thinking about adding a kids program.

Which ones should you pursue with the very limited time you have?

In the Farmer Phase, your staff brings you ideas. Some of them are really good; and you want your staff to feel important and empowered. You have more time, but the way you invest your time is even more important because the outcome affects the whole team.

Which ideas will leverage that time best?

In the Tinker Phase, your potential partners pitch you ideas. Now you have to decide between great ideas and amazing ideas. The best choices are less obvious. Most of them will make you money, but all of them will take your attention.

Which will you invest your focus into?

In the Thief Phase, you’ll have to consider the needs of your community. But no matter how large your platform, you’ll never be able to fill all the gaps.

How do you decide what kind of contribution to make? How will you invest your legacy?

 

Focus and Focus Some More

 

I get pitched great ideas every week. And I have some good ideas myself (if you don’t believe me, look at my list of 70+ domains that I’ve registered on GoDaddy). But I can’t do them all. As my mentor, Dan Martell, once told me:

“People do this stuff because they don’t trust that their primary thing is going to be awesome. They lack trust in their own ability to execute on Plan A.”

In other words, we sabotage ourselves because we don’t really think our first idea is going to work. Instead, we all need to focus on one idea at a time.

But how do you stay focused? How do you overcome FOMO on a new idea? How do you stay the course when new ideas are super exciting?

 

Send Your Toys to the Island

 

In our businesses, we put our great ideas on a list. We call that list, “The Island of Misfit Toys” (the term comes from my favorite Christmas cartoon).

When an idea goes on that list, it means “I like this. I want to do this. But not right now.

In his amazing book “Anything You Want,” Derek Sivers makes the clear point: You can do anything, but you can’t do everything. At least not right now.

Sivers’ point isn’t that you need to make a long list of “someday” projects. His point is that making a list will:

  • Get the idea logjam out of your head to make room for even more ideas (which you’ll add to the list, too).
  • Remove the distraction of fear (you’re probably scared you’ll forget your great idea unless you act on it now).
  • Allow the truly best ideas to shine through by attrition.

I’ve forgotten most of my great ideas. Sometimes I comb through my past lists (and my domain registry) and think, “What the hell was that?” And that’s OK, because it means my attention has been captured by even larger ideas and opportunities.

You don’t have to run at full speed all the time. Waiting for the right idea—at the right time—usually means you won’t miss it when it comes.

Which stage of entrepreneurship are you in? Take our 20-question quiz to find out and get the exact steps you need to take your business to the next level.

Two Brain Radio: How Jill Glasenapp Turned $650 Into $8,400 Through Advertising

Two Brain Radio: How Jill Glasenapp Turned $650 Into $8,400 Through Advertising

Mateo: 00:00 – Hey, it’s Mateo Lopez of Two-Brain Marketing. On this edition of the Two-Brain Marketing podcast, I’m talking with Jill Glasenapp of Cobra Command CrossFit. You’ll learn about her transition from being a coach to buying in as a full-fledged partner in the business. You’ll also learn about her advertising system and how in the last eight weeks, she spent $650 on ads and generated $8,400 in front-end revenue, so you don’t want to miss this. Make sure to subscribe to Two-Brain Radio for more marketing tips and secrets each week.

Greg: 00:32 – Two-Brain Radio is brought to you by Two-Brain Business. We make gyms profitable. We’re going to bring you the very best tips, tactics, interviews in the business world each week. To find out how we can help you create your Perfect Day, book a free call with a mentor at twobrainbusiness.com.

