As any coach or even any business owner can tell you, marketing is hard; which is exactly why today we are going to discuss some marketing tips I have for you.
Most coaches I know, are anxious about at least one of these:
‘How do I get more clients?’
‘How do I market my coaching business?’
Marketing your coaching business is an essential part of your coaching practice. If you want to thrive as a coach, you need to position yourself and your practice so that it reaches the right audience and you keep getting new clients.
Now, I mean it when I say that marketing is not an easy task. But I have realized one thing over the years, marketing your coaching practice is not difficult either. I love spending time on marketing my coaching practice because it allows me to do what I do best; share my love for coaching.
Believe me, marketing is fun! It could be fun for you as well if you knew what I know about market your coaching business.
I have compiled the ultimate list of 100 marketing tips and tricks for you to promote your business and get busy signing on new clients!
Common pain points about marketing your coaching business
Let’s start by understanding the common concerns about marketing.
When I say ‘market your coaching business’, do you think;
- I will sound like an aggressive salesperson.
Marketing is not like selling. Marketing creates opportunities for engagement and participation. Selling focuses on converting leads into cash.
- I can’t do it because I don’t like talking about myself.
In marketing, you are creating value for your audience by talking about main areas of their concerns (for which you can provide the best solution!)
- I don’t believe I’ll be good at marketing.
Being good at marketing is very different from being an expert at marketing! Our list will provide you with all the knowledge and resources you need to be good at marketing your coaching practice.
- I’m not sure it will work because I tried some things before and I didn’t get any results.
Most marketing efforts fail because we fail to reach out to the right audience. Finding your coaching niche and understanding what motivates people is your best bet to get results fast! We will be talking more about understanding what motivates people in a bit.
- I don’t think I have the time for marketing.
Marketing your coaching practice doesn’t need many sacrifices of your time. With this list, you can make marketing work for you instead of you working for marketing.
International Coach Federation has released a white-paper called ‘How Coaches Spend Their Time’. Activities such as developing coaching products/services and creating your brand identity as ranked as the top two results.
These activities must complement your plan instead of draining your time and energy.
This list has different sections such as business marketing, digital and social media marketing. But before that, there are some things that every coach must include in their business from the very beginning.
Absolute essentials for your marketing toolkit
Before you start working on your marketing plan, you MUST know your niche audience. Finding your niche means knowing who the people you are reaching out to and engaging. Knowing your niche is also about defining your target audience.
You can’t reach out to your target audience if you don’t know who they are! If someone is looking for life coaching, they will not respond to posts on business coaching.
If you haven’t found your niche yet, you must read our Ultimate Guide To Finding Your Coaching Niche [2020 Edition]
The following list is about the essential aspects that you must have once you set up your coaching practice;
- Have a killer website.
Your website is a digital version of you! Having a website means you have many potential opportunities for marketing your website and marketing within your website. We will come to this again in a bit.
- Dominate on social media through your Facebook page, Twitter handle, Instagram and Snapchat account.
We live in a digital age, and you cannot connect with people if you are not available for them on the platform they use.
- Create your own blog.
A blog is a space where you can present your views and share it with everyone. We can get quite creative with blogs in our marketing efforts. We will explore this again in a bit.
Digital Marketing Tips for Coaches
- Create a compelling landing page.
A landing page on your website is the first page your visitors must land (not necessarily on your home page) when they visit your site. It is best used for lead generation activities such as sign up for newsletters or subscribe to a free webinar.
Check out Landing to create easy landing pages.
- Provide for an online appointment scheduling system.
You can easily create a booking system by creating a calendar on your website, where potential clients can schedule appointments with you. There are many options, both in free and paid versions.
- Add social media integration on your website.
On your website, you can add in links to all your social media profiles by adding buttons. ShareThis and AddThis are good options for beginners.
- Share plenty of testimonials.
In the US alone, more than 60% of the digital audience have made a purchase after reading recommendations given by bloggers.
- Participate in online discussions–Quora, Reddit and Yahoo! Answers.
Online viewers get to know you better, and you obtain feedback in real-time! You can position yourself as an expert on the topic in discussion and let them know that they can get further help and support from you.
- Have a solid SEO plan.
Search Engine Optimization is the way search engines like Google ranks your website. There are many useful guides available which will help you ace your SEO game.Watch: SEO for Beginners by Ahrefs
SEO-friendly Content for marketing your coaching business
Moz has a great list of content that works best for SEO, such as short and concise articles, well-detailed articles, photo galleries and videos.
- Create a killer ‘About’ section on your website.
People who view an ‘About’ want to know things such as who you are, what you do, and why you do what you do.
- Have a Call To Action (CTA) on your website.
You will miss a great opportunity if your online audience leaves your website without engaging with you. A CTA is a prompt for prospective clients to move forward in their journey on your website.
