Business Lessons Learned from 2 Las Vegas Hookers

Business Lessons Learned from 2 Las Vegas Hookers…

So, for those who know me, the title here is dramatically incongruent with the way I live my life. So, before you judge me, allow me to explain.

Dr. Robyn and I are in Las Vegas for the Martial Arts SuperShow. After a full day of speaking to thousands of owners and instructors, we’re pretty much zombified by day end. Our standard operating procedure is to eat a nice dinner, head back up to the room…Dr. Robyn then crashes out, and I tend to head down to the casino and play a little bit of blackjack, purely for research purposes 😉

Anyhow, I get about 5 steps into the casino when a very attractive young girl links arms with me and says, “hey, you wanna date? Wanna Date? Do you want a date?”

I was immediately turned off (not just because I’m happily married, but the approach was just so seemingly abrupt and violent. I immediately unlinked my arm and just walked away without even answering her. Me at a loss for words…shocking, I know.

Less than 5 minutes later, as I’m walking through the casino I hear, “Excuse me, can I ask you a quick favor?” I turned around and there was a very pretty girl. I said, “sure, how can I help?” She walked over, smiled and said, “so…what’s the plan for tonight?” At this point, I got the joke. I said, “wow, I’m so flattered. My plan is gamble for a little while, win some $$ and then head back up to my beautiful wife upstairs. May I ask you a question though? She said sure. “How well does that opening line convert for you?” She said, pretty darn well. I believe her. It was totally disarming.

So, the lesson which was brutally clear: How do YOU build instant rapport with prospective “clients”? Are you abrupt and violent or are you disarming? It’s an honest and important question to answer. What systems do YOU have in place to ensure that everybody on your staff is disarmingly kind and engaging?

There are lessons to be learned everywhere people…

Get out there and change some lives today!

Is Your School Repelling Enrollments? Check out my Newest Published Article — Great Free Tips!

Hey There,

I’m excited to share my most recent published article with you.  This one was very personal to me and I’m confident that you’ll take away some very important tips to ensure that you are NOT repelling enrollments as you grow your school!

Click Here to Download it RIGHT NOW for FREE –> http://goo.gl/jBsqh

Please take a moment to comment below and let me know what you find most helpful with this article, ok?

A great Idea to help Your Prospects feel more welcomed at your business

It’s all about the EXPERIENCE!

I have a story to share with you.  It’s a story that has the potential to help you completely transform the experience of everybody who ever sets foot in your business…actually, the minute they set foot in your business.  Does that sound like something that you’d find beneficial?  I’m pretty confident that it is!

Last summer, my wife and I were “in the market” to find an ideal summer camp for our daughter Tallie.  Obviously, seeing as how whoever we chose would have responsibility for the safety of our child, it was not a decision we were taking lightly.  Living in northwestern New Jersey, we are lucky enough to have a ton of very high quality options…SO…we scheduled tours and introductory visits at all of the camps we were even remotely interested in.

***If for some reason, you have gotten this far and are saying, “this won’t have anything to do with MY BUSINESS since I don’t own a camp!” you absolutely, positively MUST keep reading.  I promise you’ll find something that you’ll be able to implement in growing  and improving your client / prospect experience – regardless of the industry you’re in, capiche?

OK – back to my story:

After visiting 5 or 6 camps, we were certainly getting a clear understanding about how camps market themselves – they were all pretty good at building rapport and showcasing the value and benefit of their particular “product” as we took the tour.

I will say this…it can be a little nerve wracking before the tour starts because it really is a bit intimidating.  A few times we felt just a little uneasy about where we were supposed to be and what we were supposed to do.  Not a terrible thing, however, the next camp we visited did something that really made me smile…and put me at ease immediately.

We pulled into Meadowbrook Daycamp and we were greeted with a huge posterboard –> check this out!

You’ll notice that “Meadowbrook Country Day Camp Welcomes…The Silverman Family” was the headline along with easy to follow directions on where we should go.

No rocket science here folks…I’m guessing it probably took all of 1 minute to edit the file and then hit print and attach it to the sign.  HOWEVER, it did wonders to help us to believe that they were excited to meet us and were ready to welcome us into their family.

How cool and easy is it to do this?  If you welcome introductory students or patients, or clients into your business, don’t you think this would a very simple step to take to help the rapport building process begin…even before you get the opportunity to shake their hands?