Chris: 00:48 – What makes a good gym website? The answer to that question keeps changing. Five years ago I would’ve said that you need this rotating banner image. Three years ago I would’ve said you have to have one splash page highlighting the benefits of your service. That’s true. The problem is that the benefits of your service change by the client you’re trying to target and so you need to be able to adapt. You need to be able to add your own landing pages. Your main cover page should reflect what your most important clients want. That’s going to be different from what my most important clients want. So a website that’s based on a template with the same kind of rotating image is not going to work anymore. I use For Time Design for the twobrainbusiness.com and Catalyst gym websites because those are the most important websites I own. I want responsive design that’s going to work well on mobile. About 60% of your clients are going to come through mobile and more in the future. I want a responsive designer, which means I can contact them to make changes and I want to know how to change my own oil. I want to know how to get in there and add my own posts. I talk a lot about content marketing and that means I have to know the medium through which I’m delivering my content. Using For Time Design has been my choice now for about three years because Theresa and her team are super responsive. She can answer questions for me, she can show me how to do it myself if I want to or she can do it for me if I don’t have time. She’s created a big series of videos for Two-Brain clients in our Incubator and Growth stages to watch so that they can do stuff like build landing pages themselves. A lot of website companies try to pull the curtain in front of their knowledge. They try to hold a lot of stuff secret so that they can charge you to do the basic things. Just like in car maintenance, changing your oil, rotating your tires. If you want to do that stuff, awesome. If you don’t have time to do that stuff, take it to the garage. Theresa at For Time Design gives you both options and she’ll even teach you how to do it yourself if you want to. I use fortimedesign.com that’s what’s made them an official Two-Brain partner is our firm belief in their commitment to helping first and a strong sense of service value.

Mateo: 03:02 – Hello and welcome to the Two-Brain Marketing podcast. This is Mateo Lopez, Two-Brain Marketing mentor, and I am here with Jill Glasenapp from Kansas City. Jill, how are ya?

Jill: 03:15 – I’m doing great. Thanks for having me today.

Mateo: 03:17 – Thanks for taking the time. We’re gonna talk with Jill. I’m really excited because she’s got an awesome campaign up and running right now. She’s spent a little close to, well, $650, a little bit more than that on her ads and she’s brought in 56 new members; almost $8,500 in front-end revenues. It’s pretty exciting stuff. I want to hear all about that. Before we get into that, Jill, for those listening, if you don’t mind, tell us a little bit about who you are, where you’re from, and a little bit about your business.

Jill: 03:50 – I’m from Kansas City, Kansas. Not to be confused with Kansas City, Missouri. Actually it’s one in the same, but I actually have been CrossFitting for like 10 years. I was in the military and fell in love with CrossFit there and had this awesome opportunity when I moved to Kansas City to join the Cobra Command CrossFit team, which resulted in me kind of taking over business ops and then becoming a partner and co-owner and it’s awesome.

Mateo: 04:18 – Wow, that’s amazing. Cobra Command. I know you said your partner came up with the name. But do you know what the origin is?

Jill: 04:25 – Jacob Heppner, CrossFit Games athletes, goes to my gym and is kind of a comic book nerd as is my partner Vince. And together they were like, what’s a really awesome comic-book style name? And after looking at trademarks and all that kind of stuff, they settled on Cobra Command. And everyone here is absolutely in love. It’s like the best name ever.

Mateo: 04:49 – I could not agree more actually. It’s an amazing name. So how long has the business been open?

Jill: 04:56 – We opened our doors for Cobra Command in May of 2015. So we passed up our fourth anniversary here not that long ago.

Mateo: 05:04 – That’s awesome. And then were you a part of the staff in the beginning or when did you come into the picture?

Jill: 05:10 – So I joined the team in May of 2017 so right at their two-year mark. And I came in to coach and it did not take long before I was helping general manage and then literally within six months I was on as a partner. So it was a good fit. When something’s right, you just roll with it.

Mateo: 05:25 – Awesome. That’s great. What was that like, that transition for you from being on the staff side and then being rolled in as a partnership? Cause a lot of people end up forming partnerships or buy into existing businesses or buy existing businesses outright. So what was that process like for you?

