10 Common Challenges Life Coaches Face and How to Solve Them

Finding true success in coaching presents some significant challenges. All are solved with pinpointed focus on one target market, plus a handful of winning strategies and a bit of patience. No joke. Targeting your attraction energy on one viable market is where leverage begins.

10 Common Challenges Life Coaches Face

Recognize any of these?

  • Prospects can’t seem to justify your fees.
  • Your confidence is flagging.
  • You’re getting too few referrals.
  • You’re not filling your groups.
  • Your Unique Benefit Statement is falling flat.
  • Networking isn’t working.
  • Your blog & ezine articles aren’t bringing a return in clients.
  • You’re working really hard but getting poor results.
  • You’re overwhelmed by information.
  • Your income doesn’t justify your time or investment in your coaching business.

Take a look at these challenges as if they were symptoms of root causes and see how targeting a viable market solves each one.

Symptom: Coaching prospects can’t seem to justify your fees.
Root cause: You’re trying to sell coaching, which hardly anyone seeks to buy. So, your coaching is perceived as a luxury service rather than essential support.
Solution: Your services will be perceived as essential when they address the outcome your market most wants to achieve. Sell your prospects on the outcome, then use your awesome coaching skills to help them attain it.

Symptom: Your confidence is flagging.
Root cause: Focusing on how you might be lacking keeps you stuck and in pain.
Solution: Focus on your target market instead. What makes them tick? What are their most elusive goals? What solutions would they buy? Know that your clients’ wisdom holds their most profound solutions. You don’t have to know it all.

Symptom: You’re getting too few referrals.
Root cause: If you can’t articulate in a compelling way what you do and for whom, other people don’t know who to refer to you, and you won’t be top of mind.
Solution: Champion one unique and accessible niche market. Speak their language. Then, not only will you get referrals from friends and colleagues, your clients will also fill your practice for you.

Symptom: You’re not filling your groups.
Root cause: Your leads list is too small.
Solution: It’s faster to build a list when you target, because each person on your list will share you with their colleagues readily. You are their go-to person.

Symptom: Your Unique Benefit Statement is falling flat.
Root cause: You’re still trying to sell your coaching skills. It’s what Robert Middleton calls “process-speak” and it doesn’t attract anyone but other coaches.
Solution: Tailor your UBS to address what your target market is actively seeking solutions for.

Symptom: Networking isn’t working.
Root cause: You’re not leveraging your time in front of large concentrations of your market.
Solution: Choose one viable market and you’ll know exactly where to find large numbers of them.

Symptom: Your blog & ezine articles aren’t bringing a return in clients.
Root cause: You’re writing about self-actualization topics – balance, self care, vision and values, life purpose. It’s old hat and not specific enough to one unique group.
Solution: Only write about what is highly relevant to your ideal coaching market. And watch how quickly your expertise and knowledge capital grow.

Symptom: You’re working really hard but getting poor results.
Root cause: Scattershot marketing techniques take more time and are less effective than targeted marketing. All the effort to warm up a prospect is lost if they don’t engage immediately.
Solution: Repeatedly serve one group and the trust factor builds faster. Nothing is lost. Everything can be leveraged.

Symptom: You’re overwhelmed by information.
Root cause: You don’t trust what you already know. Or you don’t know what you need to know now, so you spend all your time grabbing for information, and don’t implement. Your brain fills up fast with untried learning that only fills you with doubts.
Solution: Reach only for the information you need right now to help you connect with your target market. And then implement what you learn.

Symptom: Your income doesn’t justify your investment in your coaching business.
Root cause: You’re not charging what you’re worth because you haven’t specialized on one market.
Solution: Experts can charge much more for their services and get it. You become an expert quickly when you champion a specific group.

If you’re ready to shift your results and land your niche market, check out my popular step-by-step system to help you choose Your Highly Profitable Niche.

  • I like the confidence one, the 2nd one above. When I spend more time with my market, I can see what they need instead of wondering what they need. And without a specific market, it's tough to get a read on what whoever-your-client-will-be will need. Great points Rhonda.

  • I like the confidence one, the 2nd one above. When I spend more time with my market, I can see what they need instead of wondering what they need. And without a specific market, it's tough to get a read on what whoever-your-client-will-be will need. Great points Rhonda.

  • Hey Mark, thanks for contributing here. I agree. Our goal is to be supportive in all the many ways that manifests. Often, it’s about being challenging and helping the client to their highest good and full potential. Just being friendly won’t always help the client grow.

  • this is an excellent article and since I am a personal trainer there is a lot that I can take away from this..thanks for posting this

  • This is EXACTLY what I needed to read at a time when I am feeling a little low about my brand new coaching practice, and how I will ever grow it to what I envision in my mind. I have been reluctant to narrow down my niche as a new coach but I can see now that marketing to a niche, rather than limiting to it, could really help me.

    Thank you so much for such a great read. I have some positive and precise action points from this.

    • I know that moment of aha, Rachael, when you realize it’s time for a course correct. I’m so glad you’ve discovered this big one — that targeting a viable market is the key to as sustainable, consistently profitable coaching biz. Now… to choose a viable market. If you want help, you know I’ve got a fantastic step by step system — Ideal Coaching Market. Check it out on my blog.