As the Easter holidays draw to a close it’s a good idea to start ramping up your class promotion this weekend as people will start to look for new ways to get fit and slim and for new activities to try as the nights start to get lighter.

Here’s my Quick PR Post Easter Checklist

* Post, Post and keep posting on Facebook. The FB feed moves so fast now that you need to keep posting through the day, ensuing your info reaches as many of your friends as possible.

* Ask your friends to share your info on their walls and pages. Get your regulars to post and share your session details to give maximum impact to your promotion.

*Run Facebook ads, so easy and cheap to create, and for as little as £2 per day you can effectively target the perfect demographic for each individual class you offer.

*Send out an email to everyone who attends your classes with your new timetable and information. Offer 10minute Skype coaching calls for anyone needed to get their mojo back or remotivated. Offer a deal if they book online with you over the weekend.

*Offer a Mums and Daughters deal or Nans, Mums and Daughters deal or Dads and Lads deal. Be creative, encourage family members to attend together.

*Get your outdoor banners up – so eye catching and attention grabbing.
Organise a taster evening – Do a talk, sample classes and sign up people on the day Promote all over social media

*Target local businesses and offer sessions – Lunch and Learns, Seminars, 30minute Workouts, 30 minute Pilates/Yoga.

*Have you got a local soft play centre in your area? Contact the manager and do a 45 min session before the centre opens. Encourage mums to bring pre schoolers along to play while they work out.

*Build your following on Instagram – The fastest growing social media phenomenon. Follow me RachelLHolmes

* BE PRODUCTIVE stop wasting time and totally focus for a few hours on marketing your business correctly. Always remember people WANT to get fit, they want to feel better, they want to lose weight. You have an amazing product/service that people want and need.

Photos that Raise your Profile

If you have an iphone then make sure you get some of the apps that allow you to create cool photos and captions and use this to full effect on your Facebook and Instagram accounts.

Take loads of pictures of you doing exercises or your class members if you don’t want to be in the photos, add captions and blast them all over social media.
Add in exercise routine ideas and post regularly This is a fantastic way of showing people you walk the walk, talk the talk and really know your stuff as a Fitness professional.
PLUS, people love new workout ideas to try at home or in the gym and they really make your social media pages come alive.

Top Tips for Creating Workout Pics for Social Media
*Take a couple of shots of you doing an exercise or exercise sequence

* Use PHONTO app (there a loads so try different apps out) and add some graphics and captions
* Post to Instagram and hashtag it with lots of your relevant keywords.
* Post on Facebook and Twitter and ask if anyone has tried the exercise, create dialogue, feedback and comments.

It’s so quick and easy to do and definitely raises your Fitness Professional Profile

Fitpro Live – Are you going?

Jayne, Kelly and I will be all at Fitpro this weekend, so if you are there do pop over and say HI. If you would like to talk about the KSFL Franchise Business Opportunity then let’s schedule a chat and see what we can come up with it and see if we have a fit. Tweet me/Facebook me

World Fitness Pilates Day in Guildford

Last few places left on this day if you would like to grab a place. Click here to book on

Writing ideas for Blogging, Your Social Media and Your Website

As a fitness entrepreneur wanting to get ahead of the competition and to promote yourself and your company you need to get your name out there, write articles and allow them to be freely reproduced (with a resource box pointing back to you.) A well-written article can:

– help build your profile

– direct traffic to your website

– help build a database of clients through associated e-courses or newsletter.
-create a client base to sell your products too

How do you write the article? How do you grab those readers and make them come back for more?

You can construct and edit an article (it has a beginning, middle and end; and you can check the grammar and spelling); if you want to WIN readers – think about what they want to know.

Put your readers first. Give them what they want and they’ll be queuing up to read anything you produce.

A blueprint for writing articles that captivate your readers – whatever the topic – is a follows:

== 1. What Do Your Readers Want – Who is your target market?

Depending on who you are selling your products too. Is woman? How old are they? Are they interested in staying young? Do they want to lose weight? Do they enjoy Pilates? Are they training for anything specific? etc

== 2. Grab you readers’ attention ==

Work on your opening. Try to avoid trite questions like “Have you wondered why people find it difficult to lose weight?” It’s dull and it’s not targeting the person reading the article – what do they care about the difficulties “people” have losing weight? They care about THEIR weight problem!

