Last month I sent a survey out to the readers of Bootcamp Ideas to see what you think about Bootcamp Ideas and how things are going in your bootcamps and I’ve got to say, the results were not entirely what I expected!
Before I continue, if you’d like to survey your own clients and followers, I won’t be covering it here. Instead, you can check out my recent how-to article on the topic.
In this article I’m going through the insights the survey revealed about the state of the fitness industry post-pandemic. You’ll get to see the real numbers and hopefully get some good insights yourself.
Let’s dive in!
How People Are Finding Bootcamp Ideas
You don’t really need to know the results to this part of the survey but I’m sharing it with you because I want to show you how including these questions on your own survey or feedback form can give you valuable marketing insights.
In this case, those insights are all around how people are finding Bootcamp Ideas. This reveals where I can double down on my marketing to get even better results.
My first take away from this graph is that it reinforces to me how important it is to have a website. Over two-thirds of readers initially found Bootcamp Ideas through a web search.
If your business does something specific, like group fitness classes near Fitzroy, then having an SEO-friendly website means that people who are in that area can find you quickly through an internet search instead of randomly finding you on social media.
A few years ago I created BootcampDemo.com, a simple example website to refer trainers to send to readers when they asked about what their own website should look like.
Even though this website is for a total made up business that I don’t promote (in fact, I try to keep it hidden from search engines), I get at least one genuine enquiry per month from it. This is because I use a real park as the bootcamps location and so when people search for training in that area my made up business shows up.
I used Squarespace to set that site up which is a little involved, but now Canva have a simple website builder so it’s easier than ever to create a simple website for yourself to share what you do and collect enquiries. How would you like one new enquiry per month essentially for free?
Bootcamp Business Structures
In this section of the survey I wanted to find out the effects the pandemic has had on our industry by looking at my readers industry experience and business structure.
I’m going to share the results to all 4 questions first and then comment below.
The results to question 7 (just above) were super interesting to me!
This graph is the one that has changed the most since my previous survey of Bootcamp Ideas readers which was pre-pandemic. Normally the majority of my readers are in their first 2 years bracket of being a trainer. As new trainers are finding their feet in the industry they end up looking for help online and come across Bootcamp Ideas.
Why has this changed? Where are the new trainers?
Thanks to the pandemic a lot of trainers who were just finding their legs at the beginning have left the industry. We’re also not seeing as many new trainers enter the industry. I believe this is because a lot of people are also in limbo career-wise and taking a break before they jump into a new career.
I recently met 2 different people who are currently taking a year long sabbatical between careers.
So what does this mean for you?
This makes a great opportunity for existing trainers because people still want to exercise and with less trainers, there are more potential clients floating around. Your job is to remain visible and top of people’s minds.
If you are a new trainer, it’s also a good time for you too. This is your chance to bring something new to the fitness industry and gain many of those clients for yourself.
What You Think About Bootcamp Ideas
Next up in the survey was the feedback part where I wanted to get an idea on how you liked my paid and free services.
Again, you don’t really need to see this, but I thought it would be helpful for you to see how I analyse these results.
This is one section that I always recommend including in your surveys. It’s a great way to gauge how you’re doing in lot’s of different ways.
For example: A client may love your social media posts, always commenting and liking, but they’re really inconsistent with attending your sessions. A matrix like this might reveal don’t come often because they don’t really like the actual workouts. After seeing this you follow up with her and find out she finds the workouts too hard.
That’s looking at things zoomed in, you can also zoom out and look for where things are trending. In the graph above I can see that I’ve gotten some ‘Not Great’ responses. I could freak out and spend weeks trying to work out why, or I can remember that there will always be some that won’t get what you’re trying to do and let it go.
I’m stoked with these results and I can see from the Alright votes that I need to focus some more attention on improving showing the value of my products and better customer service and support systems.
This is so good! Please keep sharing Bootcamp Ideas and BootCraft with other trainers.
If you see myself or the Bootcamp Ideas mentioned online or social media, please throw me a kind word if it feels right.
Where You Could Use Help
The next part of the survey was all about finding out what you were struggling with so that I can make sure I’m helping you tackle your biggest problems first.
But… you had other plans!
I expected one issue to rank much higher than the others, instead we have this smattering of problems across the board.
I was hoping for just one main problem so that I would know what to include in my course next year, but alas, you all had a different plan 😊
The result of Question 13 tells me that either I know the issues you face well or that perhaps you’re not exactly sure what is the cause of your issues or maybe I need to word or group the issues differently.
