Scott: Can you tell me you tell me about when you started up in the fitness and health industry and some of your failures and Lessons Learned?
Brad: For sure. So a big thing was when I was first starting out in the industry. I was really starting as a personal trainer before I became a therapist and the big thing was I began in a corporate gym, and I quickly realized you know that you really needed to be good at multiple things.
So when I first started I originally thought you know, all I need to do is be really good at training and get really good results myself and those types of things will translate into getting excellent results with the clients. in and has become a health practitioner that the patients that I’m dealing with and what I really learned through that process was that is sitting really not the case and the ability to do something yourself doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re going to be able to replicate that with other people.
So one thing that I really learned was that I had to actually in order to overcome that that kind of sticking point if I tell was I need to understand a little bit more About the softer side of skills how to have conversations with people to get them compliant, you know, so they really understand why they’re doing something from a nutritional standpoint or homework or white why the street is showing up in the first place?
So that kind of let me down the path of Education in and also looking up by the industry on how to how to attract better types of clients how to sell in a way that was more ethical than we were being taught and so on.
Brad: for sure I would Yeah, exactly. And that was kind of like the first entering that industry of really everyone always tells you if you do good service, you’ll get tons of clients. If you’re able to get results yourself, you take tons of you know, every muscle in the body and how it works. We’ll get clients in. The reality is is not just not the not the case that I was going like my first starting point that really understanding that, you know, in order to be successful in Industry need to be good and and understand other components especially for the business aspect.
Brad: Yeah hundred percent.
Scott: So with the multi-facility and ten employee operation . How did you reach that?
Brad: So Ive been in industry for about 12 years or so now 13 years and a lot of that came down to Troutman are over the years and even when I started out as a personal trainer end up becoming a therapist and having my own practices.
I started to learn the ins and outs of the business. So I started to learn how to attract more specific types of clients and patients who were willing to pay premium rates , were more committed to the service and ultimately how I could leverage those results and they’re the outcomes that those patients have gotten in order to get success stories are case studies and attract more of the similar types of people so that allowed me to really start working with the right people that I was ultimately more passionate and skilled with dealing with and also make some more higher income just because I could charge more for the service.
I was offering it as more of a premium. over the years. I spent a lot of time in terms of marketing. Its been a lot of time with direct response marketing and Dan Kennedy world and really focused on attracting the right people and also making sure that you are establishing yourself a little bit more preeminent. so for me. I really focused on dealing with active adults who played a sport they might be running or playing hockey on the weekends or skiing cycling. Whatever might be so active adults generally over 40 who were looking at reducing pain, losing somebody fat, and ultimately getting back to you living a healthier life and doing activities that they enjoy, that’s how I originally started out with kind of my positioning and as time went on I ended up narrowing that down even more in that narrow down to working with people who were active adults in a more higher level.
So National provincial-level, I work with some NHL and NFL players and it was really focused on if you pass An injury or a restriction to your performance at for longer than 6 months and you seen two or more therapist. Then I would be the person you know to come see so I started positioning myself is that an overtime and allow me to really create a good network of clients as well as other health practitioners and personal trainers in my network. And from that time. I decided after I had some issues where you know, I was hitting the upper limits of what I could do my own practice. I knew I needed to grow a business and and have other people working with me. So I started to nurture those relationships with the soon-to-be staff and network that I had in order to open a facility that had a clinic space with Vizio chiromassage and personal training and ultimately with the systems that I learned from you how to sell more ethically and how to attract the right types of clients that direct response kind of thing as well as how to manage different aspects of the clinic and the gym together I implemented these systems and and I was doing this for about two years before I would go in and do some Consulting and then learn the ins and outs of the business and how to optimize and so I basically took my Concepts and opened a new facility which did spray wall right off the bat just because you know, we had assistance in place in the network and so on.
Scott: Right, right. Some smart brand building and a really good handle on a solid growth plan I see, what kind of what got you into that process.
