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Exactly How They Drove Gym Revenue Up 3.5X

A photo of gym owners Chad and Esther Pinther and the title "Exactly How They Drove Gym Revenue Up 3.5X."

Mike Warkentin (00:02):
Big gross revenue in gyms. What’s the secret? You’re going to find out today. My name is Mike Warkentin. This is “Run a Profitable Gym,” and my guest is going to open his vault and tell you how he earned a spot on our Top 10 leaderboard for revenue in January 2024. Chad Pinter’s been here before. He earned a spot on our leaderboard for net owner benefit—that’s what he paid himself—almost a year ago to the day. You cannot pay yourself without revenue and profit. So, we’re going to dig into that today. But first I’m going to remind you: Our leaderboard for January 2024 for monthly revenue ran from $58,000 U.S. to $125,000. Now that’s six-figure revenue. This is a CrossFit gym, $58,000 to $125,000 if you can believe it. Chad earned a spot on that list, and we’re going to talk to him. Chad, how are you from Denver today?

Chad Pinther (00:48):
Alright, thanks Mike. Really an honor to be back again. Thank you so much.

Mike Warkentin (00:52):
I was saying to you before the show: I love circling back to talk to people I’ve spoken to before because it shows the evolution of what they’re doing, and it shows sustainability and consistency, and that’s a big theme when we talk to some of the people on this leaderboard. A lot of them said, “These numbers aren’t out of the ordinary.” It’s not crazy one-hit-wonders. This is sustainable stuff. You’ve been able to do this as well. So, I want to dig in, and I’m going to ask you, tell me anything you can about your revenue streams—rough approximations, whatever you got: What goes into your big number?

Chad Pinther (01:19):
Sure. Yeah. So, our biggest number, about 78%, is our group, right? That’s the big chunk for the gym. It’s the main focus. And then we’ve got about 15%, which is a decent amount of personal training. And that’s definitely increased, and I can kind of talk about that over the last year. And then, 3% nutrition, merchandise is 2%. And then we’ve got some specialty programs. It’s about 1%, and then, some drop in is around 1% as well. So, the big two are the group and the PT.

Mike Warkentin (01:56):
OK. And I want to circle back, and I want to ask about the PT growth, but first give me the 60-second summary of Colfax Strong Strength and Conditioning. You said you’re a CrossFit affiliate, but you also run strength and conditioning brand as well. Talk to me about what you sell, who’s your market, what are you doing there?

Chad Pinther (02:10):
Sure. So yeah, we’re located pretty much downtown Denver. Have just under 9,000-square-foot facility. Our demographic is pretty young, a lot of working young professionals—late twenties, early thirties on average—living in close proximity to the gym. We have around two—it runs from 240 to 260 members in the gym. And yeah, so we’re still contained in a CrossFit affiliate. So, we’re definitely under the CrossFit brand. That’s the programming in the gym except our PT, which is all individualized work and programming for them. But the original gym started in 2013, and we bought it in 2019 and took over at that point.

Mike Warkentin (03:05):
OK. OK. So that’s interesting. So, you’re running essentially a group model, but you’re adding on extra things. I’m going to ask you this question first because when I got—I think when my gym, we ran a similar model—I think I got to it in the range of 200, 220 members, something like that. But my revenue was nowhere near what you guys are putting up monthly. Talk to me a little bit about like, how are you doing that? Like do you have any average revenue per member kind of general ideas there, or how are you putting together so much revenue with so few members? And I don’t mean the 240 is not a large number, but I had getting close to that number, and my revenue was not that.

Chad Pinther (03:35):
Sure. Yeah. Well, and I have to always give credit to Two-Brain. We got involved in Two-Brain at the very beginning. I always want to reiterate that. Very grateful for what they’ve done for us. I always tell people the story of when I first started it—and actually I can’t credit my myself; my wife, actually, Esther, is the other owner in the gym, and when I was looking to try to get off the airplanes and all the flying and all that because I’ve been doing modeling for a little over 20 years, I asked her, I said, “What should we do?” And she said, “Well, we love doing CrossFit. Let’s open a CrossFit gym.” And I told her that I thought that was a crazy idea and not possible. The main concern I had is I didn’t know what I was doing, and I literally got on the computer, and I typed in “How do you run a CrossFit gym?”

