TwoBrain Marketing Episode 1: Sherman Merricks

TwoBrain Marketing Episode 1: Sherman Merricks

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This is our first episode of Two-Brain Marketing, our NEW podcast dedicated specifically to attracting new members.

Announcer:                            00:02                       Welcome everyone to TwoBrain Radio. It is our mission at TwoBrain to provide 1 million entrepreneurs the freedom to live the life that they choose. Join us every week as we discover the very best practices to achieve perfect day and move you closer to wealth.

Mateo:                                      00:26                       All right, so we’re here with Sherman Merricks, TwoBrain mentor, extraordinaire and owner of dynasty crossfit. So Sherman, for those of the, for those listening who don’t know, I mean I think you’ll do have a kind of prolific internet presence, but for those who don’t know, you know, who are you, how long have you been in business? Tell us a little about your, your story, finding crossfit and, and, and your gym.

Sherman :                                00:52                       Yeah, I’m married. I live in Gainesville, Florida. We own dynasty crossfit and my wife and I, we’ve had our gymfor seven, eight years. We’ve been affiliate, you know, sort of that typical story from back then you could start your garage. That’s what we did. On our garage , we’d been slowly but surely building this thing up to what it is today. I was actually doing crossfit for a couple of years before I even knew where to what a, you know, what an affiliate was and that type of thing. It’s been a great run. You know, I’ve been with two brain for awhile. No for awhile. And excited about this. A little podcast right here to talk about some cool things that you guys have in store.

Mateo:                                      01:39                       And so how long have you been involved with TwoBrain?

Sherman :                                01:42                       Hmm Man. I mean I’ve been with TwoBrain since day one. Coop. Chris Cooper has been my mentor before TwoBrain. I would imagine if I had to put a number on it. I mean I’ve been with Coop probably four or five years right around there.

Mateo:                                      01:57                       And how has your business, I guess changed like before TwoBrain and then after TwoBrain, you know, what were the differences in your business and then I guess, uh, your lifestyle, your quality of life. Can you tell us a little about that?

Sherman :                                02:10                       Yeah, definitely. So before TwoBrain, it was sorta the typical, you know what, I opened a gym for me. I opened the gym from the beginning because I’ve sort of always known I wanted to be my own boss. I wanted to be an entrepreneur. And the barrier to entry to open up an affiliate was so low, alright man, this is my shot right here. You know, like I like fitness, I want to run a business. So you know, I sort of combined those two. And like I said, we started off small in my garage, you know, I was working a job and training in the afternoon and all of that type of stuff. But we came, my wife and I, we sort of came to a turning point when my wife, she became pregnant with our second child, which is our daughter.

Sherman :                                02:48                       And we had to make a decision, right? If she was going to go back to work or what was going to happen. And honestly, my wife, she made quote unquote the money back then, but I just couldn’t imagine staying on that track of going to work at eight and nine and stand there all day doing office work and going home every day at five or six being miserable. So we decided that we’re going to, you know, start the gym in the garage and that’s what we did. So basically once she came home for maternity leave, I was like, Hey, now’s the time we had to go all in and I quit my job as well. So young couple, no income, two kids. But that was sort of a blessing in and of itself because a failure really wasn’t an option. Right. We did not have a choice why there was no, there was no one that would, you know, give us money and things like that.

Sherman :                                03:42                       So that really lit a fire up under me, of course. And my wife as well. And we’ve been, you know, we’ve been blessed ever since. We’ve been growing and learning and that type of stuff. And I’ve always known, you know, I’ve always had mentors, whether that personally, professionally. So when I got into this, I actually had another, um, I was working with another company, we’ll call it a mentorship. Um, I was working with another company because I’ve always known I needed help. So I’ve always been doing something. And then I met Coop at a, uh, met Coop at, some type of seminar or something. He came down to Florida and my wife and I, you know, we sort of clicked in. We’d been with TwoBrain ever since.

Mateo:                                      04:23                       And what were the changes? You know, I, I know you, you and I have talked previously, but I know you were working a lot in the gym and I know it wasn’t always so easy.

Sherman :                                04:34                       Um, so what were the changes that you saw after starting to work with, you know, the mentorship program in the incubator? Oh yeah, man, definitely. So, I mean, when we first started it was, I was the coach, programmer, cleaner, social media person. Actually that’s my wife. You’re in charge of that. Um, but basically we did everything, right? Like, one of my most vivid memories is cleaning the gym every single night with the mop, regardless of how long the day was. Right. So I would coach the 6:00 AM you know, and then, you know, we coached throughout the day and then at night after the last class I would have to stay back and mop the floor with the mop. I remember that. Just thinking about it makes me sort of cringe a, I can’t believe that I did that or you know, I probably did it for about a year, two years, probably like two years because I’ve been there for sure.

