My first tour of 2012 ended last weekend in Edinburgh and Newcastle and what fabulous workshops they were too. It’s always great to travel north of the border and even though it is a long drive I always know a warm and friendly welcome awaits. It was delightful to end the tour on such a high. A huge thank you to everyone who attended the tour and I look forward to seeing you on new events and workshops I have planned for this year. If you have implemented any of the ideas I presented I would love to know, so do please email me, Tweet me or Facebook me with your feedback.
With IFS Blackpool only a short week away I’m seriously getting butterflies already. Pure Energy have mixed me a fantastic Beyonce/Destinys Child mix so don your hot pants if you are coming to that session, it’s going to be wild. Also looking forward to team teaching with Ceri Hannon, Jo Parry and Steve Watson and lastly I’ll be teaching Bootcamp on Sunday. If you are going to Blackpool I’ll look forward to seeing you next weekend so do come over and say Hi if you see me wandering about.
Ill also be at Hinckley this weekend for Fitness Fiesta so do pop over and say HI if you are around.
I started the Kick Start Fat Loss Spring intake on Monday and the team are doing brilliantly well so far and I’ve even persuaded Choreographytogos own Tax Advisor and Contributor to join the plan. Look out for a slimmer Mr Crawford at IFS next week! The KSFL Continuity and Maintenance Club is also doing well as we all explore fat loss to the maximum on this journey.
I’ve also uploaded another 4 new downloads on Choreographytogo with tons of new ideas for Core and Abs. The series is called 7 days 2 a 6 Pack and you will find the first 5 downloads in the series.
This week’s newsletter is all about reassessing your services and realising that it’s OK to be you and run your business and classes the way you want to. All of today’s contributors run their classes and business very differently, they attract unique markets and niches. When classes don’t work out they stop, look at the market, talk to their local customers and offer something tailored to the clients and local area’s needs.
You will smile at Jaynes piece today that really made me laugh – do tweet us and let us know your thoughts. @RachelHolmes @Jaynenicholls
I hope this week’s newsletter gives you the confidence again to continue being you and let no one ever tell you any different!
What’s Hot for 2012
Following on from last week where I suggested new class titles I wanted to keep your enthusiasm high and encourage you to create your own brand or signature class instead of following more big trends. Every time I give a workshop presentation or speak at a convention this is the question I’m often asked:
“What’s the next big thing for 2012”
” Shall I do the new ************* Training”
” Do you think that will be as big as Zumba”
“I need to get in first in my area”
Here’s my big predications for you.
1.Create YOUR own brand – Don’t wait for the next “big thing” Create it, Package it, Brand it, Run it successfully in your area then license it, franchise it or employ Instructors to teach it for you. Gte on this as sooner rather than later.
2. Small Group Training / Semi Private Training is definitely growing in popularity as people start to turn away from huge groups and go after a more personal service. Small group training ensures you keep the fun, group dynamics and camaraderie but a personal more tailored service.
3. Spring/Summer – Seasonal Bootcamps. After Easter is a great time to revive or begin teaching a new Bootcamp. If you don’t fancy dark mornings in the winter be a Seasonal Bootcamp. There’s nothing wrong with only running camps during Spring and Summer when customers are more willing to give it a try. You don’t have to stick to month long courses or camps, try 2 week intensives or 2 week Bikini Camps.
4. Back to The Old Skool – Why not turn back the clock and put back on to your timetables 80’s Aerobics, Total Tone, Swiss Balls and why not bring back some of the old favourites. If you have a good database or Facebook list why not try an Old skool class for a 6 – 8 week term and see how it goes.
The majority of the general public don’t see exercise in quite the same exciting light as we do. WE live and breath for great classes, music, atmosphere, but Joe Public constantly need fitness and exercise classes reinvented, rejigged and fresh to keep their interest and motivation. When planning your class schedules for the year think in smaller more seasonal chunks, ring the changes, run classes as shorter courses and don’t be afraid to bring back some of the old favourites; you may be surprised at the response.
Whatever you class or brand you create let your personality shine though, create classes that YOU would love to go to and be part of and always stay true to yourself.
Are you missing a trick with Youtube?
Group Exercise is an amazing experience…. the music, movement, Instructor, participants, atmosphere and vibe make up the most fantastic experience. Group X looks amazing on video so why aren’t MORE UK based Fitpros. filming?
Youtube is packed with American classes and Instructors but where are all my UK Instructors sisters and brothers?
