Today we're talking with Joey Atlas. Joey’s name has the perfect sound for what Joey does. He’s a wonderful fitness professional who’s figured out a really great way to get people results in a way that is fun and proprietary.
He's developed a machine that he calls the Sculptabod system and it's really pretty fascinating. We'll hear a lot of the story behind how it all came about.
We started out thinking about what's the best way to amplify his message, and we ended up with a really nice way for him to focus and scale in a very highly impactful way, working on creating the scale ready algorithm.
Want to be a guest on the show? Simply follow the 'Be a Guest' link on the left & I'll be in touch.
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Transcript - More Cheese Less Whiskers 079
Dean: Joey Atlas.
Joe: Dean, I'm laughing really hard here. Is the Rick Astley song by design that I was on hold with?
Dean: Yeah, you got Rick rolled on the way, there you go.
Joe: That was one of my client's theme songs when I used to do a lot of the old school traditional one on one training. They used to make that their theme song for me, never going to give you up.
Dean: Oh that's so funny. Well there you go, well welcome. So we are, we're live. We're recording right now.
Joe: Very cool.
Dean: A whole hour to hatch some evil schemes.
Joe: Love it.
Dean: I'm excited that got to come around. Boy it's been a few months since we decided we would do this right? It's a tough ticket. It's a tough ticket getting on the Less Cheese More Whiskers show.
Joe: Great show, I love it. I love listening to it.
Dean: Awesome, well let's kind of set the tone here. And I know a little bit about what you're up to, but let's start from the beginning here and kind of tell me what you got going on and then where we can maybe jump off and hatch some evil schemes for you.
Joe: Awesome. So I'll give you a broad view of things. So and some of this might click from the short conversation we had in Orlando a few months ago. So I've got context. I'm almost 50 but I'm an extremely young 50 as you saw. I keep myself in fantastic shape and I've, because of my life journey and this being my livelihood I've found and created a way to make fitness extremely super simple and wildly effective compared to what's being done out there on the mass markets.
So because there was no machinery for my unique methodologies, I had to build that machine. I had to design it and build it. So that was about 10 years ago when I designed the machine and then had it engineered and built. From there, clients who were training with me and family members and friends who came to train with me at the house, everybody was saying I really need to do something much bigger with this machine and the methodology that it allows for.
And at the time I had no larger commercial intent back at the time. It just wasn't part of the equation. It was strictly for me, my family, and my clients at the time.
Dean: Just so I'm clear for a second, when you say machine you're meaning a literal piece of equipment or are you talking about it as the figurative machine of the system?
Joe: Oh no, great question. So this is a literal all in one fitness training machine.
Dean: Okay perfect.
Joe: Okay? So it was designed again for my methods because the machine didn't exist. My methods were a unique approach that deviated from the main stream and therefore the machinery for what I wanted to do and how I wanted to train my body and those of my clients didn't exist. So I had to design it. I'm giving you the short story here.
So created the machine, the all in one fitness training machine. It's usable by all different levels. I'm super advanced, I do all my training on it, and we could dial it all the way back to my youngest daughter. She's 13 and she trains on it and then we have older women in the studio that I opened in their 70's who train on it. So fast forward to now, 10 years later. It was time to commercialize the machine and get it into the hands of a lot of people out there who need this new approach because the regular beat your body down hardcore, go hard or go home beast mode style of training doesn't cut it for the masses of people out there. It's only for the extreme users who can take that hardcore approach.
So I opened a studio about a year and a half ago. Themed it as women only because the women we want to serve actually do want their own place. They don't want any kind of coed interaction. So opened a studio for women, with a full line of these machines in it, and I have a group of female coaches that run the studio and I do the marketing from off site. And I'm there once in a while to participate in certain events and what have you.
Dean: Are there different versions of the machine? Or is it one machine that you have several of?
Joe: Yeah, great question. It's one machine that I designed so that there's basically a main frame, a foundational frame of this machine and then I designed it with these six other attachments that go on and off of it depending on what exercises and work out you want to do on a certain day. So the combination of this main frame and all these different attachments, these six different attachments allow for literally hundreds of different exercises for all different levels of users.
Joe: All right so, opened the studio for women, have a line of machines in there. I now have one of the latest prototypes at the house in addition to the one I built 10 years ago. And for me, I'm seeing this as all one connected business when I describe this to you. Okay so I'm not needed at the studio because I've installed a team of awesome female coaches. I do the marketing. They run the studio. I personally, I've worked my way out of the old school style of training years ago where I was training from sun up to sun down. I'm really really good at what I do, I always have been so I was always overloaded with one on one clients in the old business model.
Dean: Full practice as they say.
Joe: Full practice. But it was a life killer. I had no life. My vision was, now a lot of the people I trained were super wealthy, super successful, and money was not the object for them. Time was more valuable to them. And so over the years what I realized was there were some of those people who again, ultra-wealthy, where it was actually a problem for them to fit into my schedule to show up three times a week or four times a week at this specific time. Some of them would actually say you know if you had a more flexible schedule I'd be happy to pay you much more so that you could bend and flex with my schedule and my unique lifestyle that always stuck with me.
So over the years, as things have progressed these last few years one of the things that I wanted to get back into was now instead of training 12 people a day, I want to be either a local and or long distance on site, off site, private fitness coach consultant to maybe two or three very high worth individuals or families where by having only two or three, and I could go travel around to meet them and we could do long distance coaching via video, I can have these high level clients at a much much higher price point and I can be flexible enough to see them on their schedule or travel to them half a week out of the month, make sure everything's in order, they can reach out to me whenever they need to because they're on that kind of program.
