IMPROVE MY GAME
Building a Golf Fitness Business: What Do You Do First?
Thu May 20, 2004 by Fran Rosario
Now that you’ve completed some or all of your TPI Golf Fitness Certification Courses, it’s time to get right to the question that we’re all asking: “What’s next?”. Or even more directly: “What do I do first?”. I am excited to share with you some of the most important first steps you can take to getting your golf fitness business off the ground.
For a long time, the leaders in this industry were under the impression that in sharing our secrets to growing a golf fitness business, we’d be compromising our own success and growth. This is most certainly not the case, and in fact, we have found that sharing what we know and have learned to be true and effective only helps everyone in the industry. In this article, we’ll cover three initial phases that you can put into action immediately to jumpstart your golf fitness business and begin earning income by getting clients in the door to purchase your services.
PHASE 1: GET READY
LAYING THE GROUNDWORK: MENTAL PREPARATION
As we get into the first phase, or “Get Ready”, I would like to issue a challenge to you. Yes, you can have the greatest golf fitness training program or exercises, but simply having the best golf fitness routine for people still won’t dramatically increase the flow of new golf fitness clients in your door. You need to either create your own marketing plan or be willing to follow a proven successful step-by-step marketing plan that helps you do this. In either case, once you create or choose your plan, you’ll have to commit to following through and doing it.
We have been offering this information to physical therapists, chiropractors, and personal trainers, as well as trained exercise professionals of all types, and what I have found is that only a very small percentage of these folks will actually use these proven ideas, while the large portion of these people would rather sit back and allow the new business to find them. First, you’ll have to decide if you want to create an image of difference between you and all the other “golf fitness professionals”. The way to do this is to be THAT PERSON that has the discipline to follow your chosen golf fitness marketing plan.
Making that decision is crucial as you begin to lay the groundwork of mental preparation for starting and growing your business. It is important that you know and understand that there really is a market of golf fitness prospects for you; in fact, there are many more golfers now interested in golf-specific fitness services than all of us combined can even get to. Another important factor in your mental preparation is to understand and start to become familiar with the number of resources that you have at your fingertips. Again, it always comes back to who will be willing to follow through and utilize these resources.
ACTION ITEMS TO DO FIRST
1. Build a network of business friends. Whether you are getting your business off the ground or trying to grow your current client base, you will need help. As a matter of fact, you will be asking for help from these people, so the larger your network, the more help you will get. Always continue to build this network. Set a goal of adding 10 more business friends to your database every month. Why is this important? Over the years, our research has shown that many business owners or directors, high-level management, and salespeople actually enjoy golf. And if they don’t golf, chances are, they know someone that does!
2. Build a database of golfer prospects. Anytime you meet a person that golfs (at any level; beginner to expert), you should attempt to get their contact information, or at the very least, their name and email address. This does not necessarily mean that this particular person will be your client, but it is very possible that this person will know your next client. For this program to work, you will need to generate the two databases we have just covered: a network of business friends and a list of golfer prospects.
3. Begin to find experts to follow in the golf fitness world. In our research over the last few years, we have found that Googling for information to find new general fitness clients appears to be quite simple; there are numerous articles to help you bring in new members to a gym or a general personal fitness program. However, there are almost no articles showing you how to accumulate golfers as golf fitness clients. Since this particular information is difficult to come by, once you find the true golf fitness marketing experts (the ones that really know how to attract the golfers), latch on and try your best to tap into their library of information. Ask as many questions as possible and work to get all of the details and steps to any activity that may help you get the golfer as a client.
PHASE 2: GET SET
CREATING A BUSINESS PLAN
This has always been the hardest information to communicate to those interested in starting a golf fitness business because some may think that I am trying to discourage people from this industry. In reality, it’s the opposite; all I want to do here is get everything that you should think about out on the table for you, so that you can begin to develop an organized plan that will alleviate as many roadblocks as possible and therefore, moving you towards getting new clients in your door as soon as you can.
