How to Prepare for a New Client

First impressions are important. And, when it comes to a new client engaging with you or your studio it’s even more integral. When someone comes in for their first class or session 60% of the decision to start a new fitness regimen is made. All you have to do is help them decide that it is you. Here are my tips for scheduling and teaching a new client.

  1. Make it easy for them: Is it clear on your site what to do next? How to schedule? What you offer?
  2. Tell them what to do: Don’t offer them all the times in the world you have or ask them when they want to get started. Train them from the beginning to schedule their life around Pilates with you.
  3. Have a “what to expect” email: Whether they sign up over the phone, email or via text be sure to send them an email that tells them your policies, what to expect, wear, park etc..
  4. Know their why.
  5. Forget about selling Pilates. They just need to trust that you’re the person who can help them.
  6. Follow up even if they said they don’t want to do Pilates. Send them a thank you note.
  7. Remember that their first package is still the courting process. Hold them accountable to their sessions, consistency and goals.
  8. Train them how to treat you and the studio. If your policies are broken you have to uphold them. It’s not a fun convo but it’s most important in the beginning.
  9. Don’t take things personally. Whether a client loves Pilates, doesn’t, late cancels or quits it’s not personal. Read the 4 agreements. You’re not for everyone and that is ok.
  10. Know when you want to teach, where and whom. It’s your business and you’ll get more clients that inspire you when you’re clear on these things. Not everyone is for you and that’s ok.

It’s easy to get caught up on selling Pilates or the training  to the new client. But, the truth is you are the guide. Your studio is the community. If you are clear on who you are for, what you offer it makes it easier for your future clients to decide on you too. And, then help them out by making sure your site, how you schedule them and prep them makes it easy for them to know you are the expert at what you do.

For more tips on first time clients check out this blog and this course. For coaching on converting first time clients for you or your studio contact me here.

xx~LL

Are You Making One of These Mistakes? It is Costing You Money

In a day when it’s easy to compare your “work in progress” to someone else’s curated posts, it’s easy to think that you should be doing what the other teachers and studios are doing. But, if you are making one of these choices below you are most likely giving money away.

  1. Using other studios rates to set yours: Do you know if they are being profitable? When was the last time they raised their rates? There is an equation for creating your average hourly rate and it’s much more strategic and puts you more in control of your business and how much you will make.
  2. Offering too many options: It’s easy to think that you need to have classes because everyone has classes or that you need to have memberships because a lot of people have memberships. But, the truth is you need to have options that make you excited to talk about them and only a couple pricing options to make it easier for clients to make a decision. Donald Miller, an expert marketer says “you confuse you lose.”
  3. Pricing out services or workshops then seeing how much money you make. Start out with what you want to make and then figure out how many people you need to make that amount. Does it sound do-able? If not then what would? Much easier to know that all you need is 15 people to make your goal rather than blindly selling and hoping you make money.
  4. Not saying “No” enough. Scarcity is ok! It’s good to be in demand. And, it’s even healthier to put yourself and when you work the best first.
  5. Putting your marketing efforts off in exchange for other admin. Find time in each workday to “propel your business forward.” The admin will always be there.
  6. Creating one or two posts about your classes or workshops and thinking that is marketing. Social media is an extension of your business but it’s not going to replace the in-person and referral efforts you can make in your community.

If you are doing any of these and want to find a way to change that contact me here. Or, join my online community where asking questions, getting advice and support is happening 24/7. Tired of making guesses to build your business? You’ll love this space.

xx~LL

Tips to Owning Your Worth and Overcoming Objections

It doesn’t take long as a Pilates Instructor, Fitness Trainer or any other service provider to here the objections to their offer. In all honesty, if you are not hearing objections to your services then you are not charging enough or you’re probably not setting boundaries in your schedule. Objections to what we offer are going to happen. Learning how to overcome or get ahead of them is key. And, all of that comes down to you owning who you are, what you do and how much you are worthy!

In a recent workshop, I was co-leading one of you readers mentioned that your biggest fear in presenting is not feeling worthy. Man, that hit me in my heart. I so get that feeling. It’s pretty common to think “there are others who are better at this than I am…” or insert some other form of imposter syndrome here. But, the truth is this, you are the only person who can teach what you teach, the way you teach it to the people that hear you. And so, even if you can find a way to convince me that someone else is better suited to teach on that topic I am still going to say You should be doing it! If it’s your passion and it helps people you gotta do it.