Brad: Ah there was one book by Dan Kennedy, that when I was going down the drug response world. He had one book called pricing strategy, you know, don’t quote me exactly on the exact title be with somebody what pricing strategy and he also talked about marketing to the affluent And what I started to learn was the more specific that you get with the problems that you solve, in both that you’re skilled and passionate with dealing with the more that you’re able to charge because you’re actually D Commodities out of the competition. So I originally started even when I was straight out of school and I was charging $130 rate out of the gates when I was doing therapy and people automatically that was still $34 more than anyone else and I was told a lot like well, you know, no one is going to buy it and no ones going to pay that much but it was actually quite the opposite. I ended up attracting a large amount, Because I position myself in a way I’m using that USM that I said and I also worked in a, I had a practice in the fitness facility at the time. So, you know, its easier with a gym and having that specific population. It allowed me to position myself differently in and charge more and part of the reason of being able to charge more is a lot of therapists are actually not charging enough money to even live and especially in the rmt world, which is massage therapy. A lot of these people. Ive seen graduate school and they’re going to make $20 an hour and you know at the end of the day these people are you’re doing manual work and you’ve got to have a lot of skill sets to be able to invest in and continue education to get the best results for you and for your patients and I would generally spend about fifteen to $20,000 a year on continued education every year that I was in Prague. and in order to do that. I need to be able to make a decent enough income. So, you know charging the right types of REITs really allow you to put yourself in a position where you’re able to take care of yourself with, so obviously never won but that also includes investing in your knowledge base and having the ability to do so, so there’s numerous times where I would go multiple times a year.
For example food out. I would find out Arizona early on to do fascial stretch therapy, which was a stretching course that practitioners in in trainers with used in order to you know, get people moving better in terms of athletic performance in and reducing pain and obstacles of that stuff. I was there was a time that I went there three times I think in one year and probably spend about six or seven thousand dollars just to get a better result for my clients. So I really started to to favor Be able to work with less people, but the right people who are invested in their house and were willing to pay premiums for the results that I was getting because I really dedicated a lot of my life.
Im in my thirties now and I and I spent my twenties primarily investing in optimizing my systems for therapy and training so I could get patients the best results possible and as well as just a business thats like it how to invest into my marketing abilities and my ability to communicate to get a a patient to be compliant. So all of these things I thought were really thats how you kind of are justifying in and can say how much should you charge? You know, youre not charge you not paying $300. So I was charging 295 when I was treating it at the kind of near the end and people are might say wants expensive. Well, youre not paying $295 for a 60-minute appointment with me youre paying Your $95 for the 12 years that I spent up into the point to understand your condition and understand why youve been having this problem for so long and why other people havent been able to get you may be the best result possible. So thats really the key differentiating factor that you really have to think about when you are setting up pricing cuz thats in terms of failures. Thats one of the biggest things I think people do is they undervalue themselves because they look at whatever else is doing and that you cant price way so that you price based on the outcome and if you can get a specific outcome better than other people thats invaluable.
Scott: So true. So, can you share with us some of the unique marketing strategies?