Here’s a list of engaging actions for online viewers;
- Get in touch with you, through calls or emails
- Follow your social media accounts
- Share their email addresses to receive emails from you
- Download your latest case study or white-paper
- Join your upcoming webinar for free!
Remember, if viewers feel engaged on your website already, they will participate in your CTA.
- Invest in Facebook Ads.
It doesn’t need to be an expensive affair. Facebook has many options to reach out to targeted audiences at various costs. You can find a ton of resources on the internet to understand how to create a target audience for your Facebook ad posts.
- Track metrics about your audience through free services such as Google Analytics and Bit.ly. You can make better decisions about the future plan of action when you know how your online viewers behave and interact with you on your website or social media profiles.
Content Marketing for Coaches
- Invest time in building mailing lists or newsletters.
Emails work as a sales funnel and increase conversion scores. When online audience shares their email ids to receive regular emails from you, it means they are already warming up to having conversations with you!
You can leverage sending newsletters of engaging with emailing lists to have deeper conversations with prospective clients and receive meaningful feedback.
- Keep posting content on your blog regularly.
The list of content that works best for SEO is a good starting point to make your content calendar.
- Redirect your audience to previously published content within your site.
When you link back content from within your website, you create additional value for your online viewers while avoiding an overload of information within a single post. Such ‘inbound’ links increase your online viewership since your audience stays on the webpage for a longer duration!
- Introduce premium content.
Content that not available publicly works as an incentive for people to sign up for being in your inner circle!
- Generate instant sharing links to tweet or share parts of your content on social media.
In-page social sharing buttons work like a charm. You can select any sentence or paragraph from within the webpage to reveal social media sharing buttons. The selected sentence will get tweeted on your social media profiles in only two clicks.
ClickToTweet is a good option to start.
- Write for others in the same field as you, not just for your website.
- Repost your content now and then.
It is natural for your audience to miss out on updates from your social media account. Resharing your content is one of the most straightforward marketing tips in the market.Read: Chalene Johnson’s Repurposing Strategy
- Highlight case studies.
Create and design compelling case studies about your work that builds trust and helps prospective clients in deciding on signing you as their coach.
- Create a Facebook community.
A closed community on Facebook, different from a public brand-related page, has a higher interaction with a select group of people. An additional benefit of having your community on this platform is that Facebook Groups reach more people organically than Facebook Pages.
- Joining this community should be one of the Call To Actions for your audience.
- Be consistent on your social media profiles.
- Focus on one platform to grow your business while you maintain a consistent presence on other platforms.
- Add your website’s link on all your social media profiles.
- Better, add links that lead to a specific CTA such as signing up for newsletters and your contact page.
- Video content on topics related to your niche.
Did you know, videos rank higher on Facebook and Google?
- Post Infographics.
Infographics pack in a lot of information in a single image, therefore increasing the possibility of such content being shared more than others.
- Create Instagram and Facebook stories.
Share content that disappears within 24 hours! Such for-limited-time only content does not spam your audience and still reaching out to them.
- Use a social media tool like Buffer, Hootsuite or IFTTT to schedule content in advance.
It will save you a lot of time to do the thing that you love; leading and mentoring your clients.
- Don’t talk about yourself always on your social media pages.
Try having a gap of four non-promotional posts before you add in one promotional content.
- Search for and use the best hashtags on social media that are related to your niche.
When coaches tell me that they feel their efforts are not giving them the expected results. I always ask them, “Are you reaching out to the right audience?”
Sprout Social Index 2018 has some answers;
- Consumers don’t see posts that teach something.
61% of survey participants would prioritize posts that teach online audiences something.
- Online viewers don’t see posts that tell a story.
58% of participants shared that they would rank posts that tell a story to their online viewers.
- Viewers don’t see posts that inspire.
53% of people responded that they would instead work on a post that inspires their audience.
Another set of fascinating insights into what consumers want;
- 72% of online consumers are looking for sales or products at discounted rates.
- 60% of the online audience seek posts that introduce a new product or services.
- 59% of viewers want posts that give them a unique value or teaches them something.
Conclusion? Posts that teach something are a sweet spot for both content marketers and consumers!
Once you find out answers for “are you reaching out to the right audience?”, marketing will seem like a calk walk!
The more you know about your customers, the easier it becomes to create content that caters to their specific needs.–Jeff Bullas
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs–The Secret Sauce to Connecting with and marketing to your prospective clients
Abraham Maslow was a pioneer who gave the world a ground-breaking theory in 1943–Hierarchy of Needs. At the heart of his theory is a straightforward question–what motivates people?
Here’s the secret sauce–If you know what motivates people, then you can easily engage, connect and ultimately, convert those people as clients.
How can you do this? By understanding Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.
Maslow says that every person has innate needs, and these needs can be classified in a five-tier pyramid model. A person cannot move from one tier to the next if their natural needs within that zone are not fulfilled yet.
