AJ Mihrzad found himself going through a rough period in life in his early twenties. He had chipmunk cheeks, back pain, and emotional insecurities from being 60 pounds overweight. He was partying a lot, doing a lot of drugs, and one night he overdosed, landing himself in the emergency room.
This experience opened AJ’s eyes that he needed to make a shift in his life and get his health figured out. He started studying exercise and nutrition and put a lot of hard work in the gym, helping him lose that 60 pounds. Others started noticing his results in the gym and came to him for help, resulting in his first personal training clients.
- What is Online Super Coach? [01:46]
- How did AJ Mihrzad become an entrepreneur and start running his own business? [02:23]
- How long did it take for AJ to become a full-time personal trainer? [05:18]
- How did AJ discover direct response marketing and transform his personal training business? [09:28]
- How did hiring a coach help AJ build his business? [11:34]
- What were the three things AJ learned from his coach in order to attract clients? [15:24]
- What kind of compelling offers did AJ put in front of people? [19:05]
- What helped AJ the most in order to be able to sell over the phone? [20:35]
- How did AJ hire and train his team of trainers? [25:48]
- How did AJ come up with the online personal training business? [27:59]
- How did AJ scale up his online personal training business? [33:42]
- How did AJ set up the Online Super Coach and make it into a profitable business? [36:33]
- What were some of the things that AJ did that made him successful in supporting the customer service side? [41:21]
- What was the one thing that had the biggest impact on AJ’s growth? [44:51]
The mistake that put AJ in a coma
One day, AJ made a huge mistake. He accidentally mixed up a supplement with his pre workout and resulted in him taking the equivalent of 3,000 cups of coffee. He was rushed to the ER where doctors were forced to put him into a medically induced coma for six days. When this happened, his heart stopped and he was pronounced dead in front of his family. Thankfully the doctors were able to revive him.
A second chance on life
AJ reflected on what happened and decided he needed to really pursue his dreams while he had the chance. He quit his full time job to pursue personal training. He was making $1,500/month at the time from his personal training and needed to double that.
Just by focusing on his training business full time he was able to hit his goal. Unfortunately for him, the 2008 recession hit and cut his business in half, back down to $1,500/month. AJ thought he was screwed.
A dive into direct response marketing
AJ saw a friend at the time who made the transition from selling personal training sessions to selling group bootcamps. AJ asked him how he made the switch and was introduced to direct response marketing.
AJ started to read everything he could find on the subject from authors like Dan Kennedy, Frank Kern and Eben Pagan. He also hired a coach for $5,000 to help him grow his business, named Chris McCombs.
Chris gave him three pieces of advice that would change the direction of his life.
How AJ grew from $1,500/month to over $8,000/month in income
Chris told AJ to take action on three things.
- Set a date to switch to group training.
- Instead of selling sessions for $60/hour, sell the results – a 3-6 month transformation.
- Call everyone in his phone and offer them this group training program
Making these changes helped AJ grow from working with 5-6 clients per day to 50-60 clients per day and increased his income to over $8,000/month.
Scaling to multiple six figures
With this new system, AJ knew he needed to find leverage and scale. He hired a personal trainer which allowed him to focus his time on generating phone calls and signing people up for his program through Google Adwords and local search traffic.
This switch helped him grow to multiple six figures and eventually max out his facility. Living in New York, rent was very expensive and committing to a larger facility and lease seemed daunting.
He saw others at the time starting to create online courses teaching about nutrition and fitness and this gave him an idea around how he could transform his business
Reaching seven figures
AJ decided to make the leap into online personal training. He used the exact same systems of generating leads and sales calls as he used in his New York based training program.
The switch he made was he now tried to persuade these leads that signing up for a $1,000, six-month online video program would be better for them then training in person. It worked so AJ decided to switch all his sales to this online program which freed him up from the expense of trainers or paying rent.
Using this new model, AJ scaled his advertisement, hired another sales person and started selling his packages for $1,000 and $5,000. Making this switch is what ultimately helped AJ scale his business to $1.2M in sales and 90% profit.
This column is brought to you by LeadQuizzes and their series, Journey to 7 Figures. To listen to the entire podcast interview with AJ Mihrzad and get advice and inspiration from other seven figure entrepreneurs, click here.
More from AJ Mihrzad
“Coaching really works well for me, so that was my unfair advantage over other people.” — AJ Mihrzad
“It’s one of the hardest things to do, to find a hungry market that is underserved and you create something that’s leveraged. ” — AJ Mihrzad
Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to this podcast! And don’t forget to leave me a rating and a review on iTunes!