Practical Strategies to Get More Personal Training Clients

Practical Strategies to Get More Personal Training Clients

Getting clients or customers is hard work. For personal trainers, that’s no exception. Furthermore, getting personal training clients can be even more challenging because you’re selling a service where people don’t necessarily see the immediate value. Also, there can often be an emotional factor involved.

There are many strategies to consider when building a pipeline of potential personal training clients. Therefore, you should be using them all for maximum effect.

Ready to take your personal training business from 0-100? In this post, we’ll show you how.

1. Think Locally

Your immediate network is a fantastic place to start when looking to build a good base of personal training clients.

Think about it – most people want to improve their health, and if they don’t, they should. However, some people simply lack the motivation they need, which is where your personal trainer skills can help. Furthermore, by reaching out to your immediate network, you will be working with individuals with whom you share mutual respect and trust.

As a starting point, write a list of everyone you know and reach out to them, stating you are now offering personal training services. If they aren’t specifically interested, ask them if they know anyone who might be looking to improve their health.

Once you have done that, start thinking more broadly with the other ideas below.

Every network has a sphere of influence, and that sphere of influence is usually made up of the most connected individuals. These people, defined as Mavens by Malcolm Gladwell, know everyone. As a result, Mavens are generally people who interact with many people regularly. Examples of Mavens include:

Real Estate Agents

Real Estate Agents who specialize in doing business in local suburbs are generally well educated in knowing some of the best spots in the area regarding lifestyle. They know the best restaurants that are around, the best parks, and the best gyms to join.

Suppose you can build a relationship with a Real Estate Agent in your area. In that case, they might recommend your personal training services to potential buyers.


Doctors are, much like Real Estate Agents, also well-connected individuals. They know many people in the community and are often respected by many. If you can get on the good side of a doctor or two, they may refer their patients to you who they think would benefit from your services.


Many years ago, I had a job as a Barista and formed many relationships. Then, I noticed that some of my customers with whom I had developed a close relationship would often pop in to see me before or after going to the gym.

Start chatting with them about their fitness journey and how they found the gym they are attending. And sometimes, conversations would come up around personal trainers.

Because coffee drinking is habitual, Baristas often form relationships with hundreds of people. So if you can get on good terms with your local Baristas, they may start referring their gym-going customers to you.

2. Offer a Free Introductory Group Session

A great way to bring in new personal training clients is to offer a free introductory group session.

Free introductory sessions allow you to show off your skills as a personal trainer and enable potential clients to get to know you and see if they would be comfortable working with you.

You will undoubtedly convert a few attendees into paying clients if you offer a great free session.

If you do consider this promotional method, you MUST ensure the people receiving the service have a good experience. If they don’t, they may start to think your personal training services are not worth paying for, or worse, start spreading the word that your services aren’t very good.

3. Use Social Media to Promote your Personal Training Sessions

Is being #instafit still all the rage in 2022?

Sure it is.

As a personal trainer, you must utilize all the tools to attract new clients, and social media is by far one of the most effective tools you have.

Your potential clients are undoubtedly on social media, so you must also be there promoting your services.

Social platforms such as Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, and Facebook are great places to start. You can use these platforms to post before and after photos, write blog posts, share testimonials, and run promotional campaigns.

When using social media, ensure that you are consistent with your branding and that your content is high-quality. In addition, you want to offer as much value as possible before promoting your services. We recommend the book, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk as an excellent resource to learn more about this concept.

4. Provide Incentives to Get More Clients

Incentives are an excellent method to attract new clients and get them to sign up for your personal training services.

You can offer discounts, free sessions, or even merchandise to your existing clients if they recommend any new contacts who sign up for your services.

Incentives work because they can help to get like-minded people talking about your services. Also, it shows that you appreciate any business sent your way – you’re not just taking without giving something in return.

5. Ensure you Follow Up with Every Lead

After almost ten years in sales, there is one thing we can be sure of; sales don’t happen by themselves.

Well, not often, anyway.

People are busy, and more often than not, the thing that you are prioritizing (trying to get more personal training clients) isn’t what your potential customer is prioritizing (paying bills, getting the children to school, etc.). No matter how interested a client may be in your services, sometimes it just isn’t a priority.

This is where follow-up comes in.

Follow-up involves reaching out to potential personal training clients regularly until the timing is right and they are ready to buy.

The key to successful follow-up is ensuring you provide value with each interaction. You want to build a relationship with each potential client, so they think of you when they are ready to buy.

A great way to deliver value is to send helpful articles, tips, or even a quick message checking in to see how they are doing.

You can also use follow-up as an opportunity to offer a free trial or a discount for your services.

The bottom line is that you must be in front of your potential clients regularly if you want to convert them into paying customers.

6. Offer Gift Cards

In a peer group, when one fitness-conscious person offers fitness-related gift cards to their friends/family members, they would start taking those personal training sessions and gym classes that they are procrastinating for a long time. Offer gift card options to all your clients and convenience them that it is one of the best gifting options for the person they care about. 

Use 100% free gift-card services like Yottled to generate, sell, and redeem gift cards. 


There you have it, five methods that you can use to get more clients for your personal training business.

Remember, the key to success is to be consistent with your branding, provide value, and follow up with every lead.

You need to treat your personal training business as you would any business. You need to be consistent and proactive with your outreach efforts. Customers aren’t going to magically come to you in the initial stages of starting your business. So you need to put in the work!

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Matt Jennings

Matt Jennings

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