Chad Pinther (04:24):
And one of the first things that came up was Two-Brain Business. And I started doing some research into the company, into Coop and everybody, and did a couple calls and realized that I really didn’t know what I was doing, and I needed a lot of help. So, they’ve helped us a lot from the beginning, helped us through the pandemic, given us a plan at every step in the game. And one of the things that’s really big for us is how we’ve changed the evolution of how someone comes into the gym, number one, and number two, related to that, our client avatar, so to speak. Right? I think in the beginning we were like, “Come on, let’s take everybody. Let’s get as many as we can.” We had all these different pricing structures and everything; some of that we inherited.

Chad Pinther (05:12):
And through work with our mentor, we found a lot of things we needed to kind of standardize. And we used to have the old model of, “Alright, let’s bring somebody in the gym and try a class, right? And then, if you like it, let’s get rolling.” And we did have like a small-group model, like onboarding process. And one of the things that my mentor kept telling me was this whole No Sweat Intro idea, right? And I kept thinking, “This just isn’t—that can’t work.” I thought, “They really want to try it,” you know, and I should have listened from the start. We should have followed that model, but I kept thinking they had to try it, or they weren’t going to want it, right? And the reality was I started seeing a lot of situations where people coming into the gym and then they’re stepping out on the floor, and they were completely like deer in headlights, didn’t know what was going on, right? And sure, especially for something like our gym where we do sometimes highly technical movements, Olympic movements, gymnastics. Imagine stepping a brand-new person out on the floor, and you doing overhead squat or barbell snatch or like bar muscle ups or something, right?

Mike Warkentin (06:28):
I can’t do that. I’m out. Not for me.

Chad Pinther (06:30):
Right. Right. And that would—that happened a lot. So finally, we adopted that, and the next thing, the next evolution for us, which changed our average revenue per member, which right now sits about 255.

Mike Warkentin (06:44):
Yeah, there you go. It’s a big number.

Chad Pinther (06:46):
And then our length of engagement is around 16 months as well.

Mike Warkentin (06:50):
Oh, that is way—that is double the industry average. Just FYI listeners.

Chad Pinther (06:54):
Awesome. What we changed was, as a team, we got together—getting a lot of feedback from our team—we still looked out on the floor and thought, “They’re not moving the way we want them to move. They’re not at the standard we want.” And we really realized that the way that that was going to be best achieved was to go to a more personal training model, bringing people in. So, we came up with a plan of doing a minimum three personal training sessions. And this is for even your seasoned CrossFit people. We’ve had people come in, you know, “I’ve been doing CrossFit for 15 years.” And OK, well, as we all know, myself included, even if you think you’ve got it all, if you sit down with somebody and go over some things, there’s things you can work on. And so, we got three and then there’s four and then six for like brand-new people. And so, that changed a lot because now we actually have definitive personal training sessions that come with every member. And we bring in probably anywhere from 15 to 25ish new members per month on average.

Mike Warkentin (08:07):
And they all come in with personal training as a start? Beauty.

Chad Pinther (08:10):
Correct. Correct. Yep. That was a big piece to kind of boosting that. In addition, another thing that we did in the last, let’s see, almost nine months ago, is we hired, made the decision to hire a sales director. Right? This was a big, big change for us. It was something that, from a financial standpoint, was pretty scary because to cover the cost—when I looked up how much you have to pay a sales director, I immediately thought, “Absolutely not. This won’t work.” OK. But once again, got some feedback from Lisa, who’s our mentor, and she actually put me in contact with another gym that had actually done this and successfully done it. So, I reached out to them and actually spoke to their sales director and made the decision to not only hire our own, but to get some consulting done with their sales director. So, we invested a fair amount of money in that too. And the reason why we got into the sales director was one: I thought that, overall, it would probably benefit us massively from a financial standpoint. My question was: How long was it going to take to replace that income, right? And then get over the top of that hump.

Mike Warkentin (09:36):
So what happened? I’ve got to know; like, this is incredible.

Chad Pinther (09:38):
Yeah. It was actually a necessity from a personal standpoint, to be honest, because my wife and I, we were working the 100-hour workweeks, right? Even delegating things out as we’re taught, there was just a lot we were doing. And the biggest sort of drain on our personal life with the work-life balance was we were staying in the gym till 8 p.m. three, four nights a week because we’re doing these new client meetings, right? And my wife, literally in her brilliance as much as it was to start the business, she said, “We can’t do this anymore.” Right? “We don’t have a life. We need to—” And she said, “I think we need to get somebody to do this.” So once again, I told her, “It’s not possible. She’s crazy,” just like all this stuff. And she’s like, “We need to do this.”