And, here’s the thing guys, whether you want to present or just fill your schedule or classes if you don’t feel worthy you won’t be able to overcome objections. I don’t care how inexpensive you are or how many time slots you can offer it won’t work. You have to know your worth. You have to own your worth. And when you do, objections will just bounce right off of you.

1) Do not think about your wallet when setting prices.
2) Remember you are not selling Pilates (barre, personal training etc) you are showing them how you are the guide for them. That they can trust you. And, the money is just an energy exchange. They pay you for the energy you are going to give back to them.
3) Be in Demand. Do not ask them when they want to come in. You tell them. If they can schedule you anytime you won’t get in the schedule at all.
4) Fish in the right pond. If you are hearing you are too expensive all the time then where are you advertising? Where are you throwing your bait in? Switch your ponds.
5) No more discounts on your services. When you discount your time you tell people that your time is not worth the original price. Find ways to add value and keep your prices up.
6) Look for evidence of what you believe to be true. If you think you’re not worthy you will only see evidence proving that. If you think you are you will see the evidence proving you are.
7) Work backward! Whether you’re trying to figure out prices or your goals, to-do’s for tomorrow. You need to see the big picture and work backward.
8) Give yourself validation first. Seeking validation from outside yourself is risky. You never know what people are going to say. Know why you rock, own that and tell yourself it everyday.
9) Know who the 5 people whose opinions of you matter, tell them and anyone else you have to let their words slide right on by.
10) Fire clients who do not treat you right. If you’ve set boundaries, had those tough conversations and still they want to complain about your availability, price or time then find them another option that doesn’t include you. It’s ok, you will replace that income with a client who uplifts you!

My friend, objections are real. They can sting and they can get your guessing if you’re in the right place. But, remember the 4 agreements: Do the best you can, be true to your word, make no assumptions and don’t take things personally. If they are the right client for you then you can’t say the wrong thing to them. And, you’ll never say the right things to the wrong people.

Write down whose opinion of you matters and tell them
Look in the mirror and tell yourself you are awesome, you are worthy and you can do hard things.

xx~LL
PS if you need to talk more about this then lets set up a call or check out my online coaching group- AGENCY where you submerge yourself in a community that uplifts and helps you see how worthy you are.

Tips For Going Live on Social

Connecting to your audience is key in marketing online these days. And, with millions more people following Instagram stories, and Facebook stories depending on your audience and goals it could be necessary for you. Going Live on Facebook, Instagram and other platforms is not new. But, lately, I have been receiving lots of questions about this topic. So, below find my go-to tips that will not only help you go Live but feel comfortable doing it.

Choose the Platform: There are many platforms you can use for going Live. It’s important that you pick the one (or ones) that your ideal client or audience is on. Use your analytics to show you who your followers are, ie. gender, age, location etc. The one that has more of your ideal client on it is the one I would do these lives on. If you love Tik Tok but your clients are above the age of 50 going you’d be shouting from the rooftops in a deserted city.

Announce it: I don’t often have time to pre-announce my lives but when I do I always have more viewers. So, even if you do it an hour or so before on your socials it would help you feel like you are actually talking to people.

Have a Topic in Mind: What do you want to go Live about? What do you want those watching to do after they go live? Nothing feels more awkward than going live, having just a couple live viewers and not feeling ready. Even if you just want to answer peoples questions have some questions in your mind you can answer so that you’re not just hanging out there.

Ask people to comment: Tell people what to do so that they stay engaged.
Giveaway the good stuff at the beginning: Like a blog, people want to know if it’s in it for them. So, tell them the “answer” at the beginning and then go into the what and how after.

Collaborate: Go live with another teacher or client! On many platforms, you can go live with other people from different locations. I love to call into people’s IG’s and answer questions from their audience.
Look at the dot: Yeah, the dot on your phone is the eyes of your viewer.

Smile more than you think!

Capture it correctly: If going Live on IG it’s a vertical video. If you go live on FB you can do both horizontal or vertical. But, if you plan on posting your live on Youtube you’ll want to film it horizontally.
Have fun! The first time you do it will be weird. Delete it if you don’t love it. And, then try again the next day. The more you do it the easier it gets. Think about teaching for the first time.