The opening paragraph should give the reader that warm “Hey, this is about me!” feeling. – “This could be the answer I’ve been looking for…”

Example: “Diet gurus make it all sound easy: to lose weight, all you have to do is expend more energy than you take in. Huh! If only it were that simple!. For those of us tired of diets and dull group meetings, there is a back-to-basics way to tackle this. It won’t cost you a fortune or leave you feeling deprived.”

== 3. Write As You Speak… Then Edit! ==

The sample opening above illustrates the importance of the tone used in your article. You need ‘meat’ to make it worth reading.

Write your article in a natural style that’s akin to normal conversation. If the first draft is too informal – fix that when you edit. Readers may want facts, tips, and strategies, but they want entertainment too! Let your personality shine.

== 4. End On A High ==

Most articles fizzle out! Writers often don’t know how to end on an upbeat note. They either stop dead or come up with a trite ending like: “So what are you waiting for? Get started today!”

The beginning and the ending of your article are the parts that make the biggest impression. Create a feeling of anticipation… and leave them feeling satisfied (or excited) when you finish.

Offering advice to help solve a problem gives your readers a reason to feel optimistic about themselves. Don’t make promises… but offer hope. If you are giving hints on marketing or business, sum up the benefits. Experiment with using a humorous quote, or giving readers a specific action to get them started. Be creative.

Here’s a final tip: create a cheat-sheet. Divide it into beginnings/middles/ends and add more strategies as you think of them. (For example, using the tips in this article, you might write: ENDINGS – end on a high, offer hope, use funny quote, suggest action to get started.)

Do this, and you’ll be spinning out articles everyone wants to publish!
Once you have a collection of articles post them onto your website, send them to all of the local press, email them to article websites and promote them wherever you can. Always remember to include a resource box at the bottom for readers to click through onto your website

Step 4 All Seasons – New Download
Code: S4AS

I start of with 2 simple combinations then move into a 32 count block with more rhythm changes and quicker choreography. Its a good mix for your intermediate steppers and is easy to add your own variations and moves if you want to grow it further. A current favourite with my own classes
2 Tokens
Length: 11 mins
£ 3.99
Size: 65.0 MB
Have you got a wipe board? by Jane Nicholls

If anyone had asked me at Christmas what the must have piece of equipment we all must have for 2013, I would never have guessed it would be a wipe board! I have just set mine up on my Fit Pro trade stand for on the spot challenges and offers.

Here are 3 Workouts for you to share:

WOSunday – 5 mile run / 20 minute slow incline in 20 – 50 second intervals: burpees, skipping, squats, single arm rows, walking lunges, sit ups

WOMonday – 5 rounds of 400 metre runs / 5 handstand press ups for time

WOTuesday – 3 rounds 30 x 5 exercises: box jumps, deadlifts, burpees, push press, wall ball

Put your twist onto these workouts to offer a challenge in your classes or give your clients something to work on when not with you.

Hope to see you at Fit Pro – jayne x jayne@groupxtraining.com

Welcome to land overwhelm by Sally Ghafoor

Mum or not, running your own business can take you into land overwhelm. Being a mum as well as running a business means you are probably in land overwhelm before you even start your own business. Last week saw me nearly tip back into land overwhelm, 3 children throwing up, electrics gone on my car, matchsticks keeping my eyes open how was I going to keep on top of my to do list and my kids?

Thankfully the systems I have in place saw me good and I managed to complete my to do list as well as catch up on the washing and ironing!

When you get into land overwhelm it can completely crush you, leading to less productivity and a ton more procrastination – I know I have been there. I was trying to do about 5 separate training’s, write blogs for 3 different ideas, write a book, run my classes, come up with choreography as well as flyering and marketing my classes and all in all nothing was getting done. Sure I was listening to the training videos but was not doing anything about what I was learning. Tons of exciting ideas in my head but no way of knowing how to follow them through. I knew I should be bulk writing my blogs, scheduling my social media and doing my work in bulk, but I couldn’t because I couldn’t work out what to do first I was well and truly in land overwhelm and sinking fast.