Jill: 05:45 – So when I came on, my partner Vince, had a full-time job and Cobra Command was growing exponentially. We’ve been really blessed with organic growth for a long time. When I came on board, we were already at almost 150 members and now we’re a 200-plus member gym But, it was obvious that with the amount of members we had, we needed a more full-time staff. So initially when we did not have Two-Brain, we did not have the systems that we needed in place, because of my background, I knew that we needed to start moving in those directions. So I kind of naturally started doing those things. And then we started to formalize roles a little bit. And then when it actually came time for the partnership, I had just kind of been helping in the gym enough that it just was like a no brainer to kind of pursue that.

Jill: 06:36 – Vince and I went through the books together. We inventoried everything together. We negotiated, actually formally negotiated, a buy-in price, talked about sweat equity. That’s always a hard conversation for people when you’re going into a partnership. And both of us had sweat equity cause I did a lot of volunteer work to help get the business kind of up and running and obviously Vince did all the build-out to start the business. And thankfully we were able to come to a compromise that works well for both of us. And honestly like from the get-go, there was no change in how the gym operated because I had worked my way into the system at that point, which was awesome for the team. It was very seamless. What we did learn when we came on with Two-Brain is that me and Vince were way too nested in the business and weren’t working enough on the business. And that’s kind of the blessing that Two-Brain has brought us.

Mateo: 07:32 – So what was the impetus then for signing up for mentorship?

Jill: 07:35 – I had been on for about six months and knew that I had decent systems in place, but there had to have been more streamlined systems and I needed help with growing the business. So I knew that what we were doing in house was great, but I didn’t know how to get us to the next level. So we started researching and we looked at a number of different companies, but the values and the Help First mentality of Two-Brain is what led us there.

Mateo: 08:05 – Awesome. So you kind of spoke a little bit about it just now, but what was the real first change you saw after you started going through the Incubator and started—like what was the first big kind of lesson that you took away and were able to implement and see some changes?

Jill: 08:21 – So the very first thing that we did, roles and responsibilities. Like hands down the best—I would say that that’s the best part of Incubator period because it makes you break that out. That coupled with realizing that if I could not be cleaning and I could hire somebody else to clean and I outlined what I wanted that to be, I could make more money in that moment than if I was actually cleaning myself. That was huge.

Mateo: 08:49 – Yeah. The king-maker equation and figuring that out like, hey, like this is a $15 whatever-an-hour role that I’m filling, that if I outsource, I could be doing work that’s 20 an hour, 30 an hour, 50 an hour. I think is a really impactful lesson for a lot of people go through it. So that makes a lot of sense. That’s awesome. So tell me a little bit about the marketing for you. Prior to Two-Brain, you said you’ve seen a lot of organic growth. What was the outreach strategy before?

Jill: 09:20 – So I would say we did mainly affinity marketing, but didn’t know it was affinity marketing. So we did a lot of families. We’ve always had a really good kids program and that helped bring both parents kind of in the door. And then just, you know, word of mouth, like, people who liked us bringing their friends really was our organic growth. We did do some digital and social-media style marketing. But all we did was target interests. We didn’t really understand how to target our audience appropriately and get them in the door. So we would have people from like Washington, and we’re in Kansas, you know what I mean? Like react to our ads and we are like, OK, we need to get this more localized, we need to get this better targeted. And that was the very first thing that you guys helped us with for sure.

Mateo: 10:15 – That’s awesome. I want to talk more about that and what you worked on with Blake. But before I do, I just thought of something. So at your gym, you know, in your words, what is it that you sell and how do you sell it and who do you sell it to? Cause I don’t know much about the culture, but it sounds like if you have some pretty high-caliber athletes there, you know who is your market, who do you service and how do you form that culture and balance it with these high performers, with maybe the people who are not at that level.

