Today I want to tell you about how a theory called Costly Signalling is a strong determinant for a client to choose you over somebody else before they meet you.
Today, my friend, you’re going to learn one of the things that will set you apart from the pack of online trainers competing for the same clients but lacking your passion and dedication.
But first, let’s talk about London, England.
If you’ve been then you will remember black cabs everywhere. Looking like a kind of relic to the past, these cars are omnipresent, shuttling locals and tourists around.
To become a cab driver in London one needs to pass the most rigorous training in the World – a test called The Knowledge that originated in the 1860s – and requires 2-4 years of study and memorization of 320 basic routes, 25,000 streets, and approximately 20,000 landmarks and places of public interest.
Makes you kind of want to go to London just to ride a black cab doesn’t it?
But Jon, Isn’t There GPS in London?
Of course there is. But The Knowledge test persists as a relic to a time where GPS and little magical devices that fit in our pockets didn’t control our lives. Things certainly have changed though:
1998 – Don’t Get into stranger’s cars and don’t meet people from the Internet.
2017 – Literally summon a stranger from the Internet and get in their car.
The Knowledge persists because it is a commitment device. Odds that you’re going to get ripped off, have to put up with a nasty driver or worse, one with ill-intentions, are low because of how much work the driver has put into getting his or her license. It’s simply not worth it for black cab drivers to rip off tourists and risk losing their credentials.
Up front cost is a large determinant of commitment. As a consumer you might not consciously recognize how much this means to you but all buying decisions are influenced by costly signalling.
Consider buying a television. In the store there are two options with the same specs: A Sony and a no-name Japanese brand. The Japanese brand is $200 less.
Sony will outsell the no-name TV 10 to 1.
We’ve heard of Sony. We don’t have a lot of information but we know that it’s a big company probably with a lot to lose and therefore we trust Sony more than we trust the no-name brand.
Sony’s put in the work to build that trust with you. Their reward is the ability to sell the same item at a higher price point. This is costly signalling.
Recall my 24 word marketing lesson last week where I told you that people don’t want the best, they want the confidence that what they’re buying isn’t crap. When people buy an online trainer most will say that they want to buy the best, but their actions dictate otherwise. Instead, what they’re buying is the services of a trainer who they believe isn’t going to scam them, hurt them, or be crap.
I Want You to Use Costly Signalling to Your Advantage
Once somebody is on your website or you’re on a call with him or her, the hard work is done. In order to attract clients you need to set up your business and brand so that it speaks for you before you even know that a potential client is listening.
The best way to do this is to boost your credentials.
Imagine how much a certification in online training will set you apart from the pack?
You and I both know that you can get most information for free online these days if you look long enough and that certifications in the fitness industry can sometimes feel like a dime a dozen. There is no regulation and certifications for fitness professionals don’t actually mean all that much. Your clients don’t know that, and that’s the point.
A certification is a costly signal. It shows that you’ve put in the work. It shows that you’re serious.
*Not that you cannot be serious without having one, but if you put yourself in a position that requires you to first get the attention of potential clients AND get them to listen long enough to convince them that you’re serious then you’ve got your work cut out for you.
Becoming one of the first certified online trainers (OTC) in the world is a competitive advantage that firmly establishes the perception that you are more trustworthy. Becoming an OTC gives potential clients the confidence that you are less likely to be crap than all of the online Insta-Trainers yelling and begging for clients in a noisy marketplace, and that’s what matters.
But, like anything else worth having, it requires a commitment of both time and money. You need to put some skin in the game. If you want to have what others won’t, you need to be willing to do what other’s don’t.
Save $200, get on the waiting list for the Online Trainer Academy (first-ever certification in online training) here: onlinetrainer.com/academy
Read how Jason Chartrand just got his first online training client and has been flooded with inquires: onlinetrainer.com/jason-chartrand-just-got-his-first-online-training-client/