One of my marketing mentors, a gentleman named Dan Kennedy often speaks about “Little Hinges that swing Big Doors”, this my friend, is a very powerful little hinge that I hope you take advantage of…today!

Please let me know if you plan to implement this and when.  I’m confident that you’ll see positive results and that this will help to start a very positive buzz about your business in your town.
Best of luck!

sincerely,
Jason M. Silverman

A Note from a Client’s Client –> Very Cool Indeed

Hi There,

Hope you’re having an awesome day.  I just got the coolest email from one of our Gold Level Members (Shane Tassoul of Champions Martial Arts) that totally made my day.  I’m sharing it with you for a few important reasons:

1.)  It’s always great to get GOOD NEWS, right? Sometimes the day to day tasks of our job can make us forget about the impact we’re making on our members (and their families) lives. This email will remind you!

2.)  I wanted to share what our client’s clients are saying about how Powerful Words is impacting their lives.  Straight from the horse’s mouth, so to speak.

3.)  I hope you’ll take action and let somebody else know how they are positively impacting YOUR LIFE.  I’d like for this to set some positive energy in motion…would you be open to it?


Alright – here it is:



Dear Jason & Dr. Robyn,
I just got this from a parent.  Thank you for making me look so good!

Thank you to you and Dr Silverman for all you do!

Have a Kickin’ Day!

SBN Shane Tassoul

www.Championsma.us
920.882.6470
[email protected]

Begin forwarded message:

From: “Rxx, Becki”
Date: September 6, 2012 1:32:03 PM CDT
To: “[email protected]” <[email protected]>
Subject: Just a Thank You Note

I just want to say how much I appreciate the POWerful Words program and the behavior that M. Tassoul demonstrates in class. Even if my kids never master the roundhouse kick, this portion of class makes it worth the harried drive and the occasional toddler meltdown (it’s hard to be excited for TKD if you skipped naptime!).

I feel like I’m a better parent, for observing and taking part at Champions. I find myself saying things like “Oooh! I like the way you came to brush your teeth, even though I can see you didn’t want to. Thank you.” without conciously thinking about where that statement came from.  This is huge, because I grew up in a family where negative feedback was much more common, and as an adult I have fallen into that same train more often than not.

Emma (my 4 year old) will often quote M. Tassoul as well, saying things like “Water makes you grow big and strong, so your body can work better. That’s what Master Tassoul says, right Mommy?”

Ours is not a radical, from out-of-control kid to World’s Most Respectful Child story, but rather proof that small exposures to positive influences can make a big change for a family.

Thank you for all that you do.

Becki Rxx


Alright – I hope you think this is as cool as I do!


As always, please let us know how we can be helpful to you!


best,

Jason

Jason M. Silverman

CEO – Powerful Words Character Development

http://www.PowerfulWords.com

http://www.AllStarCharacter.com

http://www.DrRobynSilverman.com

(877) 769-3799 ext 7

Back to School – Back to Business – Ideas for Growth for Owners and Instructors of Martial Arts, Gymnastics, Dance, Cheer and Swim Schools

Back to School – Back to Business – Ideas for Growth:

1.) Wherever you are, BE THERE. Now that the kiddos are heading back to school, owners have the opportunity to dedicate (or re-dedicate) themselves to their businesses. That doesn’t mean ignore your family. What it DOES mean is that if you are at work – WORK. If you’re with your family – be with your family. 100% Commit to giving your all to whatever task is at hand, and your life will be dramatically more fruitful.

2.) Make it FRESH! Remember you first day of school? You got a new haircut, new sneakers, new jeans, new backpack, etc? Well, it’s a fresh new year, and you once again have the chance to re-invent yourself. Clean up your school/gym/studio, etc. Make it spotless and organized. Your people will notice. You will notice and odds are you will become more organized and professional in the process. Now’s the time!

3.) Figure out what makes your business special! In marketing terms, we call this your unique selling proposition. It’s important. What makes your program the BEST? What positive thing are you known for? Are you confident that everybody in your area knows that’s exactly what you offer? Is it on every piece of your marketing material? Is it prominent on your website? Does your staff know exactly what to say about this? If not, now’s the time to work on that. Is it that you teach an amazing personal development system in addition to a world class physical program? (this is the U.S.P. of many of my Powerful Words Clients as it attracts an amazing kind of parent and child!) Keep in mind that there is only one you! Determine what your SUPER-POWER is and let’s spread the word.