Sherman :                                05:25                       That’s sort of one thing that we still behind. You don’t have an a clean gym and you know, clean bathroom, all that stuff. And Man, just doing that on top of everything else would just make the day’s so long. So I was basically just in survival mode for years.. Just trying to grow the business and the little down time that I had to make sure that, you know, people were coming in, payments going through, trying to gain new members. I’m able to really just looking back now, it was just like, it was really just a mess, but you do what you have to do and you know, to get things done. But like I said, I was looking for something different. Actually one of my, one of the guys that I know, he’s like, hey, you should come down to my gym. So a seminar, uh, this Guy Chris Cooper has come in and I think you will like him.

Sherman :                                06:08                       So I’m like, yeah, I don’t have anything to lose. I’m always trying to learn something. And so we went to that seminar and you know, listening to some of the things that Chris was saying really resonated. My wife and I, we did not want to be tied to the gym 24-7, you know, we wanted to grow the right way. Just not, you know, say we have 200 members, but we can’t make money. We can’t feed our kids. We can’t save for retirement. All of that stuff. And Chris was talking about that stuff, um, way back then. And then since then, you know, like I said to Barry for awhile and now to where we are today, you know, sort of fast forward, I want to bore you too much. But you know, now I don’t coach any classes, and I’m , you know, not needed in the day to day.

Sherman :                                06:49                       Um, however I am still president, my gym, you know, I think it’s cool for people to sort of do what works for them. You know, I really don’t have a preference to be totally removed from my gym, not in the gym ever most days. But I know some guys, they frigging don’t do anything with their gym. You know, someone, a mentor, they don’t do anything. Someone else is running it. And I have,, you know, I have a general manager and all of that stuff, operation director and I have all of that, but I still like to be involved in the gym, hang around in the community some and stuff like that. But man, my life is so different now. You know, like, you know, like I love to travel my family and I, so we, you know, we travel probably four or five weeks a year and all that type of stuff and you know, the gym runs just fine without me.

Sherman :                                07:32                       Um, and that’s really a testament to the years of hard work and learning and growing and trying to, you know, get this thing to where I want to be. That’s sort of where I am today.

Mateo:                                      07:43                       And so you were saying before the gym wasn’t making as much money, you were in the gym day in and day out, doing all the, all the roles and tasks. Now I guess what I’m hearing you say is it’s a lot different. You’re, you’re moved to you, you choose to be in when you want to be in, but you can leave and go on vacation when you want to. And the businesses make enough money to be able to support you and your family. Is that correct? Correct. That’s great man. And so tell me a little bit about, tell me a little bit about your experience trying to grow some of your programs. We’re going to talk about the paid advertising strategies that you’ve been able to implement with two brain marketing. But I want to first hear more about, you know, your, you’re super charismatic guy, you’re great on camera. How are, you know, before really pushing heavily with paid advertising, how would you grow your programs? How would you market at your gym?

Sherman :                                08:33                       Yeah, so that, you know, this is a great question because I think that like, I like the paid advertising, but I also really enjoy doing the organic stuff. Now I will say if one of the biggest differences is, you know, the organic stuff is very, very difficult. It takes years and years to hone in. I wish I would’ve found paid advertising a little bit earlier. Um, but you know, with my organic stuff, like I still do a lot of organic stuff now. If you guys don’t know what organic quote unquote stuff we were talking about is, you know, a lot of, some of the programs I run, I don’t, I don’t run any paid advertising and we still have great turnout and stuff like that and great signups.

Sherman :                                09:09                       But one of the biggest keys to my success has been, you know, keeping an email list and really continuing to put out content for people that can really benefit them. Not just when I’m trying to get them to sign up for something. Right. So some of the things that I really implemented, you know, like I enjoy going live, right? I enjoy being on being on camera. I’m comfortable in front of the camera. So we try to get on it, interact with people as much as possible if I’m being honest. You know, we’ve gotten away from that a little bit just because paid advertising is so good. But it’s funny that we’re doing this little interview right now because we’re actually running a a weight loss program here soon and I’m only doing, you know, for the most part, organic marketing. And like I said, we’ve just, we’ve only been marketing it for about not even a week and we already have like three sign ups already and we’re going to promote it for like six weeks.

Sherman :                                10:00                       So our goal is to get, you know, 25-30 sign ups at the price. We were asking and I think a lot of gyms could benefit from really understanding how to utilize the, how to utilize the organic market in. Because when you can put the organic marketing with paid marketing, then you have a recipe for success that’s hard to match.

Mateo:                                      10:19                       So when you’re talking about creating content for people in your audience and your use your newsletter list, what’s the stuff you put out when you go live? What are you talking about?

Sherman :                                10:29                       Yeah, so here’s the thing that I think a lot of people complicate and over complicate. You know, as fitness professionals, most of us take stuff for granted, right? They take information for granted that we know it’s second nature to us, but to the common person, you know, just how to prepare their plate is a huge deal.

