Branding Mechanics Introduction

Ihave had the privilege of working with Olympian weightlifter Dmitry Klokov on a few projects over the last five years. During that time, I’ve been able to watch him present his popular seminar. The way he begins it always struck me as both honest & effective.

He starts each seminar by reminding attendees that what he’s about to teach them is the Russian method of training. That doesn’t mean it’s the right way, or the only way. But it is a system, & one worth considering both in the macro & the micro.

Dmitry knows some of what he teaches will run counter to the lessons the athletes in front of him have learned elsewhere. By opening the day up with a recognition that his aim isn’t to convert them but simply expose them to another way of thinking, he’s giving the athletes space & permission to learn.

He does this because he knows that if they are not open to learning, if they think they already have the answers, he can’t help them. By acknowledging early that his goal is not to change minds but instead to introduce concepts, strategies, & his own experience, Dmitry is able to meet his athletes where they are. He knows none of them are about to move to Moscow to start training. But he also knows he has a lot to offer those willing to leave their ego in the locker room, listen, & work hard.

Like with Dmitry, I’ve been lucky to work with my friend Ben Bergeron for years. Like with Dmitry, I’ve attended Ben’s seminars to affiliate owners & coaches. Like with Dmitry, Ben starts those seminars by reminding attendees that those who will get the most out of the material are the ones who aren’t there to check the boxes. That those who will go back home inspired to make improvements will be the ones who aren’t seeking to validate themselves by looking for the things they’re already doing right. That those who consider all the material, who ask tough questions of it & themselves, & who are open to new ideas are the ones who will reap the most rewards.

It’s in the same spirit that I present this program to you. I believe it to be a comprehensive framework with the potential to elevate your gym’s branding & create more opportunities for you to impact more people. I’m confident that those who follow it closely & execute on the ideas presented will see results.

I also know that your gym is unique. Some of the suggestions in the program may not make sense for your business, for whatever reason. Here’s my only ask of you: That you try to see both the macro & the micro; that you do the work even when you can’t yet see how it directly relates to getting more people in your door; that you trust the process.

I’m confident that for those who do, the sky is the limit.

I designed the program for you to complete in order, as each Section builds into the next & off the one that comes before it. A series of questions make up each Section, presented to you in both audio & written form. You can find space to answer the questions in your Brandwork document.

It’d be easy to burn through all the material without taking the time to think about the questions. It’d be easy to skip over the challenge of revising your answers as you learn & contemplate more. It’d be easy to go through the program with an eye toward whatever marketing tips & tricks you can use today.

It will come as no surprise to you that I hope you don’t do this.

The true value of this program will come only by investing your energy & attention to the questions it presents you. It will come by giving yourself the space necessary to think about your business from both up in the sky & down in the dirt. It will come when you recognize that branding, like fitness, isn’t something you set & forget. That it’s something you’re always working on. That we're aiming for a low trajectory toward a distant horizon.

I’m excited for you to get started. You’re doing important work. I’m honored by the opportunity to help you do it better.