If you want to sell your coaching programs, then you need to connect with the people who are most likely to need your product or service.
There’s a difference between coaching six clients a day, one on one, and selling courses (or any other information products) that you’ve created for people to purchase and access online. It’s a massive difference in reach, potential clients—and income.
When you create an online program such as a group coaching program, a Challenge or a VIP Club, your small stable of real-time clients is a good place to start.
But, as satisfying as one-one coaching can be, there’s a limit on your income. There are only a fixed number of hours that you can coach each week and once you have filled those, you have reached a ceiling. Other than raising your rates, there’s little else you can do to increase your income.
Take a look at any six-figure coach and you’ll see that they have a number of different offerings: Courses, Group coaching programs, home-study programs and more.
Having your own products also allows you to expand your reach. There’s only so many people you can coach one-one. But you can reach many thousands more by having self-study courses, books and other information products for sale.
Now, assuming you already have your own products and programs for sale, how can you sell more of them and multiply your impact and income?
I suggest that you download the Solution Brainstorming Worksheet (link opens in a new window) and fill it in as we work through the process together.
I’m not talking about whether or not to use Facebook or LinkedIn here: When I use the term ‘platform’, I’m talking about the original way the word ‘platform’ was used. Think of standing up on a stage and attracting everyone’s attention because you’re physically elevated above everyone else—above the heads and shoulders of the crowd—and they can see you and hear you clearly.
Your platform, in this context, is your most important and prominent method of delivery and reach.
Start by deciding how you connect the most naturally and easily. Which do you enjoy the most?
o Writing articles
o Running a blog
o Creating videos
o Creating podcasts (or audio files)
o Speaking one-on-one
o Speaking to groups
o Interacting on social media
Be sure to fill out your worksheet as we go along. (Don’t worry if you need to keep some parts blank for now and fill them in later.)
Start reaching out by using the platform you are most comfortable with. Later, we’ll talk about how to reach other people who are your ideal clients or customers, but who prefer to connect in different ways.
If you love making videos, make short videos. If you love writing, start making sure you share regular, original blog posts. If you are communicating via a medium and platform you really enjoy, it won’t feel like work: Communicating will come naturally to you, and the enjoyment you feel will come across to your readers, listeners or viewers.
Clarify Your Coaching Identity
Here’s a quick way to pinpoint this, if you don’t already know. Send a short email or poll out to your existing clients or subscribers, and ask them the following three questions:
o What do you want to see most from my [posts/articles/videos/podcasts]?
o Complete this statement about me: “When I see your name, I think of ____________________”
o What one thing do you think I can best help you with?
Or post it on your Facebook Page. (Do create a Facebook Page for your brand, if you haven’t already done so.)[PRESENTER: https://www.facebook.com/pages/create, if your audience asks for a link.]
In addition, ask yourself the following questions:
o Do you have a title? If not, what would it be? (Example: “Amy Porterfield, Social Media Strategy Consultant”)
o If people wrote articles about me, how would they brand me?
o What am I the “queen” of?
o Who would I like people to see me as?[Your Name], The___________________________
You need to be known for one specific talent or gift, if you want to attract the right audience. Narrowing your focus down will make sure that the people you attract are drawn to you for the right reason.
But what you really need is to expand your reach, so you can reach more of those people!
3. Mirror Your Offline Success
Take a look at what you do offline to attract clients. “That won’t work”, you might be thinking. “I hold a workshop in my community, and pass out feedback forms; then get people to put their names and phone numbers or email addresses on a list for upcoming workshop topics, to indicate they’re interested. And I get them to tell their friends about me.”
That is exactly what you have to do online—not the methods, but the process.
o Let people know about your event in places where those most interested hang out
o Present your content while they get to know you—and look to you for help with something they are invested in and passionate about
o Find out what they want more of by encouraging feedback and providing a platform for them to give it
o Providing an incentive for them to give you their contact details while indicating precisely which “program” they are most likely to invest in next
Let’s take a look at how to make this process work online…
4. Get to Know Them—and Help Them Get to Know You
The reason trying to transfer this process to an online process doesn’t work is simple: You are the missing factor. When you hold an offline event or make an appearance, people instantly get a strong idea of who you are and what you’re all about. They learn what’s important to you, what makes your face light up, they listen to the cadences of your voice, accent and speech patterns.