WE are constantly looking for new ways to market our classes and services, leaflets, flyers, posters, social media, speaking, events etc etc when the easiest BUT most overlooked vehicle to showcase you and your classes is filming clips and blasting them around the web.
Video is one of the greatest sales tool we have at our fingertips. The best of it is you don’t even need any special equipment, an iphone or blackberry will do the job perfectly well and can be immediately uploaded to your youtube channel or Facebook. So why aren’t you doing it?
I’m using my Youtube channel more and more to upload videos and bring traffic to Choreographytogo. With the right key words Youtube videos will help you rank high in Google ( You tube and Google are the same company) as Google loves Youtube videos.
So, for this week, if you haven’t got a youtube channel then open and account. Get you iphone and start filming clips of you teaching, training and working out. Promote you, your services, you classes and your brand.
I’m uploading workouts and Vlogs most days so please subscribe to my channel Click here for Rachel Holmes TV Once you have opened an account please feel free to share it on the Choreographytogo Facebook Page here today
New Downloads on Choreographytogo by Rachel
I’ve been busy filming tons of new workouts and downloads on all the topics you have been asking me about. Keep checking the latest downloads page as I’m adding new videos every day.
The cheapest way to get your downloads is to join as an advanced member or buy your tokens in bulk.
Fitness Pilates 2 Day Certification
Our next available Fitness Pilates 2 day Certification course is held in Derby on 9th/10th June currently there are 10 places available on this course. Click here to book
Jayne Nicholls – Have you been mis sold?
I opened a can of worms this week on my newsletter by bringing up the notion that as group exercise instructors, our need to get on top of every new trend can at times lead us to looking un-genuine. By no means an insult, much more a concern.
Rachel and I chat constantly about having seen it all at one time or another, yet my jaw consistently hits the floor when I witness the constant smoke and mirrors that sells courses, information and advice. I half expect to see an advert on telly any day saying: ‘Have you been mis sold fitness information over the past 10 years by your expert, guru or next door neighbour? Thousands of instructors have been duped into thinking that black is white and we will get your money back on a no-win no-fee basis!’
Take a look at this, kindly posted for its brilliance by Jo Dandridge and explain core stability to me with this evidence in front of you. It blatantly proves that abdominal strength is only a small part of the neurological ability to move.
In 2012 simply saying words and using titles does not cut it in fitness. Our content and our message should be clear and authentic. This alone will keep people coming back to class and ride the changes with you rather than jumping ship when the next Zumba comes along.
I keep saying this – they come to class because of you. Make it easy for them to access you, easy to pay and harder for them to ever say they have ‘got it’ and you will be successful.
Jayne Nicholls www.groupxtraining.com
Are you ready to write an (E) Book by Rachel
I’m getting more and more questions from Instructors who want to write an ebook/cookbook/recipe book or a workout manual. Writing a book and becoming and author immediately elevates you to an expert status. It’s great for your business and your brand.
Let’s look at why you would want to write a book.
Producing any information product is an exercise in marketing. Everything from the topic you choose, to how you position it, to the copywriting strategy you use to sell it boils down to understanding out what your clients are willing, and even driven, to pay for. And what exactly your market wants and the problems you can solve for them.
As far as ebooks go, the first question you have to ask is whether or not the ebook is the format you should be using at all. The humble PDF seems to be the first thing that comes to mind when people consider developing a product, but it’s often the least useful and has the lowest perceived value–at least when you want to charge for it.
Is Writing Ebooks Dead?
While the format is still alive and kicking, the basic ebook has evolved and the best way to get your ebook published is on Amazon Kindle.
So if your goal is to write a 200-page book, you might just go ahead and try to get a publisher, or even have your work self-published. You can get the book published on Amazon and Kindle.
The opportunities to grow and expand your business or ideas through publishing an eBook are limitless. With a insightful, compelling eBook, your words can instil valuable wisdom, actions, stories and ideas that can build trust and relationships with your audience.
- eReaders nearly doubled from December 2011 to January 2012. 1 in 4 people are now using some kind of tablet (iPad, Nook, Kindle) that is capable of reading eBooks (The Kindle reading app is also available on nearly every smartphone, ).
- If you already have an established platform — or want to build one — this eBook will fortify all your other online marketing efforts.
Ebooks That Sell Solve Problems
The good news for people interested in making money from ebooks is that the ones that sell best are nowhere near 200 pages. In fact, you can often make a profit from a document that is only 10, 20 and up to 50 pages long, as long as those pages solve a problem that people will pay to have the solution to.