Do you need to go live? Nope, not at all. Again, it depends on your goals for your business and your audience. But, it is a fun way to engage with your audience and hopefully, your audience is a lot of people in your community.

Where do you like to go live? I’d love to hear your favorite platforms and what you like to talk about below.

If you want more support on choosing the right platform and what to talk about then contact me here. Let’s set up a game plan for you!

xx~LL

My Best Advice For New Pilates Instructors

Recently in an interview, online a viewer asked me one of my favorite questions “What is my advice for new Pilates Instructors?” I love this question because I wish more new instructors had support, tips, and tangible advice to start their teaching career with confidence.

  1. You won’t always know what your niche is from the start. So, be open to teaching all kinds of people, even special cases (ideally have a teacher you can go to for support or advice) so that you can learn even more and find where your voice is, what clients you are drawn to and what clients are drawn to you.
  2. It’s ok to say no. As much as I want you to get out there and teach as much as you can I want you to maintain a work schedule so that you don’t hit burn out.
  3. Talk to everyone about who you are and what you do! I find most new instructors have more clients from the get-go because they are so fired up. So take advantage of your newbie months!
  4. Yes, you need to learn more but you don’t need to take EVERY workshop that comes your way. Teach more bodies don’t just collect information.
  5. Read my book!
  6. Watch this masterclass course
  7. Don’t worry about being so new. Most clients won’t care how long you’ve been teaching. They care more about how you can help them!
  8. Get a website but don’t obsess about social media
  9. Talk to your CPA about being and LLC or Scorp as independent contractors are taxed higher.
  10. Maintain your Pilates practice!!! This will keep you learning and staying inspired.

I could go on and on and on! If you’ve got a question you can contact me here or comment below.  I’m excited for you!

xx~LL

200 No’s and Why You Should Talk to Strangers

My parents drilled in my head that I should never talk to strangers. But, once you’re not a young child no one tells you that talking to strangers is a good thing. Talking to people you don’t know can help you get directions, help you meet other people you need to know, help you grow your business, help you make friends and other relationships. I mean, could you imagine if you still only talked to those who you grew up with?  If you want to grow your business you need to talk to strangers. And, you need to hear ‘no’ a lot!

The other day Brad and I were sitting in one of my favorite cafes in Siem Reap Cambodia. Two ladies were next to us and about to pay their bill. They both pulled out their wallets and it was the same wallet style as Brads. To me, this wasn’t that big a deal. But, to Brad, it was so cool. So he grabbed his wallet and went up to them and started a conversation about wallets with 2 strangers. 

What came out of that conversation was a relationship with an NGO in Siem Reap that will rent our house for their volunteers. That conversation lead to a meeting which lead to some other conversations that allowed our goals to match up with their goals.

Could we have done this via email? Maybe, but highly unlikely. People want to know you, they want a relationship. It takes more than one email to create a working relationship. And this applies to your business too.

If you’re wanting new clients but you are waiting for referral or people to email you or call you then it’s going to be some time before you have a full schedule. But, if you share who you are, what you do and how you help people you will build your business so much quicker.

Will everyone you talk to say ‘yes?’ Nope, and that’s ok! In fact, ‘no’s’ are a good thing. They help you get better at knowing who you are for. They help you refine how you talk about what you do. And, they help you see who you are not for.

In my online group coaching community AGENCY, Brad and I were talking with a few members who need new clients but have only told about a dozen people in one month-is what they do. He shared how he would go for 200 no’s. That he would find ways, sort of like a game, to talk to people and direct the conversation to what he was selling at the time. And he would count the ’no’s’ because they all got him closer to the few ‘yes’s’ he needed.

See, most of us don’t need EVERY client we come across. We need a solid group of consistent clients. And, that comes from being picky and being clear on who you are for and how they should work with you.

So, how many people can you share what you do with this week? I’d love to hear about your ‘no’s’ and how you got to have a conversation with a stranger. Because chances are you don’t know your future client yet.

xx~LL

What Should You Be Blogging About

Since blogging is far from dead (it really is) you’re probably more worried about what to blog about than anything. Because of my blogs, I have thousands of hits on my site every month. And you can have that too. But, you have to be writing blogs that answer the questions your ideal client is asking the search engines. So, how do you figure that out and then what do you blog about? Well, luckily I’ve got a list of ideas below you can use!

