Ep 116 – Why Losing Potential Coaching Clients Is a Gift

This episode is inspired by the wisdom of hindsight. Don’t we all love hindsight!

As a highly experienced coach, I can say without hesitation that not every coach will be the best client for me. And not every client will be the best client for you either.

In fact, some clients could end up being difficult to work with. Episode #98 was about this. In that case you and the client may suffer each time you have a session. And that’s sad because here you are intending to do good yet harm could be done.

I assure you, it’s not because there’s anything wrong with that client or that there’s anything wrong with you. It comes down to how well the client aligns with you and you align with the client.

Differences in Pace, Style and Values

When communication style, pace and guiding values align there’s a harmonious coaching relationship.

Let’s take pace. Have you ever had a client who talks so fast you can’t understand them? Or maybe it’s you who is the fast talker and your client is struggling to keep up with you. Pace in speech and processing is very personal.

There can be differences about the way our minds work. Differences in learning style, in work style too. Some client’s will have very different values than you and that could be challenging.

It’s true that part of our job as coaches is to learn our client’s ways and meet them with respect and agility in our approach. Sometimes that’s just not possible.

One of the preferences that I have with my clients is that we value each other as human beings. I’ve had clients where I felt like their slave. Obviously, that didn’t last.

But I’ve also had clients who are warm and connective, which brings us both so much joy. Now I ask for this kind of connection when I begin a client relationship. I don’t just want to help a coach build their coaching business from the ground up. I want us to enjoy the journey and each other.

5 Ways Fit Helps You and Your Coaching Clients

Fit between a client and coach makes the difference in whether:

  1. You end a session drained or energized
  2. Your coaching lands with the person
  3. The client makes real measurable progress
  4. You receive testimonials and referrals
  5. The client comes back for more

If you’re just getting started as a coach, there’s a strong desire to enroll anyone! You may be feeling “I’ll take anyone!” After all, at first client flow can be a slow trickle. I remember that. And I totally get that need to experience yourself coaching and earning as fast as you can.

As you gain experience though you might find yourself turning down a potential client before you’ve ever coached them. I have many times. I know that might seem hard to imagine.

Can You Fire a Coaching Client?

You may even need to end a coaching relationship at some point in time. I’ve had to let clients go. Each time, I’ve reflected and realized that there were warning signs that the fit wasn’t right when I met them in a Discovery Call.

Having a Discovery Call not a sample coaching session is a highly effective way to assess fit because you can ask questions to understand pace, style and values

It’s worth it to build up your intuition and pay attention to what’s important to you in the co-creative relationship.

Nearly every time I’ve let a potential client or existing client go, they have felt the lack of fit too on reflection. I take my part of the responsibility and emphasize that I’m not a good fit for them rather than the other way around.

But there have been a couple of times where a potential client insisted I work with them even though I knew for certain we weren’t a good fit. I’ve had to kindly say to them that for the sake of my integrity I know that it’s not right for me to work with them. Where possible I’ve referred those individuals to someone else. And I’ve found they are grateful that I spoke up.

Ideal Clients for Every Coach

Back in 2006 when I launched Prosperous Coach and became known as the Coaching Niche Strategist I had a vision for the field of coaching that every coach would become highly specialized, not only in their unique audience and niche but also in the parameters of the work they do with a client.

The idea is that all coaches become excellent referral partners for each other. So instead of taking on a client that is not a fit for you or your niche, you’ll refer them to a coach who has that specialty and style. I still hold this vision.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if instead of tens of thousands of coaches all in the same few niches you would stand out and quickly become known for your narrow specialty? You’d become a subject matter expert.

I’ll talk about finding the niche within your niche in an episode soon. Have you ever thought that someone else could be a better coach for a client?

There’s a maturity in that mindset. And there’s a bonus too. Because you’ll stop suffering if a potential client does not hire you. You’ll find peace in the idea that it’s simply about fit. And that will allow you to attract clients who are ideal for you.