Brad: For sure. So the first thing that I always tell people and for those who have, for those of you follow me, I apologize. I'm going to say probably the millionth time you've heard it, is you've got it. You got three things really, you've got to understand on who it is that you're trying to attract. So who is your perfect client or your perfect patient and that goes for two things? Who are you skilled at working with and getting a good result? And who are you most passionate with dealing with? so why I say the second one is important, most people say I want to go out for a few really rich clients because they can afford it. Well, Ive had some clients who are affluent and their schedule, you know, they're not very compliant their schedules suck. They travel all the time,very busy people. They're not very in the Now, that they got two cell phones on them during the training session texting between sets or not committed, is just not a good client . They can afford the service but they're not able to get is going to result. So its always going to be no for me. I was dedicated to getting the best results. For my client at all costs. So for me, that would kill me inside because I wanted to get results. So the second thing is creating a unique, when I call Unique service message to those specific patients or clients that you're trying to attract. So its one thing to say. Hey I'm a massage therapist and I can help fix your shoulder. Its another thing to say. I am a massage therapist who specializes in shoulder rehab for people who have rotator cuff injuries and want to get back to you overhead Sports. because you basically immediately tell people who you work with and who you don't work with and what that does is it places you in a category of what I call preeminence where if someones got a rotator cuff problem and they play volleyball, they're going to go see you are not going to go to the massage therapist down the road because even if its closer or cheap because they're paying for the probability of success. your positioning in the marketplace is absolutely crucial for you attracting those right types of people and ultimately your marketing to function optimally because in my opinion, you cant you cannot Market effectively If you don't have a point of differentiation and preeminence in that, Authority, credibility focused in the specific Market that you serve. So that's kind of the first starting point. And then after that its really making the marketing about building and nurturing relationships and people mess that up often, you know, I did originally in the beginning to, when I was first starting cuz you know, we are told here from the beginning, you know, you got to sell, sell, sell, and the reality is is that if you changed your thought I heard him say he knows we need the client or the patient the patient doesn't need us and whats the cost for them to go somewhere else or ultimately do nothing at all. So I started to look at it and say listen if I cant communicate effectively to get this person committed to helping them self. Then I'm doing myself a disservice cuz this person is either going to go see someone else which is probably good because they're at least doing something about it or in a lot of scenarios people don't do anything at all and they sit at home they get worse and they feel worse about themselves and it starts to actually decrease Happiness and what they get out of life. So I really focused on building those relationships and if someone wasn't buying right now or I could help them right at the moment. I wanted to be able to nurture that relationship. So thinking a lot about your marketing is yes. Its about attracting people but its about really helping them and making sure that if they don't buy right away from you or maybe they they opted into you like a Facebook ad the altitude in the to try to find more about what you got going on. If they didn't commit right away knowing that is there a way for you to provide value for them to nurture that relationship with the hope and knowing that they'll probably come back later way too many people are focused on making the sale right away and destroying the relationship, you know, both financially in from a times time and reputation standpoint because they want to they make it about themselves. I'm getting the sale right away. And you know, I don't know. I don't remember the exact day and I hear hear this a lot. But generally its around 5% of people are willing to buy and just Hand over their credit card right away. So I have a hundred people you got lets say four leads in a month. We know that 5% of them or five of them are going to you hand the credit card right over. The other 45% are going to buy within 90 days and then the ones after that somewhere between 90 days to to 12 months or never. So if we know that to be true. Why don't more people spend time building the relationship in the first 90 days and how we do that is from a strategy standpoint is we actually do that with nurturing campaigns. So we use a combination of calls, text, emails, direct mail and some scenarios and so on in order to keep in touch with that patient or prospects. So ultimately when they're ready to make the decision with the right time for them that they know where to reach us. Scott: Just never know what touchpoint is going to trigger. Brad: Exactly and you cant force people to buy, you know, there's reasons why people don't buy but ultimately, you know, there's a lot of different reasons and one big thing is is that there's a lot of uncertainty and especially in the gym world is that people don't want to feel uncomfortable. There's a quote from One Mentor that I had before. "people would rather remain in pain, and be uncomfortable. rather than uncertain that what they're going to be doing would be not work essentially." So someone will sit and complain about their low back hurting forever or that the 30 pounds overweight, but they don't want to overcome. The having to actually go to the gym and being uncertain that if they're actually going to get the results or if you were going to make fun of them or you know that they got to give up the Friday night beer and chicken wings. Scott: I totally understand.You have a penchant for overdelivering So can you share what drives that philosphy? Brad: Yeah, so I mean why its really important