Are You Marketing Your Coaching To Seekers?

Coaches are getting smarter. I’m meeting more coaches who know that the typical approach to marketing a coaching business doesn’t work well. They truly want great results, so they are using better strategies much earlier than I did in my coaching career. And it’s working for them.

That indicates the field of coaching is attracting more business oriented folks. And that means that more coaches will succeed, which makes me happy.

Insight about what makes a viable coaching market

Success in coaching comes from a combination of persistence, belief in self, genuine interest in people, and serving a market that will go the distance — a market full of people who are motivated to buy services for their personal and professional growth. I call them Seekers.

Are You Connecting with Seekers?

Recently a coach told me about her deep passion for coaching a certain group — moms. But, despite consistent hard work trying to attract enough of them, it’s not working. Prospects smile and show enthusiasm, a few enroll, but they only stay for a few months. So now this coach is ready to choose a more viable market. After all, why stay attached to a market that’s not abundantly fruitful, both in income and coaching experiences?

Here’s the thing. No matter how much you love the idea of coaching a certain group, if they aren’t seekers — not willing to invest — not much income will flow into your coaching business. It’s a hard fact to swallow. That old saying about leading a horse to water… Well, you can lead someone to coaching, but no matter how much you think they need it, if they won’t invest in the solutions you are offering, you won’t have enough clients.

Moms are an example of a coaching market that, for most coaches, won’t go the distance. Why? Because a mom’s focus is so steadfastly on their kids. Offer them something for their kids, they’ll consider investing. But they aren’t likely to invest in support for themselves. . . at least not about issues related to being a mom.

I ask coaches who are also moms this question: Would you buy coaching to help you be a better mom, to have more balance, or to help you raise your kids? Most say NO. However, now that they are a coach and growing a business, they will invest in a mentor coach to help them earn a better living. And guess what — they will bring to that coaching table many of the issues that arise with being a mom. So… moms aren’t into buying coaching services, but mompreneurs are. Hmm. That’s interesting, isn’t it?

There are many enticing markets out there — like moms — that tempt coaches, but that don’t result in a sustainable business. You know that you’re targeting one of those if you are persistently getting in front of them and speaking their language, but it’s not resulting in a thriving coaching business.

What Makes a Market Viable?

Viable markets pass ALL of these tests. They are:

  • Accessible. These folks gather in groups. They meet, they hang out together online, they read the same publications. AND they will talk to you.
  • Narrow. The market is specific and unique, small enough that you can leverage your marketing efforts. It’s a lot easier to repeatedly connect with people in a small market than a large one. Which means you build trust, credibility and a leads list much faster. Plus, you have less competition.
  • Seekers. They are motivated to invest in their personal and professional development.

Looking at the difference between the market of moms and the market of mompreneurs, what can we learn about choosing a viable market?

  1. Sometimes the coaching clients you most want to work with are contained within markets you might never have considered. Maybe you’ve felt that you aren’t qualified to work with a business market. But the ironic thing is that you work with people in business markets every day that you coach. You just aren’t thinking of it that way. And yet, if you could get over that fear, you could tap a more viable market and serve them well with the skill sets you already possess.
  2. Only some people are willing to seek professional support for their challenges. Coaches should look for markets that have tangible problems to solve and that are likely to seek professional support.

If you’re serious about your success and unimpressed with the results your marketing has brought so far, it’s probably not about you — it’s about the market you’re targeting.

It’s time for a strategy that has a proven track record. Target a market that meets all three viability tests, and watch your coaching business take off!

Want some professional support with that? Sign up for the Champion Your Ideal Coaching Market workshop. In five easy steps and just eight weeks, you will have a more viable target market, know exactly what makes them tick and how to speak their language, and have identified coaching programs that they will invest in.

  • I am not sure I am marketing to seekers. That is why I have subscribed for the course! Looking forward to it a lot!

    • I'm so delighted, Adrienne! Hear you next Tuesday!

    • Theresa

      You WILL love it, Adrienne…Enjoy ;o)

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  • Tony Calabrese

    Hi Rhonda:

    I really enjoyed today's blog. Although I have connected with your message before, today's example really showed how to focus on a market that while you may be attracted to, the need to go deeper within that market. And, that all comes as you guide your clients, by getting to know that market. Take care and I hope you are doing well.

    • Hey, thanks Tony! I'd love to have an update from you. Shoot me an email and let me know about the great things you're doing!

  • greggswanson

    Hi Rhonda,
    Great post! I really embrace the idea of “seekers”…kind of goes hand in glove with “attracting your perfect client.” I think many coaches come from a place of “lack”, that is they think getting clients is a competition and if they “narrow” their field they won’t make it.

    Wallace Wattles (The Science of Getting Rich) describes this as the “competitive mindset.” He goes on to say that the “creative mindset” is when a person sees’s opportunity everywhere.

    When a coach can instill the creative mindset they’ll then attract the seekers.

    Great post again!

    • Hey Gregg – love this idea of creative vs. competitive mindset. Thanks for sharing and I'll check out Wallace Wattles!

  • Theresa

    After going through a personal funk with my Mother's passing; resisting the idea that I needed to work with the willing/skeekers…I finally am putting Rhonda's amazing skill to practice… I am NOW seeing results!! One, just needs to get out of their own way, some times & know it's ok to seek wisdom.
    Rhonda is SO Amazing and her class helped me in more ways than I can put into words!! The investment into her class will be fun, help you uncover systems for your business and most of all help discover what's holding you back!! I hope Rhonda's next book or program is about scripts, as she has some great things she has said that are truely “Golden Tickets' of wisdom!
    Rhonda…Can you refresh my memory as to what message I leave on my skeeker's voicemail to get them to return my call/ request to interview them for my market?
    Thank you beyond the Moon !!!
    Theresa Douillard, B.S., LPC

    • Hey Theresa – Blessings to you and your family for your mom's passing. And welcome back to focus. I'm so glad you're putting things in place and getting results. When you say “skeekers” do you mean seekers? I'd recommend you call back to reach people in your market verbally rather than leaving a message. That's the best way to do those info interviews. For more info about that process refer back to the recording, study guide and exercise for Week 3. You are welcome beyond the moon!

  • From some of the coaches I have talked with, their biggest challenge is that they want to work with a group that doesn't want or can't afford to get the help. I know a coach who's target she'd love to be women who have been abused. Unfortunately, short of being in a non-profit center, she is having a hard time connecting with women in this category that feel they CAN do anything for themselves or that can afford it if they do believe that.

    We can't want it for them more than they want it for themselves.

    • Great points. Should a coach really be working with those folks? Seems to me they s/b using the services of a therapist. There are some realms that coaches are not qualified for. And, I agree, if you're a coach for pro bono, go ahead and target markets that won't pay, otherwise, either find out what a market will pay for and offer that or move on.

  • From some of the coaches I have talked with, their biggest challenge is that they want to work with a group that doesn't want or can't afford to get the help. I know a coach who's target she'd love to be women who have been abused. Unfortunately, short of being in a non-profit center, she is having a hard time connecting with women in this category that feel they CAN do anything for themselves or that can afford it if they do believe that.

    We can't want it for them more than they want it for themselves.

  • Great points. Should a coach really be working with those folks? Seems to me they s/b using the services of a therapist. There are some realms that coaches are not qualified for. And, I agree, if you're a coach for pro bono, go ahead and target markets that won't pay, otherwise, either find out what a market will pay for and offer that or move on.

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