By Steve Mitten B.ApSc, CPCC, MCC
Want to know what’s the single most powerful way to build your new
life coaching practice? When you are just starting out, the single most powerful way to build your coaching practice is to give your coaching away.
Let’s face it, selling coaching can be tough. And unfortunately most of the training schools do a poor job of equipping coaches with the skills they need to fill their practices. Too many good coaches are stuck in the paradox of providing a service that is highly valued by 98.5% of the people that experience it, and yet the coaches themselves struggle to fill their practices.
Think about it. Coaching is a new profession. Less than 1 in 1,000 of your prospects has ever tried coaching. They simply don’t know what it is. Most people just don’t have a clue what the benefits of coaching are. Would you buy something that you didn’t understand? Not likely. So unless you have unlimited time and a colossal budget, running ads, sending out announcements, simple networking, and many of the conventional ways of promotion are relatively ineffective.
Here’s the important secret. A great coaching experience sells coaching. Note, the word here is experience not description. You definitely don’t want to fall into the very natural trap of trying to explain coaching to prospects. You can be as eloquent as a poet, and yet your finest words will at best translate into a state of bemused interest – which is not enough for most prospects to make the leap of faith required to become clients. The single most effective way of communicating the very powerful benefits of coaching – and getting more clients – is by giving away experiences of great coaching.
When you give people a great experience of coaching, they connect emotionally to; who they really are, what is most important to them, what is possible for them, and they begin to see that coaching is a powerful way to realize their heart’s desire. If you are a competent coach and you do this with 3 qualified prospects, chances are you will end up with at least one new client.
So, the bottom-line here is if you want to build your practice, find ways you can give away your coaching. Whether you are doing personal coaching, business coaching or executive coaching, you can find a dozen very effective ways to connect with prospects, and help them see how coaching can change their lives.
Coaching is a great profession. It really helps people. And the market for coaching is huge. (Less than 1/10th of 1 % of the civilized world has ever experienced coaching.) However you can’t succeed in coaching by simply being an order taker. Get going. Think creatively about how to get in contact with the largest number of the people you want to work with. Be authentic. Seek to add genuine value. Be unattached to the outcome. Be fearless. Be organized. Seek the support you need to be great. Continue to develop as a coach. And if you give away 6 good experiences of coaching this week, to qualified prospects, chances are you’ll end up with a few new clients. Good luck and remember, FREELY SHARE YOUR GIFTS.
P.S. – I love to help coaches find the most natural and effective way of expanding their practice. When you find your true niche, it is amazing what can happen. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and set up a time to chat.
Steve Mitten CPCC, MCC, 2005 ICF President, works with leaders, executives and independents wanting to create extraordinary meaningful and successful lives. Steve is devoted to raising standards in the young profession of coaching and through his coaching programs and book, Marketing Essentials For Coaches, has helped hundreds of coaches find an affordable and authentic path to commercial success.
Article is free to be reprinted as long as author’s bio remains intact.