Personal Trainer to Millionaire

Personal Trainer to Millionaire

Personal trainer to millionaire, how does one do that? In simple terms you must take your love of fitness and surround it in business sense. Many small gyms come and go at a very fast rate because they started with a passion for fitness and very little understanding for business. But the resources are there to learn the business skills needed and gym ownership is a great path to wealth.

Starting Small

Joey Hoey is a 27 year old personal trainer and had never made much money and had no business experience. He took business courses with the local SBDC, prepared a business plan, and scraped the money together he needed and started a gym, The Fitness Coalition in Fairfield, California. He had $12,000 saved and borrowed $45,000 from family members. Joey decided that a CrossFit affiliation was representative of his techniques and became a CrossFit affiliate. He started in a small space, kept his costs down, and made $35,000 his first year and was able to take a small draw out of that to live on. He feels he is easily set up and on track to more than double his revenue his second year. He attributes much of his marketing success to Facebook. His journey  has begun to $1,000,000 in the bank.

Joey is also getting some advice from a friend who is a little ahead of him. His friend was also a personal trainer, but trained people in groups in the park. His groups got so big so fast by word of mouth it surprised him and he started looking for a place to have a gym. He had no money and sought out a private investor who invested $100,000 in the business. Still in his first year, his gym is making a gross income of over $30,000 a month. They will make a substantial profit.

Stevenson Fitness

Stevenson Fitness

First Million in the Bank

Stevenson Fitness  in Oak Park, California is another success story. Like many of the stories I am finding about individual gyms being started, the owner Chris Stevenson has a strong background in personal training. He started the gym in 2009  first by raising $300,000 from private investors and was pre-selling memberships in March 2010. In June 2010, the SBDC helped him apply for a $170,000 loan to further fund his business and to prepare a business plan. He also took free marketing and QuickBooks courses from the SBDC.

Here are a few of Stevenson’s lessons learned:

Manage by the numbers

-“When I opened my first personal training studio, there were so many financial factors I never calculated, or got wrong.” “Ben (SBDC counselor) helped me be realistic.” Stevenson stated  that he looks at the numbers daily and have revolving 12 month financial projections.

Get social

– They use all social media. Stevenson stated that, “During presale Facebook was the number-one tool that generated all our buzz.” The next goal is to work on and optimize the website to generate more leads per day.

Take charge of your time

– Prioritize working on what grows your business.

By August 20011, the business quickly hit monthly sales averaging $100,000, the gym had 40 employees, 1,900 members. They have continued to grow in every area. They are scouting possible locations for a second location as well as doing consulting. Both of these could substantially increased revenue. By just adding room to their current facility they also could add revenue and there is the possibility of a creating a franchise. Stevenson who started as a personal trainer, has paid his investors back and gone from gym owner to millionaire.

Planning and Research

This is definitely a tried and true business. You must prepare well, do your research and get all the help and free advice you can. Joey started where he could start and is growing his business, it will take him a few more years but he can get there. Stevenson started at a different level, with a business degree, more funds, a bigger facility and got to the million dollar mark much faster. Please note, he did not necessarily have more money than Joey, but he had a bigger plan and raised more money. But this is not a race; you need to start with the skills and assets you have and are capable of raising, lay a good foundation and then grow your business. You should start your planning today to put your own million in the bank. This is not just feel good talk, but something you can do.


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