4.) Plan your Work and Work your Plan: Remember people, the only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary, right? You absolutely, positively MUST plan out where your business is going and growing if, in fact, you do want it to grow. Make sure you are implementing a Marketing Calendar. I urge all of my private coaching clients to have 15 marketing events scheduled by the 5th of every month. That means that over the course of the month, you’ve got at least 15 different marketing opportunities happening…consistently every single month. This is a biggee!

5.) Fix Your First Point of Contact: Does your website do an amazing job of getting people interested in your program, collecting their information, and then getting them to take the next logical step to joining? If not, then unfortunately, you have a brochure site rather than a site that actually helps you enroll new members. This makes it so that your site is actually an expense rather than a profit center. HINT: Your site MUST BE a profit center for you if you want to truly run a successful business that fires on all cylinders. If you need help in this regard, message me and we can chat – I’m happy to help you.

6.) Fix Your Follow Up: Do you have systems in place to successfully follow up with folks who have visited your site and requested more info? Or, do you have to do it all manually. Now’s the time to leverage the technology that’s out there. I’ve discovered that it’s easier to implement the proven follow up systems that many of the top businesses in the world use than to have to try to do it all by hand. This way, a prospective member NEVER slips through the cracks…ever. It’s such an easy thing to do and it provides such a powerful return for your business when implemented properly.

7.) Get a Coach: Let’s face it, all of us has or has had a coach who helped us to get to the top of our game physically. It might have been a teacher, instructor, coach or trainer. Who it was was irrelevant – the fact that “it’s impossible to pull ourselves up by our own hair when necessary” rings true and that special somebody held our feet to the fire when we needed it, and probably held our hand a bit when we needed that as well. Coaches rock. I would like to suggest that if you are serious about making this year your very best year so far in your business…that you find and quickly hire the best business coach that you can. Find somebody who is not afraid to share the “hard truths” with you when necessary. Somebody who can show you what you’re doing right and what needs work. Somebody who will kick your butt into gear when you need it so that you never have to suffer a “bad month” again. Seriously. Do it. Do it now. I’ve always heard that Experts don’t need to be taught, they need to be reminded. Find somebody who will remind you on a regular basis how to take your business to the next level of success.

8.) Have fun. Smile. We have the coolest jobs in the world. People trust us with their most valuable asset (their kids!) The more fun you have, and the more fun your members (and their families) have (while also building valuable skills), the more successful your business will become.

Alright folks – get out there and make it a great time of year. Please let me know how I (or the teams at Powerful Words Character Development or AllStarCheerSites.com) can be helpful to you.

best,
Jason

How NOT to enroll new members – and piss off parents – A horrible experience that Dr. Robyn Encountered Yesterday

Subject:  What a DISASTER…I hope you don’t do this at your school or gym

Greetings folks,

Jason Silverman here from Powerful Words Character Development and AllStarCheerSites.com.  Hope all is going well in your world!

Yesterday, we had an AWFUL experience while trying to sign up our kids for gymnastics classes.  I’m still infuriated about it, however, I’m going to use the experience for YOUR BENEFIT and share with you exactly what this program did WRONG (as well as point out some opportunities for you so that you ensure that you’re doing it RIGHT!)

Here’s what went down:

My wife (Dr. Robyn Silverman) took our 3 1/2 year old daughter Tallie for a “trial class” at  a gymnastics academy that we’d previously heard decent reports about.

The Entrance:
When she walked in, she was immediately underwhelmed by what she saw.  It wasn’t particularly clean, it wasn’t particularly organized, and it didn’t particularly smell all that good.  Not a great start to say the least.

TAKEAWAY #1:
You only get 1 chance to make a first impression to a prospective member (and their family) go out of your way to ensure that people say “WOW!” when they walk into your facility.  Remember, if you want to be remarked about…you must be remarkable!