Jill: 10:43 – So our mission is to bring health and fitness to as many people as possible. And that’s what we live and breathe. We don’t care what level athlete you are. And honestly, our main audience and who we mainly serve is women in their mid-thirties and forties range. And then, we use that to our advantage and try to get their husbands in and try to get their kids in. And it’s worked really well. We are very family centric facility. We offer childcare which helps draw a lot of people in that age range in. We also have a large military population here, with Fort Leavenworth, it’s literally about 10 minutes up the road from us. So that family kind of centric service is what we really, really focus on.

Mateo: 11:34 – That’s awesome. And the childcare that’s pretty clutch there. Not everyone has that. And I imagine that’s a big strategic advantage for you guys and your business. That’s great. OK. So then walk us through your paid advertising system. I mean, you sound like you really dialed it in. You’re getting, you know, three-dollar leads. So when the lead comes in, what happens?

Jill: 11:56 – So when a lead comes in, through our click funnel, they’re automatically sent to our UpLaunch system and UpLaunch has been absolutely amazing for us to help with lead management. So they’ll instantly get a text message, they’ll instantly get an email, even if they’re just a basic lead and they haven’t scheduled with us. Then within—well during the day, during our normal operating hours, somebody within hopefully an hour is our goal, will reach out, we will follow up with a text and then every day we make calls. We’ve had so many leads come in that I can’t call people immediately. I wish I could, that would be the game changer, I think. But we try to make calls once a day and call people. And actually that’s kind of been the game changer, I think. The people who are gonna come in our doors anyway schedule a No-Sweat right away.

Jill: 12:47 – The people who are on the fringe and answer their phone, we have a pretty high conversion rate of getting them in the door. Obviously we get a lot who don’t answer them.

Mateo: 12:59 – What’s your approach? Why do you think that is? What’s your approach once you get them on the phone?

Jill: 13:03 – So honestly our approach is that we follow the Two-Brain script for a No Sweat, like scheduling a No Sweat if somebody calls to schedule one. But we just tell people that we have numerous options and that we can work with any budget and that we can work with any goal. And that’s what I think really brings people in. And it’s the truth. Maybe our transformation, which is what we sell through our advertising isn’t right for you. If I can get you in the door, I can tell you what’s going to be right for you and I can point you in the right direction.

Mateo: 13:33 – Are you on the phone or do you have other staff on the phone?

Jill: 13:35 – Other staff on the phone.

Mateo: 13:37 – And how did you get people trained up to do that?

Jill: 13:39 – Role playing. Role playing is the best way to do that. And then obviously just telling people to jump in because like you just, the only way to really get over it is to do it. So me and my head coach do role playing with the coaches to train them up. We have two coaches that make most of our phone calls and we just pay them admin hours to do that. We role play them, bless them off, taught them a little bit about objectives, but not even—objections, not objectives. We didn’t even go super in depth with it. Just the normal stuff you’d hear on a phone call trying to set an appointment. And we’ve been doing great with that sense.

Mateo: 14:15 – That’s awesome. So, to clarify, you have coaches on staff who, to make a little bit extra, you pay them the admin rate to do these phone calls and lead nurture, correct?

Jill: 14:28 – Yup.

Chris: 14:29 – Hey guys, it’s Chris Cooper. If you’ve ever run out of money, you know that it affects every single corner of your life, all of your relationships, your business, even your self-worth. And so when I found a mentor in 2009, I said, I want to share this gift with everyone. Since then, I’ve been building and refining and improving a mentorship practice that we now call Two-Brain Business. We break our mentorship into several stages. The first stage is the Incubator, which is a 12-week sprint to get your foundation built, to get you started on retention and employee programs and finding the best staff, putting them in the best roles, training them up to be successful, and then recruiting more clients. It’s an amazing program. It is the culmination of over a decade of work. It’s also the sum of best practices from over 800 gyms around the world. These aren’t just my ideas anymore. What we do is track with data what’s working for whom and when, and we test new ideas against that data to say, is this actually better? Then when ideas have proven themselves conclusively, then we put it in our Incubator or Growth or Tinker programs. I just wrote “Founder, Farmer, Tinker, Thief” to define who should be doing what in what stage of entrepreneurship. But no matter where you are, the Incubator is your first 12-week sprint to get as far as possible in your business. We’re a mentorship practice for one reason: Mentorship is what works. We work with gym owners for one reason: Because you have the potential to change the world with us, and I hope you do.

