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  • 21st March Instructor Newsletter


    As you read this newsletter I will be setting up at Blackpool for the International Fitness Showcase and teaching Unite with Jayne. The preparation for this event has been momentous, the choreography, the music selection, what I’m wearing, what I’m not wearing. I’ve unpacked the 2 cases and make up case I’m taking at least 3 times and in the end have decided to just take everything. I’ve had sleepless nights about the choreography and dreamt I’ve been just about to go on stage without any leggings on. But hey it’s only once a year and I always love every minute. I’ll be bringing you a full report in next week’s newsletter and will be blogging and vlogging on Facebook and Twitter all weekend. If you see me please come up and say “Hi” I love to put names to faces and enjoy a good sweaty hug with everyone after sessions, so don’t be a stranger please pop over. Jayne and I also have a little trade stand so come and see us.

    This week’s newsletter features great articles from Katie, Jill, Sally, Claire, Caroline and Andrew and, of course, Vikki. Vikki’s articles, although often non fitness related, get a huge amount of feedback on social media and are always great fun to read. I always love to get your comments and feedback, so please feel free to tap your keyboard and let me know what you think.


    Are you ready for a change?

    Spring is here (apparently) and with Easter around the corner are you ready for a change? Why not teach a new class, in a new venue, to a new set of people?
    Fancy it? Why not? It’s lovely to see the same faces week after week, but if you feel the need to break out, then post Easter is a fantastic time to do just that.
    What is your passion right now, right this very minute? What springs to mind as you read this article? What are you finding exciting and vibrant? It doesn’t have to be something you’ll teach for next 20 years, something that’s getting you excited at the minute.



    Here’s a little brainstorm for you:
    Men Only classes – It could be Fitness Pilates for Men, HIIT for Men, Fat Loss for Men, Freestyle Fitness Yoga for Men.
    Get Outdoors – Beginners Running, Power Walking Class, Buggy Fitness, Nordic Walking, Fitness Walking, Fitness Running.
    Old Skool – I’ve said it so many times, but bring back Freestyle Step, Aerobics, Triple Challenge, Flex and Stretch, Tone and Groan, Stability Ball, Circuits.

    Don’t get stuck in a community class rut break out and teach something new and exciting.

    Productivity Hot tips


    Time Management is something We all Battle With So here are my top tips more done in less time.

    1. Decide you want to be massively productive – do what you need to do to get massively productive! Self discipline, make your self do something that you need to do, whether you want to or not. YOU have to Eat that frog and get on with it every single day So, Get on with it, if you want to reach your goals. FAST.

    2. PREPARE – Think and Plan on paper before you begin any new project. Figure out what you want, plan how to get there then take action. FAST

    3. Strategy breaks – Take 2 days a year, 1 day a quarter, half a day a month, one hour a week, 10 minutes each end of day, plan and intend your day. 1 minute an hour. Only do what you deem is important, and only work from a list. As new things come in add to appropriate list, and cross off things from master list. Have a laserbeam focus and do only what you need to

    4. Master Lists/Create All your Master lists on Your Smart Phone – YOU pick your phone up 10000 times a day so keep your lists and goals in there and carefully craft it every single day. Don’t just have lists, have lists of lists. Create a master list or a project list with tasks placed in list so you know where you are going with each list. For example I have a C2GO list, A KSFL list, A home list, A personal list etc

    5. Separate planning and execution – don’t mix these up, the only thing that counts is getting the job done. Get it planned, then get doing, action is the parent of productivity, we only get paid for results. Move fast – pick up the pace! The faster you move the better you feel, the more you get done, the more you earn, the quicker you relax and enjoy time with your family and friends.

    6. Down time is productive time – where do you get your best ideas? For me it’s always in the shower or while I’m teaching. Think outside the box you have created, you need to break and relax, recharge.


    7. Use travel time effectively – Listen to audio books in your car. I’ve listened to hundred of audio books whilst driving. There are millions on itunes and audible.com.



    8. Remove urgency – asap. You don’t have to respond to every text/email/phone call as soon as they come in. Get your important tasks done FIRST then set time aside each day to respond to messages.

    9 Trap your thinking – dump stuff in head, journal, phone, mind map things, data recorder, capture and trap your thoughts and sort through them quickly. I constantly write notes through the day on my iphone. These then appear on my ipad and desk top which is all linked so I can work on the ideas at a later date.

    10. Clearing – getting stuff out of the way that is in the way. Clear thinking, clear relationships, get things off your mind, don’t carry them around with you. Resolve issues and move on.




