Friday, 2 August 2013

Digital Marketing Advice for Personal Trainers

I’ve recently been approached by someone asking for help with a marketing strategy for a PT, so I thought I’d put together this short and sweet guide to get started with online tools personal trainers can use and some tips for getting the right message across.

First up; a note on consistency. Think of a good name for your ‘personal brand’ - usually your own name, but it may be more of a brand name. For instance I would probably call myself ‘Will Kennard Personal Training’, but if I was more of a specialist in strength & conditioning I would come up with a name like Strength by Will, or something less cheesy, but you get the idea. Once you have this name sorted, stick to it. Make a shortened version for your usernames on Twitter and Instagram. Keep it exactly the same on all your social media profiles to make it easy for people to find and recognise you.

Blog/Website

The first thing you should create is a website with a blog. There are 2 services I prefer: Squarespace & Wordpress, both of which offer a great and reliable service, although Squarespace tends to be a bit more 'cool' but is also more expensive. Both allow you to sign up to a service and also purchase your own domain name (personal web address) at what I consider a very affordable price. When you purchase a domain name, keep it in line with my point above on sticking to your name. Get to know the service you choose (there's hundreds of tutorials on Youtube if you get stuck) and apply a theme to the site.

The main 2 things you need to add to your site are an 'about me' section, and a blog. The about me section should be where you shout about what qualifications you have and where/who you train etc. If you have pictures of you looking awesome and ripped, or in the middle of training someone, put those on there too. You want to look great so that when a potential customer checks you out online they can see how experienced you are. There's no shame in being big headed here - it's your business after all!

The blog is a place where you can write for the benefit of others - put articles on there that you think may be of interest to people. These can range from small diet tips to massive articles on why you think a certain thing is beneficial. It really is up to you what you write about, but the most important thing is that you do just that - write. You want to be posting an article at least 1-3 times a week. This will show that you are somewhat of an expert in your field, and it will reassure customers that you know what you're talking about.

SEO for your new website

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) - to put it simply, is the process of making your site easier to find on Google. To do this you have to make the articles you write on your blog contain the correct information for Google to 'read'. There is a lot more to SEO that can't be explained here, but I'll give you an example.

Let's say, for example, you are based in Leeds. For people to find you on Google who may be interested in a personal trainer in Leeds, there must be information on your site that states you are a personal trainer in Leeds. Sounds obvious, right? So how can this be done naturally? Well, you could write an article about the best supplement stores in Leeds. This way you can mention that you are a personal trainer, and that you live in Leeds, which of course will add the words 'Personal Trainer' and 'Leeds' to your website.

Of course there's a LOT more on SEO that I can't mention, but keep posting useful articles on your blog and you'll be making it more 'readable' by Google, making it easier for people to find you online, at the same time as looking like an expert in your field. So get writing.

Twitter, Facebook & Instagram

These are the three main social networks you should use. What you want to focus on here is clients (with their permission) and their progress. If you've been training someone successfully and they've gone through a 'transformation' - then shout about it. Post before and after pictures, post their thoughts, post whatever you can to shout about the fact that you are making them fitter and you're good at it. This will encourage them to share their experiences with friends, who in turn will see how good you are, and consider using your expertise. Simple! It's an internet-driven version of word-of-mouth recommendations.

You could also post quick tips, pictures of your healthy food, pictures of you working out with a friend - again anything to shout about how good you are! 

And if you don't have anything to shout about, then maybe it's time to up your game? It could just boost your career in the right direction.

If you are a personal trainer and have any questions, don't hesitate to contact me on Twitter @willkennard
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