Sherman :                                10:48                       Right? So I go on and just talk about anything really. You know, if someone asks me a question in the gym one day, I was like, oh, all right, I’m going to go live with it. I’m going to talk about, you know, she just said, what type of foods should I eat at night? Or what’s the latest I should eat at night? It’s basic stuff. You know, one thing I will say about the live videos, they’re sort of better when you can sort of announced them because it’s not, and I don’t want to say better to just have a little more interaction when you can announce them because the people that want to watch them, they will actually get on at that time and they’ll interact with you as opposed to when you just jump on a live. Like I do a lot of times, uh, you know, I won’t have a lot of interaction while I’m on there.

Sherman :                                11:29                       So I sorta just me talking into my phone, out of the camera. But people will pop on and then people will go back and watch it and then questions and comments that come up. But honestly, I just talk about anything that could be beneficial to my future clients. Right. I’m a potential client.

Mateo:                                      11:47                       So what you’re saying is you basically you’re surveying your current clients and seeing, okay, what are the questions I’m getting most often from the people who already are our existing clients. And I think the lodge there as well. If my current clients have these questions, prospective clients are probably going to have these two. And so you’re, you’re kind of creating the content, the videos, the things you’re talking about, the emails or writing about based off of that feedback. Is that correct?

Sherman :                                12:12                       Correct.

Mateo:                                      12:13                       That’s great man. That’s great man. Awesome. So now I’d like to talk a little bit more about, actually before we move on for people want to try this out. What’s your process? Do you like you blast a post out saying, hey, we’re going to go live talking about how to eat after 5:00 PM and that goes out 10 hours before or whatever it is. Like what’s the, what’s the process?

Sherman :                                12:34                       You know what I would do get the most bang for your buck is posted on your, um, on your social media sites like a day before if you can, you know, if you’re gonna go live on Tuesday, post on Monday, say, hey guys, tomorrow we’re going to be talking about how, what type of foods to eat after 5:00 PM or are we going to call it about how to really get shredded it for the summer. Something called summer shred, right? I’m going to talk about that tomorrow at 5:00 PM and then the day of you post it again and I like to post everything from my, from my personal page as well.

Sherman :                                13:09                       So I’ll post it from, I’ll post it from the business page, then I’ll share it on my personal page. Of course, I’m asking, you know my members to share it. I’m, you know, my wife is going to share it. A coach is going to share it because I think for the most part, we as gym owners, we don’t like asking people to do stuff, but if we don’t ask them, they’re not going to do it. But if we ask them, most will do it. So you know, all of my members would tell you I don’t have an issue with asking them to do anything. Right? Like Hey, oh we’re going to be running this program. Tell your friend posted on your page, Hey posted on your page again. Right? Because a, that’s how you read people that cause the people that want to get in shape man.

Sherman :                                13:48                       Like that’s the thing. It’s not really about crossfit and barbells and all that. If you are talking about a solution to their problems, people are going to come in and to talk to you. Right. So I think it’s hard to come back to your question if you have to be sharing it across a lot of different avenues on social media, but you need more than just you sharing it. You need your coaches, you need your clients in that type of thing right there. Okay, cool. So what you’ll do is you’ll basically say, hey, we got this thing we’re going to run with your people in your, in your captive audience know first your clients and then they share it. Help get the word out and then you know, you have a little bit of time to collect some. Yeah. Get some, some anticipation going in and people looking forward to see what you’re going to have to say.

Sherman :                                14:34                       You know, one of the biggest things is, you know, like used to it, like I consider myself fairly good on camera, but there’s still a piece of me that gets sort of hesitant when I get, when I get ready to make a video or something, I’m like, man, no one wants the feed is, well, how am I going to look? You know, how’s it going to? But really once you get on, if you’re really, you know, genuinely trying to help people, it’s going to turn out fine. Right. It doesn’t mean the video is going to be perfect or anything like that, but it’s going to help to someone and that’s all, you know, if I’d get on and speak to one person at a time, that’s totally fine. I was one person that I helped, you know.

Mateo:                                      15:07                       Awesome. So how has your business changed since joining? What is your experience been with paid advertising prior to doing the two main marketing course? And, uh, how has your business changed since implementing some of the strategies that we teach?

Sherman :                                15:25                       Yeah, so I think that before, before I was working with too many marketing, you know, we basically did, I didn’t know real paid advertising. I would boost some posts. I would boost some posts. You know, back when people were, I don’t even know people still boost posts, right? Oh, I would boost some posts. You, I was like, all right, I’ve made like a pretty good post. No rhyme or reason to it. This, all right, I’m going to put $20 to it see how many people would comment. Right. I wasn’t even trying to really get people to sign up. I’m just trying to get more traffic to my page. And like we talked about, most of my programs were selling out with only organic marketing. So I wasn’t too concerned about honestly paid advertising until you and John, you know, I watched some of you guys stepping out, hey, these guys are killing it.

Sherman :                                16:07                       I need to really look at this. You know, if I can grow my business like these guys have. So, you know, I jumped on TwoBrain Marketing and now it’s like, it’s a different, it’s just a totally different animal as far as the, the number of leads coming in, uh, the way that we have to deal with them and all of that stuff. So beforehand there was not a lot of, there was not a lot of paid advertising going. Like I said, I would really only boost a post and then until I sign up with, to bring in marketing, now it’s just a lot of work has to be done right to really see the benefits of it, you know?

