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To succeed as a coach or a trainer, you’re going to have to learn how to find and enroll new clients.
To help you with this I’d like to give you five tips for how to find new clients and customers:
You might have heard it said that success is not about what you know but who you know.
And while this is not entirely true, it is very important.
In an industry such as coaching that is driven by personal connections and relationships, effective networking goes a long way in helping you find new clients.
Get out of your home and go to events where success-driven people gather and go to events where your fellow coaches and trainers gather as well.
You don’t have to be overtly marketing yourself the whole time, but take time to get to know the people there and forming connections with them.
In many cases, these connections can later turn into new clients in a variety of ways you might not even have anticipated.
My friend Ivan Misner, the Founder and former CEO of BNI, Business Network International, and author of Networking Like a Pro, says that networking consists of three steps or stages: Visibility, Credibility, and Profitability.
First, you have to show up and be seen. Introduce yourself to people.
The second step of successful networking is credibility.
You gain that by contributing something of value to the other person, often by making a promise and keeping it.
Ask people what they are working on at the moment or what their biggest challenge is at the moment, and then later you can refer them to a resource like a good book, or send them an article or introduce them to someone that can help them.
Once you have credibility in their eyes, then you can ask them for referrals for your coaching or training business.
Here’s a great video on networking like a pro:
Another great way to network is by forming or joining a mastermind group.
They are becoming increasingly easier to find, and should be an integral part of your business plan for getting started.
These groups and the advice that they offer are able to help you grow your coaching/training business in a number of ways, including finding new clients.
Join one if you have the opportunity, and learn everything you can from it. You can also form your own.
It’s worked for businesses for decades, and now, thanks to services such as Facebook Ads and Google AdWords, it’s more effective than ever.
The advantage that Facebook Ads, AdWords, and a few others bring to the table is that they allow for highly specific targeting.
Rather than paying to send your ad out to the masses, you only have to pay to send it out to those that you have already identified as your target market.
If you’ve managed to carve out any sort of niche with your coaching and training business, this can be especially useful for gathering qualified leads that you can later convert into paying clients.
My third tip for beginning to build a coaching practice is one I learned from David Wood, a very successful coach and trainer of coaches. It’s amazingly simple and amazingly effective.
You start by making a list of everyone in your life who has contributed to your success in any way—colleagues, teachers, mentors, friends, people at your church temple or mosque, past customers and clients.
Then you call them and say that you really appreciate the difference they have made in your life and that you have just become a coach, and as a way of thanking them for their contribution, you’d like to offer them a free coaching session.
In my experience and the experience of my students, almost everyone says yes, and then many of them, assuming you have provided real value in that coaching call or session, you can ask them if they would like to continue and do some more session, and if they say yes, you now have a new client.
In the business world, this is known as a loss leader. You are taking a loss on the first session or a sale item in a retail store, to gain a future stream of income.
You can also do this if you have a mailing list of any kind by offering a free group coaching call or webinar on a particular topic, such as how to lose weight, or how to become aware of and release the unconscious limiting beliefs you have that are holding you back in life.
The key is to make it available to the first 20 or 30 people that sign up, so you create an urgency and exclusivity to the event with the promise of some individual interaction.
I learned this from one of my friends named Marcia Wieder. I consider her the Queen of Enrollment. Here are a couple of her ideas that I have found useful.
#1: In order to be successful at anything, you need to connect deeply with what you care about.
And then communicate succinctly why they should care about it too. When talking to someone about your work, offer them a compelling invitation for them to join you.
The emphasis is on inviting. You have to offer them something they can participate in. The compelling part usually has to do with a sense of urgency around the offer, — which is usually around timing and a special price and scarcity.
But it always has to be the truth.
She once told me she is enrolling new clients all the time everywhere she is—even at the checkout counter of the supermarket or in line at Starbucks.
She strikes up a conversation with the person in from or in back of her and at some point asks the question: “Do you have a dream that matters to you?”
If they answer yes, she asks them more about it and tells them briefly how she can help them.
If they answer no, she mentions that people with passion and dreams live longer, happier lives, and then enrolls them in wanting a dream… that she can help them find and create.
Obviously, this question will work at any event you might be attending as well.
If you’re attending the right events, networking with the right crowds, and really just interacting with curiosity and a passion for what you are offering people, opportunities for telling people about your coaching practice or training are going to be everywhere.
You just need to be ready for these opportunities and capitalize on them when they do present themselves.
You need to create a great elevator pitch – a short, 20-30 second pitch of your services that lasts about the same amount of time as an elevator ride.
Practice this pitch, hone away the parts that aren’t necessary, and learn to highlight the parts that seem to get people’s attention.
If you can pin down a great elevator pitch, you’ll be able to spark the interest of potential clients when the opportunity arises and convince them to give you their contact information.
In some cases, you may even be able to get them to sign up for your services right there on the spot.
Never just answer the question, “What do you do?” with, “I am a coach” or “I am a trainer.”
It tells people nothing.
Craft a statement that tells people in a compelling way who you work with, and how you serve them.
You want the statement to cause people to say, “How do you do that?”
My elevator pitch is this:
“I help authors, coaches, trainers, and entrepreneurs double their income while at the same time doubling their time off in two years or less.”
At first, finding new clients can be one of the most difficult parts of running a coaching or training business.
The real secret of how to find new customers and clients is that it takes consistent effort over time, but the effort is worth it because you get to make a significant difference in the lives of many people.
Which one of the methods I’ve shared with you today to get more clients for your coaching business will you try? Let me know in the comments. If you want to learn how you can start your own training business, click the button below to watch my free training webcast.