It’s not surprising if you’re confused about what your main issue is as there are a lot of mixed messages online with lots of different people telling you what you need to do.
“Never discount!” “Run promos!”
“Social media is best!” “Email lists are best!” “Neither work, do my special thing!”
“Run challenges!” “Post every day!” “Social media is dead!”
So. Much. Noise. (and yes, all of these message comes with an exclamation mark or five)
My takeaway from your answers is that I can help with this by providing more education around how you can identify what might be causing issues in YOUR business. This will help you seek out the specific information you need instead of feeling like you need to jump on the next trend or fad.
I shared this question to get an idea of what free content to create for you on Bootcamp Ideas and across social media. Again, there isn’t one particular stand out as it looks like you could use help across all these areas (although more than half of readers mentioned planning workouts and finding clients).
This makes me happy as I tend to get bored just writing about one thing. I’m excited to share what I know about lot’s of different topics.
Are You Getting The Help You Need?
In the last section of the survey I wanted to find out if you were already paying money and/or spending time to fix the issues you are facing as a group fitness instructor.
This was very interesting as many readers checked business related issues (marketing, systems, etc.) in Question 13 but only a small percentage of readers are actually seeking out information to help them develop business and marketing skills.
Why is that? Again, I wish I had included that follow up question for people who checked No.
Is it hard to find support and education that you like or trust? Maybe you could leave me a comment below if this is you?
Most readers are spending less than $250 per year on business and marketing training, so it’s not surprising that he top 3 key issues readers were facing are:
- Finding leads for my classes
- Balancing work, life and family
- Using social media for my business
All of these are business, systems and/or marketing problems. Fixing any of these would lead to more income and offset the time and money cost of learning a new skill.
So why aren’t readers throwing money at these problems?
It’s not from lack of courses or resources because there is so much out there.
Is the problem that the courses and information are so HYPED that you don’t think it will work for you?
This is something I’ll need to find out more about as I begin to launch Bootcamp Ideas’ new learning hub.
This is awesome to see. You’re recognising that spending money improving your skills as a trainer is a great investment.
You are, after all, your product.
For the 60% of you who work for yourself, if you matched that amount with learning business skills you’d likely find a lot more success.
Other Suggestions For Me
At the end of the survey I left a space for people to add any extra thoughts.
Thank you so much to those who left generous personal notes in there. I really appreciate being able to help you and to read about how services like BootCraft have helped.
There were also some great suggestions so I thought I’d share them here. I can’t guarantee I’ll have time to take action on them, but know that I’ve added them to the melting pot that is my mind.
[It] would be god to hear about your work/experience in podcast or webinar format.
Workouts that target that BOOMERS with stretching, balance, strength, and cardio would be nice.
My main issue is standing out! There are so many bootcamps and fitness classes around that I’m finding it hard to gain new clients and retain them too.
A course really digging into how to use social media, create a good website etc.
Firstly, thank you so much to the 183 readers who took the time to fill out this survey. I really appreciate your honest thoughts and responses.
Here are my main take aways:
- There is a more experienced mix of trainers in the fitness industry right now.
- They aren’t needing beginner resources, but instead need ongoing support in sustaining and growing and finding more work/life/family balance.
- Nearly all readers are a one-person show, so outsourcing or offloading work isn’t really an option. They need good one-person systems.
- Readers are happy with the current offerings from Bootcamp Ideas, how can I keep that standard going?
- Readers aren’t spending much on improving their businesses, why is that? Is that something I can change with the right products?
- Readers are investing in training courses to improve their coaching and trainer skills.
As I mentioned during this article, I’m working on a new course for trainers at the moment to help you with the ‘getting new clients’ and business systems side of things.
I can reveal that it’s a course that will walk you through setting up a groovy marketing system and that the pilot group is starting it later this month. With their feedback onboard I plan to launch the course February 2023.
If you’d like to stay updated, the best way is to be on the Bootcamp Ideas newsletter. Sign up for 21 Days of Bootcamp Ideas and get added to my email newsletter.
Kyle Wood created Bootcamp Ideas in 2010 when he was hunting around on the internet for workout ideas. He ran a successful bootcamp in Victoria, Australia and spends his spare time managing this site, adventuring (or lazying) with his wife and find new ways to make bootcamps even better.