Today we are going to talk about lead generation systems. It’s a pretty broad topic, so I’m going to cover a lot of information, and then I’ll break it down into smaller subtopics over the next few weeks because there’s so much to talk about when it comes to lead generation.

Last week, I talked about holding your clients accountable, and creating that accountability system that’s going to guarantee that your clients get results. The reason I taught that first is because if you’re not getting your clients results, or if you’re not holding them accountable, it doesn’t matter how many leads you get into your business. They’re not going to stay very long if they’re not seeing results. That’s the first system that you definitely want to implement. That’s going to set you apart from all the other boot camps, other gyms out there.

Today we’re going to talk about lead generation, which is everybody’s biggest problem. Everybody thinks there’s just not enough leads. Once you learn lead generation, it’s actually the easiest part.

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You have paid versus non-paid lead generation, or marketing. All marketing costs something. Marketing is not free. So you’re either going to spend your money, or you’re going to spend your time. I’m going to talk a little bit about both. If you’re in a situation where you don’t have a lot of money to invest in an agency like Fitness Marketer to run your ads for you, or to even market on Facebook yourself and give it a go, then we’ll teach you some no cost, but it will just take up some of your time.

First, we’ll just talk about paid, because the most obvious method that everybody’s been talking about for the last couple years, is Facebook Marketing. Most people just figure out how to set up and ad, throw some money at it, and when it doesn’t convert, they just say it doesn’t work in their area. With our agency Fitness Marketer, we’re managing over 100 ads. We have over 100 ad clients all over the world. We’re getting great results from most, if not all of them, and we’ve figured a lot of this stuff out. I’ll be teaching you some of that stuff over the next few weeks.

Facebook, like I said, is the most obvious paid marketing system right now that’s working the best. When I say system it just means that you need to have a process, not just throw some different promotions up there, here and there, and see if it works. You need a process in order for it to actually be a system, for you to be able to teach it to somebody else, and delegate or automate the process, or the system. If you don’t want to create it you can always just hire Fitness Marketer to do it, and we’ll do it for you. You just want to make sure that you have a very strategic plan of what promos you’re putting out there, when you’re doing list building, when you’re doing a low barrier offer, or a front end offer, what to do if you’re not getting results, and how to split test. There’s a lot of detail involved in all forms of paid advertising and marketing, and I’ll go over that in more detail in the next couple weeks.

One of the best things that you can do for lead generation is really teaming up with other businesses that don’t compete with you, but serve the same clientele as you. For most people in the fat loss world, it’s going to be moms, so like, gymnastic centers are great, day care centers, bounce-house places, laser tag, miniature golf, and martial arts studios. Any place where moms take their kids, they’re already going to have distribution to the same clientele that you have, without actually competing with you. You really want to cultivate those relationships and make it a win-win for everybody, but you need to be able to go to them in a way that they feel that you’re trying to help them, rather than you’re trying to use them to grow your business.

For example, I teamed up with a gymnastic center when I first started my boot camp, and they actually didn’t have an email list, but I just sub leased space from them in the morning to run my boot camps when they weren’t even open, and negotiated a small percentage of the gross in exchange for having access to the place. I taught them how to collect email addresses from all their members, and I even taught them how to do EFT, because they were charging a flat rate for six weeks, and then trying to sell them again, so we just got them on monthly, and I was able to help their business that way.

Once I helped them build their email list, then all I did was went to them and said hey, now that you have this email list, you should monetize it, and I have a program that can help you guys tremendously. We have a 14 day fat furnace program for $47, and I want to give you 100% of that, and I have the emails already written out. All you have to do is send the emails to your members, and all the money that you get you can put it towards new equipment, you can put it towards camps or competitions.

This was a much better way for them to not only make a lot more money, because if they get 10 people, that’s $470 right there. The first time we ran it we got over 50, so they made a lot of money that they were able to put towards uniforms, equipment, whatever. It benefited me, but the way I presented it to them showed them how it was going to benefit them more, especially on the front end, without hurting their business whatsoever. So I’d recommend everybody teaming up with a gymnastics center, because the obvious choice, it’s worked over and over again for me, and now that I’ve helped them grow their business, they’ll email out any time I ask because I’ve helped them so much.

