Ep 16 – Why Not Coach People Like You? with Casey Onder

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Episode Transcript

In this episode, I’m doing another On Air session (where I coach the coach) with Casey Onder. We’re going to determine her ideal target audience for her coaching business.

A Better Definition of Success

Casey is an industrial organizational psychologist by training. A year ago she left a job in leadership consulting to pursue a career as a coach.

Her life’s work from here on has to do with reforming what success and work could look like in the US because she’s done a lot of traveling and seen how different it can be in other countries.

Too Many Ideas = Stuck on the Niche

When choosing a target audience it really helps to eliminate as many choices as possible so there’s just one or two left to discuss and then only one to refine.

Casey came to our session feeling like she had a bunch of disparate ideas about potential target audiences for her coaching business.

  • She is interested in people who are in a similar state that she was in career-wise — “hating what you’re doing and knowing that it is not you.” These people have invested so much time and money learning to do one thing. Now they feel stuck there.
  • Another idea Casey has was to work with, what she called thinkers. The technical people. Similarly things haven’t fallen into place for those people. They are either overworking or want to make a switch.

They have lost themselves in demanding occupations, feeling like they sold out for what they thought success was in the past.

Casey had several concerns about this group so it was easy to just take this option off the short list.

  • Casey also is interested in women who are very bright. Again they are following a prescribed notion of success in their career.

I suggested that her audience could include this group by simply using the word ‘women’ in her audience description. And we’ll pull in how bright they are with language.

Teasing Out the Common Themes

As Casey spoke, what seemed like a big ball of confusing ideas to her, emerged as a set of clear themes to me.

I could see a way that she could pull those themes together into one audience.

What really jumped out was the idea of people feeling burdened by their professional career choice. And Casey affirmed that.

Casey’s Coaching Audience Discovered

Prior to our session Casey had sent me answers to a few questions. In those answers were clues.

I mentioned the phrase “high achievers” to Casey. And also the idea of people who come from successful families where there’s an assumption they will go into a professional career track.

I asked Casey if she comes from a family like that. And she said she did.

So when I strung that altogether as a potential audience for Casey — high achieving women from ambitious families — and asked her what she thought of working with that group, she said:

“Oh yeah, I would love to work with that group!”

Hey Coaches … I’m breaking into this episode for a minute to ask you a question …

Do you know where to find clients

who GET the value of coaching

enough to pay you well for it?

Most people don’t know they want coaching. So it’s up to you to show that you solve a real problem that’s worth their investment.

That starts by knowing your zone of genius and aligning it to an audience who does invest in their own transformation.

I’d like to help you get this right because your niche is what helps you stand out, grab attention and engage clients.

From there we can go on to make everything in your business powerful and congruent from your brand, to messaging, to web copy and a free offer that shows off your gifts while pre-selling people into your signature program.

I’ll teach you how to enroll clients that pay you well without being salesy.

If you’ve tried group business building programs and found it hard to apply what you learned, you are NOT alone.

Personalized support is the way to go. Take a first step with me. Grab a Strategy session and we’ll get you to the next step with confidence.

Refining the Audience

Isn’t it great that as coaches we can develop a business that serves people like ourselves?

Casey said that these people would be in a relatively prestigious role. So we discussed doctors, lawyers and other types of professionals.

With doctors and lawyers she felt she would be too much of an outsider. And normally I would agree, but in this case where they are burdened by their choice of profession and potentially wanting to get out, I think they’d be open to working with a person who had not been a doctor or lawyer.

Casey also mentioned Management Consultants and it was clear she had a lot of personal attraction to this audience. She said it would be exciting to work with them because they are so talented and a bit stuck in their left brain.

But at the same time she felt like they would be very difficult to reach.

I encouraged Casey to not drill down yet to a particular profession but rather to launch her business focusing on high achieving women professionals from ambitious families.

It’s narrow enough to help her stand out. And it allows her to explore groups like Lawyers and Management Consultants without having to gear all her messaging specifically to them.

I have personally met a number of lawyers and other types of professionals who — just as Casey said — are not happy with their career choice but the investment they made in higher learning keeps them stuck. Many take the leap.

Ideal Words Attract Ideal Coaching Clients

A critical next step for Casey is to do some light market research. That helps coaches get crystal clear on the psychographics of the audience — identifying what inspires them to invest in professional support to reach their goals.

From there we can create highly relevant and effective messaging as well as creating a signature program that attracts the audience.

Market research is a step a lot of coaches miss. Without it, web copy, emails, blogs can all miss the mark.

Congratulations to Casey on clearing out all the cluttered options that were keeping her from moving forward! She now has a viable audience to pursue and that will guide every choice she makes for her business making everything easier and more congruent.

The Next Episode is: 10 Years Into Coaching and Going Strong with Tami Stacklehouse