Mateo: 15:57 – That is awesome. That’s great. OK, so the coaches are making these calls once they’re booked. I know you use UpLaunch, there’s a whole automated follow-up system there, but then what happens when they walk in the door?

Jill: 16:15 – So when they walk in the door, I have a team of three, myself, Vince, my partner, and then our head coach. Those are the only people right now who I have take No Sweats. And we greet them at the door. We ask them, you know, what do you know about Cobra? What do you know about CrossFit? Just kind of get a feel for that. And then we start a walking tour of the facility, but really it’s not a walking tour at all. It’s really us having an opportunity to walk and talk and learn about that person’s goals. So we have little touch points on our floor as you go through the building and certain cues that we want to ask people, you know, like what kind of goals do you have? If it’s weight loss then we always stop by the barbells and talk about resistance training and how great of a tool it is to help with weight loss. We ask about kids and family, what kind of job they have, what kind of hours they work just to get to know them, so by the time we actually hit the office, we have a pretty good idea of what their goals are, what’s going to be the best program for them and what other services in our facility they might be interested in.

Mateo: 17:19 – I think that’s really interesting and awesome because there’s a little bit of debate kind of in the sphere that we’re in where it’s like tour the facility, don’t tour the facility. Don’t waste your time, no one cares about your equipment, especially if you’re a CrossFit gym, you gotta like just sit them down. But I like how your approach, it’s part of the overall sales script where you have these identified points like, OK, when we reach the mats, we can ask them this icebreaker. OK, when we pass this squat rack, you know, you sprinkle in, you know, like you just said, you tie it into some of their goals. If it’s weight loss, well, strength training helps with weight loss. If it’s muscle gain, great. This rack will help you gain muscle, you know, you can kind of tweak it depending on what they’ve told you so far. And the walk and talk part, what you said was really, really awesome because yeah, it’s a way to break the ice and start to sell a little bit, but they don’t feel like it cause you’re not sitting down in that consultative setting. So I think that’s really, really, really cool. All right, so you get them into the office then and what happens there?

Jill: 18:26 – So once we’re in the office, we have our actual No Sweat sheet, which we’ve actually gone through about 90% of the questions at that point. So we just, if there’s anything that we lacked, we go in and make up that question. But it’s very conversation based. Then at that point we tell them like, hey, based on everything you kind of told me, here’s what I took away to kind of reaffirm that we have the right objective of the client. But then we tell them what we think, like, here’s what I think would be the best for you. And kind of start a two-way conversation with that. Cause some people, like sometimes people will tell me they have mobility issues and I’ll be like, hey, I think we should throw on yoga and just throw it out there.

Jill: 19:09 – And they’re like, no, nope. Not interested in yoga at all. OK, great. That’s a good conversation piece. But then we bust out our binder and start taking people through. But we only present what we think is a good fit for them. I know some gyms will take them through all the options. I don’t believe in that. I only present exactly what I want them to be interested in. And then I straight up ask, what do you think? Are we ready to sign up? And I pose it just like that. And most of the time we are able to close it.

Mateo: 19:41 – That’s amazing. That’s awesome. And obviously that process looks dialed in, I mean, 56 new members in the last, you know, less than eight weeks is pretty awesome. So that’s great. And how long did it take to develop that sales process? You know, and it sounds like you have three people who do it, you know, how long did it take to develop that and practice that and refine it?