The First Contact:
After waiting around for a little while and not being acknowledged AT ALL…BY ANYBODY…Dr. Robyn finally got the attention of the twenty-something behind the reception desk.  My wife said, “Hi!  I’m Tallie Silverman’s mom and she’s here to try her first class!”  Apparently, this staff member wasn’t all that interested in chit-chat, or any conversation at all for that matter.  She simply said, “ok – go over there and somebody will call her when it’s time for class”  That was it, no greeting, no rapport building, no nothing.  (FYI – had that been my employee, she would have been fired on the spot.)

TAKEAWAY #2:
When somebody is interested enough in your program to schlep their kid(s) to your facility after scheduling an appointment, they’re probably a pretty darn good lead.  Don’t let your unprofessional front desk staff sour the experience before it begins.  The Greeting System that your staff implements is vital to your success.  It’s at this time that you have the opportunity to start to build rapport with both the child and the adult (as we all know, we actually have 2 clients, right?  We have to engage the children while also impressing the parents.)

TAKEAWAY #3:
Had the gym done any due diligence, they would have realized who was actually standing in front of them.  Without tossing extra bouquets at my wife, I will say that she is publicly recognized as one of the leading Child Development Experts in the country.  A simple google search of her name after she called to schedule the appointment would have yielded a ton of helpful information.  We always used to google all prospects to see who we might soon be adding to our family…for positive or negative reasons!  To make matters even more interesting, Dr. Robyn has spoken multiple times at the National USA Gymnastics Congress, so, odds are, somebody at that gym had either seen her speak, read her articles, or seen her videos.  What a ridiculous opportunity was lost.  Always know who you are talking to…ALWAYS.

TAKEAWAY #4:
No tour was given…None…Zero…Zilch.  A tour is a phenomenal opportunity to showcase all the positive benefits of your facility and your program.  It’s also a great chance to build rapport and find out exactly what a parent hopes to achieve by enrolling their child in your program.  It also allows the parents and the kids to become more comfortable in your facility and know exactly what to do, when to do it, where to do it, and how to become a GREAT member of your program.  I say this because almost everyday I hear owners complaining about how terrible it is to have to “deal with” the parents.  Most times, when you share with them exactly how to be great clients, they’ll rise to your expectations.

The Class:
OK, so, Tallie was called onto the floor (after NOT being introduced to the coach and NOT being told what to do so that she could feel successful) and jumped right in.  This being a gymnastics academy, we had thought she’d be doing some gymnastics…instead, she did an obstacle course (with no instruction), jumped on the trampoline (with no instruction), played in the foam pit (with no instruction), and then class was over.

TAKEAWAY #5:
If you tell people that you teach a specific skill set – TEACH IT.  If you run a playcenter, that’s fine too.  Just be very clear about what exactly you do and what exactly your clients are paying for.  My daughter has enough opportunity to play, and while I totally want her to have fun and enjoy what she’s doing…I do expect her to actually learn something (as she loves to gain new skills!)  The class was poorly organized, the coach was anything but helpful, and it was challenging to see how this would be a value added activity into her schedule.  NEVER let that happen to your current or prospective members!

The Check in:
My wife, after keeping her mouth shut for quite a while, and watching this all take place, decided to check in with Queen Grumpy at the front desk. She said, “Is this a typical class?”  Queen Grumpy replied, “which class?  There are many going on at the same time…[eye roll]”  My wife replied, “The four’s class”  “umm, yeah.  There are 5 current members and 3 trials in there…it’s an 8 to 1 ratio…that’s good.”  “yes…thanks for your help.”  Since she got nothing from the front desk, my wife spoke with one of the other moms in the viewing area. “So, what do YOU think of the program?”  “my daughter seems to enjoy it…I’m not overly impressed, but you know, it’s convenient.”  NOT a raving endorsement to say the least.

TAKEAWAY #6:
If your prospective parents are asking questions, that’s either indicative of a potential problem or they are alerting you to a potential opportunity to be welcomed into your program.  Also, if your front desk person is not wonderful at building rapport or making people feel comfortable – GET RID OF THEM…immediately.  Don’t pass go, don’t collect $200 – get rid of them – they are COSTING YOU MONEY…lots of it!  Keep in mind, that if YOU are not the one who is providing all of the important information to your prospective members, somebody else will be.  In this case, another mom, who was NOT a raving fan…UGH.  Finally on this one, don’t ever refer to somebody’s child as a “trial” – bad idea.  We always referred to anybody in a trial program as new members.  That’s how we saw them and that’s how we treated them.  