I’ve had the best luck with gymnastic centers, cheer centers, martial arts studios, daycare centers, and places like that. Definitely start introducing yourself to those business owners and getting out there.

You want to leverage other people’s email. Another way that you can do that is with hair salons. I’ve worked out deals where I would mail out a promotion for them, they’d mail out a promotion for me. These are called joint mailers, where if you’ve got a good relationship with the owner, then they might be up for an email swap. A lot of people are going to be a little skeptical if they don’t know you, so you’re going to want to go in with giving hands, showing them that you have a program to raise money for whatever.

You can spin it off of charity boot camps, so if you see a business that’s sponsoring some charity, then you can kind of piggyback off of that, and go into them offering the same thing. “Hey, I love what you’re doing with this charity, I’d love to help out. I have this program, if you promote it, I’ll give you 100% that you can put towards that charity.” Again, you’re going in with a giving hand, you love what they’re doing with that charity, and you want to help.

Again, these are systems, so it’s not just doing it one time. It’s having a very strategic plan and process, so that we can do it every month, every two months, three months and so on. If you just do it one time, you’re going to get good results that one time. You have to figure out how you can make this ongoing on a consistent basis. Once you have the relationships established, then you can have your manager reach out to them on your behalf and tell them what you have going on, because that relationship is already there. In the beginning, you’re going to have to walk in and introduce yourself, tell them who you are, and how you can help them.

$100 gift cards. We’ve used from the beginning, and they still work today. A lot of people just kind of gave up and stopped using them, but there’s so many things that you can do with the hundred dollar gift card to generate leads. We would use them mainly for like fundraisers and charities. I used to do 100 mile bike rides with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and we’d have to raise about $2-$3000 to do a 100 mile bike ride. Going and asking your clients and friends for money, it can suck just asking them just for a straight up donation, but saying “Hey, I’ve got this $100 gift card you can buy for $10, $20, $30, whatever you want to give for it, and you’ll get two weeks of boot camp.” What I did was, our coach, he would have different workshops in his house before we’d do our long training rides. Sometimes he’d go over how to change a tire, how to turn through corners, how to go downhill, braking, and then they’d also go over nutrition and exercise, as well, like cross training for the 100 mile bike ride.

When it came up for that training day, I asked if I could teach it, and just taught them some exercises that would help with the bike, and talked about nutrition, and talked about recovery and mobility. At the end, I was like, “By the way, I have this program that’s going to help you guys raise a lot of money and make your fundraising easier. You could probably raise all $3000 with this method.” I told them about the gift cards, and I told them I’d be willing to give everybody ten gift cards to get started. All they had to do was go to their coworkers, their family members, let them know about the boot camp, let them know your training for this 100 mile bike ride, and you would love for them to support you in not only working out with you, because I gave them a free membership as long as they were constantly selling this gift cards, up until the event day. That way, the people they’d give them to would come in and actually work out with them, which made it a lot more effective.

They would sell those for $10, $20, $30, $40, whatever they could get for them. All I asked was that they write down the name, phone number, and email of each person they gave it to, so we could follow up and make sure that they’re coming in. I also said that if they decide to stay onboard after the two weeks is up, that I would personally donate half of their first month, which would be $100, towards their fundraising. That really motivated them to get a lot of people in there, and then also talking them into going longer. The cool thing is that the event was like two or three months away, so after the two weeks is up, they still wanted to work out with their friend, their friend’s going to be working out for the next three months, they would normally join. That was one of the best ways that we used the $100 gift cards.