So what I want to do is, I want to make this a complete package. I want to have, here's the ideal scenario. A super successful ultra-wealthy person who most likely now has to get their health in order, has plenty of money to do it, but needs to find the right guy. They find me, I do an install of the machine at their home, their vacation home, at the office, on the yacht if they want one on the yacht. We put my machines in the locations where they spend most of their time, I go meet them there. We do two or three days, or four days of training to get going initially. And then maybe I see them once every six to eight weeks. They fly me out on the jet or whatever, or they pay for travel.
And then we keep in touch on a daily, weekly, monthly basis for accountability, questions, making sure they're doing the right things. They check in with me, they can show me on video via zoom what they're doing if they have a question. And then I can go back out wherever they are every whatever, six, eight, 10 weeks I'd go meet with them. We readjust the program, we video record it, and then they could go from there.
That's the ideal scenario I would love to be able to do, not for the money, things are cool and things are growing with what I'm doing. I plan on selling these machines to end users on a mass level like bow flex and total gym, but I want to do a high level service because I know there are people out there who need what I'm thinking about offering in this regard.
So what does that trigger in you? What questions does that trigger?
Dean: It sounds like a just a higher level version of the same cycle that you got into with the original training, honestly. That when you're saying, not that you essentially saying you're trading your time for money. You're going to have fewer people but more money. More flexibility, but you're still essentially delivering a personal service to people and you're going to run into the same situation where it seems it's going to be fun and glamorous initially. But then to scale that, you run into the same situation where this one wants you to fly out to the Bahamas and this one wants you to come out to Aspen and this one, where there's a lot of that stuff.
So I always, the question I always ask around things like that is that is that something that is really focused on entertaining yourself or sustaining yourself? You know? That's really the question that it comes down to. Is that motivated by entertainment or sustainment? Like you're doing it because it's appealing and you like the idea of that lifestyle and the story of that, versus doing something that is the most, the best course for the business side of it, the case for building out the business, you know?
Joe: Yeah understood. Great question, I appreciate you going there too. So it's not for entertainment, it's not for the story, I do want to make sure I'm focusing on building a business or more of the business. And so if it's not the right choice which it may not be.
Dean: Well it just seems like, let's explore some options, that's one option. Let's just work through the economics of that. So how much is the machine?
Joe: The machine is going to sell for around $2,000 for the package, maybe $2500 for the full package.
Dean: Okay so $2,000, $2,500. How does that fit in the landscape of the Bowflex machines that they are showing there or the telethon, those stories you know? The telethon type of thing that seems like that's about the same range, right?
Joe: Yah great question by the way. So the ... on a broader market perspective I'm aiming for the model. So they take care of cardio, that's it. It's a bike, you sit on it, you do your thing, you get the streaming classes. That's your cardiovascular exercise. But that doesn't take care of your strength and your flexibility, which is huge. Especially for middle age aunt. My machine takes care of the strength and flexibility so it comes in, I mean I think they sell the bikes for around 15, 16, $1700. Plus a few hundred for this and that set up, what not. And then they have the ... then they have the monthly continuity subscription which I would be doing as well. So we're not competitors, we're actually called complimenters, and they very well will be one day they end up having to buy me because I have the other part of the fitness equation.
But that is, so I'm in the same zone as them relatively speaking price wise, but I take care of the two other important aspects of fitness. In terms of the total gym and bowflex, they have a bunch of different units. Their low end units are pieces of crap. They're meant for people who are going to buy them and then put them out in the garage sale or something. Their high end units, the ones that are intended to built to be used are around $3,000 maybe 35, $3600 for their units that would be bought to be used.
So not only do I come in at a lower price point, I take up less floor space, and instead of half a weekend to put together, my thing only takes half an hour. It's usable by the whole family, it's safer, and it looks cooler.
Dean: I was going to say, how does it look compared to others?
Joe: It's pretty cool. And actual usage, the methods that those things are built on are built on the old school traditional approach to working out. X number of sets, x number of reps and before you know it, it's over an hour. My machine allows for 30 minute training sessions and under and you're good to goo. That's it.
Dean: Okay. And then, so the thing that kind of reminds me, let's go to the other end of the spectrum here where ... are you familiar with the ram machines?
Joe: Yeah always see those ads. Well I used to see those ads a lot.
Dean: Yeah, so that was the exercise in 14 minutes. That one ... yeah. So that device is about 13, $14,000 something like that. But they're completely selling the time. That's really what it is that you're saying the same thing for the people that you get a total body workout. And then, are you familiar with the Vasper machine?
Joe: Yes. I've heard of it. I think I heard one of the podcasts or two, maybe somebody was on with Joe ...
Dean: Yeah so Dan Sullivan and Joe are really into this Vasper machine. But the Vasper machine is like $70,000. It's a very expensive, like buying a car. And so that is kind of on that same vein there. So you're really ... you're in the same kind of ball park as Bowflex and the other devices there. But what's really I think an interesting thing around it is your training system behind it. So if I look at it that you've got this device right now, how easy is it for you to scale up the manufacturing of those and how many have you sold?
Joe: I've got, so I've been sharing the journey and the story with my e-mail lists which are basically all people who'd be their bought info products from me or have gotten onto my newsletter lists over the last bunch of years. I have about probably eight to 12 people ready to write a $2,000 check to pre order theirs. So I haven't sold any yet, but I do have people waiting to give me the money for theirs. So I have the next prototype being built. It should be here in about two weeks, and this one is intended for just making sure that we've built one that could be packed and shipped efficiently and then we can scale up. I can order 100, I can order 200, I can order probably 500 at a time. And the company who's doing this, they're already in the group. They make lots and lots of various steel products and then I also have a couple of options for going overseas if I want to or need to.
Dean: For manufacturing that you mean?
Dean: Yeah. Okay and so when you look at it now, so how much will it cost you to build one? To get to...