Jill: 20:02 – So I would say that we obviously started developing the process when we went through the Incubator, which was a year ago, this September, we’re right at a year with Two-Brain. Honestly, we had a pretty decent system that was pretty close to Two-Brain’s prior to that, we just weren’t very good at asking for the sale. Right. And that was what we needed. I would say it took about six months to get where we knew exactly what talking points we wanted at what positions in the gym. And then, now, so probably January, February is when I think we hit our stride, but we only had two or three, No Sweats a week maybe back then. So now that we’re putting through 18, 20 a week, we’re very refined. I feel like we’re very—we can very much tell who we’re going to sell and what very early now. Which is awesome because it helps you just use that whole interaction to kind of shape everything.

Mateo: 21:02 – That’s awesome. And $3 leads, I want to circle back to that. So is your town small? Is it big? Where are you at? Do you have a lot of CrossFit gyms? I imagine you would. Kansas City is a pretty well-known place. What’s the deal there? What’s the story?

Jill: 21:16 – So we are actually in Basehor, Kansas. We are literally on the urban edge of Kansas City, Kansas. And in the area that we are in, we are the only CrossFit gym. We do have a CrossFit gym about 20 minutes to the north and about 20 minutes to the south. But we have about 200,000 in our area directly that are within a 10-minute radius of us. And that’s the game changer right there.

Mateo: 21:45 – Yeah. That explains it. If your CrossFit competitors are 20 minutes away and within your 10-minute radius, there’s already the population density of 200,000, that checks out. That makes sense.

Jill: 22:02 – We are also at the higher end, so we’re in the burbs of Kansas City. So we’re in an area where the residential area is a little bit higher income, which also helps us. Some of our competitors are not in that area. And obviously that changes their game a bit.

Mateo: 22:21 – Yeah. If they can’t charge as much as you are, whatever offer the one-on-ones and things like that. That yeah, if you’re able to charge, you can afford to spend more. And so it just, yeah, totally checks out there. Awesome. Well, maybe we have to cut this part out. We don’t want anyone moving into Kansas City thinking it’s a good idea to open a box. All right. Yeah. No one do that who’s listening. No one move over where Jill is. Awesome. So this is great. You’ve been able to come on as a part of an existing business, really help it grow, really, you know, take the reins and make some changes that have enabled you guys to grow rapidly. And the business has been around for four years already. So you’ve already got a lot of experience under your belt. What do you think has been the key to your success and the success of the team so far?

Jill: 23:16 – I would say that a big part of it is the team. It took us a while and we’ve had some transition finding the right team, people who understand our value, people who understand the importance of the client experience and helping clients. Not every trainer, not every coach out there has that in mind first. So it took us a little bit to build our team, but that is definitely what has set us apart and made us successful as we go. That coupled with, like I talked about earlier, our kind of family approach where it’s whole family fitness. We try to get everyone in and then honestly just developing tried and true systems that are efficient and keep the flow rapid, right. Like that keep it unimpinged so that they can, people can get through our system. They feel like they’re valued and feel like they’re getting what they deserve every day. Best hour of their day, right?

Mateo: 24:15 – I think that’s it. The happy place. That’s awesome. Thank you so much for coming on and taking the time. If people want to talk to you more, talk about Cobra Command, talk about comic books, talk about fitness. Where can they find you?

Jill: 24:34 – Yes. You can find us at cobracommandcrossfit.com or you can reach out to me directly at jill@cobracommandcrossfit.com.

Mateo: 24:43 – Awesome. Thank you.

Jill: 24:44 – Yeah, thank you. It was a pleasure to be with ya.

Mateo: 24:47 – Yeah, it was fun.

Greg: 24:52 – Thank you for listening to Two-Brain Radio. Make sure to subscribe to receive the most up-to-date episodes wherever you get your podcasts from. To find out how we can help create your Perfect Day, book a free call with a mentor at twobrainbusiness.com

 

This is our NEW podcast, Two-Brain Marketing, where we’ll focus on sales and digital marketing. Your host is Mateo Lopez!

Greg Strauch will be back on Thursday with the Two-Brain Radio Podcast.

Thanks for listening!

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The Release Valve

The Release Valve

You’re under a lot of pressure.

