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7 Simple Steps for Writing a Personal Trainer Business Plan (with Templates)

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If you’re just starting on your own as a PT, writing a personal trainer business plan is one of the most important first steps you’ll have to take.

In this article we’ll cover:

Before you start with your PT business plan, there’s one thing you should always factor in, and that’s professional development.

With our Level 4 Sports Nutrition Course, you’re able to set yourself apart from the competition and ensure your business can thrive in a competitive industry. Download our free course prospectus to find out more!

Why Do I Need a Personal Training Business Plan?

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Before we look in detail at the process of writing a personal trainer business plan, it’s vital to understand why you should produce one. 

In short, a personal trainer business plan acts as the guide for where your business currently is, where you aspire to be, and how you’ll get there.

As you can imagine, this is vital for establishing your business and plays an integral role in:

  • How to make money as a personal trainer
  • How many, and the kind of, clients you attract
  • How you market yourself
  • Who your competitors are, and how you’ll beat them

It’s easy to assume that you’ll be the only person who’ll see the business plan for your personal trainer business but it will play a vital role in securing external funding if that’s what you need.

You will have to show prospective investors what you plan to do with your business and outline every detail if you’re looking to secure money from a third party.

Ultimately your personal trainer business plan is an opportunity to showcase your brand and display what you’ll be contributing to the fitness industry. 

Step 1: Write Your Personal Trainer Business Plan Summary

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Every successful personal trainer business plan should start with a summary. This is an overview for readers and potential investors, covering:

  • Who you are
  • What your business offers, and your target market
  • Your financial state, and projections for the future
  • Your marketing strategy
  • Plans for the future

Despite it seeming simple, this is one of the most crucial parts of any business plan for a personal trainer because it’s the first impression you’ll make. 

You’ll need to summarise for the reader what you’ll be covering so they’ve got a good snapshot of your business and the service you will provide.

This personal trainer business plan example from CIBT Visas, a global financial company, is a great illustration of how it should be done:

corporate personal trainer business plan image

Just from this short section, we find out a few key points about CIBT, including:

  • What they do
  • Where they operate
  • Their core values
  • What they aim to achieve

This should essentially contain your personal trainer mission statement and what you intend your brand to achieve and fulfil!

Your next sections will expand on these key features, and offer a more in-depth look at what you do, and where you can take your business.

Step 2: Detail Your Qualifications on Your Personal Trainer Business Plan

certificate personal trainer business plan graphic

Following your summary, your personal training business plan should lead into a comprehensive inventory of your qualifications and certifications.

This serves a few different purposes. For any potential investors or banks, you’re proving that you’re well-positioned to provide a service to your clients.

Each qualification is an indicator to those who want to put money into your business that you’re a professional able to bring return on their investment with trustworthy expertise.

Each one is also an example of the different areas your business could branch into in order to grow and develop. For example, any specialist Level 4 master personal trainer courses you’ve completed show a potential for advancement.

You should include a list of qualifications as well as where they come from. This will show that you’ve completed a course with a reputable provider and allows potential investors to see your credentials.

You should list them simply, like in our own personal trainer business plan sample below:

Diploma in Personal Training - OriGym COE

Level 3 Exercise Referral - OriGym COE

Level 4 Advanced Sports Nutrition - OriGym COE

First Aid for Sports - British Red Cross

CPD in Strength and Conditioning - OriGym COE

This list offers a comprehensive overview of our example PT’s qualifications, as well as where they were achieved. 

CPD fitness courses will also help demonstrate a wide ranging skill set and areas that your business could potentially branch into! 

Step 3: Pinpoint What You Want to Sell When Writing a Personal Trainer Business Plan

target personal trainer business plan graphic

Next up for your personal trainer business plan is detailing exactly what it is that you intend to sell and how you plan to cater to a particular audience and customer base.

This should be one of the most extensive sections of your business plan template. As a personal trainer you need to put trust in your services and your ability to meet other people’s fitness goals as well as those you have for your business.

This is your opportunity to detail all of your revenue streams and the different ways in which you intend to make money for your business.

This is also a way of illustrating why there’s room in the market for your business to cater to a particular demographic and offer a service that there’s a want or need for!