The Transfer Back to Mom:
After class was over, Tallie had no idea where to go (she’d not been given a tour, she wasn’t told what to do or where to go, and, um…she’s 3) so she followed some of the other kids up to the parents waiting area.  A coach followed behind her. When she saw my wife, Tallie came running and gave her a hug.  Once the coach saw this, she turned around and went back downstairs.  No “nice job”, no “did you have fun?”, and certainly no, “I can’t wait to have you in class!”  Obviously, nothing was said to my wife…ya know, the one with the credit card.

TAKEAWAY #7:
Are you kidding me?  After somebody gets to experience your classes, it’s THE PRIME OPPORTUNITY to help them become a member.  Continue to build rapport, build excitement about how great it’s going to be when they are a regular member, and of course solidify the benefits to the parents.  This was where we always shared with the parents exactly how our program developed the character of their kids while also giving them a kick butt workout…and having a ton of fun.  Never let a parent and child just walk away without joining them to find out what their favorite part was and what they’re most excited about doing next.  Capiche?

The Big Finish:
Ummm…there was none.  Nobody talked to my wife or my daughter on the way out.  Nobody talked about enrollment, nobody helped them determine which classes would be most convenient, nobody gave a crap.  (sorry to be crude, however, that’s exactly how they were made to feel…plain and simple)  Had my staff ever let somebody take a trial program and then simply walk out without presenting our program and an opportunity to enroll…they would have been unemployed immediately.  Listen, I know that many people are “afraid” to sell.  I get it.  My comment on this, is “GET OVER IT and TRAIN THEM!”  If you or your staff is afraid to present the value and benefits of your program, invest the time to develop the skill set so that it can be done professionally, predictably, and profitably.  There are many systems at play here – hopefully you have all of these systems developed, documented and trained at your academy:

1.)  Welcoming Phone Script System
2.)  Professional Greeting System
3.)  Grand Tour System
4.)  Parent Rapport Building System
5.)  Trial Class / Introductory Class System
6.)  Enrollment Presentation System
7.)  Follow Up System
8.)  New Member Integration System

If you don’t have these systems in place, I’d strongly urge you to do so immediately.  I cover much of these with my Top Tier Powerful Words clients as well as my private coaching clients.  However you acquire these systems, be sure to do so IMMEDIATELY.

FINAL TAKEAWAYS:

Never, ever, ever, ever, let somebody leave your facility after trying your program without offering them the opportunity to become a client.  EVER.  This DOES NOT MEAN to become an overly pushy, aggressive, salesperson.  What it DOES MEAN is to make sure that you’re at the very least offering them the opportunity to join.  Plain and simple.  This program missed out on enrolling my 3 year old daughter and my 2 year old son.  Who knows how many years they might have trained there?  Who knows how many friends they might have referred?  Who knows how amny families WE may have referred?  Can you imagine how much money this experience just cost them (from an opportunity cost perspective?) 

Imagine if you owned a chocolate shop.  Somebody comes in and tries a chocolate covered carmel and start to make yummy noises.  That would be the time to ask them if they’d like to take home a full pound of them, right?  Well, the giggles and squeals of excitement that a child makes when they come off your training floor, or out of your pool, or off the deck…those are the yummy noises we’re looking for, got it?

LASTLY:
I heard a long time ago (I don’t remember who shared it otherwise I’d give them credit) to make believe that everybody who walks into your facility has a sign on that says “Treat Me Like I’m Special” because they really are.  When you go above and beyond to deliver an amazing experience for people and treat them in a way that they always hoped to be treated – everybody will benefit.  Please, take action on this.  

Also, I’d love YOUR feedback – how would you say YOUR PROGRAM would rate on a scale of 1-10 in this regard?  If Dr. Robyn showed up at your door to enroll our children in your program, would she have wonderful things to report or would she walk away disappointed?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.

*** Nothing to sell you here.  Obviously, if you operate your program as a Personal Development Center, you’re probably already knocking it out of the park.  If you want more info about that – contact me directly, I’m happy to help!