Contrary to what you might think, it doesn’t matter if the solution to a problem can be found by even simple online research. Most people don’t like to do in-depth research online and are often sceptical of free information sources. Do the work for them and demonstrate that you are a credible person and as long as the problem is real, you’ll make sales.
Make sure you do your research and create a book that will solve your clients ‘problems and will compliment your off line and online business.
Here are some points to think about before you begin writing.
- identifying a potential profitable topic
- researching the viability of developing the document
- discovering buyer hot button issues, and
- understanding how the problem is framed in the mind of the prospect.
Cook Books and recipe books are really popular at the moment with Fitpros. You have a captive audience of class participants that would be interested in your book. So, how do you write one quickly? You could ask all of your members to email you their favourite recipe that fits the criteria of your book – That would be the quickest way to get great content.
If you don’t fancy asking for content the quickest way to write your ebook is to create a working title. Create 10 Chapters titles then begin writing.
There are numerous articles on line that will explain exactly how to format your book for uploading to Kindle so what are you waiting for.
Being True To You! by Katie Bulmer
This week I wanted to share something with you that will hopefully help you to feel good, feel secure, feel less stressed and more confident in your actions and make you smile.
I’m going to keep it short and sweet, but I just wanted to say to you that it’s cool to be YOU. To be a successful fitness professional you don’t have to earn 6 figures, have 10 staff, have your own studio, follow everything a ‘fitness guru’ says or run your business a certain way…if that is not what you want, or want makes you happy…nor is any of that stuff a measure of your success.
It’s ok to be true to yourself and instead, earn enough to pay your bills and take family trips on a weekend, work on your own, be a mobile PT or hire a church hall, take bits of advice that fit with you and your business from a range of ‘fitness gurus’, and run your business in a way that make you feel happy (and takes you out of your comfort zone too), provides your customers with great service and helps you achieve your goals.
There is a ton of pressure out there to be what other people think we should be, and it’s hard not to let it all get on top of you, but hang in there.
My lovely friend Angi sent me this poem a few weeks ago…
‘People will hate you, rate you, shake you and break you. But how strong you stand is what MAKES YOU!’
Don’t believe the brag…it’s cool to be different!
Have a super-fabulous day,
p.s. I’d really like to hear your feedback on Facebook (Katie.bulmer1) and Twitter (katiebulmer1)
I feel your pain
By Ante/Postnatal Fitness Expert – Claire Mockridge
Hi there everyone,
I hope you’re well and have been enjoying the sunshine of late. It really lifts one’s mood, doesn’t it?
Talking of moods etc, it’s quite an emotional journey being a FitPro, isn’t it? One day is never quite like the next, eh? We work hard planning jazzy and cutting edge class content, drive out of our way to get to that perfect venue that our clients are happy with, set up our sound system for the third time that day, and all we get in return is a sea of blank faces staring back at us. Well, I feel your pain, guys.
As you know, I’m an Ante/Postnatal Fitness Expert, and before I set up in this field, I did the club circuit, worked as gym instructor, and regularly covered classes at local leisure centres. It’s pretty thankless. Being in the community is different to working in gyms and clubs, you have to agree, but even client dynamics in some community-based classes are a bit hit and miss at times.
One thing I will say is, my ante/postnatal clients regularly give me feedback about how they feel before, during and after class and always say “thanks Claire and see you next week” before heading out the door. I think it’s to do with the nature of this client group/demographic really, because they’re hungry for information and education, and let’s face it, I’m pretty much providing a niche client group with all of their wants and needs.
I am still one of the only ante/postnatal FitPros in my area running fitness and Pilates classes for pregnant and postnatal women, so I’m certain some pregnant and postnatal clients feel extremely grateful that they can continue to exercise safely and effectively throughout their pregnancy and again once their baby arrives. Do some research in your area to see what classes are available for ante/postnatal women? You may find a gap in the market that’s waiting to be filled by you.
Perhaps a change of scene and/or client group may be just what you need if you’re on a bit of an emotional roller coaster at the moment, and all you seem to be doing is following what every other Instructor out there is doing, instead of breaking away from the mould.
I can honestly say, I find working with pre/postnatal extremely rewarding. Often clients join my classes for the first time during pregnancy, return with their baby and attend my postnatal-specific sessions, and then naturally progress into one of my evening/mainstream classes once they’ve returned to work. In fact, I do very little advertising for my general fitness/Pilates sessions at all – the vast majority of these clients come from the pre/postnatal arm of my business which is a win.