Sometimes that’s good. Maybe, like me, you’re at your best when your back’s to the wall.

But you’re also a fitness professional. So you know what happens to an organism under stress. Hans Selye said it first:

“An organism under stress is in decline. Remove the stress, and the organism super-compensates. But maintain the stress and the organism continues to decline until it dies.”

 

Relieve Stress—Your Way

 

Every entrepreneur needs a release valve.

Some drink. Some cheat on a spouse. Some have other bad habits.

And some exercise.

Maybe, as a gym owner, exercise is your release valve. But more and more gym owners admit that working out in their gyms adds to their stress instead of relieves it.

I want to tell you: It’s OK to work out somewhere else.

You can go to another gym. Your members won’t quit.

You can go ride a bike. Your members won’t quit your gym to ride bikes.

You can work out in your garage. Your members won’t immediately quit your gym to build garage gyms of their own.

Last May, I walked into my gym for the noon group. I love the people in my noon group but had been forcing myself to attend for a few months.

On my way into the gym, I saw a coach’s lunch garbage spread all over the front desk. I was pissed; and then the class started two minutes late, with 10 people waiting around while one person tied their shoes.

When the workout started, I felt unmotivated. I was distracted by the work sitting in my office next door. I didn’t like the workout, and I was bored by the warmup. I started to ask myself why I was even there. That night, I dug out my bike. And I haven’t worked out in my gym since.

But membership keeps growing. None of my members said, “Screw it! I’m gonna go ride bikes with Chris!”

 

Self-Improvement Produces Business Improvements

 

If you’ve been a gym owner for a while, your gym might not be your release valve anymore. And that’s OK: It exists to be their release valve. You need a different one. As our resident psychotherapist says:

“Therapists need therapy more than anyone else because they’re carrying everyone’s shit around!”

Did my members ask where I was? Absolutely.

Did I plan to return after a short break? Definitely. But I haven’t yet.

Do I hate CrossFit? No way. I love it. I just love cycling more right now. It’s a tremendous gift to be able to choose between two things that I love.

To be a better coach, better boss and better human, you need to release the pressure. Some of that pressure comes from self-doubt; some comes from lack of clarity; some comes from guilt.

Go exercise somewhere else. You have permission. Come back happier.

Do all the right things for all the right people.

Including yourself.

Need more advice on common problems? Click here to book a free call with a certified Two-Brain Business mentor.

 

The Panic Vaccine

The Panic Vaccine

It’s the 28th of the month.

You don’t have enough for the rent.

You just remembered your insurance is due. And this is a three-pay month … .

Anxiety is your cardio now.

You live in constant fear of “what’s going to happen next?” because you’re stuck in a meteor shower, and you know that any little hit could be your last. You’re overwhelmed, overworked, and just kinda over it.

That’s panic.

And data is the vaccine.

 

What Data Does

 

Data tells you, “Here’s how other gym owners got through this same situation.”

Data tells you, “Next month will be better.”

Data tells you, “Here’s how to stop this from ever happening again.”

Data is the laser beam that blasts the falling rocks out of the sky before they get close to you.

Data is clarity. Data is a look into the future. Data is absolutely critical to the success of your business.

So why isn’t there any data in the fitness business?

Because, until now, no one would collect it, analyze it and report on it.

 

Data and Duty

 

Big chain gyms collect tons of data about their customers’ spending habits. They know when they’re busy. They create budgets around peak seasons. They know when to boost their ad spend, when to hire and when a client is about to leave.

But they don’t share.

Franchisors collect data on their franchisees but don’t give that data back for analysis because it’s their intellectual property. Gathering data is very hard and very expensive, and they want to keep it in the mothership.

And licensors, like CrossFit, don’t collect data at all because they charge too little to pay for that level of business support.

When I visited CrossFit HQ last year, I asked the question over breakfast:

“What if you tracked data for all of your gyms and just released it for anyone to analyze?”