Chad Pinther (10:28):
So that started the process, got some definite coaching from our mentor, and then we went for it. And so the advice I got was, “Alright, Chad, you’re going to—you need to understand that you’re going to take three months of the cost of that person, and you might as well accept you’re going to burn it, right? Because it’s going to take about that long to get on top if”—this was the key—”if it’s going to work.” Now it wasn’t just stepping into this with this blind sort of, “Well, I hope it works.” Like the reality is we are lucky in the Denver area in the sense that we have a very large influx of new potential members and leads, right? So, I think this could be a challenge for people maybe in different rural areas, right?

Chad Pinther (11:27):
But for us, it was—I feel like, OK, there’s enough people coming in. I knew the leads, right? And at this point, we weren’t even doing any paid advertising, which is another thing we can change; I can comment on. We started doing that as well. So, we went for it. He came in, and it was like we never looked back. He signed—so my close rate for the whole team because we had our coaches doing it before; they were doing all the meetings and my wife and I—and our close weight was around, it could be 40%, 50%, and Sean’s is around 75% to 80%.

Mike Warkentin (12:10):
Wow. So like double in some cases.

Chad Pinther (12:12):
Right? So, he went—his first month broke the record, and we signed, I think it was 33 new members, so it was just staggering, right? So, he’s just come in and crushed it. And it only—it took about three months when we started seeing, “OK, we got over what we paid him; we got our life back.” At the same time also, we started some paid advertising. I wanted to kind of work through—we would have slumps sometimes in those leads. And I wanted to kind of work through that. We got some additional mentoring with Colm there. A couple different times I connected him with Sean. I sat in on that. And so, we try to utilize that. I’m not sure if people know about that, but you can trade out your sessions. And I did that for a good period of time where you can take your mentorship session and set it aside and grab somebody else.

Mike Warkentin (13:10):
We have specialists on staff. Yeah. We’re happy to help you with paid marketing or other things you’re struggling with. Yep.

Chad Pinther (13:14):
Correct. Right. So, we did that a couple different times with Colm as we built out our Google ads, as we built out the Facebook, and he could kind of take a look over it, make sure we had it all set up correctly. And then Sean came with a bunch of experience already as far as what—how to do that. So, that was a big piece for us is bringing him on. And then he’s just slowly ratcheted up kind of our starting revenue, right? Like we get a report that tells us what’s our auto pay for next month, right? And he’s ratcheted that up quite a bit since he even first got started, so super grateful for that. And then, let’s see, another thing we’ve done is my wife decided she was going to take over the nutrition aspect of the gym.

Chad Pinther (14:13):
That’s something we struggled with over the last couple years. I don’t—I’m not sure why. I think the biggest thing is, for us, it was like we would—we hired externally to the gym. And I’ve just noticed that CrossFit, specifically in this microgym space, it’s all about sort of like that street cred. If you see someone there, you see their training, you see what they look like, right? And so, we had had some external people; I even tried getting like an RD for a while. I thought, well, the best, let’s get the best. And it actually was the worst. They weren’t training in the gym; they didn’t know the community, you know. So as soon as Esther took it on, within like two weeks, she had like 12 clients, right? So, she’s brought in right now, per month, about $2,000 in extra income just from nutrition itself.

Chad Pinther (15:13):
So that’s really like boosted it up over time. And then as far as retention pieces, which I think obviously goes into keeping that number and driving that number up. We’ve got an active CSM, and we’ve added layers to that each sort of new iteration of that as we’ve gone along to make sure that we’re not losing members because they’re unhappy, because we don’t know what’s happening. We have a very active goal review process. We’re huge fans of the 90-day goal reviews. In fact, we started seeing a drop off at about 45 days, right? One of the things we noticed when we brought in a sales director like Sean, he’s so good at sales that he gets people, I think, to sign up who are very new and may not even consider that, right? And they need a little more care.

Chad Pinther (16:11):
And so we started looking at, “OK, when are these people dropping off? When are they leaving?” And 90 days seemed like an eternity, right? And if you don’t have someone talking to you saying, “How are things going?” So, we now have a process where we go 45 days; there’s a connection there. There’s a quick sit down: “How are you doing? Is there anything we can help you out with your feedback—any sort of like way we can make this a better process?” And that’s helped save some memberships that maybe someone was like, “I’m not sure about this,” you know? So, we’ve started that process, and that’s kept our average revenue per member stable and growing over time.

