The Easiest Way to Get Clients
Want to know what’s really sad? SO many coaches try to get clients entirely the wrong way, and it not only costs them a fortune, but it leaves them feeling demoralized and thinking something like “coaching is just a joke, you can’t make a living at this.”
- Most coaches I’ve supervised initially thought it was essential to develop a fancy website which would represent them well to the public. Accordingly, they wasted a LOT of money and time (often as much as $5,000 to $10,000) developing a site that really wasn’t optimized for converting prospects into clients. (See, making advertising work is MUCH more difficult than the general public believes, and certainly harder than it appears on it’s surface)…
- They take out expensive ads and drive their bank accounts down even further…
- And when they DO get in a selling situation they get flummoxed and flustered, trying to draw upon the infomercial type sales voice (“But wait, there’s more!”, etc) which does nothing but push your customer away…
So how DO you get clients as a beginning coach?
DON’T ADVERTISE! DO LOTS OF FREE WORKSHOPS AND AUTHENTICALLY COACH PEOPLE RIGHT ON THE SPOT. HAVE A PROGRAM TO OFFER TO THOSE WHO WANT MORE.
Let’s look at each part of this critical formula piece by piece…
First – don’t advertise. It’s not that advertising can’t or doesn’t work, but there’s a pretty steep learning curve to make it happen. And by the time you’re there most coaches are demoralized and broke. A year or so down the road, when you really understand your coaching niche and you know what turns prospects into actual paying clients, THEN you’ll be able to build a fancy website and start testing advertising (slowly).
Second – do lots of free workshops. There are literally dozens of brick and mortar locations which host free workshops for the public. Schools, libraries, hospitals, churches… even hotels and chambers of commerce. And there are many benefits of offering workshops there: (1) You can start virtually right away; (2) You leverage the relationship they already have with their audience; (3) You are implicitly endorsed by the administration of wherever you host your workshop, so you’ll be “starting on second base” with built in trust; (4) You don’t need a website. Just a business card and a phone number; (5) The people who show up there are pre-qualified as willing to make an effort to solve whatever particular problem you happen to advertise;
Why would people come to such a workshop?
Because, believe it or not, most people are NOT perfectly content with their lives. And many—not all but many—are out looking for something to better to do in the evening/weekends than drinking, smoking, watching another movie, etc… something which would IMPROVE their lives.
The coaches I’ve supervised have reported–who have not even taken our program–getting an average of one client from every other workshop they do. And since coaches don’t need that many clients to build a real practice, if you do the math, doing LOTS of them makes the most sense!
Third – Authentically Coach People on the Spot: There are two parts to this one.
A) Be your authentic self. Don’t put on a persona. Don’t go into “sales mode”… it doesn’t work. Coaching prospects are looking for a genuine relationship with a coach who they can really connect with. Anything but being yourself ruins the deal. So just start with a brief little talk about why you do what you do, then engage your audience, get them talking, and AUTHENTICALLY coach them right there and then. (I forget who said “Be yourself – everyone else is taken!” but I couldn’t agree more!)
B) Coaching them right on the spot is the best proof you can ever provide. Because they’ll EXPERIENCE what it’s like to be coached by you. They’ll connect with you. They’ll watch you coaching other people. And some of them should want more… it’s that simple.
Fourth – Offer a Program: Sell them a set of defined goals/benefits relevant to your niche, in a defined period of time with the first session free.
Of course, there’s a lot to learn about getting and executing these workshops. But that’s the basics of it. And I hope I’ve saved at least some of you a few thousand dollars of painful lessons!
Come join us and we’ll go through the nitty gritty details. You’ll get to practice in a safe environment. And you’ll have tremendous support to get over the natural reluctance to getting started.