    Katie Bulmer Cook
    Hi C2Goers,

    I hope all is good in your fitness hood?

    Every time I log onto Facebook and Twitter I see a lot of the marketing messages (mine included); status updates about classes, boot camps, offers etc, and this is great…it means as fitness professionals we are putting ourselves out there and spreading the word about what we do and how others can get involved.

    Social media is a great way to connect with so many people in super quick time, but have we become reliant on it and neglected our offline promotion and marketing and dare I say it maybe got a little lazy?

    In my business I find that a strong online presence works brilliantly but if I take my foot of the gas with regard to offline marketing I definitely see a drop in numbers, enquiries and sales.

    So, here are my top tips to give your offline marketing a boost…

    Make a list of ALL of your ex-clients; people you have fallen off the fitness radar and contact them by either personal letter or even better call them!

    For example…

    ‘Hi there Christine, it’s Katie, I haven’t seen you for a while so just wanted to see how you’re doing and make sure your still working out and keeping fit.’

    Ending the call with something to this affect…

    ‘Well it would be great to see you back at class and to get you back into the swing of things you can have your first one back on me/half price.’

    You may find they are quite happy plodding along on their own, or they may not be exercising, or they have been ill. But whatever the outcome you have made the effort to contact them personally and taken the time to show you care. Is anyone else in your area delivering that level of service to their clients?

    Go to the places where your potential clients ‘hang out’ and hand out your flyers, cards and promotional material. My client group are at play groups, school gates and salons so I make a point of always having my flyers etc with me and leaving them in prominent places as well as handing them out individually. As we say in Sunderland ‘shy bairns get nowt’ aka if you don’t ask you don’t get.

    Start a referral scheme for your clients, and reward them for helping you to grow your business with something they will see great value in. For example if an existing member from my group PT class refers a friend to join then the existing member receives their next course half price or I give them a £20-£30 high street voucher. Why not create a hand out detailing your referral scheme and how it works and hand it out to all of your members on Monday?

    Yes offline marketing my involve a little more effort than online, in the fast paced world of Facebook a status is easily lost in a sea of updates…good customer service is remembered forever!

    I’m presenting at IFS Blackpool this weekend so if you are there please come and say Hi! I’m teaching Real Deal Aerobics on Saturday and Serenity Pilates and Real Results on Sunday.

    Have a great day,

    Katie

    Tweet me your feedback @KatieBulmer1

    Katie Bulmer-Cooke
    07725889957


    Dropping off the radar
    By Claire Mockridge
    Ante/Postnatal Fitness Expert


     As you read this I’m on my way to London, not Blackpool, sadly. So for those of you who’ve tweeted and Facebooked me asking if I’m off to IFS this weekend, it’s a “no”, I’m afraid. I’m attending a training course on diastasis recti and symphysis pubis derangement. Juicy stuff this pre/postnatal education, eh? I do always say though, if you don’t look forward to a training day or workshop in the field you’re employed in, then, you’re in the wrong industry. True though, isn’t it?

    Anyway, how are your class numbers at the moment? A little bit up and down? Well, today, I’m talking about looking after your clients, and what things you can, no wait, SHOULD be doing to try and get clients who drop off your radar back into your classes.

    As you know, being an Ante/Postnatal Fitness Expert, I have a very transient client base, so pregnant clients are with me for just a few months at best, and often, postnatal women attend just one 6-week course, then I never see them again in a postnatal setting.

    Every week, I block out a time in my diary to focus on these things:

    *Generating sales,
    *Improving systems, and
    *Increasing retention

    These elements form the fundamentals in business, and more so for me because of the population I target. I’ll go things in a little more detail here:

    I’m constantly advertising – you should be too, whether it’s on Facebook, Twitter or asking a client to pop your timetable up on their work’s noticeboard.

    I am system-queen – you should be too. If you don’t have email templates and class registers in place which help you save time when responding to new and existing client enquiries, then you’re wasting a lot of time.

    I look after my clients – you should too. When someone drops off the radar, what do you do? Just let them do just that, or send them a quick “Are you ok?” email and encourage them back to class?

    Food for thought there, I hope. As I say, these are the 3 fundamental things anyone in business should be doing on a weekly, if not daily basis.

    See you at FitPro in April if you’re attending and do be sure to pop over and say hi.

    Bye for now.

