Jim Labadie is a fitness entrepreneur, sales expert and speaker. You can download a free copy of his new e-book "63 Must-Have Sales Tips for Personal Trainers" at www.ptsalestips.com.

Retaining personal training clients requires effort and a sensible approach. Although retention seems to be a complete mystery to most business owners, it can be made much easier with simple systems and strategies in place. The following tips will make it easy for any personal training department to retain more clients for a longer period of time.

Deliver Great Results
How does something so obvious make the list? Simple. Many personal trainers aren't particularly good at what they do. And while this may seem like a prerequisite to some, many clubs are so focused on getting new clients and new members that delivering on their promises becomes an afterthought.

Additionally, your personal training staff must deliver significant results to clients in the first 30 days of their training. To do so, you must have a proven exercise plan for each client and a solid nutritional approach that consistently delivers results.

Be Selective and Exclusive
Members need to know something about your personal training department: It's not for everyone. That might seem completely counterintuitive, but it's all in how you position it.

Essentially, you want members to know that your personal trainers can deliver such amazing results so quickly for a reason: Members who are selected into the personal training program have committed to being walking, talking billboards. They have agreed to hold up their end of the bargain and stay compliant with the program.

Not only will this create an aura of success surrounding your personal trainers, but it will also make current, and high-paying, clients feel special and a part of something exclusive. Both of these are good for your bottom line.

Recognize and Reward
People love to be recognized and rewarded. When a client reaches a specific fitness goal they originally set with their personal trainer, recognize them for their achievement either by announcing it in your club's newsletter or blog or by posting it on a bulletin board. Trainers should make a point to inform other clients of the success, too.

Of course, you need the permission of the client to do this. Some goals are more private than others. But make sure when asking the client for permission that you position the question correctly. You want to ask for their permission to share their success so they can help inspire others in the club. Many people love the idea of being seen as a leader, role model and inspiration.

Also, reward their behavior with small gifts and tokens of appreciation. A simple congratulations card can go a million miles towards retaining a client, but most business owners miss these big opportunities to strengthen their relationship and create a raving fan.

Clients who have been with your personal training department for a significant amount of time should receive a whole other level of reward. Why not send clients who have spent a small fortune with one of your trainers on a new clothes shopping spree? Partner with a local shopping or image consultant and give them a complete makeover. Plus, again, make a big deal out of it in the club. Make sure every member knows about it and have pictures of the entire event on your Web site or blog. Even better, take video and make it available online.

The Little Things
Lastly, go the extra mile and make sure your trainers know all the significant details about their client's life: anniversary, birthday, the birthdays of their children and any other big days, such as graduations.

Additionally, make sure pets are always taken into consideration. People love their pets. So anytime your business can involve them is a good thing. In fact, you may want to create some specific outdoor events just for clients/members and their pets.

Creating raving fans and retaining clients really isn't too hard. Most clubs are too busy chasing after the new member to appreciate the high-paying clients who are adding significantly to their revenues. Do not make that mistake.