In building your golf fitness business, decide what your market demographics will be and put it in writing. First, you will need to choose the type of golfer you want to work with: age, gender, golf skill levels, geography you want to cover, etc. Then, take the time to list all of the possible ways you believe you will be able to attract the golfers you choose to work with.
Take the time to talk to other people in this business to gather new ideas of how they were successful in getting a new golfer as their client. Join whatever golf fitness chat boards you can find and ask specific questions as to how to make it work in your area. As a mentor once told me, “Fran, there are a lot of smart people out there that have found ways to succeed in getting new clients.” Put your pride in your back pocket and start listening for those informational gems. If you do this, you will learn how to talk to the golfers in a way that makes them want to ask you to help them.
SETTING GOALS FOR YOUR BUSINESS
It’s time to start thinking about your company, what you want to achieve, and how you want to go about doing it. Here are some things to consider in this phase:
1. Company Goals: What do you want to accomplish with your business? What is the amount of money that you want to make? How do you want to be known in the industry? This is both a mission statement and a financial goal. Coming up with the answers to these questions tells you exactly where and who you want to be.
2. Industry Position: How will you position yourself in your community? As mentioned before, what age, genders, and interest groups will you focus on training? Will you train primarily at a gym or in people’s homes or both? Why will your customers use you instead of someone else in your area? Do your resume and qualifications package reflect the position that you are trying to achieve?
3. Your Available Market: As you choose how you would like to be perceived by your potential clients, also consider the number of potential clients in this group. Are there enough people in the market you have chosen, with enough money and need for your services? Are there enough potential prospects to generate enough clients to employ you as a full-time trainer? And if your intent is to potentially grow into multiple locations, are there enough people in your market to require you to eventually hire a staff to serve all of them?
PHASE 3: GO
UTILIZING THE NETWORKS YOU BUILD
In the previous phases, we talked about the importance of starting to build networks and databases of potential clients, people who may know your next potential clients, and experts in the field. This activity of growing these databases should be ongoing and something you make a part of your weekly routine. Leads for your networks can come from anywhere, so you need to be on the lookout for any opportunity to make connections and continuously be adding those connections into your different networks, whether it be golfers or people who give you access to golfers.
As you pick and choose golf fitness experts to connect with, swap ideas with, and imitate on the business side of things, consider this: are they succeeding in this market? A simple question, but so important to think about as you start to build your model and use others’ methods to inform that process. If they are not succeeding in their own business, chances are, you do not want to adopt their way of doing things. Seek out and learn from the people who are proving to be successful.
A WORD ABOUT MARKETING
When it comes to marketing, it is important to note that the world of marketing and communicating, especially in the media realm, is always changing. For this reason, you will need to do your best to stay in tune with what the current models are finding success with and in which online communities your clients and prospects are spending most of their time. Knowing the answers to these two questions will help you best use your resources and prevent wasting time and money doing activities that are not giving you maximum return on investment. We recommend choosing just a couple of activities (whether that be sending a newsletter, engaging on a particular social media platform, etc.) to focus on to start. Even with the ever-changing world of marketing, the one thing that has always been true is that consistency matters. Choose the marketing activity or two you want to focus on, add them to your daily/weekly/monthly routine, and stay consistent.
Now that you have your game plan set, you’ve learned about the three phases to getting started or jumpstarting your current business, it is time to put it into action. Be a part of the small percentage of people that follow through and do the work. We look forward to cheering you on along the way and hearing about your success in your golf fitness business.
LOOKING FOR MORE RESOURCES?
"HOW TO GET CLIENTS IN THE DOOR" BUSINESS COURSE: WHAT TO DO, WHAT TO SAY, AND HOW TO TURN A PROSPECT INTO A PAYING CLIENT
We at FitGolf Performance Centers® have created a comprehensive golf fitness business course with one goal in mind: to teach you how to get clients in the door and turn them into paying customers. This course will tell you what to say (and not to say) in which circumstances, show you what good and bad interactions with prospects looks like through live role playing, and equip you with all of the practical, “in the trenches” tools you need to start your new or grow your current golf fitness business.