When you hold an offline event like a workshop, or volunteer at a local event, or see people in the coffee shop every morning, it is easy for people to get to know you. They learn to recognize your face, your expressions, the twinkle in your eye, the animated way you talk, the way you laugh. They see the concern on your face when they talk about a problem that matters to you too—their problem. They instantly recognize you and make the connection: “Oh, that’s the lady who explained freelance business tax categories to me”. More likely, however, before they get to that point, you might hear them say: “Oh, that’s the woman whose daughter is nuts about horseback riding like my Jennifer.”
You need them relating to you both on a business and personal level—not necessarily knowing all your most intimate secrets, but on enough of a personal level to feel a warm connection to you—even if it’s just “we both have golden retrievers”: Because “we both have golden retrievers” means so much more.
It means that you both instantly understand that golden retrievers are:
o Goofy and silly and high energy
o Athletic and wimpy at the same time
o Nuts about car rides and walks
o Terrified of slippery floors
o Fixated on meals and treats
o Known to wear their oversized, huge hearts on their, uh, paws
And they love both games and people (not necessarily in that order, and usually both at once).
Similarly, if they identify you as the business coach whose daughter is also into horseback riding, you can bet they noticed because they have a family member into horses, and they instantly know your daughter’s room is full of rosettes, cups, horse posters and statuettes, and pony books. And that your laundry room and back porch smell of horse, 24/7.
That sort of personal detail creates an instantaneous and instinctive connection between you. It won’t make the difference between whether or not they choose you to coach their small business team—but it does mean they:
a) Instantly notice you
b) Instantly relate to you
c) Sympathize or rejoice with you
d) Are interested in talking to you, finding out more about you, comparing stories with you
So never be afraid online to make the connection more personal. Be real. Share things that are part of your life, part of who you are, and above all, why you are doing what you do—and why you love doing it.
You may look perfect in a Saks Fifth Avenue business suit, but that won’t make anyone feel a personal connection to you.
Online, this translates to doing things like:
o Writing a blog post about your dog, with photo—but using it to relate to a coaching point
o Talking about passions—and using your horse-crazed daughter to illustrate a small point
o Making a super-short “welcome” video so that people get to remember your face, how you speak, how you smile, what your energy level is like and so forth
o Making sure your writing reflects your speech patterns and cadences, your energy and the way you talk in real life
It also involves making sure that your website is laser-focused with any small, personal divergences carefully planned and presented.
5. Make them Want to Connect
Lots of people have no problem getting people to relate to them, but the real trick is to get your ideal online customer or client to want to take that first step into an actual relationship. To do that, you need to make sure that your website instantly shows them:
o What you do
o Who you are
o What you can instantly help them with
Put them all together, and you have your unique brand—one that should pre-qualify your ideal subscribers (scaring away the wrong ones that will waste your time and attracting the ones that will love what you do).
Your website also needs to do one more thing: Pre-sell them on the value of your coaching. In other words, open your door and invite them inside. Do this by presenting a single free offer or incentive that will ONLY attract ideal customers or clients.
The best way to get this point across properly is to show you from actual coaching website landing pages. Let’s start with Executive Coach, Paul Larsen’s, site…
He’s almost there—he’s done lots of things right. Namely:
o A modern, full page theme design
o A call to action (“Start today”)Focus on who he wants to attract (the “your” statement in “Find Your Voice”) rather than on himself
o Instantly identify himself as an Executive Coach
But does this website open the door and give you, personally, an irresistible reason for stepping inside?
No. It’s grey. It’s generic (other than the words “executive coach”). If you’re looking for an executive coach and you have a list of links to check out, this is one you’d probably skip over and take a look at if your main contenders didn’t work out.
But Paul Larsen has one ace up his sleeve that you don’t know about: He knows his audience. He has a strong background and reputation in the corporate world. He is well-known and an authority figure in that stratosphere. His website is designed for corporations who are reassured by blandness and subtle notes of authority, rather than billboards. People coming to his site have most likely already been referred, so this site probably works really well for him: But unless you have a similar audience and background, you will need to work a little harder to get the right people to step inside your door.
