If a gym owner or club manager hires an extroverted, enthusiastic, well-spoken individual, it does not mean they will automatically have success with selling fitness services. Of course, behavioral traits and natural abilities are important when selecting your new sales/fitness professionals, however, there are also 4 key skills/differentiators that should be taught early to transform a sales newbie into a veteran fitness professional.
Utilizing Both Elements of Persuasion
People make decisions both objectively and subjectively. Purchasing fitness services, whether they are online or in-person, is primarily emotionally driven. However, the decision still needs to make sense logically for that person to justify their decision after the transaction. Logic andemotion are the two elements of persuasion, and each prospect requires a different balance of the two to be persuaded. If the presentation is fact driven and lacks emotion, the conversation will not generate the excitement required to influence change. Onthe flip side, if a presentation focuses too much on consumer emotion, prospects may feel they are being manipulated. A fitness professional must communicate to both sides of the prospect’s brain to have the entirety of the sale come together.
Vocabulary and Trigger Words
When touring around the gym with a guest, there may be some aspects of the club they prefer more than others. It is important to get a sense of what the guest is looking for and ensure you tighten up your vocabulary to appeal to their unconscious. For example, when highlighting treadmills or ellipticals try using the term “cardio training” instead of “cardio machines”. The word “machine” may have a negative connotation for someone who prefers outdoor exercise. Another example is how you describe your personal trainers. Trigger words like “certified” will build trust, and “coach” will cause the prospect to reflect back on positive experiences with a mentor. Lastly, fitness professionals should modify their vocabulary to use trigger words such as “today”, “now”, “results”, “fast”, and “quick” to drive action and help the sale move forward.
Preventing Future Objections
The easiest objections to handle are the ones that no longer exist. From the moment prospects walk into the facility, fear and anxiety are rushing through their veins. It is often more comfortable for potential buyers to come up with an excuse not to make a buying decision than to muster up the courage to commit. Fitness professionals must gather vast amounts of information about the prospect (in a noninvasive way) to prevent any of these excuses or what are better known as “smokescreen objections.” The term “collecting ammunition” refers to gathering information throughout the sales presentation to “fire back” when a prospect throws out an objection. Not all guests are easy to influence, so fitness professionals need to cover their ground by collecting as much ammo as possible. Despite a wide array of possibilities, all smoke screens can be circled back to 5 specific objections;Spouse, Time, Think About It/Shop Around, On My Own, Money/Value.
There is a lot of misinformation on fitness, nutrition, and just getting fit as a whole. It is confusing and nearly impossible for the average person to decipher what is misleading and what is accurate. Misinformation is why more and more consumers are craving “Education-Based Selling” (EBS). EBS is the process of transforming prospects into better and more informed customers. When fitness professionals make an up-front investment in their prospects, they provide with them the education to create a better decision while simultaneously establishing themselves as both a fitness expert and a trusted advisor. EBS is not absolutely essential when selling a $10/ month membership but is critical when pushing higher-ticket items such as a $120/month boutique membership or a $10,000/year personal training package. What would the preference of a fitness newbie be? Would they rather someone sell them or educate them? By educating guests, fitness professionals do not come across as aggressive sales reps. Because today’s customers live in an immediately gratifying consumer environment, educating guests on fitness provides a greater sense of appreciation and value. Instead of focusing solely on influencing tactics, fitness professionals benefit more from putting on their teaching shoes to create better buyers.