Whenever they would come in to redeem them, we would take it, but then we would turn around and give it right back to them, and we’d be like, “You know, hey thanks, but you know, I think you’re an awesome person, and I’m sure you have other friends that are just as cool as you, and we’d love to have them in our program, as well.” We’d hand those gift cards right back to them, and like “Unfortunately, you can’t use it, but you can give it to somebody else to use.” We’d just get them back out there as fast as possible. Not very many people talk about using those $100 gift cards anymore, but it still a great way to get the word out, and get consistent leads.

One of the other things that we do is grocery store tours. We do those once a month, and it usually works best at smaller grocery stores. There’s a right way and a wrong way to doing grocery store tours. Here’s the wrong way: If you just walk in and ask for the manager, and ask like, “Hey, I have this boot camp down the street, I was wondering if I could do a grocery store tour here and bring a bunch of people in, and maybe even offer it to your customers”, they’re going to be like, “Yeah, right, you’re trying to pick customers out of here for your business, it’s probably not a good fit.”

Here’s the right way: You want to walk in, ask for the manager, let them know you’ve been a customer, you love the store, you have 10 people in your boot camp that you want to bring in, show them how great the store is, show them all the healthy food, healthy options that they have, and on top of that, you want to buy $100 worth of gift cards today. You want to buy a $10 gift card for each person right now, if you could bring those people in. You’re giving the guy $100 right there on the spot when you’re talking to him, and then each client’s going to get a $10 gift card when they come in. Go ahead and let the manager know, “obviously most people are going to spend $80-$100 or more, so the $10 is just enough to get them started.” Normally, they’re going to be open to that, because now they just made 100 bucks, they have the opportunity to probably make close to 1000 on the day that you come in, so they usually are going to agree.

Then, you go back to your boot camp and you let people know that you’re doing a free grocery store tour, but they’re only letting you bring 10 people because you can’t have a big huge crowd in the middle of a grocery store, so every seat is very important, so you need a $10 deposit to come to the grocery store tour, and you get that back when you show up, in the form of a $10 gift card, to the grocery store. That way, it’s actually free for you. You put the $100 up front, and then you get it back when your clients pay to reserve those seats.

Then, once you’re at the grocery store, taking the clients around, you’re showing them what’s healthy, what they should be buying and whatnot, you’re going to be causing quite a scene with 10 people in there, taking notes, listening to you, putting stuff in their cart, that other customers are going to come up and ask what’s going on, or what you’re doing, when the next one is, and I’ll hand them a $100 gift card, let them know that it’s good for two weeks, we do these grocery store tours once a month, but it’s only for members at this point. Then, just pass those out and get that to your grocery store tour.

At the end of the grocery store tour, go back to the manager, thank him for letting you run the grocery store tour there. Tell them your clients loved the store, I mean, their carts were like full, they probably spent $150-$200 each, said they were definitely coming back. By the way, while we were doing it, some of your customers were asking us, “What is this about? When is the next one? How do I sign up? … I was really just going to do it for my own clients, but if you like, I would offer it to your customers as a favor to you for letting me come here, if that’s something you’d be interested in.”

Now, they’re going to be more open to letting you promote the grocery store tour in their grocery store to their customers where they see it at the checkout or wherever, and you’re going to get new members coming in to the grocery store tour, along with your with own members. That’s when you’re going to want to hand out the $100 gift cards, follow up, and get them in for that two week trial. You’re going to be able to pluck people out of the grocery store that way, and they’re going to be highly qualified leads. That’s the way that you do grocery store tours right.

Next would be lunch and learns, and there’s a right way and a wrong way of doing lunch and learns, as well. The best place to do it is at your local real estate office. They always have people come in and talk. You may have to buy lunch. It may cost you $100, $150, to get in front of 10, 15, 20 real estate agents. The main thing you want to go over is different health stats, if they’re living an unhealthy life, let them know what that means for them in the future. That way they’re aware of what the problem is, why they even need to be in shape.

Then, you talk about the types of workouts, which is obviously the high intensity interval training or after burn, whatever you want to call it, with slides that are giving them more information. When you see people starting to take notes, you just want to let them know, “Hey, you don’t have to take notes, I have all these slides that I can send you, and you know, I was going to print them all out, but I’m going green and didn’t want to kill all these trees printing out all the slides to give you guys, so I’m passing around the sheet, if you can put your name, phone number, and email down, I’ll be more than happy to send you this entire program.”