to over-deliver at every stage is because it goes back to that quote. Your customers are your clients or patients, Dont need you. You need them and your whole business really exists because someones investing their time their money their resources without a gurantee positive results in health or whatnot in something that you provide to them and that takes trust and Really being able to go above and beyond really does two things, one that creates a magnetic culture where people want to be there. So if you've got a really intimate environment where everybody knows each other, the're all supportive of each other and you start to create that culture where people are excited to actually go somewhere. So what you end up getting is a higher compliance rate with with clients or patients as well as they're going to be holding the Ace to held accountable. Theyre going to go above and beyond more because they feel they have a bit more vested interest in it. And I mean if you think about it, theres any scenario like a club or a sports team or anything that you belonged to where you feel Tighter and more connected to people rather than just a number. For example, youre going to want to go there more often and some errands. Ive got hips that I go to You look as if I go to the dentist, Im sitting there and you want me for my number to be called kind of thing. I dont feel so good about going to experience and the second thing is really helps with the pain of your client base. It helps to keep them in Europe and when youre able to offer something differently and over-deliver and every aspect of that patients journey in every way possible and you make it a part of your culture where your staff look for ways to be able to go above and beyond for example, weve had people who didnt even sign up for our services. We know whats there we know whats a birthday cuz they filled out the the form and it came in for a consult. We send them birthday cards to years after even if we never even heard from them. Its just a way to try to extend no obviously were connecting with them. So, you know where I was top of mine, but were also, you know doing it from a community standpoint that were backing what were saying just because you didnt invest in us doesnt mean that we dont care if You were still here and when youre ready and Ill reach out or any way that we can help so that thats a really big component with that and the reality is is because its such a point of differentiation. If someone comes to you and your be treating them as a chiro for example or Physio and youre doing all this extra stuff to buy a new house to send them, you know of something to house warm or you you know sending the cards on Christmas or different holidays in that type of stuff, you know, not just like the hay come back for your appointment card, but youre actually sending. Thats just providing value to the like when they come in, you know what youve got a higher-end water and your towels always ready for them. The front desk is smiling and happy. If they ever have to go anywhere else, theyre going to always compare and theres one book that I like to recommend Co predictably irrational by Dan really and he talks a lot about how people make decisions based on comparison. So if I had a really good experience where I get my letter on on on Christmas and I get my birthday card and I bought a new house so they bought you know, you gave me a gift card to home sensor or whatever the place that I can go get some stuff like he or whatever and you know, a heartfelt card that has actually, you know, written with me and behind it. And when I come in at the persons always on time for my appointment, Im not having to wait theres magazines there for me to read the front desk of greeting of creating this entire experience. If someone go somewhere else theyre going to say well I didnt get this I didnt get this they dont do this for me and most of the time youll find if you believe theyll end up coming back because youre over delivering and giving him a better experience altogether and thats really how you can differentiate from the competition and people will notice And therell be some people in that also works good for you is that theyll be people who dont care about that. They only care about price will guess what theyre not going to come to you because they dont care what the experience in that way and theyre not willing to pay. So not your ideal client. Youre not going to waste your time with those people. Theyre going to find a place thats better for them and better fitting and theyre going to have a better experience just because they dont care about the luxury features or whatever it is. And thats okay. Scott: So Brad you working on anything new? Brad: Yeah, so Ive got a new coaching program called the preeminent practice and really what were doing here is thinking a lot of the systems from Marketing sales running the more experiential operation for the impatient driven business and optimizing the financials and strategic planning and so on and what were really doing is taking those Concepts in giving it to health practice on her. She want to grow their business make more Revenue reduce for clinical hours and really take control and have leverage over their practice and instead of I kind of say its like actually running your business and set of letting it run you and giving yourself a high-paying job. You want to be able to be in a position where youre able to take days off in your stuff to make income be able to have an impact in your business community and so on. So really what we do is weve got a proven system over 90 day. Of time that its basically essentially a roadmap. So you got a starting point is at 1 and theres nine different steps in order to get on this path of automating your marketing and growing in the other aspects of the business. Scott: Sounds incredible actually. Where can people reach you? Brad: You can access me at my website Brad cote dot com and I also will include the link for you. So that anyone is interested in learning more about that program. They can go on the site as well. Scott: Brad I'd Like to thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to speak with us today and share some of your insights to grow smarter. Don't forget to subscribe to Grow Smarter on iTunes or spotify, so you never miss an episode