Personal Blog Topic Ideas

  • 10 things most people don’t know about you/your studio/your teaching
  • How you prepare for ___
  • What’s in your Pilates bag
  • Five things/exercises you can’t live without
  • What you love about teaching, Pilates, your clients
  • How you became a teacher, studio owner
  • Behind the scenes
  • Your top 10 favorite things/exercises/props
  • Go to leggings, exercises, books etc

Your Product or Service Blog Topic Ideas

  • 10 reason to fall in love with—
  • How to pick the right product or service you offer
  • 10 things think about when starting Pilates
  • Spotlight your product/service
  • 5 ways your service helps ___
  • Faqs are great blogs!!!
  • Top 10 questions you get asked
  • What clients have said
  • What to look for in a teacher/studio/class
  • What it looks like to work with you
  • Client interview
  • why are people not hiring you

Put these on a doc and start brainstorming. The ones that you can’t stop writing about are the ones you should use and toss the rest or save them for another time. Pick a blog schedule you can keep up with and get to blogging. For more tips on how blogs get your clients check out my client journey course and blogging for your business.

xx~LL

How to Attract More People to Your Website

Most people do not use their website to its full capabilities. They tend to “set it and forget it.” But, a website is truly the 24/7 assistant you want, need and could be doing more for you if you set it up for that. Imagine people searching the internet for a question and your website comes up as the answer? And then, because of the work you put into your site they go on a journey that leads them to schedule a session! Doesn’t that sound amazing?

Here’s How You Do This:

1) You have to have a website. If you don’t watch this course before you spend a dollar or your time building one.

2) Every client needs to be courted. Think about the beginning of a dating relationship. You don’t get married after you become aware of someone right? My course on the client journey breaks down how to take a person from awareness of who you are and what you do to buying your services.

3) BLOG! Its so not dead my friends. My website gets thousands of views every month because of my blogs. Your blogs should be the answer to peoples questions. Then they go to your site and then end up getting on your client journey. See how all that works for you?

4) Newsletters, also not dead! A nurture campaign aka welcome series will help your client journey happen while you sleep. And, regular, consistent newsletters to those on your list keep you top of mind. And your site should be trading emails for something of value so you can guide those people to your core service!

If this sounds like total gibberish then please start with my “what your website needs” course. Then go to the “client journey” before you do the Newsletter 101 or next level. In 4 hours you’ll be sooo ready to put your website to work for you! And, that means it’s attracting your ideal client and telling them what to do while you are sleeping, teaching or reading this blog!

xx~LL

How I Prepare for a New Client

When you get a new client in your studio there are a lot of butterflies on both ends. Your new client is wondering if this, Pilates, Yoga, Fitness with you is going to be what they need to meet their goals or take away their aches and pains. And, you’ve got butterflies because you know you need more clients in your books to help you earn more money and help more people. So, how do you feel more confident when you have a new client coming in? Here are my go-to tips for when I have a new client.

1) Know your numbers! I’m very clear on my rates, my packages, and what each package equates to when it comes to helping a client hit their goals. If they are coming in for a specific goal and they have a date they want to achieve it by I know which package to offer them in order to help them achieve it. Of course, I hope they stay longer and truth be told they will but in the beginning their why is all they care about. Beyond their why is something I can tackle while they are a client.

2) Be clear on who your ideal client is. This is soo key, my friends. Sometimes I get a new client that I am not the right teacher for. Generally, I am able to weed them out and refer them to someone else before they come in for a first-time session but occasionally it happens. And, it’s important to be able to say no to them after the session. Because, if you are not the right person for them eventually it will not work out. So better to save both your times. And, also clients who are not your ideal client will not refer you more of your ideal client.

3) Tell them what to expect. I love to make sure they know everything about how to find my studio, where to park, where not to park, what to wear, how early to show up, how long the session is! EVERYTHING! I have a pre-written letter that I send out and I even link to it in a confirmation. This helps them feel more comfortable before they even come in. The more you can communicate like you’re already in a relationship the higher the chances of them feeling confident that they can trust you and buy future sessions with you.

