What Jillian Michaels knows… But Can’t Sell!

Picture from www.jillianmichaels.com

So, I admit it.  I’m a Jillian Michaels fan.  She whips my butt at least twice a week with her FatBlasting videos.  I buy magazines she’s featured in, new videos when they come out, occasionally read her blog… and really enjoy her no-excuses approach to weight loss.

Now, if you’re UNfamiliar with this superstar of the weight loss industry, you should know that she’s built an empire selling things like workout videos, nutrition supplements, books, etc.  Yet, it was the recent interview of her that SELF magazine published that really caught my eye.

They asked her which part of her health / fitness routine she would never do without.  (I’m paraphrasing.)  She responded that she ran THREE MILES every time she went to the gym.  Why?  Because that’s what keeps her thin.

She didn’t point to the cleanses, or the supplements, or the home videos… She pointed to the simplest solution that she found she couldn’t do without (and still maintain her desired body.) I love that. And have been running 5-6 times a week since I read that article.  But that’s not the point.

I’m sure she – FOR YEARS  – told people to run to lose weight.  I’m sure she – for years – tried to shout her tried and true solution from the rooftops… for anyone who would listen.  But, let’s face it:  running every day is a lot less sexy (to her market)  than special cleanses, exercise routines, and recipe books. Because everyone’s looking for the magic bullet.  And in our quest for the “little blue pill”, we often ignore the TRUTH of the SIMPLISTIC solution staring us in the face.

Here’s a random list of magic blue pills we’ve been chasing in business:

Networking (speed networking, business networking, regular networking, etc.)

Social Media Strategy (on platforms that continue to expand, change, and increase!)

Media (Get my name “out there” please!)

Self-published books!


Elevator speeches

Sales scripting

I don’t need to tell you that I use some of these things in my own business, and recommend some of them too.  I’m not dismissing them as solutions for you.   (The same as Jillian uses and believes in what she sells as well!)  But, if you ask me  what ONE THING I couldn’t do without in my business.If you ask me what I work with my clients on most consistently… If you ask me what is responsible for inflating my bottom line more than any other single action.. My answer would be:  the CONVERSATION.  The ART of the conversation.

It’s what I do.  It’s what I depend upon.  It’s the single most important marketing “tool” I use.  And I tell everyone my simple little secret.  Most gloss over it… dismiss it as too simple… as I’m sure thousands glossed over Jillian’s own 3-mile rule.  To their own peril.

So, what’s YOUR simple little secret for business success?  What works for you more than anything else?

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  1. Deidre says

    Oh Michelle, I get it I really do—but HOW do you start the conversation….

    I am at that point in my business, I have defined my service to a T, I have taught myself how to do a website—for free! (and have actually completed it–not under construction–NO WAY!) I even have researched my client list (that will keep evolving) and now all I need is…well that little detail—the actual clients–and I can’t believe this but I find myself totally stuck on this obvious thing…how do I start talking or conversing to people I don’t know, but care about serving, without sounding well…contrived and plastic….help!

    on another note both you and Tory are amazing and have inspired me beyond belief—there is SO much more to do but I never would have even thought I could come this far—Thank you from the bottom of my heart…I trust you both so and I appreciate you as do the countless others you have inspired—Best, Deidre deidrealves@aol.com

  2. says


    That makes complete sense. Networking is a big part of my profession being in the fitness industry. I recently learned about the importance of having a elevator speech and a good bio for social media sites. I am kind of having a challenging time putting something together. Do you have any suggestions?


    • bmichellepippin says

      Hey Maurice. My suggestion?? Nothing worse than a memorized, canned, hyped up “elevator speech”. How often are you in an elevator anyway? Seriously, you’re not going to say ENOUGH in an “elevator speech” to make people hire you on the spot. And most of these speeches are canned, rote and impersonal. Yuck. Focus instead – not on YOU – but on THEM. Something simple, like:

      “I work one on one with people to achieve some physical goal they’ve set for themselves.” This is enough about you. NOW, you need to ask questions about THEM.
      ” Do you have any physical goals you’ve been putting off?”
      “Do you know anyone who’s been trying to lose weight for way too long?” (Everyone does!) ” Well, I work with people just like that.”

      Quick tip on networking: You can be OVER-networked and UNDER-paid. Most people who network are. So, instead…. make sure you set “appointments” with people who are interested in your services. Take the sales conversation OUT of the networking atmosphere… because EVERYONE comes to the networking event to sell… and NO ONE comes to buy. =) Let me know if I can help you in any way. I work well with people who are PREGNANT with potential and ready to (finally) give BIRTH to PROFIT! =) Good luck! I know you can do it and I’m rooting for you! =)

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