This may sound simple but plenty of trainers will miss out revenue streams from their personal training business plan, or don’t detail potential opportunities for expansion and selling other services or products.

Most PTs will have several revenue streams and you want to make sure you detail all of these without putting too much emphasis on the most lucrative ones.

For example, you don’t want to just detail your one-to-one training, despite it probably being your main source of income!

money personal trainer business plan graphic

Some of the revenue streams you might want to include on top of this are:

  • Online or face to face seminars
  • Nutrition consultations
  • Affiliate marketing with prominent brands such as sportswear and supplement brands
  • Personal trainer tutor for a training provider
  • Workout guides or ebooks
  • Speaking at fitness or educational events

You also need to find your personal training target market

Something holistic like ‘gym goer’ is too broad and will hinder your ability to create marketing strategies and develop your business.

 

Expand The Services of Your PT Business!

Grow your business with our Level 4 Sports Nutrition Course, combining personal training with nutrition advice!

Your target market is the ideal customer and should be directly linked to the services you’re offering. 

You need to be able to show why you’ve chosen this demographic and how your product or service answers their specific needs.

Again, the more specific you can be the better. Some examples include:

  • People with physical health conditions or impairments
  • People with long term health conditions during rehabilitation 
  • Women under 30 looking for postnatal classes
  • Athletes looking for strength and conditioning training

menopausal personal trainer business plan image

We’ve written our own personal trainer business plan example for this particular section that you can use as a template:

My business offers one-to-one, bespoke, personal training sessions for women who are 40 years of age or older. 

My services predominantly focus on helping women use exercise and nutrition to deal with the symptoms and stresses of menopause. My research suggests there is a huge need for a combination of services such as mine, offering nutrition and exercise programmes to help women with some of these issues.

All of my qualifications uniquely equip me to work with this demographic to provide a much needed service. I offer nutrition sessions one-to-one, building recipes and selling them as a recipe guide, or working with individual clients to build bespoke nutrition plans.

I also offer personal training sessions one-to-one or in groups with other women of the same age or same symptom experience. 

Because of how common these issues are in this demographic there’s also a huge demand for seminars and educational sessions in partnership with women’s charities and other healthcare professionals. I provide consultancy on these issues as well as being available for talks and seminars online or in-person for various institutions.

This business plan template for a personal trainer company can be used as a jumping off point and fleshed out for your own brand!

Step 4: Perform a SWOT Analysis as Part of Your Personal Training Business Plan

SWOT analysis personal trainer business plan graphic

The next thing you will need to perform for your personal trainer business plan is SWOT analysis.

Personal trainer SWOT analysis is vital for determining what you’re doing well and if there’s any sticking points, preventing your business from growing and developing as it should. 

SWOT stands for:

  • Strengths - these are the elements you think makes you stand out as a PT making your business unique 
  • Weaknesses - this is where you’ll reflect on any areas for improvement or development 
  • Opportunities - building on the above, decide on actions that can be taken to improve your business and develop your brand
  • Threats - this last step is to assess whether there’s anything stopping these actions from being taken or potential disruptions to how you might want to grow and develop your business

By performing these steps you’ll have an idea of how you can promote your USP and reinforce the other sections of your business plan, realising what gap you’re filling in the market.

You’ll also be able to identify any room for improvement and things that you can do to allow your business to grow.

This will help you by identifying exactly what your next moves are and how you can grow your business moving forward.

This will also help to show potential investors that you’re aware of the challenges your business might face and how you’re prepared to meet them and adapt your business accordingly.

This makes you seem like a more trustworthy investment and somebody who’s aware of how best to return on that investment and grow your business and income!

Step 5: Outline Your Marketing Strategies in Your Personal Trainer Business Plan

marketing personal trainer business plan graphic

Another vital part of a business plan for any personal trainer is outlining your marketing strategies. 

This is vital for both you and any potential investors or collaborators. Here, you’ll outline the specific techniques and campaigns you will use to grow your business and gain new clients!

Showing your marketing plan will also reinforce your understanding of your target market because the particular strategies you use should be dictated by who you’re marketing to.

Identifying Your Target Market

target market personal trainer business plan graphic

If you’re writing a business plan to open a personal training studio, what’s the age range of your prospective clientele?