Make it a Powerful Day.

best,
Jason

Jason M. Silverman
CEO


Powerful Words Character Development
http://www.PowerfulWords.com
http://www.AllStarCharacter.com
http://www.AllStarCheerSites.com
http://www.DrRobynSilverman.com
(877) 769-3799 ext 7

How to Make Your Powerful Words Character Development Power Chats — ROCK! (With Dr. Robyn Silverman)

Wow, what an amazing TeleSeminar Today with Dr. Robyn.  She invested an entire hour into helping you and your staff to perform the most amazing Power Chats possible.  Take a listen to this teleseminar and by all means, share it with your staff to ensure that they know exactly how to implement this Powerful System at your academy!

After you listen, please take a moment and comment on what you found to be the most helpful aspect of this session, ok?

What Does Your Price Say about Your School/Gym/Studio?

What does your PRICE say about your QUALITY?

Hey folks, Jason M. Silverman here.  I’m often asked questions from my clients (in every single business niche) about the “hows” and “whys” of pricing.  What I’ve discovered over the years is that your Price is one of the most important marketing vehicles you have, and as such, it helps to both attract a particular demographic of people as well as repel a particular demographic of people…the kicker here is that when you price yourself inappropriately, you wind up repelling the people you hope to attract and attracting the people you hope to repel!  Yikes!!!

Last week, one of my clients was complaining about the fact that “all her clients are broke and are always complaining about having no money.”  I can totally understand her frustration.  When I dug deeper into what was going on in her business, she confided that she’s been advertising the fact that her program is “the cheapest in town” and that “people shouldn’t be wasting their money at the expensive place down the street.”  Double Yikes.  My comment to her was, “Susan, you can’t complain about your clients when you were the one to attract them with that type of advertising…plus, you agreed to let them become and stay clients, right?”  It was an enlightening conversation for her as she took out all of her advertising for the past few years and noticed that in every single instance, she was focusing on being the cheapest rather than providing the best value.  Which is an entirely different selling proposition.

Some of the Major Pricing Mistakes I’m Currently Seeing in the Industry include:

1.)  Marketing Themselves as Cheap, Inexpensive or Low Price.  One of the really cool things about marketing your business is that you can tell people exactly what you want them to know about you.  If you tell them that you’re cheap…they’ll believe that you’re cheap.  If you think about the connotation that being cheap carries with it (low quality, low confidence, poor training, unsafe, etc.) you can understand the type of prospect that would be attracted to a service like this.  While I’m not necessarily saying that every program should market themselves like the Four Seasons, Mercedes Benz, or other luxury products, I do suggest taking a look at how and who these brands market to as they have been ultra successful in penetrating a segment of society who is willing to pay more for what is perceived as “the best.”

2.)  Pricing Your Program in “No-Man’s Land”  What I mean by this is something I hear from so many owners it drives me crazy.  When I ask them how they determined their pricing model, I’m generally answered this, “Well, the highest price program is $150/month and the lowest is $100, so we priced ourselves at $125 so we’re right in the middle.”  That’s what I consider no-man’s land.  NEVER allow anybody else to dictate your pricing policy.  It’s an enormous NO-NO.  If you really have no idea how to price your program, at the very least, I’d suggest determining who the most “expensive” program is and then matching that.  If they’re in business and have a steady client flow, it proves the level of their pricing.  By doing this, it allows you to deliver more and more value to your clients.  When I owned my School, I was able to have a beautiful, immaculately clean facility  that was always being updated, the most professional and well trained (and well paid) staff, and the ability to totally blow people out of the water when it came to customer service.  Many of the Client Retention systems we implemented were able to be executed because we had sufficient operating capital to continually improve our members’ experience.  The fact that we were “expensive” was actually comforting to many of my clients because they knew that we were in it for the long haul and wouldn’t disappear in the middle of the night one night.

3.)  Dropping your price after a year.  I’ve seen this in a number of businesses and it’s almost always a disaster.  Let’s say you are bringing new clients in and for their first year they are paying $300 per month…then, after their first year, you drop their price down to something ridiculous like $40-$50 (or even less).  You might think at first blush that people would appreciate that gesture, however, here’s what’s really going on.  Once you drop their prices, they will most definitely move to the “back burner” as far as importance goes.  You know it and eventually they will know it to.  People are not stupid.    Realistically speaking, if you are now charging them less, you will have less of an ability to service them and because of that, you risk irritating those clients and then allowing those unhappy clients to infect all of your other ones.  I’ve seen this so many times and in some cases, it’s been the cause for the demise of multiple businesses…Do Not Do This…EVER.