Mateo:                                      16:40                       And so what I guess before we talk about actually, yeah. Can you tell us a little bit more about that work when you run paid ads? I guess before we talk about that, what exactly do you sell and how do you sell it? I’d like to talk more about, you know, what’s your front end offer? What do people come to you most often looking for you to solve? What do you, what are you selling? How do you sell it?

Sherman :                                17:00                       Yeah, great question. So we are really selling a solution to weight loss problems. For the most part, right? At my gym we don’t target males, right? Just a and not that we don’t have males in the gym, we just don’t pay to get the man. Because from what we’ve seen, you know, over the years of being with TwoBrain Marketing, the guys are very difficult to get in, right? So you know, when we were talking about paid advertising, now we’re talking about ROI. It make dollars and cents. So from a business perspective for us doesn’t make sense for us to target males. So all of our ads are sorta catered toward my ideal client, right? It’s going to be that way. Females aged 26 to 60 or so, right? So all of our service is speaking to weight loss, getting lean, that type of thing and our front end offer is really to get people in the door. It’s a 90 day challenge and that’s what we were talking about to get people in. Now, here’s one of the biggest sorta fallacies that I’ve seen with people new to running Facebook ads. We run the 90 day challenge, get them in the door, listen to what they want, and then we make the best recommendation based on their goals, not on what ad brought them in. Right? So yes, they’ve seen the 90 day challenge ads on Facebook. That’s what has them sitting in front of me. But me or my, one of my coaches, whoever is doing the no sweat intro has to sit down with them and we see this person really needs one on one personal training. That’s what we’re going to recommend to them. We’re not going to recommend, oh you should do this group challenge, when that’s not going to get them the best results possible. Cause at the end of the day we don’t. We want them to be super successful cause if they’re super successful then we’re super successful,

Mateo:                                      18:33                       yeah, no it makes total sense. So what you’re saying is someone will come in because they see an ad program sounds cool, but when you sit down and talk with them, you’re prescribing the best solution. That’s going to fit, fit their, their needs, right? Yes,

Sherman :                                18:48                       absolutely. That’s exactly what we’re doing.

Mateo:                                      18:50                       So can you walk us through your, you know, your sales pipeline. So someone sees the ad, they, they inquire for more information. What happens next?

Sherman :                                18:59                       So someone through the ad, they got to, you know, you’re going to see a picture or a video, they got to click on it, they’re gonna go to a landing page. The landing page speaks to them. They’re going to enter their information and then it, cause first we’re going to capture their information before we let them see our scheduling availability. Right? Because we want that. We want to have their contact info because they’re interested, right? They’re interested. It’s sold before we even let them see our scheduling software and what availability you have. We’re going to capture their info. Once they go there, now they’re going to pick a time that works for them. They’re going to self schedule. They don’t have to call us. Uh, they don’t have to come in or anything until their time. Once they enter their, their appointment time, that’s when we start working. Right now we have two options here because they may enter their info and not see what time that works for them.

Sherman :                                19:49                       And a lot of times people won’t book anything because they don’t see a time that works for them. And then that’s when we’ll reach out to them within two or three minutes and say, Hey, we saw that you want more info about the 90 day challenge. Do you need any help scheduling your appointment, right,? If they say yes, we’ll, you know, we’ll help them through that. A lot of times people, a lot of people just trying to get the price, you know, first thing they say, oh, well how much is it first? You know, we will give prices over the phone. Um, but we want a little bit more information before we just give out the price because we like to know more about this person. Right? It could be $1,200 a month to come here if this is someone that very deconditioned, they can’t go to a group class. They need personal training four times a week. Okay. But we don’t make those type of decisions over, the phone. So we’re trying to get them to come in. Right. But if someone perceives, absolutely give a price range.

Mateo:                                      20:38                       Who handles that? So you said they had given their information, you guys respond in two, three minutes. Who does the setup here?

Sherman :                                20:46                       My old general manager, she, she moved away but she was so good that I couldn’t let her go. Right. So she actually handles it. Her name is Stephanie. Not going to tell you the last name cause I don’t want people reaching out to her, all of that. Right. And she does it remotely. She actually lives hundreds of miles away. So she’s in charge of the software that we use. You know, when she’s reaching out to him, uh, she’s following up with them. She scheduling, she’s rescheduling if they had issues and all that stuff. So, um, so I’m totally hands off of that. Right. I’m not doing really anything with the software. She scheduling, communicating with the coaches, making sure everyone’s on the same page. Awesome. And so someone books an appointment, what happens once they begin an appointment? We’re going to, so they could only book an appointment, I want to say three days out, three days out.

