Social proof is quite simply about sharing the experience and successes of your current and previous clients.
When potential new Personal Training clients or gym members visit a fitness website, they should be able to see that your methods work, and the best way to do this is through testimonials. Testimonials are a feature of the fitness websites we build for Personal Trainers, Gyms, and other Fitness Professionals.
Testimonials can take multiple forms, from short written testimonials, to feature videos that tell the stories of your clients.
Regardless of the medium you choose to use, there are a few considerations you should make to ensure your testimonials are an effective tool to get more clients.
The person giving the testimonial should match your avatar:
Your avatar is your ‘ideal client’. Make sure if you’re trying to attract women in their 40s, your testimonials are given by women in the 40s.
Keep them short:
If you ask a client or member for a testimonial, they’ll probably write you a paragraph or two. And this is great! But it’s VERY rare that a potential client would read more than a few lines. It’s better to have six short testimonials than one long one. Once you’ve got a testimonial, edit it down to under 30 words. Of course, you should always run it by your client to make sure you’re ok with the shorter selection you’ve chosen.
Each of your testimonials should support your unique selling proposition (USP):
An effective fitness website should strongly feature your USP, the thing that you do best. An example of a USP for a Personal Trainer might be ‘motivating yet caring Personal Training’ (like the website we built for Jessie Jordan Personal Training). If this is your USP, make sure your testimonials support that. For example, ‘Jessie is just so supportive. She’s helped totally rebuild my fitness and self-confidence.’ Similarly,
Each of your testimonials should support the pain points you solve:
Many fitness professional websites just talk about themselves (read more about why this is a mistake). Instead, an effective fitness website should talk about solutions to the problems that are common to the target client. For example, in a website we built for Say Yes Fitness, we helped the business owner identify how they helped solve problems, by explaining that they are the expert in:
- Regain the energy to exercise and live a balanced life.
- Find a way to fit in regular exercise around your busy life.
- Gently start (or restart) your journey back to health.
- Rebuild confidence in your body and your mind.
- Overcome the guilt that can come from ‘Saying Yes’ to yourself.
- Build connections and engagement within a healthy community.
If you’re going to state these solutions on your website (which you definitely should), make sure your testimonials support these solutions. For example, on of the testimonials we used for Say Yes Fitness was ‘A wonderfully inclusive and supportive group! The trainers and classes are a great stress relief and escape from a long day with a baby.’. You can see this directly supports the final ‘problem solution’ point above.
Testimonials and social proof are vital in creating a compelling and highly converting fitness website. With a bit of planning and careful consideration, testimonials can go from being an afterthought to a major marketing strategy.