Mike Warkentin (16:55):
Wow. So listeners, I’m going to give you a quick recap here of the highlight reel, because this is right out of the Two-Brain playbook. Everything Chad laid out, there’s really cool aspects to it. So, first thing, you got a group model, but then you’re starting to bring people in with a free consultation and personal training, right? So, you’re bringing them in, not just dumping them to group classes like I did, and this is why Chad’s number was better than mine ever was because he’s doing free consultations, bringing them in with personal training, no matter how much experience they have—that boosts your average drive per member, and it improves retention. We have stats on that. And then they go into group classes. Some of them probably keep doing personal training. We might talk about that in a sec. From there, Chad did a really cool thing where he did some research and got a salesperson in place.

Mike Warkentin (17:34):
Now this is an investment, but he did the work ahead of time to find out, “Can I do this? How do I do this? What’s the reward here? What’s the cost? What’s the risk?” And put that in place. And then he started talking about marketing. It wasn’t marketing with a close rate that was at 40% or 50%. It was, “I have a guy who’s closing at like 75%, 80%. I’m going to supercharge this with some marketing, and these people are going to come in and more of them are going to sign up, which is going to make my investment and my ROI so much better as opposed to what I was doing where we ran marketing; I didn’t know how to sell. People came in the door; I couldn’t deal with it. And then my close rate was worse than 40%. I guarantee it. So, we got that.

Mike Warkentin (18:12):
From there, we’ve got extra programs. So, nutrition program is a great one. It’s a no brainer in a ton of gyms; it’s difficult to get them going at times. And there are various ways Chad talked about that you can struggle with it. Not a lot of gyms crush nutrition. Now that’s a stat from our State of the Industry Report. Some do. So, when you start, it might be 3% or 4%, but that’s still 3% or 4%. And nutrition programs can scale very quickly without a ton of space and a ton of equipment. And I know gym owners that are crushing 20% of gross revenue through nutrition programs. So that program can scale really, really well. And then the final piece I’ve got to highlight for you is retention. Chad mentioned the CSM; that’s a client success manager. The client success manager’s job is to retain clients. He also did some analysis of his client journey and said: Because our salesperson is crushing it and getting people in here, we might need some extra retention stuff earlier, as opposed to every 90 days, which is the standard. Adjusting it now every 45 days. We have more touch points; we’re retaining more members at a higher average revenue per member.

Mike Warkentin (19:11):
You see how this big snowball is rolling downhill and resulting in monthly revenue that’s over 50 grand. So, you guys can do that too. But again, it’s not everything at once. It’s targeted stuff step by step. Chad, I want to ask you specifically about your mentor. Did she give you specific steps like this? Because everything you just talked about is going to be super overwhelming for the average gym owner saying, “I don’t know how to deal with this.” Was it just like, “Let’s do this right now? Or how did that mentorship process go?”

Chad Pinther (19:37):
Yeah, well the good thing is, is all of this stuff exists in large part in the modules that are the—

Mike Warkentin (19:45):
Two-Brain resources for clients. Yeah.

Chad Pinther (19:46):
Right. So, you know, another thing I didn’t mention that is a big part of this is we also put together high-ticket items. Where we—

Mike Warkentin (19:56):
Oh yeah, there you go.

Chad Pinther (19:57):
—have all-inclusive sort of nutrition, personal training, class access, open gym, et cetera. And we even have a process with weekly mentorship sessions with our clients. And so that was something that basically she said, “OK, you want to do this?” She was doing it. And so, I knew I had resource there, and she said, “OK, take a look at this.” I did the research with the modules, and then I had someone to go to say, “OK, we’ve got these sorts of things we’re trying to work on now.” So, it was always very well guided of “Here’s what you want to do; do this now.” You know, so the process is really—I love Lisa. And her path is very directive, right? It’s not a therapy session of, “Oh, this is terrible. This is what’s going on,” right? It’s like, “OK, what’s the problem? Now, let’s have an action and specific steps to take for that.” And then your next session you’re talking about, “Did we take these steps?”

Mike Warkentin (21:10):
So, accountability. She checked in.

