What Personal Trainers Should Know About Blogging and Building their Brand
As a seasoned personal trainer or coach, you’re likely on the go 24/7, leaving you with precious little time for marketing and branding activities. You’ve probably heard a lot about the benefits of blogging for fitness businesses, but you’re not really sure if it’s worth the time or the effort, and if it can really help you to gain more clients. In short – we say yes! When harnessed directly, fitness blogs are a powerful content marketing tool that can drive traffic, boost your brand, and convert your website visitors into paying customers.
Finding new clients can be a challenge. Despite the ever-increasing consumer demand for fitness services, competition amongst gyms, studios, and wellness programs is as fierce as ever. On top of this, personal trainers and coaches are often in direct competition with one another, especially when it comes to attracting new customers both on and offline, making it hard to stand out amongst the crowd.
If you want to carve out a successful career, grow your brand, and expand your influence in the personal training space, you can’t rely on word of mouth alone. Gone are the days where you could place a few photographs on your Instagram or Facebook account and then wait for the likes, comments, and leads to roll in. These platforms have become increasingly crowded, filled with cookie-cutter business pages, and centered around costly paid ads.
However, what many personal trainers don’t realize is that new prospects aren’t just searching for information on social media. Instead, they’re often just running a quick Google search and then calling the first couple of trainers who appear in the search engine results pages (SERPs). In fact, the volume of organic traffic that you can send towards your website via search engines far outweighs the amount of interest and the vanity metrics that you can generate via social media. And it won’t cost you a cent.
To tap into these fitness and training related Google searches, you need a search engine optimized (SEO) website and quality written content. And one of the best ways to set this up is by creating a blog.
Building Authority, Recognition, and Reputation
Undoubtedly, one of the most difficult things that you’ll need to accomplish in the fitness space is to become a brand. You have to constantly build on your authority, recognition, and reputation within the industry in order to attract new clients. If you’re not getting the results you want from your current marketing and branding efforts, a blog is an inexpensive but highly effective tool that can help.
Blogging is a powerful way of connecting with your target audience. Not only does a blog act as a hub for your advice and content, highlighting your expertise and the breadth of your industry knowledge, it enables you to share your brand’s story over and over again. It’s a way to build a conversation and a connection with new prospects, who are actively seeking advice and guidance.
How-to instructional posts, training techniques, and nutrition tips, all offer solid aid and advice to people to help them solve problems and reach their fitness goals. These posts function similar to a free trial or a short consultation, which builds brand authority for your fitness business. Publishing informative content online is an easy, economical, and scalable way to show potential clients how you can help them, and to steadily build trust over time.
The more potential customers engage with your blog content, the more they become familiar with your brand. A genuinely helpful, humanized blog can forge trust, shape perception, enhance brand loyalty as well as reach, and strengthen resonance within your customer base, whether new or existing. It also has the added benefit of helping you to rank in search engines.
Get Found on Google Search
Every month, just over 22,000 people across the United States head to Google to search for a “personal trainer near me”. And this figure doesn’t even start to cover the number of searches for “personal trainer in [local area]”, fitness tips, online classes, diet advice, plus gym and product reviews.
These searches are all made by motivated, prospective customers, who are looking for a business exactly like yours. Many would sign-up for a session today, if only they could find your website! However, if they can’t – they’ll head straight to one of your competitors. This is why it’s vital that information about your business can be found high up in the Google SERPs, especially for searches that relate to personal trainers and coaches in your local area.
How can you achieve this? By adding a blog to your existing website. Having a blog on your website increases your chances of getting ranked higher and having your website pages indexed by 434%.
The real driver of traffic to most fitness websites are blog posts, usually centered on core topics related to fitness and personal training, which offer expert advice. Informative, as opposed to sales heavy blog posts, are what will drive traffic to your website, bolster your brand authority, and convert your visitors into new clients.
But before you start writing your blog posts, you’ll need to do some keyword research and plan out your content strategically. If you’re looking to build your brand and rank on Google, there’s little point in writing a post on a topic that nobody is searching for.
The Simplest Way to Get Started
How you grow your blog and what you choose to write about will depend on the type of business that you’re running, the services that you offer, and who is going to be reading it. If you’re unsure of how to get started or struggling for inspiration, we suggest:
1. Determine Your Goals
Just as you would for your clients, you need to set Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound (SMART) goals for your blogging efforts. Just as no one gets ripped by sporadically lifting and following a diet plan intermittently, blogging without a goal is equally as ineffective. You’ll need to develop a goal that fits within the SMART framework, such as ‘driving 1,000 visits to my website in a month within the next quarter, by writing one 1,000 word post per week, every week’.
Your goals don’t have to be traffic-related. If you’re more focused on obtaining new clients as quickly as possible, you may want to consider leads or newsletter sign-ups, Likewise, you could promote affiliate products to your blog visitors to earn additional income, or offer business advice in order to connect with other well-known trainers and build your network. Whatever the goal, you’re more likely to achieve it using the SMART framework.
2. Choose your Niche
You can get started with fitness blogging by considering your niche, drafting a list of all the related topics that you are knowledgeable in, and then creating short pieces of content around each. If you’re already an established personal trainer or coach, then your blog content should align with what your brand is all about.
Sticking with your niche and staying true to your brand will help you to grow your blog more quickly, as it will be easier to appear as an authority source. While you can write about any topic
you like, you may find it much more difficult to stay on brand and build your audience if you dart from running advice to yoga, then to boxing, and back to jogging.
3. Learn About SEO
You’ll need to optimize your blog content in order for it to rank on Google. Mastering search engine optimization techniques is one way for your brand to really stand out in the crowded fitness industry. And while there are plenty of factors to consider when it comes to SEO, the best way to get started is to focus on regularly generating quality content and getting it in front of people.
Great content can gain traction for a long time. Once you’ve published it on your blog, it can start to bring in traffic and leads for years to come. Developing a content strategy, selecting the right keywords for your niche, crafting informative and well-written posts, and then reaching out to other fitness bloggers to guest post or to link back to yours, will all help you to rank on Google and to generate new leads over the long-term.
4. Write Your First Post
Before drafting your first blog post, you’ll need to consider who you’re creating content for and what problem you’re going to help them solve. While you’re writing for Google, on one hand, to optimize your blog post so that it ranks well, you’re also writing for potential customers. You’ll need to bear in mind what makes your brand unique and the SMART goal that you’ve set out to reach.
One fact that’s worth considering is that lengthwise, content that ranks well in Google tends to average between 1,140-1,285 words. The more in-depth the post, the more likely it is to generate leads. This can be a large time commitment, especially when you take into account that companies which publish 16 or more blog posts per month typically generate 4.5x more leads than those that publish less.
If writing isn’t your forte or you simply don’t have the time, you can outsource your blog content to a freelancer, who can also handle your SEO. You can find suitable talent on platforms like UpWork and Fiverr, at various different price points.
Blogging for Your Fitness Businesses
If blogging isn’t part of your current (content) marketing strategy, you need to make sure that you get started soon. You might be nailing your Instagram and Facebook game, and generating
a decent number of new clients through word of mouth, but if you’re not blogging and taking advantage of organic search you’re almost certainly leaving money on the table.
Blogging is the perfect marketing channel to promote your fitness business online, to draw attention to your expertise, and to capture new leads almost on auto-pilot. This in turn should enable you to build a bigger online following; growing your customer base, maximizing your earning potential, and building high profile authority in the fitness industry.
Check out this list of fitness careers that let you follow your dreams which includes what it takes to start a career in personal fitness training. This is your most affordable and fastest way to become a highly qualified personal trainer.
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