The bottom-most tier is about our most basic needs for survival. Second-tier is about safety, health, employment and social stability. Next is love, belonging, friendship, stable relations with the family and a sense of connection. The fourth tier is about self-esteem, the pursuit for confidence, a sense of achievement, recognition and accomplishment.
The last stage refers to the ultimate need of a human being; achieving one’s maximum potential and making the most out of their lives.
Content marketers around the world are using this theory to identify which stage their target audience is currently in so that they can connect with them accordingly.
But there is another way in which Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs can be used for our marketing efforts. Cheryl Heppart, a Marketing Implementation Strategist, talks about Maslow’s Hierarchy of Marketing Needs, in which she views the pyramid of needs as an ‘upside-down’ sales funnel.
- Tier 1 – Basic/Awareness
Prospective clients need primary information about your services. You can create awareness through free consultations and such other promotional items.
- Tier 2 – Safety/Membership
Now that you have a potential client’s attention, you need to bring them in and provide assurance that they are in the right place. YOU are the answer.
- Tier 3 – Social/Engagement
Your prospective clients will continue to the next step if they receive unique value from you. Once they are engaged, they will get to know you better and build trust in your abilities.
- Tier 4 – Esteem/Invested
This is the exciting stage! When your prospects move into this tier, it means that they know that they are in the right place and want to invest in your products and services.
- Tier 5–Self-Actualization/Loyal Repeat Customer
This is the ultimate and most sought-after stage. Your potential clients trust you and are invested in your services as a coach enough to become loyal customers.
Motivation and the need of every person to achieve their full potential is the corner-stone to every coaching efforts.
Business Marketing Tips for Coaches
- Carry your business cards everywhere! You never know when you might need one!
- Answer as many emails as possible. Quick replies make your audience feel valued and assured that you’re available for them.
- Are you a natural talker and a fluent conversationalist? Of course, you are! Pitch yourself for podcasts related to your niche industry. Podcasters are always looking for experts!
- Hosting a webinar is one excellent method to interact with your prospective clients.
Read: 5 Best Webinar Software Products From Around The Web
- Reach out to your friends, family and personal networks.
This is one of the best methods to market yourself if you are starting as a new coach. Those closest to you have faith in your abilities, and they can recommend your work to people that they know. You can reach out to your former business colleagues, the bosses and the managers you’ve worked with and to your own circle of friends!
This form of marketing is a win-win situation, even if it doesn’t work initially. If you are not closing clients, then you can obtain quick feedback and see how you can improve on what you offer and market yourself better to those who don’t know you yet.
- Add yourself and your business in local listings or online directories.
- Attend local social and cultural events and participate. I mean it, participate genuinely!
- Offer free consultations.
After a free session with you, send them a thank-you note and give them an incentive for them to sign you as their coach. This method may not bring you immediate results but increases your social and network capital. People from free consultations continue to be a part of your mailing list and will receive all your blog posts and offers.
- Obtain referrals from past clients.
This is an excellent chance to follow up on how they are doing. You can check if they are willing to provide additional feedback about the time they spent with you and how coaching sessions with you have benefitted them. Previous clients are already aware of the work that you. There’s a very good chance that their referral will come along with a ‘highly recommended’ testimonial.
- Make sure that your materials and collaterals have are good in design, visually appealing and consistent.
Materials and collaterals include things such as your business cards, flyers, brochures or even those simple ‘thank-you’ notes. Online materials contain elements such as website banners, social media images or infographics or eBooks.
Your designs should reflect your style and brand image. It doesn’t have to be extensive. It should look professional, elegant and clean.
- If you feel that you don’t have a natural flair at designing, I suggest you try websites like Canva (design visually appealing designs without having to know design software) or Fiverr (get freelance design work done, for as low as $5!!)
- Insert your brand logo and style in every form of communication, from in-hand paper flyers or online social media shareable.
- Free Stuff!!
Everyone loves free things. Whether it is a free eBook or a spot in your upcoming webinar, complimentary access is an excellent way for people to get a taste of what you can provide for them. Consider this as a ‘test drive’ in an automobile showroom. They need to feel of your brand, your style and see the value of your service before they make a decision.
Lesser-known marketing tips for coaches
- Have a killer email signature!
Through a professional email signature, you can market yourself every time you email to anyone! Your email signature must have information on how they can get in touch with you through various platforms and how they can engage with you through links to all your social media channels.
- To leverage the way you sign off on your emails, you can add in a small note asking readers to opt-in for your newsletters!
- Follow up!
We all are guilty of not reaching out to people who had previously shown some interest in our work but been silent since then. Often, we think that they don’t need us. It may not be accurate. A simple follow up about checking in and asking if they’re interested in pursuing this further can make a huge difference!
- Plan your calendar and plan your breaks!
Sure, marketing can be fun. When you see people’s responses and engagements, it does feel fulfilling. But, being awesome can be draining! Plan a break, recharge your batteries and get back with limitless energy!
“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”–Benjamin Franklin