Getting clients in any industry is a challenge.
Keeping them can be a bigger challenge.
The whole idea around client acquisition and retention often times make clients sound like a commodity that can be bought and sold like a bag of potatoes (my father was a potato farmer)!
Attracting clients has come a long way since the days of seeing the customer as not having any knowledge of what they want or knowing what’s best for them; or being a vendor who has all the answers and doesn’t consult with the customer. Companies no longer can say, “To do business with us, this is what we offer and here’s how you fit in.”
In today’s fast-paced world the client is in a position to examine what is out there that fits their most pressing need. They are bombarded with news, ads, media, and celebrity competing for their attention. The selection is enormous. Your future client has access to so much information that they almost don’t need a coach … or do they?
That’s where you come in. The biggest challenge coaches have is educating, enlisting and engaging people to take a risk and hire a coach.
You may ask (especially if you’re a coach) why clients might see coaching as risky?
Well, what other relationships do you know of where you are told the truth (unscripted), hear endless silence (at times), pour your heart out, admit to flaws (most of them), exercise untapped parts of your brain, become vulnerable and pay for it?
Coaches appreciate the risk and trepidation involved in their industry. And that’s exactly why they practice these 8 Rules for Catching the Attention of Their Next Client.
- Build your reputation based on your credibility and respect. Does this mean you have to have a zillion letters behind your name? No. Having professional letters behind your name is an asset to be respected. But credibility is more than letters. It is a reflection of you being results-driven. The evidence is in the case studies, referrals, and ‘word-of-mouth’ advertising about you. Everyone wants to work with a winner.
- Know your niche & create massive value for the client. Clients will trade their hard-earned money for one thing – value. That means you need to have a deep understanding of what clients want, the problems they face routinely, and the resources they typically have available to them. Do your research and be prepared.
- Have a solid coaching strategy. After the research is done use your material to talk about the prospect and their problems. Have a vision for them. Maintain a flexible mindset when providing valuable insights. Connect your strategy to the benefits the client will receive in working with you.
- Diversify and innovate your coaching tools. Don’t be hesitant to take a risk and offer creative tools. These tools may be handouts, checklists, maps, journals, a style of e-coaching, how you structure the coaching calls, and how you partner with the client to create a stakeholder process that highly involves the client.
- Be Approachable. There is no substitute for being you. Speak in your own voice. No corporate speak, or industry language. Use the words that come naturally to you – words that the client will relish hearing. Allow the relationships to unfold.
- Deliver the goods early on. You aren’t making a 3-day cheesecake. Provide the client a great coaching experience upfront – or better yet, give your future client “results in advance.” Articles, videos, blog posts and even free seminar events that can help your readers learn more about their issues and ways they can solve it will set you apart from the competition.
- Collaborate and mastermind with other coaches. Tim Sanders, author and former Yahoo! director said, “Your network is your net worth.” He’s exactly right. Reach out to coaches who you can trust, like, have confidence in and are willing to make a commitment both to your participation and their value in a mastermind group. It’s never too late to start.
- Grow your knowledge and become a continual learner. One of the biggest attractions of a coach is their continual search for new ideas, concepts and methods. Continually learning puts you at the forefront of leading edge processes and education that will only benefit the client.
I’m not saying these are the only rules to getting clients. I stopped at 8, but they’ve been working really well for me.
I’ve written these rules for coaches, but they are transferable to any market, industry or position. After all, who doesn’t want more clients?
Getting client into the door is the BIGGEST issues facing people…. and coaches are no different. Offer your future clients something that will not only attract them to you but KEEP them coming back! Check out Dr. Keller’s course A Coaching Tool for Attracting New Clients: The Blueprint to Building Your 21 Day Program. Dr. Keller shows you each step in building your 21 Day Program; the Discovery Call, Using Handouts, Laser Coaching, E-Coaching, and more.