Real estate agents are the best clients, because they’re influencers in the local community. They know every single new family that’s moving into your town, and if they’re loving your place and getting great results, they’re going to be telling them about it, and you can put those $100 gift cards a welcome baskets once you get the relationships with the real estate agents. I would start with the lunch and learns at every local real estate agent office you have in your town.

The other thing that you can do is interview other business owners. Say you go into a hair salon and you introduce yourself to the owner or manager, and you can say, “Hey, I have this boot camp down the street, and a lot of the women in there were talking about how great your salon was, and I was in the area and I’d love to come in and just see what you do, and what all the talk is about.”

I usually go in during their slowest time as it’s the best time to talk to them. They’ll take you around and show you everything. As soon as they’re done, “Oh man, you know, it’s great, I can really see why they love this place. You mind doing that again real quick, and I’ll get it on video?”

Do it again, this time get your phone out, get it on video, have them walking around, talking about how they run their business, and ask them some questions and interview them. Then let them know you’re going to send this out to your email list, you’re going to put it on your social media. Once you email it out, put it on your social media, I go back to them and say, “Hey, my email list loved it, I bet you your email list would love it, too, if you want to send it out.”

Now, they’re more apt to send that out because now they’re being interviewed by you, and you’re saying how great their place is, so it’s all about them, and they’ll send that out to their list, and people are going to be curious like, “Why is this fitness person interviewing this salon owner?”, and they’re going to be Googling your business or stopping in, or inquiring about your services. It’s another way to leverage other business owners in a nonchalant way, where it’s actually benefiting them.

I remember back when I first got started, when I didn’t have any members coming or clients coming in at a time, instead of just sitting there, I said to myself, “I have to do something.” So I would just go outside at lunchtime, and since I was in a populated area at that time, I would just go straight up to people on the street, and say, “Hey, excuse me, how’s it going? Can I ask you something?” They’d be like, “Oh sure.” And I’d say, “Have you ever done a boot camp workout before?”

Doesn’t matter if they say yes or no, the answer is always the same, “Oh, great, I just started this indoor boot camp right here, we have AC and everything, it’s right here. I would love for you to come in and check it out, and I’d love to get your opinion on it.” People love to give their opinion, they love to help out, and they’re probably like, “Oh yeah, sure, I’ll definitely do that.” “All right, cool.” Then, ask for their name, phone number, and email.

Definitely ask one at a time, “What’s your name? Awesome, nice to meet you. What’s the best email address for me to reach out to you? Cool.” Then ask for the number. If you go like, “What’s your name, email, and phone number?”, they’re going to be like, “Oh yeah, that’s okay, I’ll come by and check it out some time”, but they’re not going to give you any information. Ask for one thing at a time.

I started doing the math, created a system for it, and call it my Three A Day. I wasn’t able to go home until I got three names and numbers, and emails, no matter what it took. If there wasn’t anybody out front, if it was raining or whatever, I’d go over to a bookstore by the mall. A grocery store. Anywhere there was people, and just kind of act like I’m shopping and then say, “Oh, excuse me,” and start talking with them. I would profile them as well. Anybody that was wearing yoga pants and running shoes – I had to talk to them, it wasn’t an option. If you’re wearing yoga pants and running shoes, I had to at least say hi and ask them if they’d done a boot camp workout before.

If you get three a day, Monday through Friday, that’s 15 solid leads a week. Out of those 15, even if you only got five to come in and try out your place, that’s five people in per week, or about 20 a month. If you got half of those to actually join your program, that’s 10 new members a month at $200 a month, that’s $2000 increase every single month. Just with that one system is how I started to grow my business, before I learned anything else. I just created that because I was like, I’m not just going to sit around. I’d be in line at Starbucks and if there was three women behind me that were … had yoga pants and running shoes on, and they were talking, I would order my coffee, and then I’d say, “Whatever these three want.” As soon as I did that, they’d stop, they’re like, “Oh wow, thank you so much” and they’d order their drinks.

