Steal his secret model…
What’s up Gym World?
The top gym owners stick to the basics over a long period of time. It’s the proven path to big profits.
At its peak, Joe profited over $100k/yr from that tiny room. But he had bigger ambitions, so he upgraded to a 6,000 sq ft warehouse two years later.
By 10x-ing the size of his gym, Joe 10x’d the size of his problems: he had more members per class, more coaches, and more complexity. He realized this was affecting the client experience his gym was known for. So, in 2017, Joe simplified things and shifted his focus to a small group personal training model.
💡 Around the same time, Joe connected with Rick Mayo, who was running a similar model. Rick has been a key mentor and friend to Joe since then.
Now, Joe’s running seven locations and is on track to open five more by the end of the year. Last year, his gyms brought in $3M with thiccc margins.
Here’s how Joe is successfully scaling:
Following a focused strategy
Joe is recognized as one of the top operators in the industry. Devin Gage puts it this way:
He’s incredible at being a sponge and then ruthlessly applying what he’s learned without any emotion or hesitation.
Many gym owners take a shotgun approach to success: they try a million things and hope something works. Joe takes more of a sniper approach: he hones in a specific target and doesn’t get distracted by anything else.
Here are his three areas of focus:
Joe’s gyms are between 1,400-2,000 sq ft and they cap out at 130-140 members. On average, a location brings in $500-$600k annually and has 40% profit margins.
💡 These numbers align with what other gym owners see when running a similar model in suburban areas.
When you look at a map, you’ll see that most of the gyms are clustered together:
Six of the locations are just a 15-20 minute drive apart. By having them close, he can easily move staff between gyms if someone gets sick or leaves, making managing multiple gyms less stressful.
💡 Nothing can destroy a gym empire faster than poor staffing decisions. Joe has two staff per gym. That’s a little too lean for my liking, which is why I think it’s smart to keep his facilities clustered together.
Joe’s ideal client is a busy mom over 40, and he mainly uses Facebook ads to target them.
💡 He uses the same Facebook and Instagram accounts for all 7 locations and changes the geographic targeting.
According to Joe, Facebook ads work best during the presale phase of a new gym, but they’re less effective once the gym opens. To keep his sales calendar full, he uses a mix of marketing methods that include:
- Engaging and interacting with his audience on Instagram
- Maintaining a strong Google My Business presence
- Keeping his gym’s Google Business Profile up-to-date
- Responding quickly to any new leads
- Ensuring his gyms have consistent and coherent branding
Joe hires two people for each gym:
- Head coach: They handle 25 weekly sessions and 15 hours of admin work.
- Part-Time Coach: Helps with additional training sessions.
💡 The head coach gets a salary with quarterly bonuses and benefits like health insurance, dental & vision coverage, a 401K plan, and paid time off. Those aren’t common perks in the industry.
To ensure quality across all locations, Joe has established strong systems and processes:
- Regional Operations Manager: Oversees the New Jersey locations, meets with head coaches, and conducts site visits.
- Training Manager: Takes care of hiring and training new staff.
- Salesperson: Joe has one guy who does lead nurture and sales calls for all locations.
- Weekly Meetings: Head coaches meet weekly to stay coordinated and connected.
This structured approach allows Joe to maintain a high standard of operation and training across his gym network.
So, what’s the secret?
The truth is, there’s no secret playbook to Joe’s success. He sticks to a simple formula:
Focus on stuff that works, and don’t get in your own way.
By keeping his focus on what’s most important and making smart business decisions, Joe has grown an impressive gym chain.