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Wendy Buckingham / Creator, Life Coaching Professionally
The difference between a good coach and a financially successful coach is being able to make a living from professionally life coaching.
This is why finding ways to raise your profile and promote your coaching business, in a way that works for you is so vitally important. And marketing yourself doesn't have to cost a fortune or involve an expensive business coach.
Read on as I outline some of the creative and affordable life coach marketing ideas you can develop to get known and attract clients whatever your area of life coaching.
Not all of them will be for you but I hope at least one or two will inspire and resonate with you.
New coaches, even experienced ones, often don't have a big marketing budget. You'll find the following ways to make yourself more visible to potential clients can do the job for very little outlay. On this page I give you a brief outline with much more detail on how to go about each one by following the links.
Even in these days of online connection with potential clients, there can still be value in investing a physical business card to hand out.
But how can you make sure that your business card really gets your message across and is kept for future reference rather than ending up in the bin, or worst still, leave the recipient wondering "who was that?".
Take a peek at these creative business card ideas so you can be sure that your card will "work" for you and make you memorable to the people you meet at networking functions, a party, or anywhere there is an opportunity for a get to know you chat.
Making new and re-establishing old connections by networking, whether face to face or on social media, is one of the easiest and most effective marketing strategies you can adopt.
My How to Network page has lots of tips and tricks to help you get the best from both social media connections and face to face networking.
You'll can also learn how to master creating your "Elevator Speech", that 30 to 60 second description that captures who you are, what you do and who you help. It can be invaluable to use in conversations when asked "what do you do?" and even in any promotional material you create.
Networking also gives you great opportunities for forming useful alliances with other coaches or complimentary professionals who can refer clients to you. You can read more about The Benefits of Strategic Alliances for life coaches and how to set them up so they really work for you.
Whatever you choose to say about yourself, it's what your past clients say that really mattters. This why testimonials are one of the most powerful ways to market yourself by showing how others have benefited from your coaching.
Having testimonials on your brochure, website or FaceBook page are free and really endorse how good a coach you are.
However, asking client for them can sometimes present challenges for both the coach and the client's.
You'll discover all you need to know and some simple strategies for easily getting those great endorsements from delighted clients when you read: how to get life coaching client testimonials that rock!
Being known as an expert in a specific niche is an invaluable point of difference and great for attracting those client you can specifically help. If you have some work skills, personal life experience or special interest that can positions you as an expert - use it to promote yourself.
Create a branding message that is authentic, congruent and inspirational. Words that will have your target market wanting to know more and feel confident that you are the coach for them.
For many of us, easier said than done, but free help is at hand from my long time colleague Cindy Schulson of Marketing From Within.
Cindy helps both novice and highly experiences coaches get authenticity and heart into their message with loads of free advice, services and products. Many visitors to this site have benefited from joining her mentor program.
Her free brand message template to get you on the right track, also includes a bonus video training that shows you how to use your Brand Message to attract your ideal clients. Do take advantage of Cindy's generosity and wisdom.
Writing a book centred around your life coaching niche and expertise is a fantastic way of raising your profile and establishing yourself as an authority to attract clients.
Becoming an author is one of THE top proven marketing ideas for a coach I know and have experienced.
Your book about your coaching niche or specialty will give you status and credibility, not to mention extra income.
I attracted many quality clients through my first book Ready Set Goal and have recently rewritten it specifically as a guide for coaches as Mastering the Art of goals Coaching. This link will show you what it takes to easily get started as an author as well as the different way to get published. Writing And Publishing A Book About Your Life Coaching. I have also turned this information into a eBook which you might find helpful.
If you get up at conferences and events in person or online to talk about some aspect of your coaching and the issues it can solve, your credibility as a coach will grow and the rewards will be huge.
In Becoming a Motivational Speaker in the context of your coaching, I discuss ways to overcome speaking nerves and some easy ways to get support as you begin. This information and more is now available for you to keep as an eBook.
From my own experience, I also share hints on putting a presentation together that will really engage your audience and have them wanting more. I also show you how to make the logistics of your presentation run smoothly and avoid the stuff ups that can ruin even the best event or talk.
Many coaches offer a free 'try before you buy' session as one of their marketing strategies. They call it a 'discovery session' or 'free consultation'.
The rational behind the concept is that people don’t always understand what life coaching is
and so need to experience it and the coach, before they make a decision.
On the surface it's a good plan and it worked well for me until it didn't! However, there are two schools of thought about this and here I cover the pros and cons of the introductory free life coaching session. You can also preview my guide on Mastering The Coaching Discovery Session, which has had some great reviews.
Having a website that looks pretty and gives lots of information about what you do and how you coach is just the beginning. Having a website that is easily found by the search engines and is written in such a way that it attracts life coaching clients and sales can be something else.
You'll find lots of helpful information for your coaching website and tips on making sure it engages your visitors as prospective clients in Life Coaching Websites.
And do have a look at Website Mistakes, for 14 things NOT to do when creating your website.
Being a guest blogger or commenting on someone else's blog can be a creative way of getting known and recognised as a life coach who has something worthwhile to say.
Your post will invariably include a link to your website which can earn your extra visitors and even clients.
However, there are (of course) traps you need to be aware of if your words of wisdom are to enhance rather than inhibit your reputation - not to mention your standing with Google and the other Search Engines (yes there is more than one!).
Read my benefits of guest blogging and commenting tips to make this marketing idea work for you.
Webinars or online presentations weren't even around when I started coaching. These days, giving a visual, interactive online workshop that gives value and promotes your message as a coach, has become one of the favourite ways of getting your face out there attracting clients.
I've seen some great webinars and some that have me turning off within a minute or two because they are so badly prepared and presented. There is quite a skill in making webinars work for you. The bottom line is that it needs to offer value more than self-promotion if it is to be authentic.
You'll find lots of useful information on online presentations in my Becoming A Motivational Speaker article and eBook. And I'd also suggest you check out The Ultimate Guide to Webinars as another great resource for online presentations.
Sometimes it really does pay to advertise! Basically, how Adwords works is that each time someone clicks on your AD, it goes to a website or landing page designated by you to promote your coaching. This is intended to encourage people to engage with you for more information or to take the action you want, such as signing up for an introductory or discovery session.
You pay for time someone clicks on your AD. How much you pay is your choice depending on your budget. The key to a successful Adwords campaign is to get the keywords right so that Google places on the right pages to attract the visitors and prospective clients you are after. Google has lots of information to help to you with this.
There are lots of forums for life coaches on Facebook and LinkedIn where you can start a discussion or comment on someone else's post and promote yourself as a coach.
Beware! Not all forums will be useful to you as a marketing idea.
Some will have been started by other coaches or marketing consultants with the sole purpose of promoting themselves and their offerings. Others will be poorly moderated and so overloaded with promotions that you will find it hard to find an opportunity for a sensible discussion or comment. I know I've joined and quickly left several of these.
The key to an effective and valuable forum is how well it is moderated so it encourages useful conversations yet controls excessive promotions.
So there you have it. I hope you find some of these coach marketing ideas appeal to you and help you get results. Of course, as I said at the beginning, not all marketing ideas for a coach ion this page will appeal to you.You will have to discover what is your best fit. I'd also suggest that you only focus on one or two at a time otherwise you may become overwhelmed and scattered.
You'll find there are loads of self-appointed coach marketing gurus promising to teach you this or that fail-safe magic bullet to get your lots of clients (often at great expense).
If you are thinking of engaging a coach marketing consultant do check that the marketing method they teach is something you enjoy or at least find a pleasurable challenge rather than one that may cause you stress and you may give up on.