Chad Pinther (21:12):
Correct. Yep, I like that. I like that. It’s very directive. And then another piece that I wanted to kind of highlight too related to this that was also advised to us from the Two-Brain material and from Lisa was to move into more of a prescriptive model. And Sean was able to really take off with this because one of the problems with the way we were selling things was we were very limited in what we were presenting. OK? We had to where it was like, “OK, here’s package A, B, C,” right? And if they were like, “A is the cheapest, right? C is the most expensive,” from a sales standpoint, where are we probably going to go on average, right? You’re going to go, right? So, what we really realized is let’s get some more flexibility and move into creating a sales process where Sean can actually design something for specifically what that client wants and needs.

Chad Pinther (22:24):
Most of the time they’re coming to us with the kind of inherent sort of belief that we—and hopefully that’s definitely the truth that they trust us—that we know what we’re talking about. We’re the experts. If they want to achieve A, then we’re going to give them the plan to get there, right? And so rather than just being restricted to specific plans, Sean can create very custom things, like, “Alright, so if you want some group membership, a group membership plan, but you also want to do one or two times a week for some PT, right? Let’s get you into that. Do you want open gym access?” Right? “Do you want nutrition?” OK. And so, he can build all those things together, and we’ve sat down and put together the pricing structure of all that. So, he’s got his prescriptive sheet, and he goes, “Here’s what you want.”

Chad Pinther (23:20):
“Here’s your goals. Here’s what I recommend.” Right? So then from there, he has that ability to build that hybrid sort of membership, which then boosts most of the time the average membership. But the main thing is it’s actually getting these members what they truly want, rather than just going: Group PT, that’s your only option here, right? So that’s been huge for delivering our mission, which is to truly help people live their best lives and help the larger community, right? So, that prescriptive model has really changed things for feeling like we’re achieving that, as well as helped from a financial standpoint because people will genuinely spend more if they feel like they’re getting what they really want.

Mike Warkentin (24:18):
Yeah. Listeners, the prescriptive model, I’m going to give you the high level—it’s more intricate than this—but I’ll give you the high-level details of how it works. It’s not a shotgun blast of “Here’s everything we offer.” It is listening to a client, asking what they want to accomplish and then prescribing exactly what would get them to their goal fastest. For example, “I need you to come to group classes four times a week, one personal training session a week, and you’re going to do nutrition with Esther monthly.” That can be your entire prescription, and that package probably sounds like $400 or $500, and people will buy that. If they don’t, it’s as simple as saying, “OK, you know, that’s the best plan, but I can also get you there with, maybe we take out the personal training for now, and we go with this package,” and there’s a whole system. In the hands of an experienced sales rep like Sean, which Chad has at his gym, this can be a super powerful thing. And the best part about it is what he just said: You’re actually helping clients achieve their goals by telling how you can get them there fastest. That’s it. There’s nothing else there. It’s not high pressure. It’s not mean; it’s not slimy. It’s just saying, “Here’s how I would get you to the goal.” So, have you seen like marked improvements in average revenue per member and gross revenue as a result of this whole thing?

Chad Pinther (25:25):
Absolutely. Absolutely. Yep. We’ve seen—from the beginning, our numbers are—we’ve seen a three and a half times increase since we started.

Mike Warkentin (25:37):
With Two-Brain?

Chad Pinther (25:38):
Correct.

Mike Warkentin (25:39):
Three and a half times revenue?

Chad Pinther (25:41):
Correct.

Mike Warkentin (25:42):
Wow. So that’s—you’re on the leaderboard, and you’ve increased gross revenue three and a half times since you started with mentorship.

Chad Pinther (25:49):
Yep. Yep. From when we bought the gym to now currently. Yeah.

Mike Warkentin (25:53):
That’s life changing—that’s a life changing stat, right?

Chad Pinther (25:56):
Oh, absolutely. Like we talked a year ago—the net owner benefit, it’s allowed us to definitely live a good life for ourselves, to be able to put money away. We’ve got some real estate investment as well. And we have three full-time career coaches that we’re able to provide great income to some benefits, right? And then we’ve got Sean who’s a full-time as well. So, a team of four. We opt for a smaller team rather than doing a bunch of part-timers so we can get them really dialed in and bought in, and they can actually feel secure that they’ve got a career in this, something that they love to do. So being able to have all of that to support my wife and I when—you know, we’ve got a daughter, and she does tons of activities and all that; we can pay for all of that. Take a vacation a year, and each of our staff members can do what they want to do and be well taken care of as well.

