Hello and welcome to the Choreographytogo Instructor Newsletter. This is a free weekly resource that I designed 8 years ago years ago to provide support, ideas and back up for all Instructors and Personal Trainers. I love to receive your feedback, so if you do have any comments or would like to contribute in any way please email firstname.lastname@example.org or please use the very lively forum.
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News and Updates by Rachel Holmes
This week I’ll be rolling down to Oxford on Saturday and Cambridge on Sunday ready for the Fitness Pilates Explosion workshop. There are a few places left on each workshop if you wanted to make a last minute booking. Then it’s convention season with IFS Blackpool on 24 – 27th March closely followed by The Fitpro Spring Convention 7 – 10th April. It’s going to be an amazing few weeks. 2011 Trips4Fitness are running new International Aerobics Weeks this year in Fuerteventura and a new 5 star resort in Turkey, hope you can join us http://trips4fitness.com/ There are weeks in May, June, September and December and lots of different packages available.
Super Strategies for Superstar Fitness Instructors in the community by Rachel Holmes
With so many of you teaching and doing amazingly well in your community venues with your Zumba classes and Bootcamps I wanted to write a little article about making sure you cushion yourself and prepare your business to go on and become stronger and stronger. A few year’s ago (well maybe 15) I used to teach Line Dancing. I ran classes every night with over 80 people. It was all pay as you go and the money was brilliant and I never thought it would stop. But it slowly did although I ran the classes for a good 5/7 years. There was no Facebook, no websites, no data capture and no real strategies to build my fitness business into the future BUT there is for you guys, so even if your class numbers are out of this world focus on the future and where you could be heading!
These are my suggestions to your future success:
1. Don’t STOP teaching everything else. I know it’s tempting but keep your hand in with other styles of classes even if it’s 1 or 2 a week.
2. Get a website and make sure everyone signs up on your list. Your data capture LIST is your future.
3. Start writing a newsletter and keep in touch with all of these new people who join your list.
4.Encourage your Zumba people to try other classes with you. Give away free classes, passes and sessions with you so they can try other things.
5. Encourage your members to add you on Facebook and Twitter and build your followings on there as well – Build a great offline AND online business.
6. Be careful about what you write about the money you are earning on websites, forums and social media – I see lots of Instructors talking about what they are buying or the new car they are going to have or extension they are building. WE are in a recession, lots of people are struggling and the tax man is watching, plus, so are burglars and muggers
7. Think about your exit strategy. If you plan one day not to be teaching every evening you need to recreate this offline business success into an online business model so your business can run without you actually working in it.
8.Fitness trends come in cycles, bubbles DO burst, new trends and new classes will come to the fore. That’s life…so capitalise on what’s happening right now and make sure you plan for the future.
If you are super savvy you can take this massive opportunity and it could potentially set you and your business up for LIFE. So, I encourage you to make plans, be sensible and data capture everyone. These people could potentially join you on a membership site or continue to buy products from you for the next 15 years long after the bubble has burst and you have moved on.
Please feedback to me on this via the Forum. Thanks, Rachel
Check list for All Instructors teaching in the community and running a fitness business
These may seem a little bit basic but you need to double check every week you have these in place so you can turn potential clients into signed up members
1. POSTERS up and flyers in all the venues you teach – Sounds like a no brainer, I know, but make sure you have snazzy posters up on display every week and flyers/postcards with prices, class details, testimonials, what to wear, what to bring etc etc
2.Referal Programme – Offer prizes, free classes, free PT, BUT make sure you give your existing clients a postcard telling them how your referral programme works. Give your clients flyers or postcards for them to put up in their place of work, to their friends, co workers, colleagues and family members AND when you email out your newsletter email to your list a “done for you email” that they can just insert their name and email it to their contacts.
3.Find out about what you class members do for a living. Last week I found out I have a beauty business owner, the owner of the largest day nurseries in my area and a solicitor. This week I got a free massage in return for promoting her salon to my clients, 5 new morning classes for drop off mums in the nurseries and I needed a solicitor when someone crashed into my car. Network with your clients every session, Find out about what they do and how you can cross promote.
So whats up at the moment? How is this year going for group x instructors and personal trainers. I wanted to discuss the ‘Betty Factor’ this week, just to see if anyone else struggles with it. I have always maintained that teaching class is the best thing and always want to do it no matter what else comes along.
Well here are the 3 pressing points for my consideration:
1. I have a business to run that takes up more and more time each week
2. I am suffering the complete disrespect and ignorance currently handed out by major club chains
3. New and exciting projects are knocking on my door
However I have 74 year old Betty who will be in class on Monday and so many more like her who love my classes, thank me each week and tell me that their week is not complete without class. Do you know what I mean? The client who loves what we do and benefits in every way possible and would be devastated if we stopped.
I feel that I have a moral and personal responsability to these people who have supported my classes over the past god knows how many years but am finding it more and more difficult to keep a number of classes going. Of course I will grab at every new opportunity but I can’t help feeling bad about letting people down.