If you don’t know where to start when it comes to setting up ante/postnatal classes, have no idea where to market, how to advertise and/or how to retain and build rapport with these clients, I’ll be covering all of these topics and much, much more on my “Bridging the Gap” Pre/Postnatal Exercise and Marketing Workshop on 19-20 May in Derby.
It’s a practical, social and interactive Workshop where you’ll not only receive great exercise content you can use with your pre/postnatal clients, but you’ll also receive the business acumen skills to enable you to make your classes as successful as mine. There really are few Workshops of this kind where you walk away with everything you need to keep your classes fresh with content, and receive skills to enable you to keep getting clients in the door.
For details on my “Bridging the Gap” Workshop, click here: http://clairemockridge.com/instructors/
Join my Private Facebook Group for FitPros who either a) want to get qualified to teach pre/postnatal or, b) are already qualified, but want hints and tips on making their business more successful: https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/clairemockridge/
Or, join me on:
Have a great day!
Ante/Postnatal Fitness Expert
Veuve, Brandy, Your Online Business & The Tax Man by Andrew Crawford
**Newsflash** This week I started a 14 day journey to a more ‘Firm’ body IM on Rachels KSFL2012 Spring Group….lol… It meant cutting out my veuve clicquot, brandy and other goodies..the fit Miss Rachel Holmes is my task Master…. watch this space….
On 17th June 2011 …..I wrote a quick blog post and sent it out on Facebook. It’s title was…
‘The Inland Revenue are now Targeting the Fitness Industry’
Read it quickly here…..
I received a big response from that article as Fitness Professionals had to take stock of how they ran their businesses.
Listen to what they are saying now….
“HMRC have announced that they will turn their attention to those involved in home improvement trades and direct selling (online market sellers) in their next round of Tax Catch Up Plans.
‘Direct selling. This will target customers who ought to be paying tax on income they earn from buying and selling goods direct to others, or from the commission on these sales.’
‘As with previous campaigns, the focus of the new campaigns will be on providing those in the selected groups, who may not be paying the tax they owe, a chance to put their affairs in order on the best possible terms.’
HMRC have announced that they will be using new technology to identify traders in both sectors with unpaid taxes.”
(Read ‘HMRC Latest Targets’ from the ‘Latest News For Business’ (updated regularly) at the following link……)
What has your no veuve or brandy and the HMRC announcement got to do with me?
Most people think that online businesses are not really taxed that’s why you see more and more people becoming attracted to start their own online business.
The Americans lead the way to market the easy, hands off money making , cash as you sleep, new dynamic cyber cash system, the home ATM, the one press cash solution, 13 clicks to freedom, Kindle riches, Never before seen, the untold secret source to riches internet business to you and me and spirit vast amounts of money from the security of your purses and wallets….into their bank accounts.
Perhaps the most common misconceptions about taxes and your online business is that the two are not related to each other
If you are one of the many people who is interested in starting your own online business or if you already have an online business of your own, then you may have heard about the controversies about online businesses and taxes.
Most people who don’t really have a stable background about online businesses and taxes would most probably guess that owners of online businesses are able to be exempted from paying taxes.
Be careful as the HMRC has use of sophisticated technology to track down non payers of tax (looking at newspapers & any such adverts) and when they make an ‘announcement’ you bet that their already on it…!!
They may have even ordered from your site.!!…those sneaky……(fill in the blanks).
“But Andrew, I Am a Single Mum…or Dad Working from Home”
The most common excuse of people who have online businesses who wish to avoid paying taxes is that they are “working from home”. What most people don’t realise is that taxes are actually based on the sources and amount of the income as well as the types of services and products sold; not on the location of the business.
The HMRC looks at the frequency of transactions.
Example. If you sold your car online, the proceeds will not be taxed.
(not if you claimed expenses on it for business)
This would be seen as a one off transaction.
But if there were repeated sales, HMRC will take this as a trade …therefore taxable.
So whether you are working at home, in a store or in a warehouse, you are still obliged to pay for whatever tax is due.
Internet Tax Is Just Like Any Business Tax Basically,
Online businesses are taxed just like any other business. The government does not actually collect income taxes based on how a business operates but instead, it focuses on the form of the business.
A business based on the Internet still has to register just like any other business.
Whether your online business is a sole trader or incorporated, you will still need to fill up some important forms so that your online business can be deemed as legal and so that you can pay the proper taxes….if you want to.