Mike Warkentin (27:02):
Wow. So that’s really cool. The cool thing here is you’re not doing this with 600 members. I know there are some gyms on that leaderboard that have quite a few members, like I think there’s one that has about 500, I know for sure. And that’s cool. You are doing it a different way with a high ARM, a great length of engagement, great sales process, and like 220 to 240 members, I think you said. So, under 250, which is a sustainable number, right? Which means that you don’t have to have—like, you have a big space at 9,000 square feet. And I know rent in Denver isn’t cheap, but you’re not doing it with 16,000 or 20,000. You’re doing it with a decent sized space. And I think if I am—if I would be so bold, I think that you have some room to grow even, when your nutrition program—if I have you back in a year, I bet your wife’s nutrition program is going to be doing more than $2,000 a month simply because she’s walking the walk; she’s in the gym. She’s obviously skilled at what she does.

Mike Warkentin (27:49):
I would guarantee that thing is going to be up a bunch of money, and your gross revenue’s going to go up. So, you’ve got a whole bunch of cool stuff in place. I’ve got to ask you this. So, gym owners out there, and they’re nowhere near your level and just starting out and they say, “What would I do if I wanted to add about $2,000 to my monthly revenue?” What would you give them as a first step? What should they do?

Chad Pinther (28:09):
Yeah, I think the first thing that I would do is I would definitely move to a prescriptive model or have some form of that in your sales process, rather than just focusing on if you just have group personal training, one or the other. See if you can get a process involved that is more about giving a client exactly what they want and do what Lisa has taught me, which is good, better, best. Right? Which is a way that you can have people—who doesn’t want the best, right? So, from a sales standpoint and from accurately being able to give a client what they want; give them these three options, right? So, I think moving that prescriptive model; I think that really doing a great job of dialing in your onboarding process to have mandatory PT would be an excellent way. We’ve just discovered that creating that one-on-one relationship with your member is—it’s just invaluable.

Chad Pinther (29:19):
And then by having that added PT revenue, you’re now not only creating better movers, safer movers within your gym, but you’re creating a relationship that already starts off that, “Hey, there’s value in PT,” right? And so, we’ve seen several people say, “Hey, OK, I did that PT in the beginning, but I’d like to go and do another session or continue doing this,” right? And so, I think having that built into your process, if you can, would be a huge benefit to your gym in general, but would also benefit your bottom line right out of the gate. So doing that; I think having some sort of nutrition program would be—like I think it’s interesting that you asked the $2,000 because that’s exactly the number that Esther’s bringing in right now to the gym. And I expect—we expect that to go higher as you said, especially since we’re spending a lot of time, I think Coop calls it, “putting them on the podium” where we’re actually putting the spotlight on people who are achieving things.

Chad Pinther (30:29):
We’ve got this little whiteboard that people take a picture of in their goal reviews, and it shows their muscle mass. You know, the InBody scan is a direct part of when you come into the gym and every single goal review in our gym; you get that InBody scan. Gives them a metric of saying, “Hey, here, you’re actually achieving this,” or if we’re not, “Let’s figure out why.” And it’s also a good point where we can work with them on encouraging them to do some nutrition work as well, right? So that, I think, bringing nutrition in, because we all know it is the foundation to health, right? It’s before all of this movement. And we still struggle with this. We get people who still think, “I can outwork a really poor diet.”

Chad Pinther (31:25):
We know that that’s not, so I think if you can get this going in your gym, there’s tons of resources from Two-Brain, the program’s built out there. One of the things we did is we switched out a mentorship session with Cynthia Fotti. So, she’s one of the specialists; we have worked with her a couple different times, and she basically will be like, “OK, here’s how you do it. Do A, B, C, D.” And we’ve executed that and always had some great bottom line revenue for that. So, I’d say a nutrition program would be essential to that. And that’s going to increase your bottom line. And then, I’d consider paid advertising. OK? I don’t think it should be first. We cover all the bases with retention with our CSM, doing a risk report every week—who’s not coming to the gym—making sure that we take care of our members with their goal reviews, et cetera, having a lot of really cool events that are free for them to participate in.

Chad Pinther (32:35):
Working on that community and working on affinity marketing as well, where we get referrals from other people. But I think paid advertising can be really helpful and really powerful to foray into. It can be expensive, right? Like to a bottom line. But if you do the numbers—and we have—we’ve absolutely recovered by three, four times what we’ve invested in it when it comes to things like putting in the high-ticket items. That’s another thing I think you could do. We don’t get a ton of them, but when we do, they’re big, right? So that more than pays for the paid advertising. So, I’d say those are the main aspects.

