Your coaching clients are out there, and they are looking for you! In my training as a therapist, counselor, and coach, I've heard this phrase often and always wondered at its veracity.
A dozen years later of online experience and building the Academy for Coaching Parents experiences, I can again state: That potential clients want you is true. Clients are out there whether you are a life coach for parents, health coach for seniors, a dating coach for men in mid-life, or a business coach for creative people.
The mindset to hold for successful coaching clients is you have a large audience, and they are eagerly anticipating the help only you can provide.
Check the list below to see if you are missing the mark in important areas. Doing so may cause potential clients to turn away for another coach.
Make it Easy for Them
When selling your products and services online, you have to make it easy for your customers to buy. The process sounds easy, but customer connections is in how you organize the information. You might be shocked at how often coaches (and others) miss
- The distinct steps are clear and obvious on your web site or on other social media platforms. The days of reading content are over. Invite visitors to download a syllabus of courses, an ebooks, take a quiz, listen to a free podcast, or watch a video that tells a visitor in three minutes abut the site and provide three options to take the next step. Would they enjoy a blog article, or would they download affirmations to stay calmer?
- The "buy" buttons are not obvious. The primary color for my websites is blue and variant shades. The buttons to link a potential client to the next page or product should stand out - bright green, cherry red, and orange are popular colors that attract attention.
- They don’t make contact information easy to find. This should be obvious to you while it may not be obvious on the website. Most websites have a contact page, which is obvious in the menu on top of the site.Here are a few more ideas: At the end of each blog, have a contact form. It could also serve to sign a new client for blog traffic, as well as to contact you with any questions, no matter how small.
- They don’t provide clear calls to action on their website. By calls to action, it means you provide instructions: click here, download this, go to the posts in children's category, review this book chapter, buy this book. In my reviews of coach's sites, I have seen a leading report on the page. A sample of content and the book cover populate a page. The button reads "Learn More." The button may lead to another page of content, a blog article, and such. The button should be much more precise: Buy this. Download the Ebook now, Read the post sample from the book, and leave a comment ti my questions: Can I email this book to you? Can you see a yes answer is more likely to be forthcoming than just learning more.
- They don’t create easy website navigation so readers can quickly find what they need. In the ideal world, you would list the pages you wanted your clients to visit in order like first, second, third etc.. Too often web builders put the basic pages up and add them to the menu with no specific navigation instruction.
The list goes on, but the bottom line is this: make it easy for your customers to buy from you. Not only will you make more money, but your clients will be singing your praises.
Court the Potential Coaching Clients
Even if your ideal market is established as business owners, you will still create your site navigation for up and coming new clients. While they might not be ready for you yet, and they'll remember you if you treat them well and have organized-easy-to-find content and giveaways.
Some ideas for helping the new coaching clients learn to trust you and your offerings are:
- Low-cost self-study products. Could you offer a short, free course, a video, or an audio file?
- E-books or guides - An ebook that you give away is called a Lead Magnet - an ebook which magnetizes a new to you? Man sure the topic is one that your clients would want to read.
- Email courses - This is a safe bet for those who don't mind leaving their email address, because they can read what they are interested in as well as learn about you also.
- Membership sites and forums should be your business model with new offers, products, or services at regular intervals.
- Facebook groups can serve as memberships also, and you have the option of making your presentations live on Facebook Live.
In every crowded niche, your personality is what sets you a part from every other coach out there. Don't be afraid to shine. Stand out brightly in your image, what you write and how you present your materials. That's how your potential customers will get to know, like and trust you. You cannot stop to worry if your efforts are working. You have to assume that your efforts work, and whether you are shy, non-techie, ora private person, you must shine online and in social media if that is where you are building a business.
- Share personal updates on social media so that potential customers can see the "real" you.
- Post photos of your life outside of business on Instagram and Facebook.
- Take a stand for what you believe in, whether or not it is controversial and unpopular.
- Be available to answer questions and stay on top of the most popular social media that you use.
You need a plan in order to make your business idea a reality. Your coaching business blueprint will guide your business from the beginning to ensure your success.
First Steps of Business Model
Name your business – using your real name or a name that identiﬁes your services.
Choose a name that can grow with you and define your focus accordingly as to local, international, or international attention.
How expansive do you envision this?
Can your business name withstand international scrutiny?
Finding a corresponding URL name, even a misspelled one, is a necessary presence today.
Also, buy your name as a domain name.
Tiers of Business Formats
Hang out your shingle and take personal checks as a solo entrepreneur
Legally set up a sole proprietorship as doing business in your state in your business name, The advantages of this business model are the setup
•Is more professional
•Allows payments are made to business name
•Could be eligible for PayPal business account.
•The accounting separates the personal expenses from the business expenses.
- Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) – the beneﬁt is that you receive the liability protection of a corporation, but the tax beneﬁts of a sole proprietorship. Cost could be between $500 to $1000 for setup and paperwork fees.
- Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) – Two or more coaches working together. Each partner is responsible for mistakes, and tax liability doesn’t cross over to partner.
