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Convert Trials Into Paying Customers While You Sleep With TrainHeroic and Zapier

Athletes from around the world can now sample your training community experience in the TrainHeroic Marketplace with a free 7-day trial.

You want to create a welcoming experience that converts the person “walking through the door” into a raving fan. You don’t have the time to manually send an email to each and every new trial athlete, but you know welcoming them is vital. What do you do? Automate! 

We’ve made this possible by integrating our platform with Zapier. 

By following the guide below, you can set up a series of emails that will automatically send to every one of your incoming trial athletes. Whether you get 10 trials per month or 10,000, set up the automation once and let Zapier and MailChimp do the rest.   

By implementing a similar email flow, TrainHeroic was able to increase our conversion rate by 10 points. If you are serious about growing your online training business, automating a welcome email series is the #1 biggest  return on your investment. 

We estimate the full setup following this guide to take roughly 2 hours. 

Buckle in, do this work at a laptop or desktop, and get ready to automate like the pros.

Chapters:

// don’t leave your athletes feeling unwelcome

Let us paint a picture…It’s your first-day training with your new coach / trainer. You walk into a new gym for the first time. People are moving, sweating, getting in their training sessions, talking in small groups to one another. 

No one comes to welcome you in. 

You’re in a gym, but is it the right gym? 

You can’t visibly discern the staff from the folks training – much less make out who your coach is, where you should go, or even if you’re in the right place. 

You’ve got a bit of that awkward feeling of walking into a party your friend invited you to, but you can’t find them and don’t know anyone else around. 

What do you do?

As a business owner you’d never let this happen in your gym, right? 

Running a training community in the TrainHeroic Marketplace should be no different. You want to create a welcoming experience that converts the person “walking through the door” into a raving fan, and their first moments with you will make all the difference. 

// Send automated welcome emails to athletes who start a trial of your programming using Zapier

Never heard of Zapier? No worries.

Zapier is the self-proclaimed “Easiest way to connect your apps and automate workflows”. And we agree.

Zapier allows users to connect apps to send information and signals to one another. We chose to connect with Zapier for a few reasons:

  • They are focused on helping small business owners like you automate marketing, communication, sales, and admin functions like “the big guys”
  • They connect with over 2,000 apps making the possibilities almost endless. (Hint-hint) today is the first announcement of more to come. 
  • They are SUPER user-friendly

So, what does this mean for you? Well, among nearly countless possibilities, it means that TrainHeroic now can send a signal to your email service provider (ESP) letting it know that someone has started a trial of your training community. You can use that to trigger a series of emails to welcome and onboard that new athlete. 

Even though the possibilities are endless, we wanted to provide you with an A-Z guide. So, we’ve chosen MailChimp as our recommended ESP. We’ll use MailChimp in our examples here, but you can easily use any other ESP you like. 

If you’re not already using an ESP, MailChimp is a great introduction to email marketing for small businesses in particular. It’s user-friendly and integrates with many apps that help you to automate tasks. A big bonus is tracking the performance and engagement of your emails, a feature you don’t get when using Gmail, for example.

We recommend purchasing the Standard plan because it’s the most affordable plan that allows you to create a series of automated emails.

We do not recommend running these onboarding campaigns through Gmail. Yes, Zapier does integrate with Gmail. Yes, you probably use Gmail on a daily basis, but Gmail is not a business-oriented email service provider. Recipients cannot unsubscribe from your emails, which is not best practice. And, you can’t add the flavor packet to Gmail emails that you can with a service like MailChimp.

// Email copy and creative: building engaging emails that deliver the right message at the right time

When building your series of emails, it’s important to note that TrainHeroic also sends a series of emails to athletes throughout their 7-day trial. 

Why do we do this?

We want to make sure that athletes are comfortable with using the app as quickly as possible, this way they can jump right into their training. We’ve seen that athletes who log a session on their first day are 3X more likely to convert. So knowing this, we specifically cover how to use the app as an athlete and provide helpful guidelines for getting started. The faster they get started, the quicker they can engage with you, the team, and get their first session logged.

We also want to form good habits early on. We express the importance of logging their sessions so you stay informed on their training, progress, or setbacks so you have the tools and the data to be as informed as possible. 

TrainHeroic is also your client’s resource for any technical support. As always, if an athlete has questions about their account or they need technical support, direct them to our help desk and customer support team.

Our goal with these emails is to let you focus on coaching. We’ll tell them the nitty-gritty details on using the app and providing technical support so you don’t have to.

You focus on coaching, we’ll handle the rest. 