Sherman :                                21:38                       So, um, in that time, we’re going to email them a couple times. We’re also going to text message them the night, the day before, right? So Mateo, if you had appointment with us on what’s today, Tuesday, whatever, Wednesday, Wednesday, an appointment with us on Friday, right? Tomorrow you will receive a text message from us saying, now in the meantime, while you’re receiving this, you’re still going to be receiving emails from us as well. It’s all right. Just talking about the value that we’re going to be adding and the No Sweat Intro, right? Um, you may meet our team and stuff like that. So once they go through that, they’re gonna receive a text message the day before if we don’t hear back from them to confirm, because we ask them to confirm because I don’t want my coaches showing up if no one is going to be here. So we basically asked them to confirm, uh, you know, we send him a message, blah, blah, blah, blah.

Sherman :                                22:34                       Look forward to seeing you. Please confirm that you will be attending this appointment. And if they don’t confirm, we will reach out again the day of the appointment via phone call or text messages. Again, sometimes people just miss it or they get busy and they forget, but we want to make sure that we stay on top of them. And you know, this has been sort of new to us. Paid Advertising, um, you know, like, you know, Mateo, like it’s a numbers game. So just because someone books an appointment doesn’t mean they’re showing, right? So we need to make sure that we’re following up and really doing everything we can do to get them to show up and you know, the numbers, you know, everyone’s not showing up and then we basically work it from there. If they don’t show up, they’re going to go into a different funnel and we’re going to continue to nurture them forever until they tell us, leave us alone, or they come in for a no sweat intro.

Sherman :                                23:22                       Right. I think that’s the biggest piece that I was missing prior to TwoBrain Marketing was the continual followup. Right? Like, if someone came in, I had a Google sheet back in the day and I will follow up for a month or two because you know, whenever I get low on clients. So I didn’t look at that Google sheet. Oh yeah, that lady came last month. Let me follow up with her. But six months later I was following up with no one. Right. Uh, I was following up with no one. I wasn’t going back to, you know, I wanted to go in right in July, look at the people in February and following up with them, they were thought to just lost leads. So now we have a system and all of that. I have someone in charge of all that and we just follow up with them consistently until they tell us no.

Sherman :                                23:59                       Right. Like our software is managing all of that person’s in charge of the software. Um, and you know, one of the things that I’ve seen over the last six months is, you know, really keeping up with the data and stuff. There’s, there’s, there’s probably 25-30% of people that come into our funnel and just sit in there. They don’t respond to any emails. They’ll open them, but three months later, like they’ll book a No-Sweat Intro and come in. Right. So just because they’re not ready, right, when they get into your funnel, it doesn’t mean they’re not ready. So really you’re doing yourself a disservice if you aren’t constantly following up with these people until you get a yes or a no. I want a yes or no. Personally I prefer yes, but I will take a no as well cause they tell me no.

Sherman :                                24:38                       Okay well I can scratch them off the list and I can move on to the next person that I can help.

Mateo:                                      24:44                       And so what kind of returns are you seeing from your paid advertising efforts? You know, what is your ROI been? How’s your membership grown? Talk to us a little bit about that.

Sherman :                                24:54                       So membership has grown. I don’t have exact numbers in front of me. I guess I should, but I do keep up with, you know, my ROI and that type of thing. Right. They are now, you know, I’ll just use last year, I’ll use what was August, September, October, November, right? So September, October, November, I was spending about $800 a month on Facebook ads. And in those three months we gained on average say 12 people. And that was, you know, that was on average about $11,000 in front end revenue. Right? So I was spending seven, I was spending 750 and then that was turning around and about $11,000 in front end revenue.

Sherman :                                25:35                       Because again, everyone that comes in, they’re not doing, you know, like we would require some personal training before we allowed them in our group. So some people it will come in and do a little personal training. They didn’t go to group. Some people that would come in and be like, Hey, I only want to do personal training. So you know, for us, everything sort of starts with personal training anyway. So that’s how we get our numbers. Our numbers are so high. So for me, um, you know, this year we bumped our ad spend up to about $1,200 a month. You know, so, and we’re seeing, you know, the, the benefits of that. And I think one of the, one of the main things I’ve learned is to, this is sort of a, trying to think of the right term is sort of a hit and miss game, right?

Sherman :                                26:13                       It’s not going just because you spend x amount of money per month, it doesn’t guarantee that it’s going to work. Right? You have to play with your ad, you have to get your, your copy right, you have to find the right picture. And sometimes one picture may work and it may be crushing it. Then all of a sudden, two weeks later, it may not be doing as well. Right? So that’s what you, you’re constantly sorta of with it, making it better. But I’ve seen a huge ROI on my, on my, uh, on my investment with, TwoBrain marketing and so I couldn’t be happier.

Mateo:                                      26:43                       And what do you attribute your success to? Like what’s been the key, I know you mentioned a little bit about staying vigilant and, and, and looking at your metrics on a regular basis, but what else is it just that you’ve been able to utilize the prescriptive model when you bring people in and give them the solution then those high ticket items or what do you think has been the key to your success?