The response: “Good idea. But we’re not going to do it.”

I quickly realized that our company, Two-Brain Business, was in a unique position: We were already the largest mentorship practice in the world, and gym owners trusted us. We had the resources and the ability.

That made it our duty to collect data, analyze it professionally and report back to the community who shared it with us.

 

The Two-Brain Dashboard

 

We unveiled the new Two-Brain Dashboard to those in our Incubator and Growth Stages last week. It’s simple and clean but very powerful—all of the individual gym’s information stays private, but we can analyze metadata trends that will benefit the whole industry.

Most importantly, the dashboard makes it really easy for a gym owner to enter data, track it long term and see trends in his or her own gym.

But this is just the start!

The Dashboard will also clearly show gym owners their next step in the path to wealth. Using data and experience collected from over 10,000 one-on-one mentorship calls, our mentor team has mapped several paths to Tinker Phase. Those will show up on the Dashboard soon.

No one else has done it. No one else will. But when you care this much, it’s your duty to give as much help as you can.

Take your hand off the panic button.

Write down your numbers.

Write down your feelings (they’re important, too).

Next time you’re panicked, look back.

Then look ahead. Build your path with stones instead of shifting sand.

And call if you need help.

Need more advice on common problems? Click here to book a free call with a certified Two-Brain Business mentor.

Impostor Syndrome

Impostor Syndrome

Who am I to lead them?

As a business grows, it adds staff. Ironically, this can leave the Founder feeling even more isolated.

By the time she reaches Tinker Phase, an entrepreneur can feel very alone even with a big team supporting her.

Promoted beyond the point of her own expertise, the Tinker tries to wrap her head around larger challenges than she’s ever faced. Each decision takes on great importance because it affects a larger team. And she’s dealing with sums of money she’s never seen let alone controlled.

It’s very common for a Tinker to feel as if she’s woken up in someone else’s job.

“How did I get here?” she asks. “Why me? I’m no more qualified than they are.”

That’s the impostor syndrome.

(Not sure if you’re a Founder, Farmer, Tinker or Thief? Take the test here.)

 

Beating Impostor Syndrome

 

Nearly every Tinker I’ve ever mentored has reported having impostor syndrome—even the alpha folks who own gyms.

At some point, even the most self-confident owner has wondered, “How did this all fall into my hands?”

Here’s how to beat it.

 

1. Realize You Don’t Have to Be Perfect

You only have to be slightly ahead of those you lead—and not always on a technical level. Your job as Founder is to be well rounded. But good hiring means that you replace yourself with “pointy” people: those folks with a deep (but narrow) field of expertise. They’re specialists. You’re a generalist. If you know more than your tech-support team, they need more instruction. Your job isn’t to be the best shoemaker anymore. It’s to motivate and calm the team, tell them inspirational stories, and provide a vision for the future.

 

2. Fake It Till You Make It

One of the benefits of joining higher-level mentoring groups is that you have to do the stuff they do. When everyone else in the room is a millionaire, you spend the weekend doing millionaire stuff—you dress better, eat better, have higher-level conversations about money. By the end of the weekend, you think like a millionaire. Our Tinker program has group meetups for this exact reason: It’s millionaire immersion.

 

3. Ask Everyone in Your Mastermind Group if He or She Has Ever Suffered From Impostor Syndrome

I can guarantee over 80 percent of them did.

 

Off the Map—and Where You Belong

 

Our school system teaches us that there’s always an answer (and only one answer).

But in business, there’s rarely only one answer, and no one will give you a big checkmark when you need it.

That means we feel like we’re “wrong” when we don’t know the answer or what to do to get that answer.

But that’s leadership: By definition, you’re working in unmapped territory. By definition, there is no right answer.

And by definition, you’ll feel like you don’t belong.

But you do.

Welcome.

Need more advice on common problems? Click here to book a free call with a certified Two-Brain Business mentor.