You might be wondering what on earth strength training has to do with marketing. Stick with me and I’ll explain.
I’ve been strength training now for just under two years and I realised it has taught me a lot of valuable life lessons, some of which can be applied to marketing.
A well thought-out strategy can give you incredible results and return on investment. The same goes for strength training. Whether the result is building muscle or building an inbound marketing campaign, it’s important that you maximise your results.
So, here are 10 lessons I learned from strength training that you can apply to your business today.
1. Stop looking for the perfect plan
Have you ever started a training programme or other activity for a week or two, found yourself bored or frustrated and so you switch to another one? This is known as “programme hopping”.
It’s near impossible to get results this way. Similarly, a lot of advisers and planners are in search for a secret tactic that will somehow provide them with clients. There’s no such thing. Marketing works when the right people see your message again and again until they buy into your service.
2. Track your progress
Amateurs go to the gym and their goal is to leave feeling like they worked hard. They don’t write down the exercises they do, the weight they used, the reps they did, or their rest breaks. They don’t weigh themselves or take progression photos. They have no idea how to tell what’s working and no way to ensure they are really progressing.
This is fine if you’re just working out for fun or have no specific goal, but if you want to make meaningful progress then you need to keep a record. Therefore, you must test, measure, and analyse your results to get those marginal gains that will set you apart from other financial advisers and planners. So, be a professional and track your KPIs.
3. Don’t compare yourself to others
Many people get discouraged when they start strength training because they’re using smaller weights and they don’t look like other people in the gym. This kind of comparison makes it easy to get discouraged, and quit.
This was me back in 2020. I could barely lift two 5kg dumbbells for an overhead press and I felt embarrassed, too weak and like maybe this whole weightlifting thing wasn’t for me.
But then I remembered, everyone starts somewhere, and we are all at different stages. We discount the amount of time someone else has been training or what genetic advantages they may have. If you’d have said to me that just under two years later, I’d be able to lift 30kg overhead, I would have laughed in your face.
As Theodore Roosevelt once said, “comparison is the thief of joy”. Other people’s progress is irrelevant – focus on what YOU can control.
4. Embrace discomfort (hello, lateral raises!)
The only way to get stronger is by putting stress on your muscles. Similarly, the only way to build a strong business is by doing things that other advisers/planners aren’t willing to do.
Just because something feels hard or scary doesn’t mean that you’re doing it wrong. In fact, it probably means you’re doing something valuable!
For me, I hate doing lateral raises. They are one of the hardest moves I have in my training plan, but every so often, I notice I can up the weight. So, even though I don’t like them, and it feels hard, it’s clearly working to improve my strength.
5. Commit for the long haul
If you go to the gym today and lift weights, your body will not look any different tomorrow. If you write a blog post today, your business won’t look different either, but that’s OK.
Remember there’s no magic solution, you must be willing to put in the work for months or years and let the work compound itself.
6. It’s a marathon, not a sprint
A sustainable strategy is important. It’s no good being in a calorie deficit during the week then splurging on the weekend and taking yourself out of that deficit. It’s the same with your strategy, so think long term.
For example, on social media, just because your working week is Monday to Friday 9am until 5pm, this doesn’t mean your social media stops when you leave for the day. Using scheduling tools such as Buffer and SmarterQueue are effective ways you can overcome this.
7. Build the habit
Just as you won’t be able to lift 100kg on your first day in the gym, you’re not going to be able to revamp your entire marketing strategy in one afternoon.
It’s much more important that you build the habit of working on your business. So, choose one thing you know you need to be doing to get clients and just tackle that this week, whether that’s regularly posting on your blog or starting a weekly newsletter. Over time, your confidence and capacity will grow.
8. Focus on the reps
It’s far better to do 3×8 sets of high-quality reps than 5×10 sets with poor form or reps that aren’t fully engaging the muscles.
Similarly, it’s better to engage with 20 high-quality leads that have a genuine interest in your services than 60 who don’t. Know who they are and focus on finding more of them.
9. Rest days are important
Without training, you aren’t going to improve your physique, just like without creating content and engaging on social media you aren’t going to improve your lead generation.
However, it’s important to take time out to review your strategy. Your business goals, much like your health and fitness goals, will change over time and your strategy needs to reflect this.
10. Don’t get lost in the little things
In lifting, it’s helpful to spend most of your time on “compound movements” — like squats, presses, and deadlifts — because they work the largest number of muscles at once. Similarly, you should stick with foundational marketing principles.
A lot of people get caught up in little things like which hashtags to use on Twitter, yet they don’t know who their ideal client is, they don’t put out a weekly piece of content, and they don’t have a way for people to apply for initial enquiries.
Do you need a personal trainer?
If you are struggling with your marketing strategy and would like to find out more information about how we can help, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on 0115 8965 300.
I promise we won’t make you lift any weights – let us do the heavy lifting for you!