Business doesn’t get much leaner than a personal trainer in the park. But how do you keep that fat-free business model as you scale up from one-man-band to global brand? Joe Wicks, The Body Coach, shares some quick tips on keeping your business lean.
Joe Wicks, The Body Coach, is one of the most impressive examples of rapid business growth in recent years. He’s gone from running park bootcamps, to a global fitness and nutrition brand. From borrowing £1k from his dad for boot camp gym equipment, to buying his mum her council house. Keen to share the stacks of business acumen he’s built up in that short time, we’ve compiled his best bites on how to run a lean company and build business muscle.
1. Sell the sizzle, not the sausage
Joe’s highly successful range of cookbooks sell so well not just because his recipes are easy to follow and full of flavour – you don’t know that until you’ve bought the book and cooked them – but because he’s created a personal brand around them. You want to get in shape, you want to sculpt your body, you like Joe Wicks, you want to cook and eat real food. So you buy the books, you go to his website for exercise videos, you buy the DVD. Joe is selling the sizzle – that delicious, mouth-watering sound and smell of a sausage in a frying pan, not the string of raw, unappealing sausages coiled into a plastic tray.
“I’ve tossed out the rule book when it comes to the dreaded diets. I’ve stood up and said diets don’t work; you need to eat more of the right foods and exercise less and you will burn body fat. Then I’ve made sure that people can get all the information they need to make the right choices – whether it’s my free videos or my Lean in 15 meals on social media, one of my cookbooks, my DVD or my TV shows, my message is the same.”– Joes Wicks, The Body Coach
2. Don’t throw money at shiny new things, seek out like-minded people instead
Social media is arguably the making of The Body Coach, Joe’s brand and alias. He could’ve lost a lot of pounds (not lbs) trying to grow his business through traditional marketing routes at the start. Instead, he invested in coach and mentor Bev James, who advised him to (among other things) maximise the massive potential of social media. He didn’t jump straight into chasing books and TV deals with expensive agencies. Working out where to invest before you pledge your savings to the sexy-looking stuff is the basis of lean business.
“Bev basically taught me to work smarter, not harder, which is lean business, right? We meet up and make plans about exactly what to do next, no waffle, just smart and focused plans” – Joe Wicks, The Body Coach
3. Don’t starve your business to death
Being lean isn’t the same as starving yourself, and the same is true in business. You need to feed your business with new ideas and the right investment every day if you want it to move forward and grow. That means talking to customers, staying on top of innovations in marketing and payments technology, and knowing how consumer habits are changing. Then working out your next move. The idea is to smell what’s selling, not kill yourself trying to flog the stuff that used to be popular.
“The most important thing anyone can do for a healthy lean body is to make sure you don’t starve yourself and I want that mentality throughout my business – don’t starve yourself, don’t starve your business. You should enjoy building your empire; put in the right fuel, enjoy the journey and you’ll get results.”
– Joe Wicks, The Body Coach