What are your thoughts on this? If our target audience appreciate what we do and show consistent loyalty to both us and our classes, why are we not given due respect by club chains for being a major factor in client retention and member motivation. Do you think the industry will ever respect our individual skills and expertise or view us as a one size fits all industry. I have had a conversation recently that a conditioning class is a conditionng class no matter who teaches it. I know that this is rubbish, you know that it is rubbish our clients know that it is rubbish but if our managers choose this standpoint then working conditions cannot improve.
Is our future in the community, boot camps, small groups, private clients and 1 to 1 training?
I would love your thoughts on this.
j a y n e
Twitter News and Help
Since I’ve been writing a lot about Twitter this year LOADS of you have joined and are tweeting away with great success. Twitter is a amazing way to gain contacts, network, and strengthen your personal brand. But sometime the 140 characters can seem a bit short. So here are some ideas to get your message across LOUD AND CLEAR in 140 characters or less 🙂
I always seem to get a warm-fuzzy feeling when I use up all 140 characters in a concise descriptive tweet. Here are some tips for making the most of those few characters you get to use. I still have to get to grips with grammar ( my weak point, I’m sure you have noticed!)
1) Use shorthand codes. BRB, LOL, RT, TY, etc. Some may call it tech speak or leet speak. Acronyms and abbreviations for commonly used words and phrases. Check out my list below of popular abbreviations .
2) Be clear and concise. Make sure you are not being redundant. Remove any words that might be irrelevant to what you are trying to convey. Be succinct.
3) Use URL shortening. This one is pretty obvious and is even built in to Twitter. However, there are some URL shortening services that can save you a few more characters than TinyURL. I use IS.GD and another popular one is XR.COM which even allows you to customize the URL or Bit Ly http://bit.ly/a/sign_up
4) Use special symbol characters. You may not know it, but Twitter accepts more than just normal characters. You can actually create hearts, stars, smilies and other symbols that can represent words or ideas in just 1 character. TheNextWeb has created a great tool called TwitterKeys which allows you to have all these symbols at your fingertips.
5) Use labels. Labelling your tweet has some cool benefits. A label is like a tag at the beginning of your tweet. Your followers will know exactly what you are sharing right away and they may even increase your chances of being re-tweeted. Here are some examples… (Reading:, Stumbling:, Digging:, etc.)
6) Be simple. This is a writing tip from Copyblogger, “…simple words work better than big ones. Write ‘get’ instead of ‘procure.’ Write ‘use’ rather than ‘utilize.’ Use the longer words only if your meaning is so precise there is no simpler word to use.”
RT = Retweet.
PRT =/ Please Retweet.
OH = Overheard.
DM = Direct Message.
@ : Reply to [username].
BTW : By The Way
FTW = For The Win.
FTL = For The Loss.
IRL = In Real Life.
FTF = Face to Face.
IMHO = In My Honest Opinion.
YMMV = Your Mileage May Vary.
BR = Best Regards.
b/c = because.
JV = Joint Venture.
LMK = Let Me Know.
Please follow me on Twitter and I’ll follow you back http://twitter.com/RachelHolmes
One highly effective way of mobilising a Facebook community is through the use of page events, from both an online PR and engagement perspective. Whether it’s to signify a live announcement, the launch of a new form of product, or a real life event like a masterclass or charity class or a new class you are starting. Facebook events provide a great mechanic for engagement and create a recurring presence on users’ Facebook homepages once they have submitted their response to the event invitation.
Below are a few pointers that will help to optimise the impact of a page event within a Facebook community, based on the input fields that are available during the event creation process:
Since imagery is one of the most powerful assets that can be used in Facebook wall posts, the same logic can be applied to the use of imagery on the event page too. Wall posts that are accompanied by an image can in some cases generate around 50-60% additional engagement compared to those posts that are purely text based or highlight links or videos with thumbnails. As such, it’s vital that the image in the event page is as relevant as possible, and has enough impact to really make users think about the event and get excited. An example of this could be if a new product is being announced, in which case a teaser image or silhouette of the product could be used to stir extra buzz.
This can be particularly important when it comes to what kind of community the event is created for. If the Facebook community is a global one, then it’s vital that time zones are considered if the event is occurring at a specific time.
What is being planned? This is the title of the event that will appear on users’ Facebook homepages, so it’s important to ensure that this section is as accurate, relevant and eye-catching as possible. At the same time, the title shouldn’t be so bold as to distract users (i.e. entirely capital letters), as this may annoy them and reduce their likelihood of responding or indeed attending the event.
Is the event one that will occur in real life? Is it a digital event, for example a website launch or a live broadcast? Whatever the answer, it should be specified here, so that the users who eventually attend the event know exactly where the event is happening, ergo where they need to be at the specified time in order to get involved. If it’s a website, why not go ahead and input the URL for users to cut and paste?
Once an event is created then you can issue invites to all of your Facebook friends making this an ideal opportunity to get bums on seats.
Fitness Entrepreneurs Bootcamp Event
information from the very best in the business.
Jon Le Tocq
And a mystery star guest
Hope you have an amazing week
Love Rachel xxx