Business For Unicorns

Seen My *Newest* Project? [Gym World Worldwide]

Keeping it brief today, but wanted to be sure you saw my newest project. That’s right… MOAR MF CONTENT! My pals John Franklin and Mateo Lopez from Kilo have joined forces with yours truly to start a new kind of fitness industry YouTube show: Gym World Worldwide! We...

My Birfday!

But Monday was my birthday.  I’ve cheated death.  Yet again!! Between my birthday and the time management workshop I did a few weeks back, I’ve got time on the brain. To that end, I wanted to share a resource with you that can help you use your time more effectively....

MF’s *Book* (!!!) Is HERE

I’ve completed the book! It’s done! Huzzah! CLAIM YOUR COPY Now as a loyal subscriber, here’s a warning: this book is a compilation of BFU emails written over a two year period. This means if you luuuurve this here weekly email, you may have already read all these...

Happy New Year [FREE Resource]

First things first, it’s not too late to grab a spot for my time management workshop. I’ll be making the magic this coming Saturday, Jan 7th from 10am to 5pm est virtually on Zoom. Although live attendance is strongly encouraged, all registrants will get the recording...

Most Popular Podcasts

I hope you’re getting some extra downtime with your family as 2022 winds down. Since I know you may have a bit more free time on your hands over the holidays, I wanted to share some of our most popular BFU podcasts of 2022 (as determined by downloads). For your...

Baby Tiger [Painful Lesson]

*** Long one today. But there’s a huge takeaway here and almost no one talks about this issue. Grab a cup of coffee *** There I was,  Standing in front of the entire team of MFF trainers. And crying. Now, I’m an emotional guy. I tear up a lot. (Just like Steve Jobs....

Did You Catch This?

In today’s Missive of Love, I wanted to share some of my most popular fitness business YouTube videos to date. In the grand scheme of things, my lil’ YouTube channel venture is still a glistening lil’ newborn content-making baby. But I’m really proud of how it’s...

Sharing Finances With Your Team?

In today’s missive, I shall cover a common question for gym owners AND a model for thinking about the answer. “Should I share financial numbers with my team?” The super short answer is “Yep!” But you have to provide some context. Here are points that need to be...

A (Counter-Intuitive) Facilities Tip…

Here’s a quickie pro–tip to best nurture your facility. When making improvements, don’t do everything all at once. If you’re anything like me, you like to get THINGS DONE. FAST. (I have many lovely qualities. Patience is not among them.) So when I’m thinking about...

“It Worked So Well, I Stopped Doing It!”

First up, want to give you a gentle reminder, you have until tomorrow to sign up for my upcoming time management workshop and save $200. I’ll be hosting it over Zoom on January 7th from 10am est to 5pm est. Although live attendance is strongly encouraged, we will be...

Who We Are

We’re just a few days away from the closing of the Early Bird window for the Unicorn Society’s 2023 enrollment… So I want to shamelessly talk about the humans who provide the BFU coaching magic.  If you’re looking for support in growing your training gym, you have one...

Exactly What I Track (Personal, Financial, Business)

First off, reminder: this is one of your only chances of the year to join a crew of some of the fitness industry’s most successful gyms AND get personal coaching from Michael Keeler, Pete Dupuis, Ben “the Secret Weapon” Pickard, and yours truly.  To learn more about...

Top Lessons From A Unicorn Society Member Turned COO

Today we have a guest post from BFU coach (and now COO!), Ben “The Secret Weapon” Pickard.  Ben was a client for many years. Since we just opened up enrollment for the 2023 Unicorn Society, I’ve asked him to share a bit about his experience. He also includes one super...

3 Takeaways From My #1 Tool [I Legit Cried To My Wife]

I had a pretty intense experience recently… For the first time in years –– possibly since I wrote them –– I went into old journals and reviewed my planned 5-year goals from ten years ago. The years described were 2017- 2020 (written in 2012-2015). As I flipped through...

Best Writing Resources

If you run a training gym, sometimes you’re going to have to put the proverbial pen to paper. As long time readers know, your beloved author suggests consistent email marketing to your community of current and future clients. These emails need to build value by being...

Should You Have Your Prices On Your Website?