- If unsure, start as a sole proprietorship and carefully investigate the pros and cons.
Do you need to start business planning or take a second look at the steps to success? As a supportive coach or helping professional in business, planning your success requires a clear action plan.
Reasons and Mindset for Thorough Planning
- You will hold yourself accountable, which is the flourishing mindset.
- You will define the steps to the destination.
- You will complete each step or goal and track your progress so you reinforce your enthusiasm and get the resources you need.
Determine Goals Through Visualization
Where will you begin? Start at the result as opposed to the first planning stage. Close your eyes and imagine where you want your business to be in five years? You are assuming that the business is wildly successful and you have the income you desire and more.Then, answer the following questions to fill in the content of your business plan.
- How many and what kind of income streams have you developed?
- How much income did the business achieve the first year? The third year? The fifth-year?
- To how many clients have you sold products, services, or training? What is the overall sum of products or services sold?
- What kind of training(s) have you designed? How many courses do you offer? How have you priced these?
- How do you personally interact, coach or advise your customers? How much time does that take in one given week of your schedule?
This phase is complete when you have defined what you want to achieve and how it will be done. You have established the basics. Next, determine what products or services to set up to be ready to market your website or product.
For example, if you are creating an ebook, what are the steps to its creation, writing proofreading, and setting up for sales?
- Define topic.
- Establish the context of the topic.
- Research content and create an outline of the ebook.
- Complete the writing and formatting.
- Find and insert images or types of graphics
The ebook is a good example of your steps to complete any product or service. You follow these steps once you establish any new product and its timeline for completion. Set aside a section of time each day or week and make sure you complete your tasks. If this means setting up a blog on Monday and then writing an article per day the rest of the week, then commit to getting that done.
Implement Your First Marketing Campaign
If you have your site or product set up and ready to promote, the next step is marketing. Get the word out about your great offer. Even if you don’t think your product or site is perfect, don’t worry about it. You’ll probably be tweaking and editing it over time anyway.
Just as you would with a product, plan each step you will follow to instigate your marketing campaign. Be specific about the tasks, responsibilities, and deadlines. For example, if you want to promote your info product, you might need to
- Create a free offer,
- Connect with joint venture partners,
- Write or purchase your sales page copy,
- Get the word out in relevant forums,
- Follow through on any tasks that are crucial to the marketing strategy
Don’t forget to also put your measures in place. Hopefully, you identified how you’ll measure your campaign’s success when you created your marketing plan. If not, figure them out now and keep track on a regular basis so you can tweak your tactics as needed.
For example, if you have more than one giveaway to offer to get people on an email list, check the sign-ups and conversion rates on each one on a daily basis. If one is converting higher than the other, try to figure out why. Then rinse and repeat.
Additional Marketing Strategies
When do you know it’s time to add more marketing strategies to the mix? The marketing is based on the results you are already achieving, along with your timeline and budget constraints. If you are already having great success with one strategy, such as joint ventures, stick with that. If you have extra time on your hands, then go right ahead and start implementing another promotional effort in your arsenal.
At this point in your planning, You should have identified about three strategies when you created your marketing plan. One strategy could include a free giveaway for which people sign up and are added to your email list? Another strategy could be a series of emails that you send to your subscribers about an informative blog article like this one. A third strategy could include other offers like listening to a podcast, selecting clients to interview, or promoting through Facebook ads.
The broader the mix of marketing strategies you have, the more complicated your business will become. Make sure you map out each of your strategies step-by-step to keep track of them. If feasible, outsource as much as possible. If you want to keep your business simple, you’ll have to focus on whichever strategy produces the best results. Leave the rest for marketers who don’t mind a little extra complication in their lives.
You can guarantee the success of your business and marketing plans by putting in place and following detailed action plans. This is where many people fail. They don't get success immediately and decide to try something else. Stick with your plan, reap the rewards, rinse and repeat for ultimate success.
I went against the advice of my mentors. As a family coach or parenting consultant, you build your brand by deciding who you want to be as a business person. Can you envision the person you will be in the future and make that your goal, while following your own heart?
In the process of developing a personal brand, most entrepreneurs set goals around time, or earnings, or marketing methods. Their profile or persona is the first step.
Decide who you want to be. When I founded the Academy for Coaching Parents International, both of my mentors told me up front to hire an assistant to handle email, answer queries, and keep up with the enrolled students. They explained the purpose for this was to give me a lot of free time. Wow! The advice was not what I expected.
In deciding who I wanted to be, I chose this description: A professional mentor with heart, who supports ACPI students through compassionate guidance and coaching to succeed in their business goals in becoming a certified parenting coach. Not only am I personally involved in my business, but I also answer phone calls, emails, and make personal queries to each student and support them through weekly phone calls.
When you build your brand, the best choice is to be yourself. There is only one, unique you, and the vision of who you are in business refers to who you want to be in the future.
- Where do you want to live?
- How do you see yourself?