Let’s take a look at another example…
Again, there are several things that nutrition coach, Michelle Pfennighaus, has done right on this landing page:[PRESENTER: http://findyourbalancehealth.com/]
o Focused ONLY on her main message (“Feeding yourself doesn’t have to be complicated”)
o Included a specific call to action button (“Join our community”)Has an easy-to-remember, memorable branding presence (“Find Your Balance” plus her web colors and photo, showing an individual in an informal setting, enjoying a drink at home)
o It’s actually a photo of herself, presumably in her own kitchen
o She uses the word “community”. People nowadays are strongly attracted, in this web-isolated world, with the thought of becoming part of a community that shares specific values
o It’s supported by an incredibly strong, personalized “About” page that her ideal client can relate to[PRESENTER: http://findyourbalancehealth.com/about/]
The negatives are:
o She relies solely only on relating to entice you inside (but the good part is, her ideal client will find it interesting)
o She utters the fatal words “tell you what you need to know”. Even when people want you to tell them, No-one likes to be “told” things. They like to discover them interactively—particularly when working with a coach.
o She does offer a freebie—but you have to really dig to find it. (“Coconut Milk Magic” on her “How to Work with Me” landing page.)[PRESENTER: http://findyourbalancehealth.com/workwithme/—scroll down.]
o She attempts to use humor in her “How to Work with Me” section. This is when people are just getting serious; getting down to business. It can come as a shock to see something like this—even though she qualifies it as a joke immediately. The timing is off—the humor is in the wrong place, and the reader was not prepared for it by signs of humor in her “About” page (or anywhere else).
Finally, neither of these two websites gives it that extra, Olympic-training, fine tweak. Neither uses pop-ups to retain exiting visitors or pre-qualify and attract new arrivals.
And once you’ve created a visually pleasing, branded, targeted website, it’s those Olympic-training tweaks that take your online presence from pleasing people to actually selling your programs.
It’s a two-part effort:
o Creating a website that is a virtual introduction to you, what you do and how you can help
o Attractive multiple sources of targeted traffic
One such tweak is using a pop-up to instantly captures those targeted leads…
6. Providing Compelling Incentives
Let’s look at a website that does use pop-ups—TimeFreedomBusiness.com.
Here, outsourcing coach, Melissa Ingold, uses her unique “What Your Time is Worth” calculator app to attract those interested in making the most of their billable time and ensuring they receive maximum profits.
You can use pop-ups in this way to offer your free incentive—but like your branding, make these incentives specific and valuable. To someone passionately interested in maximizing their time, “Sign up for my newsletter” pales beside “Use this free calculator to find out how much an hour of your time is really worth”. And, as you can guess, the entire focus of the website is on saving you time, through informed outsourcing.
Pop-ups can be:
o Timed, so they appear after a slight delay
o Instantaneous, at the beginning of your visitor’s entry to your website
o As an exit strategy—appearing at the end of the website visit
Entry pop-ups are often included with premium web themes. They are usually optional, and you can adjust the settings.
If you would like to try out an exit pop-up (sometimes harder to find), check out Popup Domination 3.0.
Whatever pop-up option you choose, make sure it works with mobiles.
Another option for presenting your high-value, targeted incentive—one which you can use with pop-ups or without—invest in LeadPages®; one of the smartest, most time-saving, highly-converting actions you can take!
With literally hundreds of current-design templates, LeadPages® allows you to create a fantastic-looking landing page in minutes. You don’t need any knowledge of html, and there are tutorials, but you’ll get the hang of creating a landing page (and many other types of web pages) almost instantly.
What’s more, LeadPages® will track your Page results for you, showing you what works, what doesn’t, where your conversions and clicks are coming from and much more. (It will also help you easily create A/B split tests too.)
So that’s how and where to offer your incentives: Now… what about the incentives themselves?
Ask yourself this question:
o What have I got to share that represents my most valuable, priceless piece of knowledge?
Is it a…
□ Defining question you can ask?
□ A unique app that your ideal visitors will find priceless?
□ Signature program you can introduce them to?
□ High-value, signature book you can give them for free?
□ Form that will save them time and help them do a difficult or wearying task?
(You fill in the blank on this last one!)
Especially if you have more than one answer, go back over each choice you’ve ticked off and ask yourself:
o What unique, big benefit does this incentive offer?
And ask yourself one last question:
o What instant incentive can my ideal subscriber/client/customer not be able to resist?
If you have more than one choice, choose the one with the greatest and most in-demand benefit or reward.
You also don’t have to offer a “freebie”. If your program is unique and hot enough, you can introduce it to them straight away—and use your incentive to take them to where they can learn more.
