MindBody is great if you have lots of time and money.
As an entrepreneur and self motivated fitness and wellness coach, I’m sure your time is focused on your clients. Designing classes, promoting them, reaching back out to past clients about a new offerings… are just a few of the many things that come with running your own business and practice. The administrative tasks are endless. You don’t want to get side tracked from doing what you do and it is not always an option to hire a full time assistant to manage it all for you.
For large fitness businesses, MindBody is one of the more popular choices when it comes to helping you run your practice. Handling client appointments, class booking, invoicing and so forth. Getting started with software like MindBody can be very scary and difficult to learn, especially for people that aren’t technical experts. For any software, if you have to enroll in a class (much less a university like for MindBody) to understand how to use it is a major red flag. Your goal is simplify your work and save time not increase your workload with a complicated tool.
No Software Please
MindBody requires an in person seminar to onboard new users to their platform because of the complexity and the overwhelming number of features that are included. Users must become experts in the desktop software and mobile application and their clients have to download and log into a portal (which clients don’t love). If you are a large corporation or a gym owner with multiple locations, it makes complete sense why you and your team would be willing to invest weeks into customizing your administrative settings and training your people on how to use the mobile app. For independent personal trainers, yoga and pilates instructors, as well as health and well professionals; however, it is just plain too much.
It’s like learning to ride a bike… once you learn to balance it comes naturally… but try riding a bike and putting on an 80lb suit. That additional weight changes everything. Same goes for a mobile app that helps you run your business. You’re balancing your time between booking and payments as well as delivery of amazing client service, which is where you would like to spend 99% of your time. If you have a heavy suit, your focus is inevitably tilted away from doing what you do best to operational logistics.
PocketSuite would like to help you take the suit off.
Higher Price Always Means Better Right?
MindBody charges 3x to 6x more than other business apps for the health and wellness industry, How else can they pay for expensive onboarding classes and instructors. The fact that an average user has to dedicate 4 to 5 hours on average to learn the basics is extreme. If you are a Pro that has lots of clients, but no time to figure it all out, don’t invest resources in a solution that will require a lot of time and ongoing effort to maintain. You need something that is designed for your existing workflow, requires minimal setup, and automates all of the repetitive tasks that you do every day to schedule clients and collect payment.
The World is going Mobile
There is no denying that the world is going mobile. To meet client expectations for speed, transparency, and predictably you need to have systems that enable clients to book you from anywhere, at anytime, on any device. By definition, desktop solutions don’t make the cut. You don’t have access to them when you are in the field or in session with clients (which is everyday for most of the day). You need to be able to do anything from confirm a booking request, charge a card, look up a client’s payment history, and send a contract at a moment’s notice. When you go mobile, everything comes together. The simplicity of scheduling messages and follow ups with clients is literally a game changer. Mobile helps professionals build deeper, stickier, longer, and more loyal client relationships.
Try PocketSuite today… simplify your daily booking, payments, and client messaging. Automate your work and save yourself time and money.
Over 5,000 fitness, health & wellness professionals use PocketSuite’s free set of features:
Packages Services & Classes
Package any set of services or classes that you offer
Sell packages to clients for immediate and upfront payment
Track all package sessions by client
Recurring Client Payments
Set clients up on recurring payment plans
Auto-charge any client’s card after each week, month, or any period of time
Just a 2.9% + 30¢ processing fee for credit card payments, and 2-day direct deposit
Direct Client Import
Add any client directly to PocketSuite or import clients directly from your mobile phone contact list
Track all income earned from each client
Take notes (text, photos) on each customer for private viewing
Appointment Calendar Sync
Sync all PocketSuite scheduled appointments and sessions directly to iCal, GCal, etc.
Pick and choose which calendars sync (i.e., Google, Outlook, etc.)
Use a single calendar app to manage both client and personal appointments
Send instant text messages to any of your clients
Clients receive messages via SMS text and respond in real-time
Share photos, share contacts, share GPS pin location
4 Tips to Building a Scalable Health and Fitness Business
(Written by Sam Madden, co-founder of PocketSuite. Featured on DaiManuel.com)
There comes a time in every professional’s career when they have turned their business of just a few clients, into something much bigger. If you’re currently there, then you know what I’m talking about. If you’re not, then trust me – if you’re good at what you do, you will get there very soon.