Topics we cover:

  • Getting athletes to log their first session with a quick how-to video 
  • Using TH Chat to connect with you and the team
  • How to share their session stats on Instagram
  • Viewing Profile Analytics to track their progress

Build and design your emails

Below, we’re going to lay out recommended email topics & suggested copy. As you read through, begin building all four of your email templates in MailChimp. If you’re starting from scratch and need help getting started with templates, follow this MailChimp guide.
This is where you can have fun because it’s your chance to get your new client acclimated to you as well as the culture of your training community. That’s why we wanted to give you full control over the look, feel, and copy within these emails by using MailChimp. 

We recommend sending a series of 4 emails over the 7-day trial. We designed this to align with the emails that TrainHeroic is also sending. 

Day 1: Welcome

Day 2: FAQ’s

Day 3: Communication

Day 7: Upsell/cross-sell 

 

We’ve included email templates from our faux-brand Doug’s Gym to give you some inspiration and insight into what these emails can look like.

Day 1

This is your first chance to be that friendly face, give a warm welcome, set the stage, and get them excited on their first day of training – just like you would in the gym. 

Think about the following as if you were physically in the gym with this athlete: 

What would you run through with them? 

What do they need to know? 

What are they going to love about being part of your training community? 

These are clear calls to action you can put in this email. 

And remember that starting the free trial was the first sale to this client, to keep them for the 7-day trial and beyond, you need to reinforce the sale. Remind them why they made the decision to pick your training in the first place. You can do this by reinforcing your positioning statement, your promise to your customer that differentiates you from other coaching programs. 

Ideas for inspiration:

  • Create a welcome script, or better yet, a video to hype up the athlete
  • Let them know where to start. Do they just jump right in? 
  • Make intros to your community – have the athlete introduce themself in TH Chat 
Use our template (including product images) as a starting point with this link.  Note: you’ll need a MailChimp account to access this. Don’t forget to edit all links including social.

Day 2

There is where you can address FAQs. You know they will come up, so why not address them early on? Any friction a client experiences in their first couple of days can delay their training, or worse, cause them to not train at all. So put them at ease and put your commonly asked questions here. 

Ideas for inspiration:

  • I’m new to the program, Where should I start?
  • How should I warm-up / cool down? 
  • Can I swap exercises if equipment isn’t available?
  • Can you help me track my diet & nutrition? 
  • Can I post videos for form check?
  • Where do I go for support help?
  • How do I update my working max?
Use our template as a starting point with this link.  Note: you’ll need a MailChimp account to access this. Don’t forget to edit all links including social.

Day 3

Day 1 & 2 are designed to make clients feel welcomed, address questions, and help them get started with logging. On day 3 we’re going to focus on communication. Your communication and involvement as a coach are what sets you apart from your competition. This is where you can hone in on the benefits your clients get when part of your team and what sets you apart from other teams out there. 

How involved are you with your team? What they can expect from you? Do you do weekly check-ins? Video reviews? How do you stay engaged while coaching remote? Let them know here. 

Use our template (including product images) as a starting point with this link.  Note: you’ll need a MailChimp account to access this. Don’t forget to edit all links including social.

Day 7

Day 7, and it’s the last day of their trial. Your goal here is simple: conversion. 

Drive your value home, let them know what else you offer as a coach, and encourage their friends to join. This is where we’ll work in upsell, cross-sell, and “pre-marketing”. 

If your client started as month-to-month, tell them about your annual plan, especially if you offer a discount for upgrading. Put a time limit on that discount to create a sense of urgency.

Do you coach other training communities in the TH marketplace? Perhaps a client really likes your coaching style but they didn’t start with the right programming for them. If you offer other programs that span different ability levels or goal-specific training, let them know so you can keep them in your organization. This is called pre-marketing. 

Referrals and word of mouth marketing are a great, free way for you to gain more clients. Ask the athlete to invite a friend to train with them. Include a link to your TrainHeroic Marketplace Page so they can send it to their friends and take advantage of the free 7-day trial. 

Lastly, get them to follow you on social, subscribe to your blog, YouTube channel, or anything else you offer. The deeper your connection with these athletes, the more value you provide them, and the longer they’ll stay a paying fan. 

Use our template (including product images) as a starting point with this link.  Note: you’ll need a MailChimp account to access this. Don’t forget to edit all links including social.

// creating email automation with TrainHeroic, Zapier, and MailChimp

If you’re a coach who has more than one team in the TrainHeroic Marketplace, you may want to send different emails for each team. For example, each of your teams might have a different logo and branding. Or maybe you have a beginner team and an advanced team and you’d like to send different messaging to each. Rather than send one generic email to all of your athletes, you can use automation to send team-specific emails. 

If you coach one team and don’t need to indicate in Mailchimp who is on what team, then you can skip this step. 

We do this by creating a custom field in Mailchimp. This will allow us to send the Team Name associated with each athlete into Mailchimp.