As with weight loss, you have to have your head in the right place to move through overwhelm and you have to have strategies in place. the first thing I did to get myself out of land overwhelm was to sit for 40 minutes and brainstorm everything I had to do or wanted to do, including everything to do with the kids and housework. I then put it into categories of work and home. Once everything was down on paper I chose the most important 3 things from each list and did them first before returning to the list and selecting the next 3.

Land overwhelm can zap you of your productivity, so take a plane out of there as quick as you can.

@fitbusinesshub
www.facebook.com/thebusinessmumshub
www.facebook.com/fitnessbusinesshub

Little Black Book
By Andrew Crawford

For todays article, I am going to dive straight into something that will perhaps assist some of you if ever you are in this situation.

Have you heard of the Business Record Check?

This is something the Inland Revenue rolled out last year. I wrote about it earlier this year. Have a quick peak here to remind yourself.

http://www.fitnessindustryaccountants.com/business-record-checks.htm

I thought it was very important for you to know first hand what may happen if you are ever called in to face the ‘Interrogation’.

Yesterday I joined my client to attend a BRC.
Usually there are 2 Officers In attendance but today there was surprisingly only one. This was because they didn’t know I was coming. …..tee hee…!!

They will start by opening up conversation about your business, general but very detailed. You will need to explain in detail how you business works. More importantly, how your income is derived.
Let me tell you now………..if your business does not involved the taking of cash, this BRC will only take about one and a half hours. If however you do take cash…then expect to be there for two hours plus…..!!

Ensure that you can trace your income from client, to invoice to bank statement. They wanted my client to have kept a record of each client and the amount paid by them. For Accountants, we only need to know the amount invoiced, received and banked.

This is where your ‘Little Black Book’ comes in.

Did you know that the Inland Revenue will accept your diaries as ‘Source Documentation’?

After quizzing them, I also put forward the idea of ‘Back of the Envelope’ records. This is what they said.

“……As long as it is ‘The Source’ it will be accepted…..”

So folks……write it down, even if it is on the back of an envelope. Then keep that scrap piece of paper to ‘support’ the amount you reveal on your Tax Return

If you use your bank account to complete your Tax Return, make sure you can cross check each figure. The best thing to do is to use a spreadsheet, enter your business expenses on this spreadsheet, then from this you complete the return.

My client had to pick random figures and track it back to the bank statement. These were picked at random by the Officer.
We decided to use the bank account only with no receipts…….you can do the same but they will insist that receipts are kept. I stated……many times throughout the interrogation, that a receipt does not necessarily prove that you made the expenditure, the bank account is a definitive source to the expense had occured.

Although one could argue that you do need receipts, it was accepted that because the bank account cross referenced with the spreadsheet that was used to complete the tax return that this was sufficient proof of expenditure.

It is important for you to record expenditure exactly as it appears from your bank statement, I noticed this was an area they concentrated on and throughout the whole of the interrogation they asked the same question in different formats.

What was this question?….or questions…?

How many hours do you work?
What is the average amount charged per client?
How much do you earn a month?
How many clients do you have in a week?
Do they pay cash?
How do you record your income?
Do the clients pay you or through a third party?
How is your lump sum broken down?
Can you identify which clients make up the weekly or monthly total?

You get the picture, it will all be weighted towards income.

Oh…….a few other things to remember.

They will inquire as to the types of expenditure you do.

Make sure you say this sentence BEFORE they do….
“All my expenditure is Wholly and Exclusively made of behalf of my trade/business…”

Beware and know that travel expenditure incurred from home to a permanent place of work is not a claimable expense. Make sure then, that this expenditure is not included on your spreadsheet.

Any expenditure with a personal element to it, eg mobile phone. Ensure you say….
“…I make personal adjustments to account for the personal element..”

If your Accountant deals with this side, tell them you produce the figures then send everything to your Accountant. Full stop.

Another thing that came up was clothing. As you KNOW………Uniforms are claimable but clothing is not…..so…..put a logo on it….!!!

Suffice to say…My client did not require a follow up visit and was adequate to prepare a tax return. I already knew this but had to go through this which showed my client that whatever we are doing, is in accordance with accepted protocols.

On your behalf, I did inform them of their inadequate service for tax payers including the unacceptable amount of time waiting on the phone for them and also the time taken to process simple business records.

