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Clark Bartram and Mike O’Hearn Discuss Brand-Building in the Fitness World

Episode 26 of The Mike O’Hearn Show was published on Generation Iron‘s YouTube channel on Dec. 23, 2022, featuring a conversation between the show’s namesake and fitness model and host of American Health & Fitness Clark Bartram.

The discussion covers how Bartram made a living for himself as a fitness model capable of both gracing the cover of magazines and articulating how he acquired his physique via the article feature contained within said magazine — a breakdown of brand-building. 

I always had a marketing mind. Not knowing I had one, but having one.

Check out the entire interview in the video below:

[Related: The Risks and Rewards of Extreme Leanness on the Road to the Bikini Olympia]

Bartram recognized the value of having a brand based on the discrepancy of pay for a magazine cover shoot versus the price of a full-page ad in the same magazine. Recognizing that early in his fitness career led Bartram to focus on building his brand to maintain enough clout worthy of more magazine covers instead of becoming an elite professional bodybuilder.

I’m Clark Bartram, I’m always in shape. That became my brand.

The gap in the fitness space for models like Bartram was that bodybuilders who were competing were only cover-ready a few weeks each year based on when they were competing. Outside those windows, they were either bulking or otherwise not in the requisite shape. Bartram recognized an opportunity to be the go-to guy for magazines like Muscle & Fitness if he stayed in shape year-round. 

I don’t want to be a bodybuilder as much as I want to be a brand.

Bartram furthered his brand by having a tagline that coincided with his name — Clark Bartram, America’s Most Trusted Fitness Personality. That tagline later evolved from using the word “personality” to “professional.”

[Related: Bodybuilding Versus Powerlifting Programs: Three Big Differences]

Five Tips for an Up-and-Coming Fitness Professional

O’Hearn asked Bartram what advice he would offer someone younger in modern-day having to contend with social media. Bartram offered the following tips:

Clarify Your Goals



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