- What do you see yourself doing?
- What are your goals?
Dream about different futures to choose from the possibilities. Try on potentialities to see which ones fit best. It's a necessary process. Decide through the dreaming to build your brand that's right for you and take affirmative steps to turn that dream into reality. The process involves a certain amount of decisionmaking, some mental toughness and the ability to look at your goals realistically.
- You see, there is a difference between a dream and a goal.
- The dream is tentative. The goal is firm.
- The dream is a possibility. The goal should be a probability.
- The dream is subject to change. The goal is not.
These are important differences. They are also differences that many people don't recognize or, even worse, choose to ignore. Take a cold, hard look at the dream that you've selected to be your goal. Look at the ins and outs. Don't avoid looking at the bad. If you don't weigh the good points against the bad, you're going to be in for either a rude awakening when you reach your goal or disappointment when you don't.
When you set firm goals as the final step, you have accomplished the first three steps to build your brand.
- Envision possibilities or your role or who you will be as a business owner.
- Choose your persona and write it out for reference when you lose focus.
- Accept that you are the brand and build your brand products and services on that foundation.
The confidence of knowing where you're going translates into personal stability. Your personal security, in turn, translates into higher acceptance of your brand over time. When your customers trust you, they also believe in your brand. After all, you are your brand.
How can you, a coach or consultant, form a connection with your target audience? One that makes them feel fierce loyalty to you where they spread good word of mouth and help you achieve your goals.
What Your Branding Is and Isn’t
Other seasoned marketers will teach you technical strategies like video marketing, blogging, podcasting and more. They’re great at teaching the technical steps and talking about how your content can help you with search engine optimization (SEO).
However, these technical steps are not what attraction brand marketing is about. Anyone can release a video. Anyone can slap content on a blog or website. And anyone can record an audio file.
You are a special person to be able to embrace the concept of branding for yourself, a true leader who isn’t afraid to command the clout you need online to draw the very best clients. You can leverage the attraction brand marketing system to draw people to you, not drive them to you.
What does attraction branding mean? Branding to attract clients is not hype and not hard selling. Attraction means you present yourself online--as a brand--in a way that has people clamoring for more from you.
You make them addicted to you over time. They love your personality. They love your insight, and they love how real you are with them. Branding with an attraction element helps make you visible to those wouldn’t otherwise find your site online.
Word of mouth is a powerful thing. When there’s a buzz created about you specifically – people flock to you like moths attracted to a light. They feel warmth and comfort in your message, and people respond to that and want to be around it.
Live Your Tag Line
A tagline is a kind of brand motto. When ACPI was formed, two pilot groups produced two different tags lines for ACPI to test.
- Take on the role of a lifetime.
- Make a difference
ACPI still uses both in different marketing venues, and since we chose those taglines, I have noticed other online businesses copy them. That means ACPI did its homework successfully.
What is your branding about? What do you want to be known for? Do you want to be the marketer who:
- …has a sympathetic nature?
- …is very blunt and honest with people?
- …over-delivers in value?
- …carefully scrutinizes everything before you recommend it?
Whatever you want people to think about you is what your brand’s tagline should be created around. Many marketers use a simple, “To your success” closing tagline at the end of every email and blog post.
This is generic marketing, and it does work. Yet, how much better would it be if you could come up with something that people remembered and associated with you?
What businesses are you drawn to? Think of those who you yourself are attracted to in the world of online business. What drew you to them. What elements are they using to capture people’s interest and turn them into loyal fans!
Branding affects you whether or not you know of its' persuasive force to influence your purchasing choices and habits. As a consultant or certified coach for parents or families, how aware are you of creating and using a brand?
Branding is a powerful marketing tool designed to work in concert with conscious and subconscious factors to affect decision making. Branding is impressive in the ability to impact opinion, and the ability has grown with the development of technology.
The best way to understand the power of branding is to review a few examples. You see how an emblem, logo, or picture makes your brain trust or not trust the brand, based on your personal experiences.
This connection between you and the brand image happens when you look at the brand. These brands do what they are supposed to do: You see, and you make a connection.
Branding Basics: What It Is and Who You Are
Many people assume that branding is a more difficult process than it is because we are inundated daily. Branding is so pervasive in our modern society that as consumers, we learn to accept it subconsciously. When we step back and look at the process, we see what a collective force branding has become.
Branding works on the idea that humans are designed to see patterns and to associate those patterns with specific expected results.
Branding takes advantage of this evolutionary predisposition to allow us to associate a business, products, and services, with particular concepts--–a musical note, a shade of color, a shape or a phrase.
The idea is that the business and the concept become welded together in the minds of the general public through repetition. Our brains unconsciously associate the concept with the business.
Branding requires that the business behind the brand know exactly who it is, what it does and who it wants to attract as a customer. It is this steadfast and focused clarity on identity that makes the world’s best brands instantaneously identifiable. The companies with the most potent brands know who they are and know who their customers are. This clarity is what drives the brand and also what makes the brand successful.