I’d be wearing my boot camp shirt, and so while we’re all waiting for our drinks, they’re going to be asking me, “Oh, so you’re trainer, what do you do?” and I’d answer, “Well, actually I just started a boot camp, and have you guys ever done a boot camp before? I’d love for you guys to come in and check it out and just give me your opinion on it.” Then, I’d also have $100 gift cards, and I’d say, “Here’s actually a $100 gift card, you can actually come in and try it out for two full weeks and give me your opinion on it.” Again, once I’ve given the card, then I’d ask for their name, email, and then phone number. One thing at a time.

Again, just three a day is a minimum. Obviously some days I got more, but I never got less. It definitely gets you outside your comfort zone, especially for me. I talk fast, I mumble. Talking to total strangers wasn’t what I like to do, so I just forced myself to do it anyway. The more you do it, the better you’re going to get at it.

There are things you can do internally to stimulate referrals. You can do a referral contest. You can do a “Bring a Friend to Boot Camp” day kind of thing. We used to do community classes on the weekend, so they could bring their friends for free on the weekend. Stuff like that, so you can definitely stimulate referrals. We would have signs hanging up all over our boot camp that would say “Thanks for choosing Fit Body Boot Camp for your health and fitness needs. The best compliment that you can give is to refer your family and friends.” Subconsciously, they’re reading that when they go to the bathroom, when they’re sitting out front, so it’s always in their head to refer people or to bring them in.

In my experience, the best way to get referrals is to give them the best results possible, because then their friends are like “Hey, what are you doing? Where are you working out? I need to get over there.” That’s the best way to get referrals, is actually getting them really good results, because even if they love you but they’re not getting any results, it’s going to be a hard sell for them, when they go out with their friends, if one of the other friends is doing a different program and lost weight, all the people that are there, no matter how good you talk about the boot camp you’re in, they’re going to go to the one where the person’s getting results.

Always Create a System

A lot of the lead generation tactics get a lot of leads at once. Other things have them coming in more consistently, they kind of trickle in. You never want to have just one pole in the water. A lot of people right now are so dependent on Facebook, and if Facebook changes the rules are just stops working for whatever reason, they’re going to have a few months of a dry spell and start freaking out. That’s why you have to have as many poles in the water as possible. Some that are just going to be like a ton of leads at once, and others that are going to be more consistent.

Before Facebook, it was Groupon, everybody was just building their businesses all off of Groupon, and then that went downhill kind of quickly, and everybody jumped onto Facebook. We are figuring Facebook out, and it’s working great, so if you have the budget, you have the money, I highly suggest that you do Facebook, but that doesn’t mean you should not implement other tactics. You should be doing it all, and you should have a system for it all, so that we are not just randomly picking things to generate leads this month, but you have it all mapped out and in up with a process that’s teachable to somebody else.

The worst thing you can do as a marketer, and I do this more than anybody, is I’ll create something and I’ll spend so much time creating it, and it works really, really well. Instead of automating it and delegating it, I come up with some other idea and I stop doing what was working and try to see if I can get something else to work. I’ve gotten smarter over the last couple of years, and now when something works, I just pass it on to somebody else, and then I go and create something else and try to get it to work. Then, that way, you’re always adding to all the systems and lead generations that you have.

Coming Up

Over the next couple weeks, again, we’re going to just keep getting deeper and deeper into each one of these things, and I’ll map it out step-by-step, so you can implement them and start generating more leads in your business, more than just from Facebook or just from referrals, or however you’re doing it now. You can start setting up the systems and automating them, and then delegating them to somebody else, and keep them going. Make sure to follow along on Facebook and stay up to date on the newest content.

That’s it for today, guys. Thanks for joining me and I’ll see you next week.

Talk soon,

Jeff Sherman