Joe: Yeah so in the US it's going to cost me at low volume it'll cost me about $900 to make and if I increase the volume here in the US I can probably get the price to about five or six hundred dollars raw cost for the full package.
Dean: Okay and what volume would you need to get to that?
Joe: Probably have to order maybe 200 to get into the $600 range. I'd have to confirm these but I'm guessing based on all the numbers we've done all ready and the quotes I have from them.
Dean: Okay. All right. So you've got, so there's the, that's the kind of base for, or the facts about this side of the business. If you've got other elements of this here. So you've got the device itself, and that's really about marketing in itself. TO find now if you've got a cost on the machine of $500 to $900 and a retail price of $2000 or $2500, then it's really going to be about the economics of the gap. Can you find buyers for it for less than, to make that a reasonable thing?
Then you've got this model that you were describing to me of the high end training for people. So let's talk about the economics of that. How do you see that playing out? What would be kind of the scenario there?
Joe: Well it would be the type of person who needs, not just somebody but somebody who's one of the tops in the world. And I am one of those people.
Dean: Says who? First off. I love to push on that.
Joe: I love it. So number one I do. I'm very self-aware and also aware of what's going on out in the open. And I over the years, a lot of my clients have been in the position to hire lots of trainers over the course of their successful careers. And many, if not most have said I've worked with a lot of trainers in my life, many different places, and the way you go about this and the way you deliver it and the way you've helped me is head and shoulders far above anybody else I've ever worked with. And I got that quite often, and I still do when I work with somebody.
Whether it's a short term coaching assignment or what have you, and I got that a lot. I used to take it for granted but then I really started paying attention to what it is these differences are. And I get it. I understand and understood where they were coming from.
Dean: And so when you say, so number one, how do you quantify that? How do you say that you're the top kind of ... what would be the result that would if you were having a contest to pit somebody against each other, what would be the parameters that you would kind of judge that on?
Joe: Okay so quick brainstorm. I can get you healthy, fit, in shape and feeling good. In x number of months with no injury and you enjoying what we're doing and wanting to continue it even after that. Or I give you all of your money back if I don't deliver.
Dean: And so when you look at something like that. Like those are strong words, right? When I say to you, what would you do if you only got paid when your client gets the results, you're that kind of confident in this situation.
Dean: So most of the time, and it's really interesting. How do you account for what most people would do in a personal training situation or in something like, especially in health and fitness where there are things that are out of your control? How would you, how do you account for the tendency to kind of external blame shift? Like you're saying even in spite of somebody. You're saying or are you caveating it with if they do the work that I show them how to do, kind of thing.
Joe: Absolutely. I mean if they can't track and show accountability for what they're supposed to be doing the days I'm not there or when they're sticking to their eating plan, even if it's not an extreme approach which I don't employ. If they're not sticking to it, if they're sabotaging it then all bets are off. So there's got to be some kind of accountability loop.
Dean: Yes. And how do you account for that? Do you take that into consideration?
Joe: It would have to be the easiest way to quote unquote systematize it is they do a daily check in. I shoot them an e-mail, they give me a summary of what they've eaten, and I have to trust that they're telling me the truth. Or they could just take a snap shot of each meal and text it to me.
Dean: All right.
Joe: Or a combo of that stuff.
Joe: My guy, fitness corner man is waiting for me to send me what I'm eating and a short summary of it. I've got to take a picture, text it. So they know I'm watching, even though I may not be right there all the time, I'm watching over their shoulder because they're supposed to be sending me these two or three things.
Dean: Yes. Got it. So that, and that's somebody who's yeah, they've got to be in it to win it kind of thing. That they want to do it, they want to make it easy.
Joe: Don't hire me...
Dean: They need to be held accountable.
Dean: Not hiring you, because a lot of people would write the check and not do the pushups. That's really the thing.
Dean: Hire you and not do the pushups.
Joe: Right. We call that a done for you method. You pay double but I'm going to do the workouts for you.
Dean: Yeah, which that would be ... I think a lot of people would pay triple for that. Absolutely.
Joe: Yeah easily.
Dean: Yeah. Okay so then, how much would that cost? How would you work with somebody, because I'm trying to get a comparison of ... I'm trying to get all the economics of it to kind of lay it out and set out some options kind of thing.
Joe: Right so when we're thinking about the person who now time is more valuable than money, the price tag really shouldn't matter. So it may be $35,000 for month number one which means I'm coming out there for three or four days. It's going to include your machine package, I'm coming out there I'm setting it up and we're going to set the foundational program, get you going. And then each day we're going to be doing the check ins and we might use a combo of video, phone, text, zoom, whatever. And then I come out month number two see how we're doing, adjust the program upward a little bit, make sure everything is on track, fine tune things, and maybe month number two it goes down to say $27,000 or something.
And then we continue on from there in that price range give or take. That's what I'm thinking. Because this type of person I'm believing, if they sense they're going to have this kind of freedom and flexibility from me to come out there, stay in touch with them daily, and be there when I need to reach out via phone call or video call, I think they're expecting to pay that much, maybe even more.
Dean: I don't have any frame of reference for that. What would, who would be paying that? What would be a reference for that now? The only people I can think of are that guy in Hollywood that trains all the movie stars.
Joe: Gunner Peterson?
Dean: So Gunner would be a good example of that. So is that kind of in the range of how he would work with somebody?
Joe: I think so. I'm going on memory based on some things I've read and made mental note of. It's in that range.
Dean: And then what about the guys that Tom Brady works with?
Joe: I'd have to look it up.
Dean: I'm just trying to think about another example that guy's been working with Tom Brady. So you're talking about people who ... it seems like the people who would pay that amount of money are people who this is a high stakes situation for them. Whether they're an actor who needs to get into, like Will Smith getting ready to play Muhammad Ali or Mark Wahlberg getting ready to play one of those roles that he does or guys who have a high stake thing that they have to get in shape in a long period of time. Or are you maybe not even talking about from an elite body building kind of standpoint but people who are in a life threatening situation where they have to lose weight where it's heart disease or diabetes or those kind of situations where you need to turn this around or you're not going to make it.