Let’s face it…….
There must be hundreds..if not thousands of online businesses operating now who don’t pay taxes and the HMRC haven’t got a ‘Scooby Do’….
I have heard….’Through the Grapevine’…. of many sole traders avoiding tax….allegedly…!!
Where did you hear that Andrew?
“I heard it through the grapevine Marvin”….!!!
There is actually no big difference between the tax responsibility of an online business and any other business …if the HMRC knows about it.
This is why they may be announcing their impending plans.
If you have an online business and you are wondering if you still need to pay taxes, the answer is yes.
Another set of people who need to be aware are those……
Selling On eBay Or From Your Own Website
A lot of people today are getting attracted by the fact that they can actually sell almost anything on the internet by just posting it on eBay, their own web site or any other site that offers practically the same services.
If you have been selling your goods for quite a long time already, you may consider it as an income-generating activity, right?
Beware the ‘Mystery Shopper‘
It is known…or it should be known that the HMRC sets up email accounts and purchase goods from ebay. This could be YOU.
Having an online business really has a lot of perks and advantages such as being able to work right at home, not having to have your own boss, etc.
However, having an online business doesn’t mean that you are free from paying your taxes. When you decide to be more serious about your online business, there are a lot of things you have to consider.
This includes you ‘Yummy Mummies’….ohh..I like that word..!! …lol
Just be careful out there…the HMRC are using underground tactics to uncover what they might suspect as being tax avoidance.
All is not lost…
I’m not suggesting for an instance that you have avoided tax…I mean..how can you?
You pay council tax, income tax, road tax, value added tax, national insurance tax, capital gains tax, corporation tax, stamp duty land tax
And when you die….inheritance tax..
Don’t forget about the taxes they disguise as ‘ licences’…TV licence (if your blind, you get a 50% discount..!!) , dog licence, fishing licence
Congestion Charge…..!!!!! What a load of …………..(fill in the blanks)
In January I submitted 10 years worth of Tax Returns which were all accepted this week. We received a letter from HMRC…so ALL CLEAR…..
Tip:Now…what I’m saying here is this…..
“It is better for a person to come forward with his / hers hands up than it is for it to be discovered..”.!!!! Even if the person hasn’t submitted a tax return for several years.
What about the veuve and brandy Andrew?
Well….that will have to remain on ice for another 10 days….. x
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Andrew Crawford can be contacted on twitter @tax4fitness or firstname.lastname@example.org
The fitness backlash Sally Ghafoor
Sheep or shepherd? by Cori Withell
We all know this one right?
Do you want to lead or do you want to be led?
There have been a lot of conversations banding around social media sites about so called gurus that will propel your business to the next level etc etc etc. But you know what? I think it is just the same ‘buy my shit’ over and over again.
Yes there are some very knowledgeable people out there that will no doubt be able to take your business to the next level but are you sure that is what you actually want?
Is earning six figures the only thing that is important to you? You see, most of these gurus are selling you a dream but it is THEIR dream, not yours.
When we attend workshops and seminars you can get so swept up in the moment and the fear of being left behind is what carries you forward and to sign on that dotted line.
I always use mentors, they are great for bouncing ideas around, getting support, getting the much need kick up the backside when you need it, practical help BUT I make sure that the mentor I choose is right for me.
Not right because half a room have signed up with them, not right because I see so many other people sign up to them.
Just right for me and my business, after all, we are all unique, we all have different dreams and aspirations and you need to make sure that your mentor understands that.
A lot of gurus will drive you to lead, create your first class product and be a little minion of themselves but I don’t want any of that!
I want to be ME with my own successful business built the way that I want it.
6 figures is no longer the be all and end all for me, having time off, time to enjoy seeing my friends and family is far more important.
I have done the money thing, I earned an awful lot of money and loved it, BUT it didn’t make me happy in the long term.
I was working pretty much 24/7 and never saw anyone. I was so lonely and down most of the time and the only people I got to see were clients.
Yeah sure, I could buy what I wanted when I wanted and go on holiday BUT at the end of the day, money can’t buy you happiness.
So, whether you want to be a leader or to be led – it is always okay because you are doing what is right for you and that can never be wrong can it?!
Follow me on Facebook www.facebook.com/coriwithell and Twitter www.twitter.com/CWFitness and my blog at www.cwfitnessco.uk/blog
Health and happiness x
Have a wonderful Thursday
Love always Rachel xxx