CASE STUDY: How to Get Your First Online Personal Training Clients

CASE STUDY: How to Get Your First Online Personal Training Clients

A step-by-step guide on how to get your first online personal training clients by Regan Kirk, owner of Trainer Pulse.

Want to get your first online personal training clients?

I have some good news for you….

You can make it happen right now and the best part, you don’t need to have a huge following or insane tech skills to do it.

In this guide, I’ll walk you through the 6-step process you need to start online coaching. 

This isn’t just made up theory, this is the exact process that Masterclass member Gary used to generate £1125 ($1520) from his first online personal training clients.

Meet Gary Hill, he’s our case study for this guide:

Gary Hill Exceed Masterclass Member

Gary made £1125 from one single Facebook post. 

Here’s a screen shot from his email to prove it:

Payments from Online Personal Training

Here are just a few reasons you should start online personal training right now:

  • You stop trading time for money
  • No more expensive gym rents
  • No more split shifts or weekend work
  • Work from wherever you want

Ready to get started? Let’s go!

What you need to start

Note: Gary used the step-by-step training and resources inside the Exceed Masterclass to plan, create and launch his online personal training program. 

Gary also uses Trainer Pulse, which includes everything you need to create an online coaching program. 

Here are the exact steps you need...

An idea for your coaching program

This consists of 4 parts:

  • Name
  • Price​​​
  • Duration
  • Program Outcomes

Gary called his program the "Ultimate Physique - 6 Week Hybrid Program”.

This was Gary's first online program so he only charged £75 per online client (personally I don't think he charged enough).

If you're struggling with pricing then be to check out our Online Personal Training: Pricing Like A Pro Article

A really important part of a successful online personal training program is knowing who your program is for & what goals it helps your clients achieve.

This is known as your target profile.

Picking your avatar as an online personal trainer

Gary did ok here - he specified he wanted people with weight training experience but next time I would like to see him get specific about who the program is for.

The key to quickly growing an online coaching business it to, "solve a specific problem for a specific group of people".

Example target profiles:

Good Example #1: Busy Mum’s who want to get their pre baby body back and don’t have time to go to the gym.

Good Example #2: I help MMA fighters make weight for a fight safely, without losing performance.

Bad Example #1: People who want a 6 pack (too broad).

Bad Example #2: Guys named Peter who likes Dungeons & Dragons & live in Norway (too narrow).

Questions that you can use to figure out your target profile:

  • Who is your client? (age, gender, occupation etc)
  • What specific outcome do they want to achieve?
  • Why is this outcome important to them?
  • What has triggered them to start training?
  • Why is their current strategy not working?

Where you can find the information:

  • Interview someone who matches your target profile
  • Facebook groups
  • Amazon book reviews (books they read about health & fitness)
  • Question boards (Reddit / Quora)

It might seem boring (compared to getting a new logo or designing your website) but spending the time to research what your client really wants will be one of the most important things you do for your online fitness business.

If you need some more help deciding who you want to work with as an online personal trainer, then check out our How to Attract Your Dream Online Personal Training Clients article.

Templates that are easy to modify

Gary made up some template workouts / meal plans that he formatted with his logo.

He will then change these around based on peoples’ preferences/abilities. Using templates doesn't mean cookie cutter programs for everyone, it just saves you a bunch of time and makes program delivery a lot easier.

A word on your documents: make them really easy to understand! 

The simpler, the better!

Here’s an example program I used successfully on my own online personal training program:

Workout program from Trainer pulse

When you're launching your first program don't wait until you have created the entire program.

Your goal should be to program the first week / block and then launch ASAP!

A simple landing page

This is the website your clients go to see more information about your coaching program.

The key here is to not get too fancy. Fancy does not mean more sales, it normally just confuses people.

Copy Gary and keep it simple.

Online personal trainer example advert

Here are some things Gary did really well:

  • Picture of Gary (this increases trust)
  • Clear outline of what's involved in the program
  • Clear outline of results clients can expect
  • Element of scarcity (selective of his students)
  • Offer was hard to resist (50% discount)
  • The page had one button/option

To make something like this you need a landing page builder. It took Gary 5 mins to make this using Trainer Pulse's inbuilt landing page builder.  (Don't worry you don't need any coding skills, it's all drag & drop).

If you need advanced features and budget isn't an issue, there are some great stand alone landing page builders you can use - LeadpagesUnbounce & Instapage are all good choices.

Whatever software option you choose, use a template, it will save you hours. 

The content (e.g. who you’re targeting etc) is significantly more important than making your page look pretty.

A trusted payment processor

This is the thing that connects your landing page builder to your bank account so you can get paid.

There are two processors that I recommend - Stripe and PayPal.

They both charge roughly the same amount, which is about 2.9% + 30c per transaction.

Stripe requires a bit more tech knowledge to implement but in my opinion, the user experience is much higher, which means you'll sell more.

If you want an in-depth breakdown of the two providers click here.

Setup Guides:

#1. Set up PayPal button - click here

#2. Set up Stripe payments - click here

#3. Too hard? Find a tech guru on Fiverr - click here 

Note: Trainer Pulse has 1-click Stripe integration.

The second benefit of using a payment processor is trust: both Stripe & PayPal take security very seriously, which is fantastic. The internet can be a scary place & using a trusted provider like these increases your online credibility.

Online coaching software

Gary uses Trainer Pulse because it has everything he needs to run his online coaching programs. 

In addition to client tracking it has: 

  • 1-click payment integration
  • Inbuilt landing page builder
  • Automated weekly client check-ins
  • Automated program delivery
  • Email marketing integration
Trainer Pulse for Online Personal Trainers

The Facebook post that made £1125

Gary has about 2000 people on his Facebook page, which gives him an advantage.

If you don't have a big following, you could easily use Facebook Ads to promote your programs to people who match your target profile.

If you need some more help improving your social media accounts, check out our 8 Social Media Mistake to Avoid when Starting an Online Fitness Business Article.

Here's the exact post Gary published:

Facebook post for online personal training

Note: Due to the crazy demand Gary had to open up an extra 5x places on his program.

Putting it all together

I know from the outset it seems scary, but once you have some basic elements in place it's actually not that bad.

Here's a quick summary of everything you need:

Step 1: Decide on your program details (name, price, duration & outcome)

Step 2: Create the templates for the first week of your program

Step 3: Create a simple landing page

Step 4: Link your landing page to your payment processor

Step 5: Post to social media / email list

Step 6: Track client results & do weekly check-ins with Trainer Pulse

Let's build your online fitness business together

If you're a health and fitness pro who would like to learn more about creating a successful, meaningful online fitness business, check out The Exceed Masterclass

The Exceed Masterclass is your essential resource for the training, advice and support you need on how to become an online personal trainer.

You'll receive proven, practical training to help you reach more people and create more impact online.

How to start an online personal training business

Discover the Masterclass >>