Joe: Exactly. The take the successful entrepreneur business owner, he's made lots of money, he's gotten his business to a point where it's creating a lot of cash flow for him. He's quote unquote he's reached success. However now he realizes oh man, I've let myself go. I've sacrificed my health. I've got a wife and kids and like now this is more important. My health is more important because if I'm not around none of that success matters.
I need to take care of me now. So now they want to, it's up to me to say hey. Unless they realize this themselves, I need to invest a small piece of this money into taking care of me now so that I can be alive to not only enjoy it but to be around for my family. Blood pressure's high, heart issues are coming up, blood profiles going down, getting worse every year. Things are getting scary. So all right, we've got to get Joey Atlas in here and have him help me take care of all this and get the proper set up in the house and at the vacation home. And make sure that I have my health and fitness in order. So those are the people I want, if I get to work with celebrities for certain projects or what have you. I mean there are plenty of celebrities who are in the same situation.
They're unhealthy, they're having food and exercise issues, they need it for the same reason the successful business entrepreneurial type needs it for as well. So it doesn't matter to me who it is, but I'm not looking to get somebody all ripped and jacked and this and that. I want to help somebody who's suffering, who needs to save their own life.
Dean: Yes. Okay. And so when you look at that then, have you got any clients like that or any people that you work with right now? Or is this something...
Joe: Well not me personally. I have a few success stories at the studio who have done the method on the machines. And some of these women have tried all the other stuff in the past and that's what's so awesome about their story is they've tried this cross training thing and they've tried that trainer with the gym approach and they tried this diet.
And finally they stumble upon something that almost sounded too good to be true, they'll admit. But they come in and try it and they're like, this is what you guys are saying it is. I like this I'm going to sign up. So we have one woman who's dropped ... she just cleared the 100 pound mark dropped. And now she's starting to speak and she's wanting to spread the message. So we've got other success stories. Not as obvious as that one because of the weight loss and the health changes.
Dean: How long did it take to lose the 100 lbs.?
Joe: I would say probably just a year.
Dean: Okay. That's about the right track, right? Like to lose so much weight?
Dean: You don't want to do it faster than that.
Joe: No, you have eight to 10 pounds a month dropping off you don't want to do any more than that.
Joe: And eight to 10 feels pretty good going through it.
Dean: Yeah exactly, and then you end up ... yeah so you don't have or you're less likely to have loose skin and all the sort of things that come from the rapid weight loss of that, right? I imaging you hear that, that's the big thing that women are all concerned about, right? Almost that they don't want to lose weight because the thought of having loose skin is more horrifying than the carrying the extra hundred pounds.
It's kind of an interesting dynamic, isn't it?
Joe: It is, but at the end of the day it's like look, you have to get it off otherwise you're going to die anyway. And then surgery can take care of extra skin, but it's not a good idea to take care of the fat and the skin because you're setting yourself up for some real bound rebound effects.
Dean: Yeah gotcha. So when we look at it, how many people would you estimate are in a situation where they need to lose 100 pounds? It seems like the numbers, the obesity numbers and the things that we hear are getting more and more.
Joe: Oh they are. I mean look it's a reflection of our society. There's way more food and booze than any individual needs that we're surrounded by on a daily basis. So the food is a drug, and so the food manufacturers, it's not up to them to say hey look don't eat too much of our stuff because we don't want you gaining weight. They want us to keep eating. That's their profits, they don't care if we're packing on the pounds.
Dean: I'm fascinated by the ... right now of course we're recording this and it's the first week in January. So right now, everywhere TV is just bombarded with the ones that stand out from my mind right now are the weight watchers freestyle program. Which seems like it involves eating tacos and burritos and dancing and smiling. That seems like what the weight loss program is about, right? That they're, even just those words freestyle make it seem like I do what I want. Which is the thing, listen you're not going to have to change anything about ... you can go to any restaurant eat whatever you want and you're going to lose weight. And everybody is flocked to that because that's what they want.
They see these happy, dancing people eating chicken wings and tacos and losing, eating whatever they want. And you're ... that's kind of what we're competing with in a way, right? I mean that's what most people in that situation.
Joe: That's mass market stuff. I would like to think my people are smarter than that. They've reached a level of success partially because of their smarts and their intellect. And they know they're not going to be doing freestyle because they probably tried freestyle and in their younger years or whatever the latest fad was back then. They know they need a specialist. A guy who not only can say he can do it, but he's a walking example of what he says he can do for us.
I'm not a 25 year old hard body. I'm almost 50 years old and I have younger people, they'll see me at the beach and they'll be like damn, you got a white goatee we know you're a bit old, but what do you do to say in shape like this and this six pack and ... so it's not a common sight to see a guy like me maintaining fitness and the easiest way that I do. So there's, that's part of my marketing material.
Dean: Okay so let's bring this to the practical side of it right now.
Dean: You're in Jacksonville? Or where?
Joe: Yes, south of Jacksonville Florida. Just north of St. Augustine.
Dean: Okay perfect.
Joe: I think two hours from you.
Dean: Yeah yeah. So when you look at this, when you look at the surrounding area there. Is your studio a prototype for other models like that? Is that something that you're, that could be a possibility?
Joe: Yeah it could be. It could be a franchise model. We've had people come in and say is this a franchise because it has that feel. We run it that way.
Dean: Good marketer and all that. Yes.