4.)  Pricing On The High Side but Delivering on the Low Side.  A horrible idea at best.  It doesn’t take long for people to figure out that they are being taken advantage of does it?  Absolutely not!  If you are going to charge a high rate, make sure you are delivering a super high rate of service…that way, they are still getting a tremendous value for their investment.  At my academy, we went by the theory that we would always deliver 2 dollars of extraordinary client care for every 1 dollar we collected.  This way the client always WINS…and that’s super important, not just for that particular client, but also for creating a community of success at your business that everybody finds exciting.

5.)  NOT having a pricing strategy at all.  Believe it or not, many owners simply throw a price out that they believe people would be willing to pay without taking into account what it “costs” to deliver your service.  Again, this is a horrible idea.  I remember going through the exercise with my CPA many years ago to determine how much a square foot was worth on my training floor at various times on my schedule.  As owners, we sometimes forget the expenses that must be paid in order to be able to successfully deliver our product (amazing / life changing classes).  Make sure to look at everything that you’re investing and then build in your profit – that’s how you determine the FLOOR for your pricing model.  If you have not yet done this, please get it done.  One of my favorite metrics is to help people grow their profit margins, however, if you don’t know what your margin is, it’s challenging to measure and grow it.  Keep this little phrase in mind – “Know Your Numbers – Grow Your Numbers!”

Obviously, there are a bunch more, however, these are the major issues to avoid in your pricing strategy.  Hopefully, you’ll find this little nugget of info helpful as you head into another amazing year!

Please let me know how I can be helpful to you going forward, ok?

IMPORTANT NOTE:

I’m considering running either a 1 or 2 day Marketing and Business Systems Intensive for a small group of top level owners like you.  The plan would be to host this in New Jersey (where I live) as it’s alway easy to get a flight into Newark for those coming from out of state…Would you be interested in attending?  I’d like to keep it to less than 25 owners if possible in order to really ensure that everybody gets what they need to really launch your business this coming year.  Please send an email to [email protected] if this sounds like something that’s right for you!

best,
Jason

Jason M. Silverman

Some Tips to Improve the Customer Experience at your program (martial arts, gymnastics, dance, cheer and swim)

Hey Folks,

Jason Silverman here from Powerful Words Character Development.  Hope you’re having an awesome day!

As you know, when you are remarkable, you are remarked about…therefore, going the extra mile can do amazing things for both your member retention AS WELL AS your new enrollment.  The sad truth, however, is far too many owners don’t take the time necessary to implement the easy systems to ensure that your clients are having an amazing experience.  Regardless of whether you own a Martial Arts Academy, Cheer Gym, Gymnastics Club, Dance Studio or Swim School – these tips will be valuable to you!

Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity (both personally at my facility as well as with hundreds of clients) to discover the Power of ensuring a Powerful Experience for clients.  I know that at my academy, our retention rate always hovered around 99%, which meant that on a monthly basis, only 1% of my students would discontinue training.  Unfortunately, as I speak to more and more owners in this industry, I’m seeing retention rates that are dramatically lower.  That’s sad.

So, today, let me share a few ideas / systems that always proved helpful for me and are now proving helpful for many of my clients worldwide to ensure that all of their members become (and stay) absolute Raving Fans:

1.) Teach nothing but amazing classes.  I know this sounds silly…of course we all teach amazing classes, right?  Hopefully, the answer is yes.  Take a really, really good, hard look at every class that’s being taught and make sure that it always contains SSL –> Sweating, Smiling and Learning. (With a nod to Mr. Dave Kovar for that one)

2.) Welcome New Members THE RIGHT WAY.  Have a New Member Success System so that when a new member comes aboard, they feel comfortable with everything they need to know.  Make sure that you’re sending them a welcome postcard (not an email) to add that little extra touch.  For info about Welcome PostCards click here.