    Claire Mockridge
    Ante/Postnatal Fitness Expert

    Facebook: ClaireMockridge1
    Twitter: @ClaireMockridge
    Facebook Group for Instructors: https://www.facebook.com/groups/clairemockridge


    Are you using a media Platform ? Caroline Dance Lady


    Monday 11th March I filmed a short Dance video for the Red Nose Day celebrations. My aim was to get teachers, schools and students to participate in the Dance as a kind of Fun Fitness Dance activity to mark the celebrations. I choreographed the Dance so it was easy enough to do in a classroom, in the hall or even done in the playground. I had already planned to do the Dance with my schools as part of their Red Nose Day celebrations . Having read all of The Fitness Business hub’s ideas, I decided it was time to build my audience and reach them via the power of Facebook, so I began mentoring with Sally. Sally set my page up and immediately set to work on a strategy for my Facebook page, one of them being getting my video’s viral. I Uploaded the clip to my Youtube channel and Facebook page and then sat back and watched Sally work her magic, with great excitement I watched the unfolding views, shares and comments . WOW! It went viral within 48 hrs and to date has had

    843 Youtube hits
    37,743 reach on Facebook
    891 views on Facebook
    With 17% of those people talking about my video.
    People were videoing themselves and popping it on Facebook, teachers were teaching it at schools – it went well and truly viral and got my name out to my target market. So if you want to get yourself viral start using a media platform – it really really works!
    Want to see what all the fuss is about take a look at the video below!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgsb7HfvveY

    So just from a simple and quick to do video I have secured likes , shares , new followers and subscriptions to my Youtube account. So could you do something similar ? Do you have a product routine, idea which could be on a media platform ? Share it ! You just don’t know who is out there watching , sharing and liking so what do you have to loose. ?
    To top my week off ! I was later described as “Epic ” by none less than a YR 8 Boy . To date this is the biggest compliment I have had in my 20 yrs of teaching !!!!
    Keep Dancing ! Caroline DanceLady


    Sally Ghafoor Fitness Business Hub

    Why Those “motivational pictures” some people are moaning about are GREAT for your business.

    So, I have heard and listened to a ton of fitpro’s saying they cannot stand the motivational quotes/funny ecards that are getting shared around on Facebook at the moment. Fair point, it may not work for them, however it is very dependent on who your target market is, so let me explain.

    Firstly your Facebook page (your business page) only reaches around 16% of your fans every time you update your status – why? Well mostly to do with timing. when you post on average around 16% of your fans are online at that time. Does it make FB pages seem a bit pointless – no as here is how you increase this statistic.

    Let’s say you have 600 fans on your page called “I am a Fab instructor”, you are merrily posting away, you are not getting any likes/shares or comments on your updates and no one is clicking on your links to read the blogs you are popping up. Facebook thinks, you know what those fans are not interested in what “I am a Fab instructor” has to say so as a result we will not put those status updates into their news feeds. Big Bummer!!! If this is the case you will end up having a reach of ZERO. None of your fans will see what your putting in your updates, so in essence you are talking to yourself. You will not be creating a community with your fans, you will not be able to build an email list and more importantly you will not be able to convert those fans into paying customers – why? because your updates are not getting into their news feeds.

    So let’s have a look at this page “My customers are important to me”. This page posts up things that is of pure and utter interest to their target market, which is the same as the “I am a fab instructor” page – targeting mums for their offline fitness classes and online fitness classes. What do mums share – funny ecards, quotes and pictures. Due to the fact that in between posting videos of workouts and blog posts, “My customers are important to me” is posting up these funny/motivational pictures that get tons of likes, comments and tons of shares, this page is getting into over three quarters of its fans news feeds and its viral reach is massive. All through knowing what its target market will like and interact with. So when this page wants to sell something to do with its online/offline business or wants to show the results its got or wants to get people to sign up to the newsletter – it will be seen. Or maybe some customers just aren’t ready to embark on an exercise regime, but when they are who is still getting into their newsfeeds and who will they think of?. The big big benefit as well this page will be completely bucking the 16% trend.

    You have to understand your target market to connect with them and if you are not talking their language your marketing will never ever work.

    However – this is very important.

    Just posting pictures and quotes will not get you any type of business – You need a strategy each day to also deliver some kind of quality content, blogs, vlogs, workouts, podcasts etc along with these quotes.

    It is quite simple for a successful FB page – give quality content, grow your email list and talk your target markets language.

    I am taking bookings for my next month’s coaching programme, I will teach you HOW to use Facebook to grow your email list, how to turn fans into paying customers, how to use Facebook Ads amongst many many other things – its on offer for the next two weeks at £47 so grab it now go here http://fitnessbusinesshub.com/get-fit-faced/ for all the details or get in touch via Facebook 🙂



    Rising up from the crowd….How to differentiate to Potentiate by Jill Gardner

    Fitness Instructors, Personal Trainers, Bootcamp Owners. Let’s face it there is plenty of us to go around and basically in the most part we all offer a similar set of outcomes.