Just to let you know, I was told that even internally they have communication and waiting problems concerning the phones and post. So if it is not good for them…..do not expect it to be good for you.

I also mentioned on your behalf what was the reasons that the boys and girls from the Big House (Westminster) were treated differently…………they looked at me and laughed ( my client saw and heard all of this)…..yes indeed, you must know that MP’s do not follow what you do ………that’s life….!!

Ok…Today was srtictly based on an actual BRC, not all of them will go the same way.(I pre-prepared for this) It will depend on the person you get asking the questions and how suspicious they are of you and the records you keep.

If you have tried to get hold of me in the past couple of weeks and I haven’t replied, this is because my inbox is rammed full and some of your emails will be bouncing back.

Until I have cleared this, you can also use adviceontax@gmail.com

Just remember to keep that Little Black Book for 6 years and if there are any private stuff in there………..Black it out….!!!

Oh…that’s the other Little Black Book……ha ha ha

www.fitnessindustryaccountants.com
www.facebook.com/andrewjamescrawford

Relaxing Teens by Caroline Newman

We have now entered Exam season ! Young people across the country will be sitting exams and finalising last pieces of course work. Stress levels will be high and tempers will be fraught .

Last year I contacted my local secondary school and offered a block of “Chillax Sessions ” the sessions were aimed at Yr 10, &Yr 11 pupils. The sessions were 45mins long and comprised of Active mobilization and stretching exercises focusing around the head, neck, shoulders. Posture specific exercises, breathing and relaxation techniques. We also covered healthy eating, nutrition, the importance of sleep and the importance of fun !. During the sessions I included handouts about nutrition, healthy lifestyle etc .

The sessions were very casual, I used Ibiza chill-out session music, suitability balls, plus other equipment and encouraged everyone to participate.
This year the school I have spoken about booked me in again for 4 sessions and another booking for Activities week at the end of term.
So, could you offer something similar|? Or has this sparked off a Teen class idea for you ? Even if you don’t specifically work with children, could this be a bolt on to an existing Pilates/Yoga Relaxation class that you already teach ? More than likely you have parents (Mums) that attend your classes that could do with the sessions themselves!.
At the other end of the age spectrum and on a lighter note my latest Dance/Fitness video is Lazy Town ! Ideal for 4-7 year olds, great for burning off enthusiasm ! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YlPsDGznEFc

After last weeks response to my article about working in schools I plan to arrange a webinar to answer the many questions. If this interests you please contact me caroline@thedancelady.com &like my FB page The Dance Lady .
Thanks for reading. Caroline Danceady