3.) The First 100 Days are crucial.  Make sure that you have a “Stick System” (a system designed to help make the new member feel at home quickly so that they “stick around”.  I strongly urge you or one of your staff members to implement a 2-4-6 call system.  All this is, is a scripted series of calls made to each new member at the 2 week, 4 week and 6 week interval from when they joined.  These calls allow you to nip any potential issues in the bud, ensure that they parents and athlete are happy, and potentially generate some referrals and some early testimonials.  In addition to the 2-4-6 calls, I’ll urge you to use all the helpful technology you can as well — Message and mention them on facebook, text them to check in, tweet them (if they’re on twitter), etc.  None of this is hard to do…just get in the habit of doing it!

4.) Make sure to “Catch them doing something great!”  Every week, my staff used to go out of their way to notice somebody doing something extraordinary.  It might have been a physical skill they’d been struggling with, or perhaps it was just how helpful they’d been in class.  It’s amazing what sending them a “Your Rock!” postcard or simply picking up the phone after class and calling them to let them know how proud we were of them.  Word got out in our town and people flocked to our facility – not just because technically we were the best (which we were), but because the process of becoming the best was so enjoyable.  (ya know, outside of the pushups, abwork, bagwork, roadwork, etc.)

5.) Don’t be afraid to invest in your clients.  One of our clients had seemed totally stressed out and overworked before heading to worlds this year in Orlando.  We wanted to make her smile and hopefully make her life a little easier, so we ordered an enormous fruit and goodie basket be placed in her room with a small card from us.  As it turned out, the contents of that basket were the only thing she and her staff had to eat during the competition.  That made US feel great.  I’m pretty sure nobody else did that.  Over the years, I’ve sent clients books, videos, chocolate covered fruit, steaks, you name it.  Not because I have to, but because I want to.  It always strengthens the relationship.  The key here though, is to EXPECT NOTHING IN RETURN.  Do it because you want to, not as a “quid pro quo”

6.) Teach it ALL!  That doesn’t mean teach all the classes.  It means teach both the mental AS WELL as the physical side.  Many folks know that I’m the CEO for Powerful Words Character Development, a program designed to help develop your athletes from the inside out.  If you haven’t checked it out, you should.  Many owners have come aboard as a way to offer more value to their members and the families of their members.  Seriously – take a peek.   As the industry’s #1 Character Development System (and the only one designed by an internationally acclaimed Child Development Expert who is often called upon as an expert for the Today Show, Good Morning America, Nightline, etc.  If you want the best – you’ve found it. Take action!  Here’s a quick video from our very own Dr. Robyn about having your school as a Personal Development Center – it’s worth a quick watch!

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7.) Over-Communicate with the parents.  One of the biggest problems in the after school activity world is that parents feel like they don’t know what’s going on (regardless of whether or not you think you told them!)  So, make sure that you are sending email blasts (at least weekly), communicating appropriately via text, adding content to your members only area, blogging a few times per week, updating your facebook page, your like page and heck, if your people are on twitter, make sure you’re tweeting too.  It’s just that important!

8.) Ask for Feedback…AND LISTEN! It’s always great to hear when you’re doing a great job (and when you do – make sure to write it down and/or video it so you can use it in your marketing!), it’s not so great to hear when you’re dropping the ball…HOWEVER, it’s really important to know when you do, so that you can take action and fix it immediately, right?  Make sure you don’t bury your head in the sand like an Ostrich if you hear something less than perfect.  Evaluate if it’s actually a problem and if it is…FIX IT!

9.) Give them MORE than they Expect – Always OverDeliver!  We all love to get great free stuff, right?  Figure out how you can go the extra mile and overdeliver to your clients.  It might be something as simple as providing some helpful videos in your members area (in the parent info center), to help them feel more “in the know”.  Some of our clients add strength or flexibility vids so that there members can continue to train, safely of course, when they’re NOT at the gym.  Make sense?  If, for some reason you DO NOT have an effective Members Only Area on your site, please contact me immediately – we need to chat!

10.) Remember that every single member that you’ve been blessed with, could easily be somewhere else.  I always remembered that my students were either one step closer to their goal, or one step out the door…the good news was that it was my choice since I was controlling their experience.

I’d love YOUR FEEDBACK please.  Help me learn more about how YOU provide an amazing experience at your business.  Please comment below or shoot me a quick note at [email protected]

Obviously, if you’re looking to discover how you can leverage the credentials as well as the media celebrity of Dr. Robyn Silverman and Powerful Words for YOUR ACADEMY, contact me immediately.  Why wait?

Get out there and change some lives!

best,

Jason