So that takes care of Part One—making sure your website is as focused, appealing, valuable and attractive as it can be. Let’s turn our attention to Part Two: Getting more traffic to discover how awesome your coaching programs can be!
While it’s a great idea to start out by concentrating on and throwing all your passion and energy into the content platform you love best—video, podcasting or writing—interacting in whatever form feels best to you—you need to invite the guests to your party. And if you’re investing your life-blood and soul into it, and throwing a huge bash, you want as many people to rush to your table as possible.
Your website (i.e. invitation) has made sure that only the right people will want to respond. Now let’s find them—and let’s look beyond the contacts you already have… But let’s start with them.
7. Start with Your Existing Clients
Lots of people have no problem getting people to relate to them, but the real trick is to start with your Existing Clients and contacts.
First of all, let your existing clients know about your new website. Give them new cards or brochures introducing them to it. Give them more than one new business cards—give them several “so you can share these with others” that you think might need your new program.
Point out to your special VIP, one-on-one clients that your new website offers automated ways for people all over the world to be helped by your coaching, without the special privileges that your one-on-one clients will continue to enjoy.
Then ask your existing clients to write you a short, three-sentence testimonial (call it a “recommendation”).
Make this as easy as possible: Make it “fill in the blanks”. Hand them out a form to take home with them that says:
1. [Coach Name] is all about _______________________________________________________
2. She helped me to_____________________________________________________
3. If you want to_________________________________________, then [Coach Name] can________________________________________ for you.
And do feel free to add an extra text box that says “Other Comments”!
8. Focus on Multiple Social Sharing Platforms
The good news is: This not as daunting as it sounds! If you’ve concentrated on your main content platform—for example, making videos or writing articles for your blog; or creating a Facebook Page or Group, if interactivity is your most comfortable method of communication—then you are eighty-percent of the way there.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to add social media sharing buttons on your website—as coach, Paul Bevans, does on his home page.
If social sharing is something you want to invest your time in, make sure you have visible, large share buttons! Each platform will have some sort of tutorial on how to create sharing buttons—and will even provide you with the code to copy-paste into your website. Alternately, there are many social sharing plugins you can use, if you prefer to simply add a WordPress plugin.
You’ve created your main content creation routine: Now sign up for multiple social sharing platforms—and see where you get the greatest response.
Focus mostly on that particular platform, when you’re starting out in building leads—but don’t focus on making them buy: Focus on helping them—and helping them get to know you.
Be distinctive! Let them hear your “voice”.
In addition to links to your own articles, videos, etc. share:
o High-end, sumptuous and striking graphics that will appeal to them
o Relevant cartoons
o Inspirational quotes
o From your articles
o From other people’s articles (with link)
o From famous people and influencers
o Shout outs or congratulations for their achievements
o Screenshots of your video, website or anything else that might catch their eyes
o Links to sites or resources that can help them
o Carefully chosen personal tidbits
And all of these short posts can be quickly created from material already produced (by them; by someone else; or by you!)
For maximum effect:
1. Schedule your social media activity (e.g. every morning from 11—11:30 a.m.)
2. Schedule time slot per week to create posts for the week from what you’ve noted, seen or produced yourself
3. Check your social posts daily—staying online or turning on “Notifications” on Facebook to respond quickly to comments or shares
4. Acknowledge and thank people who share your posts
5. Answer questions and respond to comments
6. Use people’s names, when responding
9. Create an Effective Email Strategy
There’s no other way around it: You need emails to keep in touch with—and grow—your ideal audience.
Creating an email series that will automatically be delivered to your new subscribers after sign-up is a crucial follow-up strategy—sign-up is just the beginning of your relationship.
Your follow-up email series will also prepare your subscriber for your new program offer—or funnel them to an alternate offer. (Make sure you provide them for you!)
What you need to provide in each email—and especially in any email directly leading to an offer is the magic ingredient.
Successful emails do the following:
o Identify the problem
o Promise the “magic ingredient”
o Give the reader what you promised
This doesn’t mean dumping every bit of knowledge in your reader’s lap: It means focusing on one small, specific aspect of a topic and giving them something valuable that will further them on their most desired and important journey.
Successful emails also:
o Tell your reader what to do next
Powerful emails also invite the reader to take a specific action—and give them sufficient incentive or inspiration to do that immediately.