4) Tell them when you will follow up with them. And, then make sure you do! No matter how the session goes I always follow up with my first-time client. I remind them of their goals, how Pilates will help them and if they scheduled another session I remind them of when it is, what the cancellation policy is etc. If they didn’t and I want them as a client I offer them times to come in, how long it will take to feel the benefits and ask them a question that requires a response.

5) I have everything ready for them when they arrive. Think of a first date. If the date was late would that make you feel good about how much they value your time? If the date was disorganized would that make you feel like they were an expert? That they could keep all your needs in order? That they could take you where you want to go? Pull out the red carpet for new clients. And by red carpet, I don’t mean discount signs.

I could go on and on but I don’t want to overwhelm you! Pick one or two of these that you are not doing and give them a try. Then add in another one or two. Until they become a habit and you have your own system. And, then, write it down! Then you can review your system before every new client comes in.

Which tip will you try? Post in the comments below.

xx~LL

6 Tips to Get More Clients

In a perfect world, clients would just grow on trees, right? But, while this world is pretty great clients instead come to us through variations forms of marketing. And, it’s important to know what these different routes to you are and use them to attract your ideal clients. Because even if your schedule is full someday you will need another client or few. Your favorite clients will move. You will move. And, so something you can guarantee you’ll need to have set up in your business is a way to consistently attract new clients to you. Here are 6 of my favorite tips for getting new clients.

  1. Be Known in Your Community: This means getting outside your studio and going to networking events, community events, add meeting local business owners in your neighborhood. The more people know who you are, what you do, and whom you are for the more they can tell people who complain about not feeling good, having aches and pains, looking for a trainer that you are the rockstar teacher for them!
  2. Add So Much Value: to your community, clients and if you’re a studio owner your teachers that people sing your praises! If you focus on your existing one or few clients truly feeling the benefits of Pilates with you they will feel the need to reciprocate and will share your good words to everyone!
  3. Make Your Website Work For You: This means you have to have a website and keep it updated. One of the best ways to do that is to blog weekly (yes, weekly) about the top things people search on the internet that you can help with! Consistent blogging keeps your website updated, helps your SEO (the thing that drives traffic to your site) and shares who you are and what you do with those who come on your site.
  4. Create an Email Campaign: this is something I cover in my courses “Client Journey” and “Take Your Newsletters to the Next Level.” This includes having something on your site that exchanges a potential clients email for something of value and then an email campaign that you write one time and it guides people to your core offering.
  5. Client Referral Rewards Program: I am not a fan of discounts for new clients. I truly believe in rewarding existing clients for sharing how awesome you are. And, there are many ways you can do this. All depend on what your services are and their prices. For my business, I give a free late cancel, a sort of get out of jail free card, for every new client that buys a package. They have to buy a package for the reward to be kicked in. And, you’ll want to remind your clients of this reward program regularly.
  6. Talk to Strangers: Yep, if you want new clients you got to get out there in the world and tell strangers who you are, what you do and whom you are for. You cannot wait for clients to walk by your doors and hand you their credit card. That doesn’t happen often enough to pay your bills. So, get out there, make eye contact. Get told no. It will help you refine your pitch and also who you are looking to talk to. If you are fishing in a pond of cheap fish switch ponds!

I would love to hear which of these tips you are going to try this week. Post your plan in the comments below.

xx~LL

Do You Need to do Videos to Grow Your Business?

It seems like everyone and everything is going digital these days doesn’t it? Well, it’s true! Facebook and Instagram are pushing content that includes organic videos more than ever these days. And, with the recent changes at IG where they allow the first minute of your IGTV to go in your feed to get more views it certainly makes you wonder, should you be doing videos?

Now, I know some of you are hating on social and wishing it could go back to being for connecting with friends. But, before you roll your eyes and stop reading let me just tell you a little goes a long way. Don’t forget that I know and believe its not about followers and likes. It’s the quality content that shares who you are, what you do and whom you’re for that gets you doing more of what you love-teaching Pilates. However, just like there are different learning styles you have to know how to teach to.  There are different ways people connect to our message. Some love a good read so blogs and great copy on your site will be perfect. Others need a picture, they need to see themselves in your photos. People who look like them. And, there are some that need audio. They need to hear your voice, and the visual of video will hit two types of learners. So, having some video content of you rocking what you do with your ideal client is quite compelling.