    What I have learnt most recently is that we HAVE to differentiate to potentiate!

    Take weight loss. There are many ways to skin a cat and there are many ‘weighs’ you can help people to lose weight. But what sets you apart from another instructor? How can YOU offer something much more than anyone else?

    Here is an example:

    This Instructor arrives to teach class on time, handouts out a nutrition plan, gives a small talk, weighs each member, leaves on time and repeats each week.
    This Instructor arrives early to class to chat to members, offers a Q&A, brings food samples to try. This Instructor texts clients during the week to motivate them, sends emails to educate them, tags them on Facebook to encourage them, sends them unexpected cards in the post when they do well. This instructor offers a free Facebook support group or a monthly shop night at the local store. This Instructor finds new weekly recipes and articles to hand out, plots their weight loss on a chart and keeps a record. This instructor negotiates discounts with local companies and free goodies from relevant businesses. This instructor arrives in branded, professional attire with boundless enthusiasm and energy and is always the last one to leave.

    Despite Both instructors offering the same product, you can see that one is offering so much more value. And what’s more, it’s a higher perceived value. You can add so much more to your business by just thinking a little more. Don’t do what everyone else does! Do what the competition ISN’T doing!

    How can you add a higher perceived value AND differentiate to potentiate?

    Big love, small tummies!

    Jill – The Fat Controller



    One Foot In The Grave
    By Andrew Crawford


    In the last couple of weeks, I have had to deal with the ‘Death Estate’ of a few people including the calculation of the deadly Inheritance Tax.

    You must be aware that not only are you taxed in life but you are also taxed after you have died but whoever you leave behind will have to pay the tax.

    Remember EVERYTHING in your name over £325,000 will be taxed at 40%. ……EVERYTHING…..(your car, cash, savings, shares, assets, even those abroad, gifts you have made in the last 7 years !!!)

    Don’t let me get started about this word they call ‘Pensions’. The boys in the Big House constantly brainwash people about …”How we are living longer…blah blah blah….total and utter bollox…

    Here’s what I picked up the other day.


    “………….As longevity continues to increase, the aim will be to maintain the proportion of people’s lives spent in retirement.
    Under current law, the state pension age will rise to 66 for both men and women between 2018 and 2020.
    As previously announced by the coalition government, the law will now be changed again so that the state pension age increases further, to 67 between 2026 and 2028
    Although the state pension age is already scheduled under existing law to rise once more, to 68 by 2046, this target will now be subsumed in the forthcoming five-yearly reviews………”

    Come on now……..as they push the age up, they KNOW that once people retire at that age, they will not plunder the ‘Pension Pot’ for very long.

    Imagine paying into a pension all your 45 – 50 years working life only to find that on retirement you will not benefit fully from the pot that……”….for every £ that you put in, we will put ££…” umm.

    Back to One foot in the grave (although very much connected)

    You all know the 7 year rule. Here are the rates…

    http://www.fitnessindustryaccountants.com/ard/detail_doc.asp?ID=638120&AID=1987&SID=11&FID=37232

    Basically, if you make a gift to someone and live for 7 years after that gift, the value of that gift will not be counted as part of your ‘Death Estate’

    Some important gift types come into play, you may or may not have heard of them, so I summarise them here.

    Exempt transfers – These are gifts with specific exemptions for example a gift to your spouse.

    Potentially Exempt Transfers (PETs) – This gift is initially treated as exempt but becomes chargeable if you die within 7 years.

    Chargeable Lifetime Transfers (CLTs) – A gift you make in your lifetime and IHT is paid when the gift is made. For example if you give a gift to a trust.

    I have noticed….amongst other things, that the nil rate band, that is the amount of value at which the value of all your assets can be before the 40% Kicks in, which is £325,000 at the moment, has been artificially kept low…..why?….to TRAP everyone…….allegedly.

    OK Andrew…… I fall within the category of ‘One Foot In The Grave’…Is there a way to avoid the Death Tax?

    Why…Yes of course…and I suspect you want me to reveal some tricks here??

    Firstly make sure you have a tax efficient will. If you die without making a will (intestate) and you have no children a large proportion of your estate will go to…………..The Government….and I know you would want to bolster up the already bursting coffers…tee hee

    If not, our Fitness Industry Solicitors have some simple proforma wills you can use. Contact them here.
    http://www.fitnessindustryaccountants.com/news/fitness-industry-solicitors.htm

    Oh….and did you know you can change a will AFTER your death, called ‘Deed Of Variation’.