1. Click Audience from the left-hand menu then Signup forms 

2. Locate Form builder and hit Select

3. On the right-hand side, locate Add a field then select Text

4. Fill in the field label. We’re going to use Team Name.

Using a Field tag allows you to pull an athlete’s team name into the email copy for additional personalization. We used TEAMNAME which we can be easily referenced in emails.

Once you’ve filled in both of those fields, select Save Field.

5. Now, select All Contacts from the left-hand menu. You will notice a new Team Name column.

Later in this guide, we will show you how to send Team Name into MailChimp from Zapier.

 

Set up a tag in MailChimp

Now that you have your email templates built, we’re going to create a Tag in MailChimp. Tags will label your contacts, keep them organized, and ensure the right people are receiving the right emails. The automated workflow we’ll be building is going to rely on tags.
  1. To get started, select Audience in the left navigation then Tags.
2. Now select Create Tag
3. Give your tag a name (such as Athlete Trial) then select Create.

Creating your automated campaign

Now that you created your Athlete Trial tag, you’re ready to set up the automated email campaign.
1. Select Campaigns in the left navigation
2. Click Create Campaign toward the top right corner of your screen

 

3. Select Email
4. Click the Automated tab then the Tags tab.
5. Give your campaign a name then click Begin.

Build your workflow

We will now tell MailChimp what emails to send and when. 
1. To set up the first email, select Edit next to Please select a tag
2. We want this email to send right when the trial is initiated, so change the delay to Immediately. Under settings, select the tag you created for trial athletes. This will ensure that only athletes who started a trial will receive this email. Then click Update Trigger in the top right corner.

Setting up multiple workflows (for coaches with multiple training communities)

If you have multiple teams and want to send different campaigns to each team, we will now add an additional filter to the workflow. If you don’t have multiple teams in the TrainHeroic Marketplace, you can skip this step.

1. Select Add next to Filter by segment or tag.

Check the box then select Contacts match the following conditions

2. Select the dropdown and locate the custom field you previously created: Team Name.

Next, indicate which team this campaign applies to.

Team Name is <enter your team name>

Make sure spelling and capitalization are correct or else the filter may not work properly.

3. When finished, select Save Segment in the top right corner.

Now, you have told this workflow to only send to athletes who started a trial and who are part of a particular team.

Adding your emails to the workflow

Now we’ll add the emails you built earlier into this automation. 
1. Select Design Email
2. Fill in or update the following fields to name your email, give it a subject line, add preview text, edit the sender name and sender email address if needed. Then hit Next
3. Since you already created your email templates, select Saved Templates and pick the first email you will be sending in your sequence. Then hit Next.
4. Once you’ve reviewed your email and are happy with the result, select Save and Continue.
5. Your first email setup is done. Next, let’s set up the second email in your sequence by selecting Add Another Email.
6. For the next email, we want it to send 1 day after the previous email is sent. You’ll notice the trigger already defaults to 1 day so you can leave it as is. Select Design Email.
7. Same as before, name your email, give it a subject line, add preview text, and edit the sender name and sender email address if needed. Then hit Next.
8. Select your second email from the Saved Templates tab then hit Next.
9. Review your email, make any desired changes then select Save and Continue.
10. To set up your third email, click Add Another Email.
11. The third email will also send one day after the previous email is sent, so you can keep the trigger set to 1 day. Select Design Email.
12.  Name your email, give it a subject line, add preview text, edit the sender name and sender email address if needed. Then hit Next. 

 

13. Pick your third email template from your Saved Templates. Review your email and once done, hit Save and Continue.

Next, select Add Another Email to build the fourth and last step in the sequence. 

 

14. This trigger will need to be adjusted. We will be adding a 4 day delay to this email so that it sends on the last day of a 7-day trial. Edit the trigger, change the delay to 4 days, then hit Update Trigger.

 

15. One last time, select Design Email.

 

16. Follow the same instructions as before and fill in the necessary fields. Hit Next. 

 

17. Select your template, review it, then select Save And Continue.

Now you have all 4 email automations set up within your workflow. 

 

Testing your workflow

Before you go live, you’ll want to test the automation you just built. 
1. Before moving on, let’s test what we just built. In the top right hand corner, select Send a Test Email.

 

2. Select Test all 4 emails, decide who should receive the test emails, then hit Send Test.

 

3. For testing purposes, you will receive all 4 emails to your inbox at once, regardless of the triggers we set. This is your chance to review each email and make sure the subject line, design, & layout meets your expectations.  

If you’d like to make any adjustments, select Design Email to head back to edit your templates. 

Once you’re ready to move forward, hit Next. You’ll see a recap of the workflow you just built. 

Here you can review the audience, tracking, and emails that will send in this workflow.

Make sure everything looks correct. If not, select Edit next to the section that needs to be adjusted. 

Once you’re ready to launch, select Start Sending in the bottom right corner. 