We’re having our biggest Unicorn Society retreat EVER this weekend in Boston. If you’re interested in attending future ones, we’re almost ready to unveil our 2023 calendar so our Unicorn Society members can make plans. We go to awesome cities, have great meals and...

On Aging and Leadership

Students of the human brain are aware that different cognitive abilities peak at different times in life. Younger brains are more agile. They have more of what’s called “fluid intelligence.” Younger brains have lots of youthful vigor and energy. They have an easier...

EXACTLY What MFF Spends Money On [Breakdown]

For today’s missive, I wanted to share a video I did recently for my YouTube channel. Have you ever wondered exactly how a multimillion dollar training gym allocates its budget? Click the thumbnail below to find out how MFF spends every dollar that comes in the door!

Make Me Feel Welcomed

Michael here. It’s been a while. Happy September! Let’s chat about first impressions.  Have you ever been to a traditional Japanese restaurant?  Their front door almost always has a bell or buzzer to announce that someone has entered. Then you are ALWAYS greeted by...

How To Actually Get SOPs To Work For Your Gym

This week we’ve got BFU’s “Secret Weapon” Ben Pickard sharing some actionable tips on create clear standard operating procedures. Ben is one of the greatest “systems minds” I’ve ever met in the fitness industry. Give this a read and go take action! Do you ever feel...

31 Ways to Get More Leads

If you’re looking for more leads, there are three ways: Add more lead-generating activities Add more lead-nurturing activities Improve the execution of your current activities Our focus today is the first two pieces. Below is a relatively comprehensive tour of your...

The Thing I Don’t Say Enough

I get stuck in a bubble sometimes. You see, some things that are taken for granted in the fitness business circles I move in. These principles seem obvious to me.  But that’s the Curse of Knowledge for ya. It lulls me into assuming we’re all on the same page about how...

Can’t Afford a Sales Team?

Michael, your friendly substitute teacher here, taking over Mark’s email this week.  Instead of rolling out the a/v cart to play a VHS tape, let’s talk about sales.  Take a deep breath. It’s going to be alright. I promise.  Here’s what I hear all the time from gym...

Biggest branding mistake

Got a quick thought for you on visual branding. Most training gym owners are not passionate about design. I totally get that. But there’s still no reason to make the most common mistake I see in branding. Good branding, above all else, should be CONSISTENT. Pick a...

Time Management, Culture, and More

Yours truly is still adjusting to NewDadlandia, so for today’s email, I wanted to direct you to the most recent video from my YouTube Channel. You see, all of time management really just boils down to five steps. And WOW, am I gonna get a chance to finetune my time...

Email For My Friend Mark Fisher

Since yours truly is busy with New Dad Life, we’ve got a guest email from my pal John Franklin of Gym Lead Machine. Fun fact: John has been a pal of mine and Keeler’s for many years. Before his current business, John ran several highly successful Crossfit gyms in the...

MF’s Latest Keynote Takeaways

We are now two weeks away from baby MFF’s due date. Yowza! With a baby on the way, now’s not a great time for me to be on the road. So it’s pretty awesome that I can now do virtual keynotes from the comfort of my own home. Today I have the good fortune of delivering...

About Us

Since we’re just a few days away from the closing of the Early Bird window for the Unicorn Society’s midyear enrollment… I want to shamelessly talk about the humans who provide the BFU coaching magic. You see, if you’re looking for support in growing your training...

What Should Happen EVERY Session?

Now, we all know that we should have “standard operating procedures” for our training gyms. But sometimes, this can feel overwhelming. Even the term “standard operating procedure” can sound daunting. The good news is that if you do this right, it should be simple....

MF’s Favorite Books for Training Gym Owners

A few thoughts on this list: Want to learn more about how I get through so many books? Lucky you! Since writing the original version of this post, I’ve outlined my entire system in this post HERE (NOTE: This too needs an update, but it’s a solid overview). This list...

Time Away From Your Business…

First off, in case you missed it on the socials, I’m proud to announce I’ve recently become an investor in Alloy Personal Training, an emerging fitness franchise. I’m really excited about this opportunity. I expect to learn many lessons and become even more helpful to...