In business terms, this is called an “inflection point”, and that’s when you need to start building in efficiencies to your small business to help you grow in painless and scalable ways. There are 4 core elements to your business around which you can easily build efficiencies to help you not just take on more clients, but to continue to serve your clients well.
Each one of these core business pillars is like a body part that needs to be kept in shape. Just like your body, you need to hone the muscles of your business so that as you take on more work, you can manage easily and not have to spend excess energy (or money!) to succeed in scalable ways.
1. Your Clients: Core
The core building block to every business is your client base. Your clients are the most important part of your business – you need to serve them well, and you need more of them to grow.
In order to provide the best training and health services to each client, you need to know who your clients are, how to reach them, what their needs are, and where they came from.
Putting tools in place to create profiles for each customer is crucial. Give yourself a central location to access all your client information at the drop of a hat. That means who they are and how to reach them. Give yourself the ability to jot down notes and reference them while you’re on the go so you know your clients in and out. Quickly access your transaction and communication history with each client, so you know what you’ve advised the client before, when you last saw them, and what payments they have made or owe.
Putting these “client best practices” in place will make all aspects of client dealings incredibly easy. This will also free up tons of time to allow you to take on more clients without sacrificing any quality of your service whatsoever, and without giving you a headache.
2. Your Schedule: Quads and Calves
Your schedule keeps you moving from one spot to the next. The more organized you are, the more efficiently you can move from appointment to appointment.
Set up a system to allow you to efficiently organize your calendar of client sessions, meetings, appointments, etc. A pen and paper won’t cut it! That’s just another item for you to lug around. God forbid you lose it – do you have a back-up of your schedule? I know this sounds silly, but how about if you run out of space on a page to write?
And don’t simply set up a digital or mobile calendar to make your life easier. Use a system where once you input a session into your calendar, your client’s calendar gets notified as well so you both are easily on the same page. The worst situation ever is for you to show up and your client is a no show. Or for you to show up and your client isn’t at all ready because they simply “forgot”.
Use smart calendars to also set up automatic reminders to be sent to your clients…Maybe a day or two before the session to (again) professionally reinforce the fact that there is an appointment upcoming. Your calendar should show you (and your client) the job details and location, as well as give you easy access to your client’s contact info in case you’re late, or something has changed, or any other little update.
And keep all this info in one central calendar location so you don’t have to be opening up different computers or phones, or apps or calendar programs just to get a sense of what your day or week looks like.
3. Your Payments: Cardio
Payments are what keep the engine going!
You want to not only give your clients an incredibly convenient (and pleasant) payment experience, but you also want to give yourself a very simple tracking system to ensure no payment ever slips through the cracks.
Give your client easy options through which they can pay you. Don’t force them to lug around a check book or make sure they went to the bank to withdraw cash. And avoid making the act of asking for payment feel awkward or uncomfortable. Create a simple system allowing your clients to pay you remotely so you don’t have to be physically in front of them to collect, and so they can even pay you ahead of time for any services you offer (reducing your payment risk completely).
Keep a log of these payments close so you can quickly get a glimpse of who owes you what, and how much you’ve made from each customer. You want to make sure you know who your best clients are and ask them to refer you to their friends…maybe even send them a holiday card! At the same time, you want to know what payments are outstanding so you can efficiently and professionally remind clients to pay, never letting a payment slip through the cracks.
4. Your Business Health: Brain
Exercising this “muscle” drives you to make all the right business decisions.
Instead of flipping through bank statements, or making daily logs of cash payments, leverage technology to know exactly how your business is doing each day, week, or month. Having all your client information, appointments and payments in a central location will allow you to leverage all this data to understand the overall health of your business. This health score gets increasingly difficult to measure as you start to grow as an solo professional, as there becomes so much more information to keep track of. And don’t fall into the trap thinking you have to pay an accountant to tell you how you’re doing!
A major factor in growing a business is also understanding how much to invest for growth. If you know how much income you’re bringing in vs. last month, then maybe spend some of that extra income on marketing or leads or advertising, to bring in more clients.
If you’re making less this month than the previous month, understand why – Were you working less? Did certain clients take up too much of your time? Are you waiting on payment?
Help is Now Here!
Following the above simple steps sounds like a ton of work, but the reality is it’s not. Technology is starting to offer independent and solo professionals (of all industries) valuable tools they need to help them compete, grow, and drive their business to success. The trick is finding the tool that’s right for you, without paying an arm and a leg. But little tips like the above can help you grow your business in incredibly efficient ways to reach that scale you need to succeed.