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Best Email Software for Online Fitness Coaches

An email address is like an invite into the VIP room

Running your business on social media is like desperately running around in a loud nightclub, shouting in people’s ears.

Photo by Maurício Mascaro

But an email address is like an invite into the VIP room; you can sit down, chat quietly… you’ve got their full attention.  

If you’re not collecting email, addresses then you’re purely at the mercy of the platform’s algorithm changing overnight, or Zuckerberg one day deciding he’s not happy with you and throwing you off his platform.

With social media, you don’t own your audience

We work with online personal trainers who have 20,000 followers on Instagram, and overnight their reach plummeted. The number of likes they were getting on their posts was going from hundreds to about 80.

Photo by Omar Patyane

With social media, you don’t own your audience; Instagram does. On the other hand, with email, that list is entirely yours. Your subscribers are your own, and they’re far more profitable and far more dedicated than those flaky characters in the loud nightclub. In fact, pound-for-pound, you’re not going to find a more profitable segment of your audience than the people who are on your email list.

It’s a way for you to build a one-on-one relationship with your audience, but at scale. It just couldn’t be better. And unless you’re one of those people who have tens of thousands of emails left unread in your inbox, then you actually read and open all the emails that come your way. Of course, that doesn’t mean you’d sit and scroll all the way to the end (unless you’re having a very slow day).

It’s a real privilege to be let into someone’s inbox, so make sure you treat it with respect, but they do want to hear from you. That’s why they’ve opted in.

You get what you pay for with software

The email automation software that we use is called ActiveCampaign. We’ve basically tried the entire market by this point, and ActiveCampaign is just head and shoulders above anything else.

With email software, there are free options and you certainly go for one, but you get what you pay for with software.

For the sake of trying to save a few dollars a month for your business, you’re going to be causing yourself a lot more hassle than it’s worth.

The key profitable features of ActiveCampaign are the visual conditional automations. It’s also got advanced tagging, so you can attribute exactly where each sale is coming from, how long they’ve been a subscriber for and any previous interactions you’ve had all in one place.

It’s the closest thing to having sales superpowers that you can get.

It’s also got a CRM (Customer Relations Manager) which monitors deals along a pipeline and allows you to set trigger automations depending on where someone is in the buying process.

Using email as a client

Photo by Torsten Dettlaff

As an actual email client, we just use Apple Mail. It’s pretty hard to beat the Native Apple Suite, but if you work in a team where there’s lots of shuttling emails back and forth between yourselves, or you need to discuss certain emails, then have a look at Spark or Missive. That way you can create a round robin, or tag emails with certain people, which might suit your workflow a bit better, too.

What not to do

One final note:

Do not coach with email.

Just don’t do it. Email is a marketing and a sales platform only. It’s used when someone’s coming into your world and you need to get them set up. But you need to have a dedicated Client Management System where you can deliver your coaching, so that you can deliver a better service delineate sales from delivery, and just maintain your sanity.

Getting started with email software

If you’d like to know more about how CRM works, Jonny has recorded a free video guide that covers the specifics of how someone can land in the big spider’s web that is Propane Fitness, and then get automatically handled by the system, which helps turn them into a customer over time. You can access this here.

You can find out more about the other software solutions we use (including online coaching platforms and social media schedulers) here.

If you’re interested in ActiveCampaign, we have a discount link here. It is an affiliate link, but we only recommend what we use ourselves.