By Ken Andrukow, TwoBrain Mentor
Previously, I talked about the importance of “Knowing Your Client’s Why” from the big-picture perspective of services you can offer to address their needs and keep them engaged in your gym for a lifetime. Today we’ll look at your client’s “why” from a core business step you may be missing: your new client intake.
How do you bring in or process new clients into your community and get them started with the services you offer? Do you have them fill out a standard form, tell them about your Foundations class, sign them up for their five introductory sessions and then push them into regular WOD programming?
Probably. But how does this address your client’s “why”? It’s time to ditch the one-size-fits-all approach and give your new clients what they need.
Here are two typical examples of new prospects you want to see walking into your gym.
The first is a 42-year-old woman with two kids and is 45 pounds overweight, who tells you she hasn’t been in a gym since her teens. Your first step should be to ask why she walked into your gym. Maybe she’s looking to have more energy to do activities with her kids and wants to look better in her clothes, rather than deadlift 275 pounds and do a rope climb.
Next, find out what she does well already. Perhaps she brought a dog into the family three months ago the kids aren’t looking after, so she takes it for a 45-minute walk every day. These walks will serve as both building blocks for her confidence as well as the program you’re going to design for her.
The wrong solution would be to put her in your Foundations program for five classes and move her into regular WODs. She’ll hang in for two months only to quit because it’s overwhelming and not geared to her needs right now.
First, you could introduce her to your nutrition program and give her manageable changes that improve how she feels immediately. Second, you could recommend she increases her dog walks to 1 hour every day, broken into 30 minutes in both the morning and evening. After 3-4 weeks of improved activity levels and eating habits that can sustain the next phase of changes, she could start 1-on-1 training sessions with one of your coaches and complete a baseline body fat analysis. Additionally, you could ask her to increase the amount of activity she’s doing at home and up the complexity of the nutritional changes, building on what she’s already achieved and feels good about.
As she progresses in meeting her goals with your help, she’ll get closer to being ready for regular classes. Her “why” will shift as she’s ready for new challenges, confident that your gym is where she can get the support she needs going forward.
Another prospective client you may see is a 55-year-old male with a history of knee issues. He’s a former high-level athlete who loves competition but has fallen off regular training and participating in sports because of the pain it causes him. When you ask for his “why”, he tells you he wants to enjoy playing sports again and be able to train pain-free.
The danger here is that CrossFit is very appealing to his competitive nature and his ego will push him to do more than he should, too soon. Instead, the right solution could be a personal training program that focuses on rehabilitation and addresses the dysfunction that has been causing his knee issues. Once he’s pain-free, he’ll be able to move into regular programming and stay with it for life―in your gym.
If you don’t have the overall focus on the client’s “why”, you’ll miss the opportunity to build success in your clients’ terms. Sometimes, finding that “why” takes some work. Don’t be afraid to dig down and continue asking questions to get to the real heart of their motivation. When that focus permeates every facet of your business, your clients’ success naturally becomes your success.