The Time I Felt Lowest About Myself (and MFF)

I’ve recently found myself digging into the rabbit hole of “mimetic theory” and the work of philosopher Rene Girard. Girard was a professor at Stanford and was a big influence on a few Silicon Valley luminaries. I was vaguely familiar with his work, but after reading...

Takeaways from Miami [Unicorn Society Retreat]

Spending a few days with some of our training gym owners, enjoying Miami, and working on our businesses is more fun than a barrel of monkeys on LSD! In addition to our usual quarterly planning session, this meet-up’s topic was leadership.  As usual, the BFU team...

Easy Actionable Tip [Quick]

Keeping this one super quick today, as we’re in prep mode for our first Unicorn Society retreat of 2022. And that means I’m living dat good Miami life with the other unicorn-lovers! But worry not, I shan’t leave you hanging without any Thursday goodness. Today’s...

10 Ways to Grow Your Training Gym

Time sensitive offers are a great way to encourage your prospects to finally try out — or return to — your training gym. Now there’s a bit of an art to this. We don’t want to “train” our audience to always wait for something special. But a clear call to action and a...

Introducing BFU’s Pete Dupuis [NEW]

Want to share a very important point that came up in our private Unicorn Society Facebook group. One of our members shared this insightful thought in a post: “I thought I was running a people first business. But now I realize it’s been a people pleaser business.”...

The Requirement

I’m not one for dogmatism. But some principles are essentially laws of nature. And if you’re looking to run a successful training gym? Success requires investment. This is true no matter how you define “success.” Want to make a bigger impact with your business? Want...

How Do I Find Good Employees For My Training Gym?

(Diligent readers will note I shared a version of this email over the summer. But since I know staffing is still an issue, I wanted to share it again.) Finding qualified team members is one of the biggest challenges of owning a training gym. And the stakes are high to...

What Kind of Help do You Need?

Welcome to a brand spankin’ New Year. 🙂 As we think about the year ahead, I wanted to drop you a short note and invite you to get crystal clear on what kind of help you need. You see, sometimes, we know the root of a given issue and we know how to solve it. We just...

5 Top Posts of the Year

Have some extra time this weekend to catch up on some reading? Here are some of our most popular posts from over the last year. They’ll help you hit the ground running in 2022! Why MFF Closed a Location [$500k Lesson] - My scars are your lessons! Haha. All kidding  —...

Don’t Drive Angry

Quick thought for you today... If you run a business, I bet that sometimes you have feelings. This is normal. It means you care! And feelings can be helpful signals. We don’t want to dismiss them or attempt to block them out and repress them. That never works anyway....

You May Unsubscribe…

You can usually trust this missive for a weekly heapin’ of actionable fitness business know-how. But long time readers know your friendly author’s commitment to a never-ending liberal arts education. You see, if you want to win at your business — and be the best human...

How Can I Sell Without Feeling Sleezy?

Today we’re going to cover how to sell your services without feeling sleezy. First point: if you’re concerned about this, you probably don’t need to worry. At the end of the day, those of us that are concerned about turning people off or being too pushy usually don’t...

2022

Seems hard to believe. But we’re a stone’s throw from 2022. If you don’t already have a dedicated 2022 planning session in the books, now would be a great time to pencil one in. The Unicorn Society is gathering in Nashville this weekend to prepare for the new year. In...

15 Traits of Successful Training Gym Owners

As we chat with training gym owners for the January enrollment of the Unicorn Society, I’ve been reflecting on the differences between those who just get by and those who thrive.  (Want to learn more about the Unicorn Society? Go HERE.) Listen, this can be tough biz....

36 hours Of Pain

One of the hardest parts of running a business is “ripping off band-aids.” The band-aid in question can be any number of situations demanding a change: A pricing model that won’t allow for profitability A long term employee that’s no longer working out A new hire that...

Simple Marketing Calendar For a Training Gym [Easy]

I hope this missive finds you well and drinking something seasonal including but not limited to a pumpkin spice latte, apple cider, or a pumpkin ale. #basic If you haven’t already put some thought into leveraging Black Friday/ Cyber Monday, now’s the time to get...

Should You Bill Weekly or Monthly?

You know, it’s very rare that I speak in absolutes when it comes to success as a training gym owner.  But this is one of those moments. Virtually all members of the Unicorn Society have made or are making this change. I promise you, this is a move you need to make...