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.
Coaches's income streams takes planning premium content in varied formats and specific marketing sources to insure that you meet your income goals.
Setting Realistic Goals for Multiple Income Streams
Coaches are interpersonal helpers and need emotional and financial security. Most coaches I've met are not financially savvy people, but willing to learn and gain the financial planning skills.
So I ask, "How much do you want to earn?"
"Well," the coach responds,"I guess it depends on what clients are willing to pay?"
"Wrong. It depends on what you want to earn? Let's start planning what you want to earn."
To make an annual income of $40, 000 you would spend 18 hours a week working one-to-one with clients.
Add five hours a week to consistently market your coaching practice, and you have 23 hours total of your work week.
Most likely you would have no more hours available if you have other people in your life who need you. You also have to consider your fatigue factor, burnout rate, or your ability to be inspiring all the time.
At ACPI, we encourage you to be more creative and find more fun ways to engage your clients. All of the ways you engage your clients in exchange for their investments are multiple income streams. Stop trading your valuable time for money and see below this sample of multiple income streams.
Go For The Larger Income Model From the Beginning
Why we at ACPI suggest that you began with larger income goals is to inspire your ideas and to motivate you to create a true business vision. Then through planning your Relationship Coaching business financial goals, you can initiate a six-month or twelve month plan to offer ready made courses, group coaching, training in emotional competence skills, as well as information products. ACPI provides these courses for you.
Many coaches start by pricing their services lower to attract more clients. Then when they are busy and their time is scheduled, they have no choice but to increase those hourly fees and risk losing those clients who are paying already. Why not focus on clients who have the ability to pay for your services up front and recognize the value you provide.
Few coaches, who come from helping professions to ACPI, have set income goals and actually brainstormed on how to achieve that.
The multiple income streams below have a targeted number of clients drawn to what you offer in a variety of courses, teleseminars, private coaching, or live trainings. You can see that even with minimal training, your ability to earn income can include any activities you like to provide.
Otherwise without offering what you are passionate about, you are more likely to burn out and be overwhelmed. So see what is possible below. Use this sample income stream chart to plan your own Relationship Coaching journey.
Planning Income Example
6 Month income projection
|One hour coaching for 8-weeks
||One hour @ $85.00/4 weeks x 8 clients
|Course 1: Core Temperament Communication
||4-week course and group coaching for 20 people @ $150
||$3000 Offer 2x in 6 months
|Course 2: Emotional Skills in Relationships
||4-week course and coaching support for couples.10 couples @ $500 each
||$5000 Offer once every 6 months.
|One-day Live Training in Relationships
||For 10 couples @ $897 per couple.
||$8970 Offer once every 6 months
|| 2 teleseminars per month @ $20.00--40 people per month
Use this checklist to ensure you do not miss any valuable steps in planning a successful business. Your niche research gives you a solid foundation, and your market can grow exponentially.
Choosing your niche is one of the most important decisions you ever make in your business. Remember to take plenty of time to conduct thorough niche research in this area. Here are some things to keep in mind:
The niche research I’ve chosen:
- Is interesting
- Is something I’m passionate about
- Is profitable
- Is evergreen (it has year-round interest)
- It has a sense of urgency with lots of customers looking for real solutions to their problems.
I’ve considered my goals for this business, and I know:
- What I want to achieve with this business.
- How much money I want to earn.
I’ve determined my marketing strategy, and I have to decide:
- Will I be targeting the global market?
- Will I be targeting the local market?
- Which countries have the most interest in the niche and related topics?
- What are the top problems people in this niche have?
- Which solutions are people seeking?
I also have prepared in this way:
- A list of related search suggestions to help me plan future content and possible ads
- A list of trending hot topics
- A list of existing tried-and-true products (solutions) that stand the test of time as well as rising/trendy products
- My list of keywords
- Information on pay-per-click ads to help me generate marketing and ad ideas.
- Details on how widespread the niche is with advertisers
Every online business today should have a strong online presence. You then personalize your online marketing strategy. This will allow you to potentially reach out to more customers than you would with regular marketing methods. A solid online strategy will allow you to increase your business image, send more traffic to your site and promote customer awareness.
There are various marketing strategies that you should implement to achieve this. Use the following tips to help you plan a strategy that will give you results.
Develop a Marketing Message
You should work on creating methods that clearly project your marketing message. This needs to be done in such a way that your audience clearly knows what message you are sending. Work on understanding what your message is first, then practice writing it out so that it becomes super clear.
Who is Your Target Market?
This aspect is vital and should not be overlooked. Take the time to research who it is your products or services are targeting. It is not always the group that you first had in mind. Learn how they operate, how they think, their wants and desires. By doing this you will discover ways that you can easily market to them. Without this knowledge your marketing strategy will not be as successful as it could be.
Discovering Your Options
Any good business will know what their options are and how to put them into play. No matter how great your online marketing strategy is, it will eventually come to a standstill. By having options in place, you can simply move on to the next thing.
A good marketing strategy will offer consistency. This includes ensuring that your branding and any promotional materials are all consistent. This way your potential customers will know who is sending the message. Use the same image and logo across all of your social sites. Keep the branding in place on your website or blog. Eventually customers will associate this look with your business name.
Always Follow Up
As well as following up with your customers you need to follow up with your online marketing strategies. This way you can identify which methods were successful or not. You will then know what areas of your business need tweaking or changing completely, and what methods to keep in place.
If you take the time to include all of these points into your marketing strategy, you will have a well thought out plan in place. You will know how to communicate with your audience and you will know who it is you are targeting with your messages.
By having a good marketing strategy in place your business will prosper and grow. So take the time to put yours into place today.