Sherman :                                27:03                       So I think one of the, you know, one of the major cue cards or test has been, yes we’ve been able to get people in, but we really take the sales piece seriously, right? Like all of my coaches, no, I personally train them on the sales piece because the market, it may work, but if people are coming in and you can’t sell them and you know, some people don’t like the word sell, but everyone’s selling something and the people that don’t know, you know they’re in trouble. Right? Because you better believe that there’s other franchise type gyms out there that are absolutely selling. They’re trying to sign these people up. So, as are we, and I think one of our, one of our biggest pieces have been my coaches and myself. We really take the sales piece seriously. We read, we get together, we role play. We’re constantly trying to get better at that sales piece. Well, I think there were going to have to do a whole other call just for that man for sales training.

Mateo:                                      27:54                       I love it. All right, Sherman. Well that’s all I got. Thanks so much for coming on here. And, uh, where can people find you if they want to talk to you more on social media?

Sherman :                                28:03                       They can simply email meSherman@twobrainbusiness.com.

Mateo:                                      28:10                       Awesome, man. Thank you.

 

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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To help out the show:

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How to Limit Your Financial Downside with Facebook Ads

Before you decide to launch Facebook ads for your business or your program, there are a few things you need to consider.  First and foremost- you need to establish a proof of concept.  
 
Here’s an example – you are a gym owner who wants to build some additional revenue streams for your business.  You know there is a large population in town of people over the age of 50, so you decide to create a “Legends” or “Fit Over 50” program.  You want to use Facebook ads to sell the enrollments for this program.
 
Using ads at this point in the process would be immature. You need to first see if people in your network will buy this “Fit Over 50” service.  If you can’t sell someone who walks into your gym on that program, then the chances of you selling it to complete strangers on the internet is close to zero.
 
Even after you sell 5 people into your new program, you need to iterate on the service to make sure it consistently yields the results that you promise.
 
Only AFTER you establish that your program works and that there is demand (meaning you’ve been able to sell it without the aid of paid advertising), you can begin to make some hypotheses on how to increase sales with Facebook.
 
At this point, you’ll need to make some educated guesses on the types of campaigns you want to run.  Form a hypothesis on the message, the media, and the market.  Meaning, you’ll need to make a few guesses on what combination of ad copy and imagery will resonate with the audience that you want to target, but you should have some preliminary data with which to start out.  If you’ve been able to successfully sell your program without paid advertising, then you’ve interacted with your potential clients, you know a little bit about their challenges and what problems they are looking to solve.
 
After you’ve made your message, media, and market hypothesis and you are ready to build out your ads, you can make an investment in Facebook ads.  You do, however, need to treat it exactly as such, an INVESTMENT.  You need to establish a test-budget and be completely ok with losing all of it.
 
The last thing you should do is put your last $1,000 worth of savings on a campaign to try and resuscitate your business.
 
When advertising on Facebook, I always assume that I could lose 100% of the money I put in.  If you are looking to get started with online ads, look at your business’ cash-flows and determine the amount you can safely risk testing on your ads each month.  When you assume that risk, you remove the emotion from the process.
 
The worst investors bet their money on things that they NEED to work. When you establish your test budget, you are identifying your hard stop number and you limit your downside.  
 
Treat your ads like a professional investor. That’s how you set yourself up for success with Facebook. 

[VIDEO GUIDE} How Just $1 Per Day Can Make a HUGE Difference

Last week, I wrote about ways in which owners of micro-gyms should approach their marketing strategies.  To review, gym owners have 3 key digital marketing goals:

Goal #1: Build up your authority and likability, or “know-like-trust” factor

Goal #2: Capture leads

Goal #3: Make sales/generate new clients

In this week’s video, I’ll walk you through how to build campaigns that will help you prioritize Goal #1 – I’ll show you how to nurture your audience and increase the amount of people that know, like, and trust your brand. You’ll learn how to take your best content and get out in front of the eyes of your prospective clients in your audience. Click to watch!

Are you making these common Facebook ad mistakes?

To succeed in online advertising, especially with increased competition in the digital marketing landscape, you need to focus on three key goals:

 

1. Establish yourself as a likeable and trustworthy authority figure in your market.  Most in the blogosphere call this the know-like-trust factor.  

2. Capture leads (prospective client contact information)

3. Nurture your leads and convert them into new member sales

 

This list is written in order of importance.  Most gym owners attempt to drive cold traffic directly to a signup page on their website in hopes of increasing sales.  As a microgym owner, however, your #1 marketing and advertising goal is to first prove to people why they should listen to you and consider your gym.

 

You need to consistently provide value to your audience if you want them to know, like and trust you. You can create value in many different ways. You can write articles and blog posts, Facebook Live Q&A’s, video tutorials or webinars. Ask yourself, “what are the most common problems that current clients are looking to me to solve?”  List out those problems, prescribe solutions, and distribute those in the form of online content.  