Joe: My team is awesome. So the process of being a prospect, coming in for a trial and then being presented with options is very streamlined. I don't know if I want to be the guy to turn it into a franchise. I may want to license the rights out to a larger company that has to bring in new concepts to build their portfolio and stock, their stock position. So that's one thing. But I know where you're going with this. Here's another part. I do have trainers who want to buy the machine to have their own little personal training business.
Dean: A studio. A boutique.
Dean: That's where I was going, is I think that this could be the thing where it's almost like, if all the machines are the same, the vision that I had when you were describing this. Like you've got your protocol and your device and all of that, that the way I was thinking about it was almost like the hair salon model in a way where you're, you could have a space like that where in a hair salon a stylist rents a booth, rents a chair from the salon owner. But they have their own clientele. So they've got the device there or you've got the machine there, and they do the training with the people right there on site. That could be an interesting thing.
Or if people want to do it on a boutique basis in their own space, that could be a really cool thing too, because ultimately what you're talking about is that the machine on its own is one thing, but the machine with a protocol and somebody holding you accountable and getting it into your routine is another thing.
Joe: Absolutely. The idea of trainers and fitness pros buying one for their home or their room or whatever and then being able to have this efficient fitness training machine that allows them to train many different clients in one six by nine square foot area on maybe a licensing arrangement of sorts.
Dean: And that could be, that's an interesting model right there because the thing that you need to figure out is the scale ready algorithm of this. When you figure out what the thing to do is. Is that it's got to be about picking an area where you've got the studio right now in Jacksonville, or what's the town where you are actually?
Joe: St. John's.
Dean: St. John's. Okay perfect. So in St. John's you've got how many of the machines in your location there?
Joe: Eight in the studio.
Dean: Okay so you've got eight of the machines. And how many people, what's the capacity of that model in that location kind of thing? How many could you accommodate there?
Joe: In a class?
Dean: Mm-hmm (affirmative) do you do it in a class or do you do personal training, freestyle?
Joe: It's small group classes. And we can, a maximum class can have 16 women in it because between each of the eight stations we have what we call accessory stations without a machine and the coaches do other types of complimentary exercises at those other eight stations. So we can have 16 women in any given class and it's a group type class. So it's a much lower price point than say personal training one on one.
Dean: Yeah. And what's the price point for somebody to be in a program like that?
Joe: So our lowest one essentially is two, 30 minute express sessions per week and that's $68 a month. They get eight express sessions a month for $68 and then on our top end is what we call signature unlimited and that's $198 a month which basically gives them access to both express and signature classes, as many as they want to come to.
Dean: Mm-hmm (affirmative) and so there's some room even then on top of that with if somebody was doing as a personal trainer with them too, right?
Joe: Yes so we're exploring that now. My master coach, we've been talking about this because we've had some people asking about possible personal training on down times in private, like when we're not running classes we're exploring that now.
Dean: Mm-hmm (affirmative)
Joe: Of course at a higher price point.
Dean: Yeah and so have you done the math on what the, how many people that could accommodate? Like in what would be that you are at capacity in the studio there? It would be ... you couldn't really probably get past a couple of hundred people right?
Joe: We could probably have a paying client roster of about 400 women.
Joe: And so if there was, let's say the average monthly was $120 a month and we average the goal out per client. That's what it could look like.
Dean: Okay. And how close to that capacity is the studio now?
Joe: We're just above 100. We have about 105 clients right now.
Dean: Okay so lots of room there. There's lots of opportunity there. Okay. And so we look at it that that, it seems like with this idea here, you've got the ultimate laboratory. Because in either way being able to identify the people who could be the potential clients. Is coming to, they're coming from a pretty tight radius around the studio. That's the way fitness primarily works. They're not going to be, they're not going to drive more than 15 or 20 minutes to come for a place like that. Because that just becomes then too big a commitment. Too big, unlikely that they're going to do it. So you've got a radius of the studio as your option. So five, 10 miles kind of thing as a radius.
So what are you doing to attract the people in there to come, like to grow that number of?
Joe: Using Facebook of course. Facebook ads, we've got it I would say a gentle internal referral program. New clients will get a one week free gift certificate to give to somebody they also believe would love to come in and try it. And we give more of those out on a regular basis if anybody needs an extra one or if we have this time of year we'll give them out to people to gift to somebody.
Dean: Yeah of course, that's the best. Because your incremental cost on having somebody come in is a much less. It doesn't matter. It's a great thing. And you've got a great chance to convert people into a program, right? So if there's ever ... I recommend that for anybody that that's a possibility is let's start with that. So yeah. And then do you use that same model to attract people who aren't referred? Are you doing like a free week offer on Facebook?
Joe: Yeah that's one of our main ones for Facebook. We also carry these around in our cars. And we'll hand them out in combination with a neat magazine article that was, we actually paid for it but it was actually very well done. And we've had some women say you know I read that article and I said okay, this is the place I need to go to, there's no other option after reading this. And so we'll reuse stuff like that, evergreen in our marketing. We do reprints at the local print shop and we all carry them around in our cars. Our lady who's lost 100 and is now radically changed herself, the local community paper which has a pretty wide reach is actually doing a feature on her this month. So that'll be pretty cool. We're going to recycle that. That'll become evergreen marketing for us. That story and those photos in that paper. We'll find a way to multiply and amplify the effect of that. So those are some things.
Dean: Yeah I think that, and so what kind of scale do you do those? How are you perpetually running those ads or do you do it periodically?
Joe: Yeah perpetually running. Things were a little weird in November and most of December but it seems to be picking up again. The ones that I see, I have a combination of ads that I run. It's a combination of content based ads that lead to an option somewhere, and also straight up offers for one week free that it's as clear as day what we're offering right there. All they gotta do is click and opt in. So we've got a handful of ads that are starting to do well, they're getting some good engagement, so I'm just kind of looking toward making those evergreen and then maybe adding another content piece here or there to just round out the ad rotation.