 

4. You will see that this campaign has a Sending label which indicates that it’s running. Now, anytime a Trial Athlete tag is added to a user in MailChimp, your trial workflow will trigger.

Congrats on setting up your first campaign in MailChimp!

 

// Setting up your first zap: connecting zapier, trainheroic, and mailchimp

Now that your campaign is set up, we will automate it through Zapier to connect TrainHeroic and MailChimp.
Before you begin, create a free Zapier account by following this link.
  1. Log into your TrainHeroic Coach account. Click the drop down in the top right corner then select Zapier Integrations.
2. You’ll be taken to the Zapier Integration page in your settings. Now let’s connect to Zapier by clicking Generate Zapier Magic Pass Key.

3. You’ll be directed to the TrainHeroic Integration page on Zapier. 

Scroll down on the page and locate the section labeled Connect TrainHeroic to 3,000+ Apps. This is where you will find our pre-built templates to help you connect supported apps even faster. 

 

Select Try it next to the template named “Send Mailchimp welcome campaigns for new trial starts in TrainHeroic Marketplace”

 

Only use this template if you are using Mailchimp as your email provider. If you’re using a different email service provider, you’ll have to make a new zap and start from scratch.

4. Next, in the bottom left corner, select Go to Advanced Mode. This step is important so we can configure an additional setting for Mailchimp.

 

5. Since we’re starting with a template, you’ll notice that the Zap is already named with the apps and triggers selected for you.

Simply begin by hovering over the trigger and selecting Edit.

6. Here is where you will log in to your TrainHeroic account. Select Sign in to TrainHeroic.

Next, enter your TrainHeroic email address and paste your Magic Pass Key. Then hit Yes, Continue.

7. Once you see that your TrainHeroic email address is connected, hit Continue

Testing the trigger

  1. Next, select Test trigger to search for an athlete in your account. 
2. Zapier will populate several of your athletes to ensure the connection is properly set up. Select an athlete then hit Continue. Note: if you can, select your own email, or a friend’s email, or a sample client. When testing, this will actually trigger the email sequence in MailChimp.

 

3. Now that your trigger is set, let’s tell Zapier what action to take. Select the blue plus icon.
4. Here you can search all of the available apps. For this example, we’re going to search for and select MailChimp
5. In order to automate the trial emails in MailChimp, the action we’re going to take is to add the athlete as a contact in MailChimp and when doing so, assign the Athlete Trial tag. Remember from earlier that whenever the Trial Athlete tag is added to a user, the email sequence will trigger. 

Under Action Event, select Add/Update Subscriber then hit Continue.

 

6. Now you’ll need to connect to your MailChimp account. Click the dropdown Choose an account then select Connect a new account. Login and authorize your MailChimp account. 

Head back to your Zapier setup and select Continue. 

 

7. Now we’re going to set up the desired action to be taken in MailChimp. Fill in the required fields. Select your MailChimp audience then select the email of the sample athlete that was pulled in.

Make sure Update Existing says Yes to make sure all trial athletes will receive the email whether they are a new or an existing contact in MailChimp.

8. Scroll down to where it says Tag(s). Select the dropdown and find the Athlete Trial tag that you created as the first step in this guide. This part is important because it assigns a tag to users who complete this flow, and the tag is what triggers the automation in Mailchimp.

Find your sample athlete’s first and last name. Adding these will allow you to personalize emails.

 

9. Now let’s test the action we set up. Select Test Action. When complete, you should see a message indicating that a subscriber was successfully added to MailChimp.  

Now let’s see what it looks like in MailChimp

  1. In MailChimp, select Audience from the left navigation then All Contacts
2. Look for the athlete that was just created. You will see their first and last name listed as well as a tag indicating that they are a Trial Athlete. If you scroll to the right you will even see that the source of this contact is from Zapier. 
3. Now that we are sure the new contact exists in MailChimp, let’s check on the status of the first email in the sequence. 

Head to Campaigns in Mailchimp and find your trial campaign. After selecting it, you’ll see a snapshot of all emails in the campaign. Click View subscribers in queue under the first email.

4. You will see that the newly added contact is in the queue to receive the first email.
5. Once you’re done testing, you’re ready to turn on your first Zap!

Head back to your Zapier setup and select Turn on Zap.

 

6. Your newly created Zap will now indicate that it is on and running.

 

// check in often, measure, and optimize

Coach, you did it. You’ve set up your first marketing automation. You’ve built a machine that will help you convert clients while you sleep, train, go on a hike, lay on a beach, or whatever else you find yourself filling your new found extra time with.

Make sure to stay tuned to our blog and Instagram accounts for more tips on measuring and optimizing your automation flows.

For now, check in a few times on both Zapier and Mailchimp within the first few days.

Be sure to note your conversion rate before AND after launching this automation.

 

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