Now, that I’ve perked your ears a little bit please note that I am not going to say you have to start posting as many videos as you can. Not at all. If you want to do that than let’s talk because there are some def do’s and don’ts for Youtube and IGTV. But, for many of you I am talking a video or few on your site and every once in a while on social so that people can see you in your element. Can get to know you. See you as the expert at what you do.

Facebook (who owns IG) has a goal to beat out YouTube. So, if you’re like me and you post videos to YT than do not post those video links on FB. They will bury those posts. You’ll have to do an organic video for them. This is something that might seem annoying for you. But, if you’re not trying to become a YouTuber than it’s really simple, take the video. Cutoff the beginning and ends where you press start and stop and post it to your studio/business FB page or group. If you filmed it in vertical video it’s great for IGTV if in horizontal it’s awesome for FB and you can still upload it to YT just don’t share that link on FB to promote it.

Create videos as part of a giveaway in exchange for email addresses for your newsletters.

Post videos of you and a client accomplishing an exercise.

Share tips on exercises your ideal client can do at home.

Vlog! Allow your clients and future clients to hear what is on your mind.

These are just a few things you can do with video to attract your ideal client to your schedule.

I’ll get honest with you, when I first started posting on YT I thought “Why me?!” I mean, who was I to create these videos. But, now a few years later I have met more people around the world because of my videos. And, my goal was to travel the world to teach. I have a teacher I coach who creates videos of modifications. Her ideal client is someone who is just like her. Wants to get her move on but due to injuries can’t do it like everyone else. I have another friend who does lots of mini classes.

Who do you wish was your client?

What do they need?

Film the answer to their questions. Post it on your websites and share it on social media to drive traffic back to your website where they will then be prompted to schedule a session or class with you!

So, should you be doing some video? I think so. But, you don’t have to. It first depends on the goals for your business and what you feel comfortable doing. However, as I mentioned I was not keen on the idea. And now, I am sooo grateful I was pushed to start. And geez, those first videos sucked but the more I did the more comfortable I got.

xx~LL

Ps I’ll be talking about how to use YT to grow your business and hit your goals in my next webinar. Click here to get the help to start and grow your YT and video business.

Do You Need a Welcome Series?

You’re an independent contractor, a small home-based studio or a boutique space with the opportunity to expand and you’re wondering if you need a welcome series for anyone who joins your email list. You are not alone. I get this question and excuses or reasons why people believe they don’t all the time. But, the truth is, if you’re teaching as part of your income, this is not a hobby, then I believe you do!

I know, you’re busy, it’s another thing to do! But,  hear me out. You are busy. You don’t have time to respond to EVERY person who joins your list and share who you are, what you do and why you will rock their world! So, by having a welcome email series (did you think I was suggesting a discounted intro pack? I hope not) you can write up a wonderful series of emails (one time) that guides this newbie on a journey that you want so that they get to know you, trust you, see you as the expert in your area and when you say, “take a session from me” they hit that button so fast because they have been waiting for you to ask this whole time!

You have been part of many a “welcome series” or some call a “Nurture Series” and some totally get you excited and others fall flat or make you hit “unsubscribe.” And, while I could write a book about all the nuances and I am doing a webinar on this topic I thought a few quick and easy tips for you to get started today.

A welcome series should:

Introduce You as the guide to getting them where they want to go

Share some background to your awesomeness

Explain what you do

Why You do what you do

How it helps them!

Guide them from “hey, how are ya?” to “Buy my main offer.”

Be automated and spaced out over time until they are dumped into the main newsletter

Add value

A welcome series could:

Go on for months (I don’t recommend this for Pilates teachers or other movement instructors)

Have an offer or two in it that gets them to try you out before coming into the studio

Share pics or testimonials

Have a secret offer they won’t find on your site

Be as short as a few emails

Once you put your in place it should kick off as soon as they register for your list. And then when it’s done they should end up on your regular newsletter schedule. Because, a welcome series is a lot of things but it is not a replacement for connection or a consistent weekly, bi-weekly or monthly schedule.

I’d love to know what you wish clients new before setting up their session? How you want clients to see and experience you and your business and what you want to drive your future clients to buy? You can post in the comments below.

xx~LL

PS the next webinar on this will air June 26th 12pm pst and replay until July 3rd.