What is Your Bridgeback?

In our First Degree Course, we introduce the concept of using bridgebacks to deepen relationships with new clients.

Simply put, a bridgeback is the act of following up on a point of commonality (POC) that you established in your first interaction. These POC’s can take on an infinite number of forms, but in my experience as a coach and gym owner these 6 are the most common:

  1. Kids
  2. Food
  3. Cars
  4. Travel
  5. Sports
  6. Animals

POC’s make us relatable, they make the client say in their head: “I have something in common with my coach!”

It may seem small, obvious, or even inconsequential, but this is a crucial nuance to bring attention to. In the words of author Seth Godin, it plants the seed in their mind that “people like us do things like this.”

To be a world-class coach, you should have the ability to entertain a surface level conversation in any of these topics. No, I’m not saying that you need decades of statistics of every sports team at your finger tips, but if the Super Bowl was just played, you should at least know who won.

Even more important is having your own personal favorite bridgeback to engage in conversation about. This is because you will absolutely light up when you do get a chance to go back and forth with someone about your area of passion. Want an easy to cultivate, built-in retention tool? Find those clients with whom you share this favorite topic!

My favorite thing to talk about is cars. It doesn’t matter what kind, color, make, or model. I just love them. Here’s something neat I learned about my favorite bridgeback early on in being a gym owner –  I discovered that as people pulled into our parking lot, I knew exactly who it was just based on what they were driving. This allowed me the chance to think about the bridgebacks that are important to them while they grabbed their stuff out of their trunk and walked in.

“Dan just got back from his trip to Jamaica, I’ll be sure to ask him about it!”

“Sally’s daughter made the high school volleyball team, I’ll be sure to congratulate her!”

And on the off chance it was someone new, or a veteran that got a new ride, man oh man was I even more excited – another new car to talk about that day!

Is there a category above that you could stand to learn a bit more about? After all, it’ll only help you deepen your relationships with your clients.

How about you, what do you find yourself continually getting excited to talk about? (Besides fitness and working out!)


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