Powerful email series also make sure they use reminders, for when an offer is about to expire. They also tell subscribers how to get help, and/or contact the writer—and follow up by making sure people know how to use the program, checking up on how their doing, telling subscribers where to find them on the net (social platforms) and generally maintaining the conversation.
Powerful emails are also fun and rewarding to read.
Bottom line: Don’t ever underestimate the power of regularly scheduled email contact! And be sure you don’t neglect it.
10. Go that One Step Further
Remember that most sales happen in the follow-up stage. That’s why you need those email reminders—and you need persistence without pestering.
You need to carefully plan your sales funnels, so that each program—free or paid— leads your participant to the logical and emotional “next step”.
Anticipate your subscribers:
o Not being “quite ready” for a program or fast-action deal
o Needing more “proof”
o Not being the ideal candidate for that particular program/offer
And provide alternate options for them: Ones that will either help them prepare for that “step up” program or send them out your door (thanking you and giving you a sale anyway, as they leave).
So they’re not ready to travel to San Francisco for your big, exciting summit: Offer to sell them the recordings!
So they’re not ready to invest in your ten-month, intensive coaching program: Sell them your DIY kit that actually will make them eager for the very program they initially turned down, while allowing them to achieve results that prove you can do what you say.
11. Plan to Advertise
Later on, when you have got everything up and running and you are able to measure real-time results, plan to invest in advertising. To start out with, however, use Facebook advertising, if you’ve created a Page (and Group). As soon as your page gathers 100 “Likes”, you will be able to easily boost posts through your “Insights” dashboard—and measure their success.
You can also quickly create ads to gain “Likes” on your Facebook Page; as well as advertise your website.
Make sure you use ONLY your best keywords in your ad copy: Watch out for any keywords (words) that attract the wrong people. For example, if you don’t want freebie seekers, don’t use the word “free”. DO use words that are specific to what you teach, what your ideal subscriber’s concerns and problems are—and your benefits.
12. Use Shortcuts that Help, not Hurt
Taking care of these areas and making sure you settle into an enjoyable routine based around your main passion and focus will give you a solid start in reaching more targeted subscribers, customers and clients.
Meanwhile, remember that you can minimize the learning curve and stop wasting billable time (not to mention your energy) by using valid, professional shortcuts such as packages and content provided by reputable companies like CoachGlue.
You can find done-for-you planners like the one pictured above, done-for-you content and done-for you forms. All you need to do is tweak them to target them to your own ideal clients.
There are Teach Your Tribe packages and a high-value VIP Club too.
On the following page, you’ll find a little checklist to summarize what we’ve covered so far…
If You Want to Sell More of Your Programs CHECKLIST
1. Decide on your primary content creation platform: The one that is most easy—and the one you most enjoy.
2. Drill down and clarify a strong coaching identity—what you want to be known as/for and who you are best at helping.
3. Mirror your offline success. Identify what works for you in attracting offline clients, and find the right online versions to achieve the same thing.
4. Make sure your website ticks all the boxes—that it attracts the right visitor—and repels the wrong ones.
5. Make them want to connect. Help them get to know you, and make sure you get to know them. Make sure your website:
□ What you do
□ Who you are
□ What you can instantly help them with
6. Start with existing clients. Get them involved in spreading the word about your new programs
7. Provide the strongest, clearest incentive possible
8. Be present on multiple social media platforms—and include social share buttons on your website!
9. Create an effective email follow-up strategy—build the relationship (and your reputation!)
10.Go the extra step further—add those little tweaks that kick everything up a notch
11.Use professional, time-saving shortcuts that help, not hurt, your brand.
12.Plan for advertising and start with Facebook advertising
Remember that what we’ve covered her today is a solid, basic starting point to gain the maximum number of targeted leads: Always be on the lookout for natural, new arenas where you are likely to find your ideal client.
I’ll be taking your questions at the end of the call, but first let me tell you about something that can really help to double your audience![Present your offer (10 minutes) GIVE COUPON information, if you have one, for early responders who are already poised to buy.]
It’s a four-module self-training system—complete with an Action Plan you can implement at the end of each module, as well as exercise worksheet to help you define your plan, called “Double Your Traffic, Double Your Audience!”.
You can save yourself countless hours of billable time, eliminate the need for complex planning and research, and get yourself ready to sell your programs effortlessly to a much wider, targeted audience by taking this easy, four-module course (and save yourself hundreds of dollars, by eliminating the need for your own coach).
This quick and easy self-study course will guide you through content creation for several