Vikki Scovell

Ok, so you already know that I am the Queen of showing off. But guess where I am typing from this week? I’m sat at a wooden table with a glass of rose, looking out from my balcony towards the mountains, and snow is drifting down lazily over the view. The silence is only disturbed from time to time by the happy yelps of skiers and the occasional helicopter delivering spoilt and be-furred Russian Oligarchs to the resort 200m above us. It is a bit like living in a giant, moving Christmas card. Because of the snow, I can’t quite see the mountain this morning, but last night once the fog had cleared, I saw it towering over us for the first time: an immense crag of searing purest white thrusting up into the Caribbean-blue sky. You know me and my propensity to sit and watch, well I watched the glaring white peaks slowly soften into gold as the evening drew in, and then melt into pink, and then shadowy blue as the sun disappeared behind them. Today started out foggy, and first thing, Mr Blue took the children (Child 1, Child 2 and Small Blue- petit bleu) to the shop to be fitted with skis and snow boarding boots. Their excitement was mounting by the minute. Petit Bleu has skied many times and couldn’t wait to get on the slopes. Child 2 was so excited she was doing a convincing impression of an infant fed solely on blue Slush Puppies and luminous cheesy-whatsits. Whilst trying to calm her a little, I tried to defocus from Child 1’s low-level monologue. Child 1: Like OMG are you SERIOUSLY expecting me to wear this protective head-wear, like, does NOBODY understand exactly like how long it took me to straighten my hair this morning with all the moisture in the air? (Glares from beneath a liberal application of ‘smoky eyes.’) Once the skis and boards are hired (at a price which despite being heavily discounted still makes me almost vomit) I attempt to apply sun screen to these beautiful offspring. Petit Bleu allows me to smooth the stuff ont o his cherubic face, but at 12 years old and a boy who sails through life with blissful calm, this task is easy. Next comes Child 2 who is positively vibrating with energy and too excited to stop talking. This involves several ‘eating the sunscreen’ accidents before I finish protecting her porcelain skin. Child 1 is next. Each time I approach her she backs away and screws up her face. Child 1: Like NOT THE EYELIDS hag, you will smudge the wings on my eyeliner (hastily pulls out pocket mirror, checks and exclaims…..) What the HELL? You have completely removed an entire eyelid-worth of liquid liner (pouts horridly whilst still looking beautiful in a slightly lop-sided way). I threaten to lick the corner of a tissue and wipe the other side, which is enough to send her into a frenzy, as she is completely grossed-out by most things to do with me, but my spit is definitely off-limits and almost as gross as it gets. It is a threat I have used for years, and I think I stil l have some mileage in it yet.
So we make our way to the slopes and when we get there, Child 2 who has been bubbling with confidence, immediately wipes out and cries enormous fat tears down her lovely face. Child 2: I don’t want to ski mummy, it hurts, and my knees have gone wobbly and I think they are both dislocated, and I don’t like it and I just want to be with yoooooooou……. (more enormous and perfectly-formed tears roll down her rose-bud cheeks, I wonder if she truly has a future in film or on the stage). Child 1: (filled with an unusual level of compassion) OMG just stop being such a pain and sort yourself out. Child 2: I’m never coming skiing again, its horrid and you (child 1) are a pooh. Me: (Brightly) Hot chocolate anyone? Child 1 forgets everything she has ever cared about concerning her appearance, and chugs off with her snow-board, sweating huge smoky streaks of mascara down her cheeks, and returns wearing her pure white ski jacket completely spattered with blood. Luckily it was onl y a small cut to a vein in her finger, but WOW it looked fantastically dangerous. Me: RADICAL DUDE! You are the only blood-spattered person on the piste today: that must chalk up some serious cred. Child 1: Can you be quiet HAG, you are embarrassing yourself; you are too old to talk like that, and actually NO ONE talks like that anyway. Me: (Quietly) I was being ironic actually. Anyway, child 1 becomes increasingly frizzy-haired, pink-faced and mascara-streaked, as the day wears on, and we discover that she is a brilliant snow-boarder. I take a photo of her looking completely awesome coming down the slopes. I decide to print it off and take it to the PE teacher who put her in set 4 for sport; destroying years of confidence-building work in the time it took to open an envelope. I will spare you the method with which I intend to deliver the afore-mentioned photograph.
Meanwhile, Child 2 has been soothed with hot chocolate and cream on the top, I have pep-talked her, prepped her and booked her into ski school, from which she emerges several hours later with a Cheshire-cat grin: look at me mummy, I can ski, I can ski, It’s amazing, I love it………………. The charming Petit Blue disappears with Child 1 to snowboard, and I wait for everyone to come back, with a big bag full of treats, warm dry socks and praise. Nothing prepared me for the arrival of Mr. Blue who had been gone for hours on the misty mountain, arriving at break-neck speed, his hair and eyebrows frosted, looking rugged and James bond, dressed all in black. Me: OMG Blue you look extremely dashing, quick! Take me to the nearest log cabin and BTW where’s my Black Magic? Blue: I would have got you some, but you would have complained about getting fat. Oh well, It’s true, a whole box of chocs would be disastrous, but not as disastrous as being trapped in a ski resort, surr ounded by mountains of melted cheese. I muse over the evening’s meal, and vegetarian choices of 4 cheese pizza, cheese fondue, a raclette of cheese, cheese salad or just a plain cheese selection. I contemplate starvation as the only valid option, and decide to spend a week’s wages on a plate of lettuce (again)………………….. Tomorrow, it is time to conqueror my vertigo/claustrophobia by attempting to go up the mountain in the cable car, so wish me luck, and I will let you know next week how I get on.
DUDES! Have a RADICAL blue-sky week, with no wipe-outs, and catch you next time…………………….
Vikki Scovell (from Courchevel 1650) @fitbite

Have a wonderful and see you at Fitpro

Love Rachel xxx


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