As we mentioned earlier, you need to make sure you’re as specific as possible with your target market.

The more specific you can be about the demographic the more specific you can be in targeting them, based on their behaviour and interaction with different platforms.

Using Social Media Platforms Relevant to Your Target Market

social media personal trainer business plan graphic

You need to make sure you’re aware of which platform is most used by your target age range. 

This is so that you can demonstrate that you understand the best way to target this specific audience with your marketing. 

If you're looking to target an older age range, you may want to get clients from Facebook, as the social media site tends to be used by an older generation of users.

If you’re targeting young women, for example, you should target platforms such as TikTok and Instagram that are dominated by this younger demographic.

However, some platforms such as Google are frequented by everyone and are a worthy investment no matter your target market.

 

Expand The Services of Your PT Business!

Grow your business with our Level 4 Sports Nutrition Course, combining personal training with nutrition advice!

Using Ads on Social Media

facebook personal trainer business plan graphic

You should also include information about any existing personal trainer marketing strategies you’ve implemented. 

This will show your progress and illustrate your understanding of including this in your SWOT analysis and your awareness of how best to reach your target market.

You can include a screenshot of any existing ads you have on social media but you also need to ensure you include details of any spending and your projected spends on future strategies.

You should also detail any spending you’ve already done for advertising and marketing efforts.

This should include the costs for the maintenance of your existing marketing strategies, as well as any projections for future ones such as getting PT referrals or affiliate marketing.

Showing the Impact of Your Marketing Strategies

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You should also make sure you include figures you have about the impact of any existing strategies you have in place.

For example, you might show the reach and engagement of certain ads you’ve had on social media platforms.

This will show what’s worked already and support any request for funds if you can show how and to what end your budget for marketing has worked.

In terms of showing what you’ve already done, this might be simply including a screenshot of what you’ve already spent on your advertising and any leads or impressions generated as a result.

For example, here’s an image of the leads generated by our own Facebook ads within a month:

fb ad leads personal trainer business plan image

And here’s what it might look like to show what you’ve spent in order to generate those leads:

fb month spend personal trainer business plan image

This will show a potential investor that your existing spends have been successful and will be considered in terms of how much you can borrow or get.

This way you’re showing that what you’ve spent already has been successful and what you need to continue to spend in order to maintain that success.

However, you may not have already done any marketing in this way. If you’ve worked in a gym chances are you have to promote your own services but you might not have been solely responsible for things like ads and email marketing. 

If you’re just starting out, and this is the case, you should just include projections based on your market research.

Make sure to focus on the aforementioned factors, including any financial projections you can make. 

This way you’re still showing you’re aware of exactly what you need to do and what you need to monitor to have a successful marketing campaign!

If you found this section helpful, you can find out more about marketing your personal trainer business with some of our other articles below:

Step 6: Include Your Financial Plan and Projections in a Personal Trainer Business Plan

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If you’re trying to secure money from a third party for your business, probably the most important sample of your personal trainer business plan is your financial projections.

The level of detail you include will depend on where you’re trying to secure funding from and how far into your business you are.

For example, this will look different for a personal training studio business plan than if your services are online or from home. 

It will also depend on some of the other features from our personal trainer business plan examples, such as marketing.

If you’ve only just started then your marketing costs will be projections rather than the screenshots we included in our own personal trainer business plan sample. 

You’ll need to detail not only what your expenses are or will be, but exactly how you see your business making and maintaining a steady financial flow.

 

Expand The Services of Your PT Business!

Grow your business with our Level 4 Sports Nutrition Course, combining personal training with nutrition advice!

No matter what your brand is, when you’re writing a personal trainer business plan you need to make sure you include the following crucial elements:

  • An income statement
  • A balance sheet
  • A cash-flow statement

We’ll run through each of these now so you know exactly what they entail and why they’re important for any successful personal trainer business plan.

An Income Statement 

income personal trainer business plan graphic

An income statement is a crucial part of any business plan template and a personal trainer business is no exception.

This is a statement that shows how much money you’ve made after your expenses and taxes are deducted from your income. 