Dean: And how do the metrics of that work out? What do you know so far? How much does it cost you to get an opt in?
Joe: Probably, I would say probably $10-$13 for an opt in. Maybe a little less. Out of the opt ins we're probably getting half the women to come in and of the ones who come in our close rate is pretty good now since we added a lower price option. People who are more price sensitive. So our closing is probably about 70%.
Dean: Oh that's great. So you know once you get somebody in ... so that works out to ... what does it cost you to acquire a customer then? Or acquire a new member?
Joe: I'm just gonna take a stab, I should be watching these more closely but this is not my forte.
Dean: Right but that's because this is the kind of thing when you start thinking about this now, as your scale ready algorithm, this is the thing you're imagining, what's this going to look like in St. Augustine or in Jacksonville, or in wherever, Tom Harbor. What would this look like if it was in another location there or starting to think about what would it look like if I was a personal trainer who wanted to become a certified, do you have a name for your atlas method? Do you have a proprietary name for everything?
Joe: Yeah so the studios are called sculpta fit. Sculpta fit studio. The machine is a Sculpta Bod unit. And the broad methodology is based on what I call lit, as opposed to hit training. So hit is high intensity interval training. Our approach is low intensity interval training which nobody even knows exists really. Because it's a complete opposite. So I was able to snatch the domain, low intensity interval training, and that's what part of our marketing conversation revolves around the opposite of all the hardcore stuff out there.
So we need to use words like lit, and low intensity interval training, and low impact. So it's sculpta fit studio, the sculpta bod. Actually I'm calling the Sculpta Bod Genius Gym Unit.
Dean: How are you spelling that?
Joe: Sculpta Bod?
Joe: S-C-U-L-P-T sculpt. A, B-O-D. Sculpt a bod.
Dean: Sculpt a bod.
Joe: Totally unique, trade markable. Got the domains, logo looks cool.
Dean: Okay cool so you got, that's the thing now this is where it becomes interesting now is to really play around, really figure out what would, if you've got some trainers that were working out of your place and St. John that the, to imagine what would it look like if you were one trainer looking to set up this as a way to go. What would it look like? What would be the business model and what could one person do, turn this into a real business opportunity for them?
Joe: That's a great question.
Joe: So I've had one coach who's actually, she actually does some of the accountability coaching for us and she's in the process of setting up a small training studio in her home, and she said I need one of these machines. This is the ultimate solution. There's no way I can get everything this can do, fit it in the same amount of space for the same amount of money. This is brilliant. So the average personal trainer who does want to have a solo personal training business has the challenge, has a challenge of fitting a bunch of different equipment they think they have to buy, spend maybe 6, 7, $8,000 on it all and then figure out who and how they're going to train the clients they want to try to attract and on all these things. The pro model's going to be $3,000, maybe $2850 or something. So it's going to be a heavier gaged steel. So they get the pro model for under $3,000.
It takes up 1/4th of the footprint of equipment they would need, so they could probably fit it where they couldn't fit everything else, and they can train a wider variety of people and in shorter amounts of time. So they basically have a more efficient, more successful business because of the parameters that are changing now.
Dean: Right. Yeah this makes total sense. So then it becomes now creating, this is where I talk about syndicating. This is what we were looking for is that to imagine that the way to scale this is really to figure out the best way to grow one unit of this, one trainer, in a duplicable way. That's the whole key to everything that I've done in the real estate world is that I figure out what do the realtors want? They want to primarily get listings.
They want to multiply their listings, they want to get referrals, convert leads, find buyers, and I've got the complete turnkey solutions for those things that were all tested and developed by working with one realtor to get that done and then multiplying it out to where thousands of people can use it. So you're right in that the, it's a different person to take that model and really grow it. You seemed like when we talked about that, that that's not really the exciting part of the business for you. And so it may be that there's somebody who, they see this, you've got a completely turnkey, ready to go system that's ready to duplicate and that somebody could then build out or like you said maybe even acquire a system like this that is a ready to scale system, opportunity.
Dean: I think that's the kind of exciting thing. In that whatever you can replicate in St. John, whatever you can figure out that is scalable and duplicable. If you've got even one person somewhere outside of St. John's that would be ready to take one of the machines and try and build their business around it, that would be a really valuable way to invest your, in the short term here. Your time, trying to crack that code. Because once you've got that figured out and you've then duplicated it, somebody else can do it, so you've got a preponderance of evidence that this works and that this is the fastest way to a six figure income for a trainer. What would be the dream come true for a trainer like this?
Dean: Is that goal? Is it a six figure income? Working their own, with their own clients?
Joe: Yeah I mean just going based on what I know being in this industry so long, seeing how many trainers are getting certified these days with a weekend certification to become a personal trainer, god if you say look I've got this unit, it's basically an all in one fitness center in the corner of your room, you can train all different kinds of people so you're open to expand your possibilities for clientele roster you can build. And training sessions are shorter so you could do a few more sessions per day. And here's the kind of income you could make. So if the average trainer can get, can clear a six figure revenue level for a year in their home with no overhead? For the average certified trainer that's gold. There are armies of them out there who would want to do that.
Dean: Right, that's the whole thing. So that's where you've got that opportunity, even though that alone doesn't, see the challenge is that often as an entrepreneur who's developed something it's not as exciting for you because hat feels like it's going backwards for you. You've already got that. You've already passed that level. You're already going beyond, but where this really becomes the opportunity for you now is to leave in your wake a system that can help other people do the same thing, but do it in a way that doesn't require you to do it.
Joe: Right right, totally agree. For me, it's a variation of seeing a franchise model of the studio, on a smaller level personal trainer one on one scale. It's a licensing variation of an individual type business model.