 

Your ads will consistently underperform if you skip ahead and drive traffic to a front end offer. Offer your prospects something of value first before you ask for the sale.

 

You need to dedicate part of your advertising budget to audience engagement – to nurturing your audience with content.  

 

Using your ad budget solely to advertise and promote your front end offer, like a 21-day rapid fat loss program or a 6 week challenge, will lead to suboptimal results.  When your front end offer looks and sounds the same as every other gym in your area, there is very little to set your apart from your competition. Instead, build engagement campaigns that educate your audience on who you are, what you do, and why you can help them. If you haven’t promoted your valuable content to your audience and they see your ad for a 6 Week Challenge that looks just like the gym down the street, your prospect will have to make their decision based on price.  No one wins this game.

Creating and promoting content is easier than you think.  You can promote your content and build a large, warm audience with as little as $1 a day.  Tune in next week where we’ll show you how!

Where To Build Your Gym

Where To Build Your Gym

My second gym was a CrossFit gym. I built it in an industrial park, because #hardcore. It looked nothing light my bright, open personal training gym, which had tiled showers and sparkling windows. In fact, I remember by CrossFit landlord staring at my chalkboard wall and asking:

 

“Don’t you want it to look NICE?!”

 

I said, “Hell no!” and laughed. Of course, the joke was on me: over the next few years, I had a hard time getting people to drive across town to do puke-inducing workouts in a dusty garage. (You know, now that I say it out loud…)

 

Meanwhile, downtown in my airy second-floor personal training space, my clients were begging for CrossFit! And I, stubbornly stupidly, told them to “drive up to the Industrial Park if you want CrossFit.”

 

Most new affiliate owners are smarter than that. We work with dozens of future gym owners to help them avoid the crazy expensive mistakes we all made; open profitable; and kickstart their dream career. If you’re about to open, here’s a podcast I think you’ll LOVE (and I know will make you money).

 

Entrepreneurs go through four phases in their journey: Founder Phase, Farmer Phase, Tinker Phase, and Thief. If you’re not sure which phase you’re in, take the test here.

 

Then, whether you’re considering your first lease; an expansion; purchasing a building; adding a second location; or moving house, follow these guidelines:

 

Founder Phase priorities:

  1. Convenience is more important than exposure. Choose a location that close to your ideal clients’ homes or workplaces. If it’s closer to their work, you’ll need showers. If it’s closer to their home, you might not.
    Don’t be swayed by proximity to a highway. “But 30,000 cars drive by every day!!!” Exposure might get you the first half-dozen clients, but won’t be measurably more valuable in the long run.
    If you have two buildings in mind, and they’re priced the same with the same space and lease terms, and one is on a major highway? Sure. Go for it. But don’t choose your location based on drive-by exposure at the expense of convenience. Ask yourself: What’s actually better for my clients AFTER they join?
    People quit gyms to join closer gyms. But no one quits a gym because of signage.
  2. High-value clients are more important than volume. When you’re starting out, aim to make a good income on 30 clients or fewer. That probably means you’re not going to run big groups, but do more 1:1 and very small group training. Here’s a podcast episode to help you get your mind around it, and here’s a blog post that will help too.
    When you’re starting, you’re going to be doing a lot of coaching yourself. You’re mostly going to be coaching 1-3 people at a time. You can do that coaching for over $100+ per hour, or for under $12 per hour by trying to sell group memberships on day one.
  3. Short-term leases are more important than buildouts. You ARE going to grow–unless you “go for broke” and try to get too big, too soon. This is probably the #1 affiliate killer: great intentions, great bets, but too big, too soon.
    It’s better to borrow the money for one shower in your first location than to sign a 5-year deal and get the shower for free. Because you’re GOING to be successful. Bet on yourself, and don’t tie yourself down yet.
  4. Build a plan that makes you profitable right away. I paid myself four days after opening, because I had to. Even if you’re single, independently wealthy, and “don’t need the money”, you need to plan for profit or you’ll never get there. Here’s a helpful video, and you can book a free call with our team here.

Farmer Phase Priorities:

Your business becomes a destination business. NOW people will go out of their way (a little) to get to you, because they trust you. Trust has wheels. So you can look a bit broader, and add up to ten minutes’ travel time for your seed clients. Don’t worry about the fringe clients who will leave soon anyway.

You need split space to diversify revenue streams. In Farmer Phase, you’ll need to make a career for others. That means adding personal training and/or group training and/or nutrition. You’ll need an interior wall somewhere. You need to be able to run two things at once.

You need an office. You can’t build a business between interruptions, or while you’re thinking about empty bars being dropped. You need a door that closes. You need to give prospective new members some privacy, and have intimate conversations with your current clients.

You don’t need 10,000 square feet to do this. You need well-trained coaches, flexible programming and equipment that moves. You don’t need ten GHDs and 30 rowers or the space required to store them. If you have dust anywhere, you’re throwing away money on space you don’t need. You also don’t need to pay rent for “social space” for your clients. They’ll be friends whether you have couches or not.