Any business will keep this anyway for tax purposes and it can be helpful to have those numbers in front of you when you’re looking at ways to grow or streamline your business.

This is especially useful for anybody looking to invest or support your business financially because it shows your business’s profit and success.

It will also show any losses made and where they’ve come from so you can make any alterations.

This will inform and reinforce other parts of your personal trainer business plan. For example, having these figures ready will help you with your SWOT analysis.

Throughout your career you will have to complete an income statement for your business every fiscal quarter.

However, when you’re starting out, and for the purposes of the personal training business plan, you should do one every month for a year where possible.

This will also depend on your personal trainer business registration because your taxes will depend on whether you’re a sole trader or a limited company.

You should check this or use a business plan template for your personal trainer income statement.

A Balance Sheet

balance personal trainer business plan graphic

Your balance sheet is a calculation of what you have versus what you owe, giving a sum that shows the equity of your business. 

On one side it will list your business assets, which are things you own and could be liquidated and turned into cash. On the other side it will show liabilities, which are what you owe.

Most people will have a mixture of short and long term assets, called ‘current’ and ‘noncurrent’. 

Current assets are those which you could turn into cash within the year so either cash you currently have or accounts receivable (invoices from clients who are yet to pay).

Noncurrent assets are those which you don’t expect to liquidate in the near future.

This includes things like equipment or, if you’re writing a personal training studio business plan, you’d include property on this list too.

This is only in the list of assets if you own the property, though. If you’re renting a space or you’re paying off a mortgage, this would be in the liabilities section.

Liabilities will mostly be related to starting your business and any loans or any costs you got on finance.

Being able to show a healthy balance of these two things is a vital part of your business plan as a personal trainer because it shows the financial health of your company.

Showing that these things are well balanced will demonstrate to a bank or any potential investors that you’re a trustworthy business and will be financially stable enough to repay any money lent.

You should subtract the amount of liabilities from your assets to show the equity of your company.

A Cash Flow Statement 

cash flow personal trainer business plan image

Any business plan template for a personal trainer business should also include a cash flow statement. 

This is similar to an income statement but instead of just showing how much money you have after your outgoings this calculates the ‘flow’, i.e how much you have consistently coming in and out of your business.

Ideally, you want to be able to show that the flow of money is always positive, meaning you take in more money than you’re spending on expenses. 

Including this in your business plan serves a similar purpose to an income statement in regards to the SWOT analysis too.

Having these figures showing the cash flow will help you identify what’s working best to make money as a personal trainer, and where you could improve or cut back on expenses. 

The cash flow statement should show where your money is low and where there may be a surplus, meaning you have some opportunity to spend or redistribute some funds.

Having these figures will not only help you adjust your business but will also give a good indicator to investors or potential lenders of your financial stability as a business.

Step 7: Conclude Your Personal Trainer Business Plan with a Closing Statement

tick personal trainer business plan graphic

Last but not least, you should end your personal trainer business plan with a closing statement.

This will serve a similar purpose to your summary from step one but you can now summarise based on everything from the other sections.

This will act as a conclusion and an indication of where your business is up to and what you see as the next important steps.

This will help you to decide what you want to do with your business and the most immediate concerns and actions you need to take.

This will also act as an indicator to investors and lenders that you understand and know what to do with the data from previous sections.

If you can assess your business and read through your PT business plan to make some decisions, this reinforces your understanding of your business and your trustworthiness as a business owner!

After all, in any sample personal trainer business plan this is your opportunity to summarise your successes and illustrate that you understand how to fix any issues, and adjust accordingly.

Before You Go!

Hopefully now you’ve seen our personal trainer business plan examples, you feel ready to start writing your own!

Don’t forget you can grow your business by learning new expertise and skills and offering new services. You can do this with our Level 4 Sports Nutrition qualification.

Find out more by getting in touch with our team today and download our course prospectus to see how else you can continue to grow your business.

Written by Jessie Florence Jones

Content Writer & Fitness Enthusiast

Jessie has a 1st class honours degree in English Literature from University of Leeds and an MA in English Literature from Durham University. Naturally Jessie has a real passion for writing especially about film, culture and wellbeing. Outside of writing she loves hiking, country walks and yoga, which she has been doing religiously over lockdown.

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