Chad Pinther (33:25):
And finally, if you can afford it—I know not everybody’s in that same position, but we’ve had great luck with it—the sales director thing is a great thing to have because when you have somebody who that’s what they live and breathe, right, they’re going to do a better job than you. I remember when we first hired Sean, and I was like, “OK, I’m going to sit in on his thing, and I’m going to watch what’s going on just to make sure everything’s going right.” And it only took me a few sessions just to sit there and say, “Why didn’t I do this a long time ago?” Number one, and you’ve got to be careful. You don’t want slimy salesperson, right? So, we had like 70 applicants for our sales position, right? So, wading through all that, and we had—it’s a pretty cool story because I’m wading through all these applicants and I’m walking by in our athlete sort of like common entryway area up there.

Chad Pinther (34:30):
And there was a guy standing there, and I noticed he—I’m like, “This guy’s not a part of the gym.” And I walked by him, and I said, “Hey, are you new?” He goes, “Hi, I am Sean. I’m your sales director.”

Mike Warkentin (34:44):
Powerful play.

Chad Pinther (34:44):
And I was like, “OK.” So, we sat down and talked, and he has a way of talking with people and making him feel great.

Mike Warkentin (34:52):
He sold you, right?

Chad Pinther (34:53:
Yeah, he really did. And so, when I sat in on his sessions, I’m like, “This guy’s much better. He makes you feel comfortable.” Yeah. So, you know, be careful about that. But I think if you can find someone, you know, like him, and you can have someone like that to give you your time back. We talk a lot about it this in our mentorship about buying our time back, right? And the whole thing is getting the right people in the right seats, and they should be better than you at what you’re doing. And my wife and I and our coaches were doing it; we were doing OK, but we weren’t really salespeople. It wasn’t what we were passionate about. And so, when we handed that over to somebody who is, it made all the difference.

Mike Warkentin (35:35):
OK, so Chad listed a bunch of stuff there that you can use to generate more revenue in your gym. What should you do? Well, I’ll tell you this. A mentor would tell you exactly what to do when, what is the best thing for your business right now. It might be a sales director; it might not. It might be a CSM; it might not. You will figure that out with a mentor and everything that Chad listed, we have plug and play resources for clients: checklists, step-by-step resources, timelines, done for you stuff where you just take the stuff, and you put it in place really fast. You can get a nutrition program going in about a week, I would think, if you did it with a mentor. But I’m going to give you this for free. The prescriptive model: I’m going to put a link in the show notes for you.

Mike Warkentin (36:12):
This—you can literally take this, read this article; it’ll take you maybe 10 minutes. You could put this in play today in your next sales consultation. And if you do this, I’ll give you a couple of stats. People are going to stay longer and buy more. And as part of the prescriptive model, we have goal review sessions. In those goal review sessions, 90 days down the line, 30% of clients upgrade their service packages by 30%. Those are stats from deep in the Two-Brain vault. That means that you’re going to sell more stuff to people in your business and add more revenue without adding a single member. Just by asking them, “How are you doing in progressing towards your goals?” You can do that very easily. Chad is living proof of that. I’m going to put the link in the show notes. Do me a favor, read it, use it, and then use that money book a call to talk about mentorship and see what we can do to help you move even faster. Chad, I want to thank you so much for your time. I love circling back and finding out what you’ve done over the last year. So, we’ve got to make a date, March 2025, and do this again, I think.

Chad Pinther (37:12):
Yeah, I appreciate your time. Such an honor, Mike. Thank you so much.

Mike Warkentin (37:16):
My pleasure. We will talk to you very soon. Thank you again for sharing your time. I’m Mike Warkentin. This is “Run a Profitable Gym.” Please hit “Subscribe” on your way out, so you don’t miss an episode. And now here’s Chris Cooper with a final message.

Chris Cooper (37:27):
Hey, it’s Two-Brain founder Chris Cooper with a quick note. We created the Gym Owners United Facebook group to help you run a profitable gym. Thousands of gym owners, just like you have already joined. In the group, we share sound advice about the business of fitness every day. I answer questions, I run free webinars and I give away all kinds of great resources to help you grow your gym. I’d love to have you in that group. It’s Gym Owners United on Facebook, or go to gymownersunited.com to join. Do it today.

Thanks for listening!

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