Dean: Yep. And so I think that, to get that on a foundation for you of creating that scale ready algorithm, getting a foundation of really solid recurring revenue that you've got proof statements like getting out to where you've got your first hundred people doing that system that way. That's really a great leaping point to come, then maybe jump off into the personal training with the high net worth people that you were talking about right? Based on that you're coming from a position of no matter what you've got this base of recurring revenue and a business that's growing and growing and hiring people or partnering with people who that would be their dream is to scale something.
Right like there are people just like we, I'm not a scaler. I have no interest in taking something from the scale ready algorithm up to something big. But where I can really make an impact is in conjunction with somebody who's an operator who has something that they want to scale.
Joe: Mm-hmm (affirmative)
Dean: And so to create, it call comes back to what I do with them is come down to the base unit which is the single cell that we're going to, the single yeast cell that everything's going to come off of and optimize that and create the scale ready algorithm and then there's a lot more people who can execute that than there are people who can create the scale ready algorithm. And you're a creator, that's your real thing. So you don't want to get caught up in feeling like you're limiting yourself to this is all I'm going to do for the rest of our lives is just punch out these new things. That doesn't sound creatively energizing to you.
Dean: But if you can, I'll tell you that the part of your brain that loves that I imagine your, are you familiar with the Colby index?
Joe: I did that when I was in strategic.
Dean: Okay great, so I imagine you're a high quick start on that.
Dean: Yeah so and that is, do you remember what your Colby was?
Joe: I don't, I'd have to dig it out, but I don't.
Dean: Well I'm a 4, 4, 10, 1, which means I'm a four fact finder, I'm a four follow through, I'm a 10 quick start and a one implementer. And so that means that I just have so many ideas I can't help myself. I can't stop it.
Joe: I'm with you.
Dean: And I love that. But here's the thing is that part of your brain doesn't really care what it's working on. If it's novel and unique, like you can achieve anything you want in your life if you can just constrain and focus that energy like a laser on the one thing with a finish line for it. Like you know that once I figure this out, I'm figuring this out to create something that's going to go on and on rather than focusing on creating the new thing or going and challenging yourself personally at the higher and higher level. Which is where that aspiration to work with high net worth people to work at the highest level of the personal training thing. Is really going to be, there's some juice around that, but functionally you're impacting far fewer people than you would be by creating a system that helps other people, you know?
Joe: Right right. I agree. I just pulled up my Colby, I'm 8, 4, 6, 3.
Dean: Okay. So there you go. So you're a high fact finder, so you like to get all the facts together before. Okay.
Joe: Definitely quick start. Yeah I'm with you, I mean I love the licensing package idea for other fitness professionals. The notion of spreading my methods to impact more people through other fitness professionals who are probably looking to differentiate themselves from the rest of the marketplace as well. I love that idea. That, building that out, I actually had a feeling you'd go there. And I love the idea. What scares me Dean is okay, how do I put the mechanics in place for this stuff?
Dean: Yeah. Well that's, part of it now is now you kind of take on this thing that where you get to do is you say what is the very best thing that I could do? What if I was only going to work with people within five miles or 10 miles of St. Johns? Of my studio in St. John's? And you start to amplify that. There are, I guarantee you more than 100 people who need and want to lose weight and get in shape and do all the things within St. John. So we always tend to have that whole conversation. If you're going to be the biggest band in the world, you've got to start by being the biggest band in St. John.
Dean: When you look at that it's like you've got to be the number one expert in St John. St. John's or St. John?
Joe: St. John's with an S.
Dean: St. John's with an s. Yeah you've got to be that, you're starting now. If you start thinking about it, if you've got to be the biggest fish in St. John's to think that way, to start to think what would happen if you kind of take it on as a mission in a way. You narrow your focus like that but you're doing it for a contained period of time.
And you know really, you realize now. You're almost 50, I just turned 51, and you realize now how fast time goes. And that in the context of everything, as healthy as you are you've got nothing but runway. You've got 25, 30 more really viable vibrant years of growing this. This is your life mission here, that it's really going to be an incredible thing when you look at it, what if I took six, eight, nine, 12 months and I'm only focused on really creating the case study program here.
Now I can then help 10 people do this at the next level of it. You start thinking about, you maybe adopt, not you personally, but you adopt one person as your and of one study. Where you take one person and you deploy all of the things that you know so far for that person on their behalf.
Dean: And use them as somebody who that's their mission is they would just be completely happy to have a six figure income and half a great life of helping people.
Joe: Yeah I think I have that person. It was the coach I was telling you about earlier. She's already said I want one of these once they're ready to go. This is my business.
Joe: And she's local.
Dean: Perfect. So there's the thing, I think that's the ... everything good is going to come from that. Once you get that protocol down, then it's about wrapping it in all these different things. Have you heard of these ghost kitchens? Have you ever heard that word?
Joe: No I don't think I have.
Dean: Ghost restaurants. Okay it's really fascinating.
Joe: Yes yes yes. I think you were speaking about this on a recent podcast right?
Dean: I did, absolutely. I'm fascinated by it. That there are restaurants who exist only on grub hub and seamless in New York. That they run nine different brands from the same kitchen. And so I look at your studio in St. John as potentially within St. John's having multiple approaches when you look at it that you've got people who, women who need to lose 100 pounds or women who just want to get in really great shape. You start to look at all the different avatars of who those potential people are and you're starting to create the plug and play system that you can then roll over into Jacksonville or into St. Augustine or whatever.
Joe: All over.
Dean: Yeah all over, that's the thing. Like literally, you look at, it's like how many orange fitness places are there? Planet fit, people get all the potential things if you slice up the country in 10 mile circles.
Joe: Right right. Yeah we're talking in the context of individual fitness pros and trainers buying one unit to have their own little business where they want to put that business. Whether it's their home or their garage or spare room.
Joe: Yeah it could be anywhere. Let alone the US. It could be international easily.