 

Tinker Phase Priorities:

You need to own a building. If you’re the sole tenant in your building, you can start there…but a building with another anchor tenant is better. The first building I purchased housed only my gym. Given a gym owner’s penchant for paying themselves last, it might not be wise to be your own landlord. Having other tenants means the mortgage gets covered even when the gym has a bad month. But even if you’re the sole tenant, it’s still better to pay a mortgage than to pay rent.

Your staff needs a private “offstage” space. If you’re not going to be in the gym, you need to contain the mess. You also need to give staff a place to take off their stage face and relax, because they’re going to be around all day.

You probably need to find a second space. When you do, remember that your second location starts over at the Founder Phase, and follow those directions.

 

Every gym is different. But every landlord is the same: they want to rent all of their space on a 20-year contract that increases in value every year. You’re not in business to make them rich; you’re in business to succeed. Take small bites, start on the right foot, and grow to be the best, instead of trying to dig yourself out of a huge, echoing grave.

The Real Reason I HATE Bait-And-Switch Advertising

The Real Reason I HATE Bait-And-Switch Advertising

If you go read the CrossFit.com message boards all the way back to 2001, you’ll find questions about marketing.

 

The very first affiliates struggled with marketing. Affiliates in 2014–during the highest-growth period of CrossFit affiliates worldwide–still struggled with marketing. And in 2018, affiliates were still struggling with marketing.

 

So when some gym owners started to find success with various Facebook marketing strategies, I was thrilled. FINALLY, we could talk about actually running a business! FINALLY, more affiliate owners could afford the service that would really make a difference: mentorship!

 

And it happened: on more and more “Free Help” calls with affiliate owners, I heard: “I ran this six-week challenge and now I can afford mentorship!”

 

It appeared that the marketing problem was solved–at least, temporarily. No Facebook strategy lasts more than a few months, but I hoped that gym owners were being given some breathing room to work on the stuff that works forever.

 

But then I started hearing about the “bait and switch” advertising (I refuse to call it “marketing”.)

You know how it works already: “FREE challenge! Sign up here!” Then the potential new client is told the challenge is actually $499…but they’ll get their money back IF they leave a good review…and check off a bunch of other boxes.

 

I heard stories about coaches leaving, because they no longer trusted the box owners (“If they’re lying to clients, they’re probably lying to me, too.”)

 

I heard stories about great, long-term clients being “washed out” of the gym by the tidal waves of short-term, in-and-out groups of 30 or more.

 

I heard stories of burnout by owners. Stories of clients who thought they had “done CrossFit…and now I’m looking for the next thing” because they thought CrossFit was an 8-week mass challenge.

 

Stories of marketing companies charging tens of thousands of dollars for this stuff!

 

But what really broke my optimism was this: “People have commitment problems. They never stick around after 8 weeks!”

 

That’s not a commitment problem. That’s a leadership problem.

 

What kind of leader promises something to get you in the door, and then tells you the truth later? Not one that I’d follow.

 

What kind of relationship starts with a lie?

 

Since starting TwoBrain, I’ve wrestled with the question “What do gym owners actually NEED?” many times. It’s my mission to make gym owners wealthy–because I am one. I’ve asked the question about data sources; about booking and billing software; about handbooks and templates and courses and seminars and mentorship.

 

But what gym owners actually NEED is the ability to change lives. That means leadership. It means business strategies that stand on their own: logical, replicable, and honorable.

 

What gym owners don’t need is tricks. That’s what made the industry so corrupt BEFORE CrossFit!

 

So when two members of the TwoBrain family–John Franklin and Mateo Lopez–told me about their success with Facebook marketing, I was eager to hear their story. I love these guys. I trust them. They’re great leaders. They do things the right way.

 

They showed me their strategy. They’d taken years (and over $80,000 of investment) to learn how to market their four gyms well. I loved their method, but I don’t sell ideas; so we tested it. First in mentors’ gyms, then in a dozen TwoBrain gyms, then in a hundred. Their Facebook marketing strategy proved SO successful that we built it into the Incubator permanently. Every gym owner who works with TwoBrain receives mentorship in Facebook Marketing now.

 

Our strategy isn’t a swipe file or one specific campaign. It’s not an over-promise-and-pray plan. It’s mentorship.

 

What works in my market might not work in yours. Hell, I wouldn’t WANT another gym running the same ads in my city anyway. But John and Mateo have built a mentorship program for marketing on the TwoBrain platform that makes me proud. It’s one-on-one help (not big group calls); a help desk; tons of samples; coaching on ad spend and mentorship on testing. And it’s a fraction of the cost of these challenge-brokers, because I think that’s the right thing to do.

 

We also make gyms fix up their operations, retention strategy, coaching development plans, and pricing before teaching them marketing…because that’s ALSO the right thing to do.

 

I want to make gym owners wealthy. That means the ability to stay in the game for 30 years; to build long-term relationships of trust; to lead. Does your marketing make you proud…or does it make you a fraud?