    Secondly…….Transfer your assets…..again for those not paying attention……Transfer your assets…EVERY 7 years….(diamond)

    Even though all transfers and gifts to your spouse are exempt, this will raise the value of their estate. So when they die, the IHT will be high.

    Thirdly, use Trusts to shelter your gifts.

    There are 3 types
    Accumulation & Maintenance Trust
    Interest in Possession Trusts
    Discretionary Trusts

    Next….. ‘Gifts Out Of Income’, this is where if you make any amount of gift out of your income, especially large gifts, it will cease to be part of your estate from the moment you have made that gift….

    However…………as with all things, there are conditions.
    The gift should be part of your ‘normal’ expenditure (so give this gift EACH year).
    After making the gift, it will not affect your standard of living.


    Finally

    If you are reading this, you and me have ‘One Foot In The Grave’
    Let’s avoid this tax together. Till death us do part.

    Andrew Crawford

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

     



    Vikki Scovell Musings

    Well, we are settling into our new home and you will be pleased to know that my spanking-new hoover is awesome, and I have even USED IT (I would like a certificate of Achievement, or maybe a badge saying ‘good girl’).
    The kids are settled and pleased with their new rooms, and I have been in a flurry of domesticity, trying my best to look like it is completely natural to me to tidy up and fold laundry away. Actually Mr Blue doesn’t believe it for a minute, as he was frequently awe-struck by the mountains of chaos which we lived amongst at Bryn Heulwen.
    If I had managed to fool him at all that I was in control of domestic pursuits, the kids would have burst that particular balloon within a week. As I flit around in a pinny, hoover in one hand, feather duster in the other, they loudly exclaim- Child 1: Like, what the HELL? Are you hovering Hag? (Mum) We like, don’t even HAVE a hoover: I’ve never seen you do that before, it’s NOISY….. Or- Child 2: Mum, OMG what are you doing? Me: Ironing, don’t worry lots of people do it; it’s nothing to worry about. Even worse- Child 1: Like, WTF? Hag, have you tidied my room? Don’t EVER do that again, WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT?
    Oh well, luckily Mr Blue doesn’t love me for my domestic skills, or quite frankly I’d be out on my ear. Because I have been so tied up with unpacking, decorating, gardening and working, I had chosen to ignore some rather pressing issues. I remembered that when I had moved out of Bryn Heulwen, I had left the fridge exactly as it was and closed the door thinking I would return the next day. THEN: 30 days passed in a blink. Yesterday I opened the fridge to clean it, and discovered an entirely new eco-system, which I’m sure scientists would be fascinated by; a wealth of emerald and cobalt molds blooming over whatever delicacies I had forgotten about a month ago, a clear brown ‘juice’ an inch deep in the bottom, and a fragrance which I would rather not describe. I picked up my rubber gloves and cleaning basket, quickly shut the fridge, and scarpered. In the car, I persuaded myself that I had avoided the fridge for the good of humanity: what if I had stumbled across some new and much-needed antibiotic? It would be tantamount to criminality to destroy it, and as I am no criminal, it followed logically that I must not clean the fridge out under any circumstances.
    The thing is, now it is a day closer to the new people moving in, and I have to woman-up and get down there and do the nasty stuff. No more excuses, and I’m afraid that cutting-edge medical science will have to resume its proud march forwards without my assistance. Really I shouldn’t be sitting here scribbling, but scrubbing, vacuuming and sweeping. It will be sad to clear up the pile of wellies where the chickens used to roost, and sweep the thinking step where I spent so many hours sitting and pondering my predicaments, a cup of tea warming my hands in the pink dawn light, watching the house martins and swifts zoom over my head to their nests all through the summer, and contemplating the stars on clear nights. But I have already found my new space to sit and I’m hoping there will be much less vexing things to think about, and many lovely things to contemplate by starlight. The eaves of the house are peppered with house martins nests, so I will not miss my old friends and the chickens have a new preferred spot to perch and cluck, and are presently decorating the once-pristine paving with previously-digested kitchen scraps. All is good and there is so much to look forward to. Oh except the fridge issue, which I simply must resolve now, so cheerio! I shall clean up and close the door for the last time on Bryn Heulwen, wave my windy Welsh hill-top goodbye and motor home in my wagon to my new life. Have a great week, and don’t keep putting important things off, unless you enjoy making hard work for yourself.
    Vikki Scovell @fitbite

     

     

    Have a wonderful Thursday Love Always

     

    Rachel xx

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