Dean: And it's got to start with, from that foundation. It's got to start from, you've got to have the duplicable model.
Joe: So that one example that you're talking about is having the prototype, another fitness pro. Here's the exact example. Christy the trainer set up this in her home.
Dean: Yep we've got everything, and then you can use a tool like gogoclients.com and you have all of the, that's what I've done with gogoagent.com. I took all of those tools which, the landing pages, the auto responders, the voice recorded messages, texting, all of the tools for a direct response business, wrapped into a CRM that now you can give them this whole turnkey system. Here's the Facebook ad, here's the landing page, here's the auto responders, here's the weekly messages to send to people, here's your newsletter, here's the marketing materials and the systems. Everything they need to just run it from their own version of it.
Joe: So they're not just getting the machine, they're getting the method and they're also getting the marketing and messaging system with it. So go go clients is a license able program that you put out, then yes?
Dean: Yeah so I'm modeling ... yeah go go clients, that's the stand alone tool. Anybody can use go go clients, because it's got all of those tools, landing pages, auto responders, everything all in one.
Joe: So I would subscribe to it? I'm sorry go ahead.
Dean: Yeah you can subscribe to it, certainly. $79 a month and it's unlimited. Got all of the, you send all of the e-mails, set up the landing pages, do all of the stuff with that, and but what I'm modeling with go go agent is I've taken all of those tools and then bundled them with all of my intellectual property specifically for real estate agents. So when you're looking at this system that you would be looking at as part of it, creating the sculpt a bod system, that includes that comes with their CRM and their landing pages and auto responders and all of the things that they would need to run the business. You could really set up the whole model that way.
Joe: So correct me if I'm wrong. I would or could sub license out then go go client...
Dean: Yeah absolutely. That's why I'm setting that up. You could do a white label version of go go clients that becomes the sculpt a bod system.
Joe: Right. Sculpt a bod pro trainer system.
Dean: That's exactly right.
Joe: So stick with me here, so trainer Tom would pay, he'd buy the machine then he's got a monthly marketing licensing customer support system for whatever, $150.
Joe: What do you think sounds fair off the top of your head for a trainer fitness pro to be paying into a system like this monthly?
Dean: That's all going to be, that's all going to be a matter of how much they can make and how much is done for them. So I think you want to get to a point where it becomes, what's the best thing you could do for somebody and how much would it be worth for them.
Dean: I mean certainly you're going to get into a point where somebody's paying a monthly membership part of it.
Joe: Oh yeah. That's critical I mean it's the continuity side of the business.
Dean: That's exactly right.
Joe: We're not just making something up, they need to continue to pay their licensing fee to use the sculpt a bod marketing to maintain their certification, and have that edge over the competition.
Dean: That's exactly right.
Joe: Plus the get the CRM, they get my marketing expertise and how to keep attracting clients and get new ones, et cetera.
Dean: Yes. That's exactly right.
Joe: Beautiful, beautiful. Love it.
Dean: Yeah. All right, I think we've hatched ourselves an evil scheme.
Joe: I don't live the word evil Dean, for me it's got to be a...
Dean: Evil is with love, yeah.
Joe: Yeah there you go.
Dean: It's so funny, I've used that in the Austin Powers Dr. Evil way.
Joe: Yes I love it.
Dean: But is it an evil scheme? It's so funny because I have a friend in Toronto and she made an evil schemes sticker for my journal, but the V was a heart, so it's evil with a heart in there, evil schemes.
Joe: It's the angel's tool.
Dean: That's exactly right.
Joe: I love it.
Dean: So there you go.
Joe: That's brilliant, good stuff. This has been helpful and I really appreciate it Dean, much appreciate it.
Dean: Yeah it's been fun. I'm glad we were able to do it.
Joe: Yes, I'm going to check out go go clients as I draft my master plan here based on what we spoke about and what's been churning around in my head and I will keep in touch, hopefully we'll see you soon again.
Dean: I was just going to say, whenever you're ready it would be good for you to come to break the blue print and we can go through the whole thing for three days. That would be the great way to lay it all out.
Joe: When is your next one?
Dean: End of the month. 29, 30, 31.
Joe: Oh that's soon. All right I'm going to check that out. Is it on, what is the site to check it out?
Dean: I'll give you the info, I'll send you all the stuff. But breakthroughdna.com is where we have all the info bomb.
Joe: Awesome. All right I'll be looking forward to checking that out. And either way hopefully we'll see you soon being that we're practically neighbors.
Dean: Yeah absolutely.
Joe: All right thanks a ton Dean, thank you.
Dean: Thanks, enjoyed it. Bye.
Joe: All right, bye.
Dean: And there we have it. Another great episode and I love when a good plan comes together. We've got, this whole idea of creating a scale ready algorithm by focusing on the highest impact thing that you can do if you've got something that you know is going to impact a lot of people, often the temptation is to try and think about how you can personally continue to do it at a higher and higher level. But the most impactful thing that you can do is often to think about how you can make it possible for other people to impact the world using the scale ready algorithm that you've already figured out.
So I think that's really a great lesson if you've got something that you think could scale in that way. So if you'd like to continue that conversation you can go to morecheeselesswhiskers.com and download a copy of the More Cheese Less Whiskers book and click on the be a guest link on the show, on the site, and you can be a guest on the show where we can hatch some evil schemes for you.
Evil with a heart. Now if you want to see where the opportunity for your business is, where the things that are either slowing or growing your business are with relation to the eight profit activators that we talk about, you can go to profitactivatorscore.com and try our profit activator score card. There are just eight mindsets that we want you to look at and see where you relate, which statement makes the most sense for you, and it'll identify where the big opportunity is for you.
So I will love to look forward to seeing your scorecard, and then maybe hatching some evil schemes with you on the show.