Today’s article is an interview with Personal Trainer Glenn Munso; who is the founder and head trainer at Essential Health And Fitness based in Melbourne Australia.
You might know Glenn from his clever and innovative YouTube videos where Glenn painstakingly eats chocolate ice creams and chugs full bottles of beer to then demonstrate how much exercise is required to burn off those empty calories; all in the name of science.
It’s been very exciting to watch Glenn’s business go from strength to strength with his wide variety of programs, initiatives and his innovative marketing style; let’s get to it!
Hey Glenn, thank you for chatting with me today! I’ve seen all of the awesome work you’re doing with Essential Health And Fitness and your business looks like it’s absolutely booming! Take us back to the beginning; how did you get started in the fitness industry?
Thanks Ben. Everything really started back in 2008. That’s when my life completely changed and I learnt a lot about myself, because it was a very bad year for me. I was overweight, depressed, hanging with the wrong crowd which led to trouble with the law and didn’t know what to do with my life.
I began exercising and eating better and then everything started coming together for me. I began meeting positive people and realised how much this healthy lifestyle helped me and I wanted to help others get out of that black hole.
That’s when I began studying and I completed my Cert IV at the end of 2008 and began training friends and family and the very first Essential Health And Fitness Bootcamp was in 2010.
That’s an incredible story; congratulations on such a dramatic and positive lifestyle change! When you first started out; did you work from a gym or for any other trainers?
No. I’ve never worked out of a gym or for any other personal trainers. I actually trained my first clients just with some cones in the park. This is all the equipment I could afford at the time.
Another reason I’ve never worked from a gym or for any other trainer is I wanted to just get out there and start. I wanted to brand myself and implement my own strategies on health, not have to follow someone else’s.
It must have been tough just starting out with nothing really?
It was, but when the only way you’re earning money is from training clients then this is an incredible motivator to get out there and keep going.
So with very little equipment and no real marketing budget; how did you find your first clients that weren’t family and friends?
I ran a lot of referral competitions to encourage my family and friends to bring theirs. I also ran a free bootcamp and put lead boxes in a few cafes and stores with different offers.
And what were the results?
The referrals were and continue to be my biggest lead generating source. I would offer free PT or bootcamps to clients who brought along other people and this works very well with my business.
The lead boxes were not so successful and I don’t use them anymore. I did get quite a lot of leads from them, but the conversion rate is terrible considering how much effort is needed.
Have you done any marketing or small business courses?
Not specifically, though my Cert IV teachers did teach me a lot about the business, so I was very lucky. I’ve also used business coaches to help with ideas to better market myself and my business and that has been a huge help.
What has been the most successful promotion that you have done?
The YouTube videos have been incredible for my business branding. Being able to show people what you do rather than just talk and write about it makes such a huge difference and people really respond to these.
Your videos are awesome and the quality is great! Do you have a few tips for other trainers on how to make quality videos for their fitness business?
- You have to project your personality to the camera, just be you
- Put up content that people can relate to
- Be different and make it fun
- Keep your videos under 3 minutes, 5 minutes absolute maximum if you have something really awesome to share.
- Invest a little money into a camera and tripod. It doesn’t have to be expensive, but your videos are representing your business so make an effort.
Great tips Glenn thank you! And here’s Glenns Magnum Ice Cream Video:
Looking back at the beginning; what would be your advice to a brand new trainer who has just been certified and looking to build a business?
The first thing I would do is walk out the door and tell ten people that I’m a personal trainer. Start going to nearby businesses and introduce yourself and what you do and start spreading the word. No one will no what you do unless you tell them.
I also think the best thing to do, for anyone in this business is not to just sit around thinking about what to do. You have to get out and do it. No one is going to do you any favors and no one knows you better than you so just do it!
And stay on your toes. The fitness industry is always changing and evolving so you have to be up to date with everything that’s going on. You have to always be improving your trainer skills to make sure your clients are getting the best and also watching the marketing trends to make sure your business is always out there.
What are some of the hurdles you’ve had to overcome getting your business off the ground?
I hate the phone. I’ve always been much better at helping people face to face, but the phone is an important part of the job.
I started out trying to be too professional and robotic on the phone rather than just being myself. Not only did it probably sound insincere to the people I was calling; I didn’t feel right doing it and that affected my conversion.
What’s in the future for Personal Trainer Glenn Munso?
I am currently working on a book called The 30 Day You Program which will be finished in April 2012.
So much of the health and fitness information out there is about general weight loss, but the You Program also focuses on Mindset. It’s about feeling happy on the inside to get more out of life.
Thank you so much for all of this great information and look into your business Glenn! Do you have any final words for people reading this?
No matter what you want to do, you just have to do it! Don’t let anyone else stop you from achieving your dreams and learn from your mistakes. The only thing that can change you, is you.
You can contact Glenn, or check out his other videos by following the links below!
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For other great interviews: