Your Guide To Generating Leads And Writing Advertisements
posted on 23/01/2015 6:31:00 AM
Your Guide To Generating Leads And Writing Advertisements
By Brad Sheppard
Generating leads is all about finding out where your future clients are, and speaking to them about how you can help solve their problems. If you know who the intended audience is for your business and where they are – that is where they ‘hang out’ – you need to consider what they want in their personal trainer. There are countless problems people need or want solving, including how to:
- Lose weight in less time;
- Be injury- and pain-free;
- Quickly gain muscle;
- Become more flexible;
- Gain better energy;
- Become healthier overall;
- Tone up their bottoms, thighs and arms; and
- Look younger or slow down the ageing process.
Each one of the above tend to have a different personality type. While everybody wants to have high energy, young men already tend to have that by default. Usually they’re more interested in jacking up their athletic endurance and packing on muscle mass. However, a 50-year-old male executive may have very little interest in bulking up and may want to work on becoming healthier and losing weight instead.
You aren’t going to want to talk to these two different groups the same way. You probably won't find them in the same places and they most likely won’t respond to the same kind of lead generation methods. (A lead generation method is the way you get your message out to potential clients, so they can approach you if your services interest them.)
My top three steps for generating leads
Crafting a good advertisement basically boils down to three components:
1. Getting people to contact you
Getting people to approach you for your services is the most important part of any ad. If your target audience doesn’t contact you, you probably won’t have any clients. It’s rather like trying to drive across water when there’s no bridge or ferry – it just won’t work. You get people to contact you through supplying your phone number, website and/or e-mail. You don’t need to have all three, and you may not even want to overload people with all that information, but giving them an easy way to get in touch with you is what puts prospects in your database and food on your table.
2. Sell your freebie
You should be giving something away for free as an enticement to your leads. You don’t need them to sign up for personal training today. Even if you just occasionally send them helpful e-mails for a year or two, it’s about showing them what you have to offer.
The biggest reason you want to get potential clients to opt in to your freebie immediately is because you don’t want to waste anyone’s time. You can give them a taste of what you have to offer and if they’re ultimately not interested, no time has been wasted.
3. Make an offer with a call to action
At least once during your ad, you want to make your offer. This actually works very well as your headline, because it tends to work on getting the person’s RAS to notice it. If your headline reads: ‘Hey Mummy, lose the baby bump!’ or ‘How to get your pre-baby body back in less than 12 weeks!’ a new mum is going to be way more likely to notice it and read the ad below it than a middle-aged executive.
First and foremost, you need to target your intended audience and capture their attention by putting a headline and letter up that gets them nodding their heads. Then you mention the benefits you can provide them and get them excited about what you have to offer. After that, you make a call to action. It can be as simple as ‘Call Now!’ followed by your number or a call to visit your website.
Treat your advertising space as valuable real estate. Consider what you can do with a real plot of land. You can build one house on it or you can build an entire apartment complex there. Naturally, the apartment complex is going to provide you with a lot more income from the same space. So when you write your ads, write for maximum intensity.
Make your message very clear. If a sentence isn’t needed, take it out of there. If you start drifting back into trying to target a variety of client types, stop that. If a section doesn’t seem like it fits with your core niche, cut it out. And if you’re going to be running your ad in multiple places, such as a group of magazines, try testing out slight changes to it.
Print advertisements and flyers design
We are going to compare the two following advertisements that we typically see personal trainers produce. Well, actually, it’s the first ad that we usually see more of. No doubt you do too!
Let’s analyse the first advertisement: Tom’s Personal Trainers
Here are some notable points about Tom’s Personal Trainers advertisement – it breaks many of the principles of direct response marketing.
- It has no powerful benefit-driven headline;
- The main body (and valuable ‘real estate’ of the ad) is taken up with features rather than benefits;
- It states points that you would most likely expect: ‘We are qualified’. Well, I certainly hope my personal trainer is qualified!;
- It states the price which can immediately cause a potential client to make a decision based on price alone; and
- It contains to limited call to action and leaves the responsibility of picking up the phone and calling in the hands of the potential clients.
Now, let’s look at the following example using the direct response marketing formula.
Here are some useful points to note about this advertisement:
- It begins with a bold, punchy headline that could be considered quite contrarian and therefore invites the reader to want to find out more;
- Rather than asking for the potential client’s business, it first makes a clear statement for them to ‘not hire’ a personal trainer until the ad is read;
- The sub-headline is very clear and definite, indicating two very valuable things that people do not want to waste – time and money;
- It states that “not all personal trainers are the same.” This frames the potential client to understand that there are different types of personal trainers;
- The advertisement educates the potential client and empowers them in the buying decision: “you should know what questions to ask”;
- The toll-free number with a voice recorded message enables the potential client to call without the fear of being ‘sold to’;
- Giving away a ‘free, special or bonus’ report immediately positions you as an expert in your field. In addition to this, you are beginning the relationship simply by giving something away; and
- Alternatively, the potential client can go straight to a website landing page that has been specifically set up to test and measure the response of this advertisement.
You can see that this example follows the principles of direct response marketing which simply invites the potential client to take the first step, and that is to exchange their contact details for some free and valuable information that will be of great benefit to them.
The value of testing and measuring
Testing is where you make the most progress with your marketing materials. Through testing you can identify where you’re doing well and where you can still stand to do better. At first you can experiment with writing headlines and copy you’re fairly certain will appeal to your target niche. But over time you can refine your marketing message to the point where it’s a lead-generating machine.
When you first start to test, use several places (such as different magazines) and only change a certain section of your ad at a time. Start out with testing a few different headlines and see which one gets you the biggest response from your target audience. Once you’re pretty confident in your headline, start moving down the body of your ad and tweaking areas you might not be sure about.
Once you’re confident in your ad as a whole you have two options: you can let it be and start working on another way to generate leads while this channel brings in a steady stream. Or you can be bold and try something completely different. Remember that sometimes ‘boring’ ways to do something are actually the most useful and changing them can end up hurting your efforts.
Once you’ve got a few good strategies for generating leads you also need to find a mentor. A great mentor is going to help you brainstorm ever better ideas and will inspire you to keep reaching further. When you make six figures, you’re going to want to find people who make seven. And when you make seven, you’re going to have to look long and hard to find even greater mentors!
Remember that once someone is in your database you have commenced a relationship with that person. I like to say that the people in my database will be there until they either ‘buy or die’. That means I'll keep sending them occasional bits of my hard-won wisdom until they either opt out of my list, sign on to train with me or one of my trainers, or until they go to that big gym in the sky!
Brad is the co-founder of Create PT Wealth, Australia’s largest Business Coaching and Mentoring program for Personal Trainers. Brad has taught thousands of Personal Trainers internationally the methods on how to become multi six-figure Personal Trainers.
Brad is the co-author of the best-selling book A Personal Trainers Guide To Wealth Creation and has delivered over 100 live presentations at events including Filex, Network, PT Pro and the Create PT Wealth Summit to name a few.
Brad is a highly sought after business and motivational speaker and is passionate about creating a more professional fitness industry by volunteering his time on the REPS council of Fitness Australia.
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