Have you done what it seems everyone says you need to do…
Create a website, Facebook page, and business cards…
…but you’re frustrated because you’re still not getting enough clients?
Do you feel like you’ve wasted time or money on marketing strategies that don’t work, or never tried any because you feel stuck and overwhelmed?
If so, you’re not alone. It’s no wonder one of the most common things we hear from life coaches or other entrepreneurs when the topic of marketing comes up is…
“Yuck! I hate marketing! I suck at it, it’s overwhelming, and it’s expensive!”
But we have
…marketing doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated. In fact, in our decade of experience and after working with thousands of coaches, we can tell you that the MOST EFFECTIVE marketing strategies for life coaches are both simple and FREE!
(In previous issues we talked about the importance of focusing on a niche, offering specific results, creating a coaching package, and developing a magnet message or elevator pitch. If you missed out, you can catch up by watching our videos on those topics on our YouTube Channel https://www.youtube.com/Transformservices/) Doing these things is truly the key to building a profitable coaching business—but it only works if you put yourself out there through marketing. You have to get in front of or in contact with your ideal clients.
There are 2 proven marketing methods that work for life coaches above all other methods:
joint ventures and free sessions. (For other entrepreneurs, joint ventures is equally as effective and you can replace free sessions with some other way of letting your customers or clients “try you out” or get a taste of what you can offer.)
First let’s look at Joint Ventures. The most effective method of gaining access to your target market is through collaboration.
Joint ventures are like mini-partnerships when 2 or more individuals or businesses collaborate on a specific project, by pooling resources, talents, time and energy. Ultimately, both partners work together in some capacity for mutual benefit. They agree to share the rewards, as well as any risks. Unlike a business partnership, joint ventures are short term collaborative projects.
Joint ventures expand your reach by accessing a pre-qualified audience.
Collaboration gives you the opportunity to co-create new products or services by collaborating with partners who bring different competencies or expertise to the table.
JV partnerships are the most effective marketing strategy, whether you’re just starting up or you’re ready to take your business to the next level, and here’s why:
First of all, it’s free: In most cases, joint ventures don’t cost anything. Instead, you work together to generate sales and then split the profit.
You don’t need an audience to start with: If you have a huge following and a big email list, great! But if you don’t that’s okay too because you can establish a mutually beneficial partnership with someone else that will expose you to their audience, which helps you build your list.
It’s highly targeted marketing: You can spend countless hours and money trying to identify and target your specific market of ideal clients, or you can collaborate with someone who already works directly with them—and get a warm introduction.
You get to leverage their credibility: People do business with people or companies they know, like and trust, and by partnering with someone who promotes you to their established following who loves them, you benefit from the good will and trust they’ve already developed. The benefit is that this warm-contact leads to much higher conversion rates than paid advertising.
Plus, it’s scalable: You can work with as many joint venture partners as you want—there are no limits! And, as you increase experience with joint ventures, you’ll be able to reach higher and higher into bigger, more established markets with more influential partners.
Here’s how it works:
There are people and organizations out there that already have an audience that is dying for your solution. Just waiting for you. All you have to do is figure out who already works with your tribe. It’s so simple.Ask yourself:
Who are my ideal clients?
What are they interested in?
What other business do they already work with?
Once you know these things, reach out and create a partnership with those businesses. The best part is that this works offline and online
For example: Let’s say you want to coach people how to overcome a divorce. Where do you think those people might be? Examples of where to find them: Women’s resource center, divorce forums, divorce lawyers.
Another example: If you are a health coach who specializes in helping people create healthy diets, where do you think those people might be? A more direct connect would be by partnering with personal trainers who work with people who are trying to lose weight or live a healthy lifestyle.
Then, what do you do with this person you attract through a joint venture, who would benefit from your coaching services, and is interested? This is where the second marketing strategy for coaches comes in, which is free sessions!
The best way to convert an interested potential client into a paid client is to give them an opportunity to get to know you.
Give them a chance to see what coaching can do for them by offering them a free or highly discounted introductory session. This free session is also important for you because it gives you an opportunity to see if this person is a good client for you.
But, it’s important to know there is a right way and a wrong way to offer free sessions.
Ultimately there are 2 goals when offering free coaching session:
a) get your clients results
b) be able to discuss your offer
First, you need to structure your session around clearly-defined outcomes so that your potential client receives real value and experiences what you can offer them through coaching. One great idea is to focus a free introductory session about a specific topic, such as a sub-topic within your full coaching package. It gives them a taste of the benefits they can experience, which makes them want to take it further.
Second, you want to avoid doing what many coaches do, which is to finish a great coaching session and fail to make an offer. It can be awkward, so it’s important to have a pre-planned strategy for making a compelling offer so you don’t leave it to chance. And, this is another reason you need to have a well-structured coaching program to offer and know how to describe the outcomes.
So, how do you get people to sign up for your introductory session?
In order to sign up clients for your introductory session, you need to make it compelling. There are 3 parts of a compelling free session offer.
A concrete and compelling name.
A list of powerful outcomes or results that clients will leave the session with.
Limiters or perceived scarcity.
TIP 1: Make sure your free session offer and signup link are easy to find on your website. Put a call to action or graphic that stands out on the main page and/or put a link in the main navigation bar. (This seems like something Captain Obvious would say, but you’d be surprised how many people overlook this. So if you did, no worries! Go fix it now.)
TIP 2: Allow interested clients to book their appointment automatically.
This one technique of using free introductory sessions is absolutely VITAL because regardless of how you get a new lead through your marketing, whether they become a client or not all comes down to this moment when you can offer them a chance to experience your coaching and make them an offer they can’t refuse.
So, as you can see, getting clients and that scary word “marketing” don’t have to be scary, complicated or expensive. Not only have the 2 strategies we’ve mentioned been PROVEN to be the most effective methods of getting clients, they’re both also super simple and FREE!
Sometimes certain marketing strategies just don’t work.
Other times, you may just be doing it wrong and need to dive into learning how to up your game.
Other times it isn’t that your marketing isn’t working, it’s that YOU aren’t working.
Sometimes you’re telling yourself “marketing is hard, complicated, expensive,” or another favorite, “I don’t know how to do marketing; I suck at it,” to give yourself an excuse for not doing it.
The truth is that in the information age the answer to “HOW do I effectively market my services” is literally at your finger tips. If you’re willing to do some research and invest in learning, you can do it.
Everything is figure-out-able!
So, don’t let yourself hide behind your fears by making getting clients more complicated than it needs to be. Stop telling yourself you first need to become experts at social media and build a fancy website. Stop waiting for more social proof or fancy credentials. Stop holding yourself back by not putting yourself out there because there are people out there who really need you.
Don’t be the missing piece in your clients’ transformation.
If you’re interested in exploring these marketing strategies more in-depth, we have an entire course dedicated to Joint Ventures and another one to Free Sessions. We also have a great course on Email Marketing if you are interested in generating leads through digital marketing and creating sales funnels. Enter code grow2018 to save 40% on these courses at http://www.transformation-academy.com.
Natalie Rivera is a firestarter, speaker and entrepreneur. She is passionate about empowering others to GET REAL and live authentically. After a decade of living a life that wasn’t hers and developing Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Natalie let go of everything and completely transformed. Through her journey to healing she rediscovered her true self and greater purpose—to inspire others to transform their lives. Natalie “retired” from the rat race at 24, put herself through school as a freelance designer, created a non-profit teen center, and later created Transformation Services, Inc., which offers motivational speaking, curriculum development, life coaching, event management, and publishing. She is also the Publisher of Transformation Magazine.Visit www.transformation-academy.com.