Ep 114 – 10 Things That Help You Become a Coach in High Demand

One of my VIP clients was researching other coaches in her niche last week. She came away from that shocked and concerned.

So many of the sites felt like ghost towns. A lack of current content or pages out of date seemed to signify the sites were abandoned.

Besides this one, three distinct fears crop up fast from researching other coach’s websites:

  • Is the coaching field too saturated?
  • Can I compete with this?
  • Should I even try to make it in coaching?

First, I assure you the coaching field is not too saturated, especially if you do things to stand out in the crowd, which you’ll hear me reinforce a lot.

And should you even try? Only you can answer that. You know your mind and heart. If this truly important to you, you’ll go after it with singular focus and true grit.

It may be hard to accept this. A lot of coaches do not make it — mostly because they lack determination.

Building and sustaining a business is no small feat. So many coaches will spend all the time and money to learn coaching skills then do all the tasks to launch but let the whole thing go before they even cross the threshold. Or, they give it 6 months then give up.

Looking back I’m amazed that I stayed the course considering my many mistakes and some slow years. I’m stubborn that way. Stick-to-it-iveness pays off.

So yeah, there’s tremendous attrition. And that’s true for all startups, not just coaching startups.

I encourage YOU to think of this attrition dispassionately. What really matters is YOUR courage of conviction. Don’t give up. Every problem has a solution.

Find your way and enjoy the journey because few things in life will teach you so many meaningful life changing things as growing your business.

What most coaches ultimately want is to become a coach in high demand. That golden place where clients find YOU and they are ready to enroll. It’s something you absolutely can achieve if you give it a chance.

I ’ve narrowed it down to 10 things all coaches need to become a coach in high demand:

Specialize on an Audience with a Specific Big Problem and Goal

The viability of your audience and niche is the cornerstone of your stability as a coach. If you stand out in the crowd and become well known by a unique and viable audience, you set yourself up for success. The more broad your audience or light your niche, the less likely you’ll gain traction.

Implement a Strong Content Strategy

Standing out matters here too. If your blogs, episodes, videos and social posts seem to be just like every other coach’s, those efforts won’t pay off. Content is still King and Queen!

Grow Unstoppable Determination

This is about character. Will you apply discipline? Will you believe in yourself and this calling even when there’s no proof you’ll make it?

Take Daily High Payoff Actions

A high payoff action makes you squirm. Coaches who make it will do the hard things until they are no longer hard to do and then they’ll find other challenges.

Have Patience

The first eighteen months after launch is a critical time. Because it’s during that time you’re most likely to give up. Patience is absolutely required. Without it, you’ll live in disappointment and give up before you’ve gotten started.

Value Your Time Highly

Act as if you are already in high demand. Choose wisely where you put your time and energy. Control your calendar and pinpoint your efforts. Set up and hold boundaries. Be a professional.

Charge High Prices

Graduate from student mode quickly. Stop charging by the session or month and develop a Signature Program. Charge fees that will allow you to work with few clients each year.

Develop a Platform

A platform is a stage that allows you to reach people. I was asked to train at Coach Training Alliance and to re-write their curriculum. This put me in front of hundreds of coaches that wanted my help to build their business. As you network to reach your specific target audience, because you’ve specialized an organization or center of influence might notice you and help your star rise.

Help Your Client Achieve Critical Results

If your clients are satisfied you’re worth the investment, you’ll enroll more but only if you’re charging well for your services. Professionalism and a sense of authority are strong attractors.

Ask for and Reward Referrals

I used to think any happy client would refer. But people are busy. You have to incentivize referrals. For example, when one of my VIP clients refers someone who enrolls in my 5-month VIP Coaching Business Breakthrough program I reward them with 2 free sessions to use anytime. It’s a strong incentive.

Ep 108 – How To Develop Your Signature Coaching Program

This episode is part of my Money Mastery series and it’s being reprised as LISTENER’S CHOICE because it had record listens over the last year.

Thank you, Coaches, for your loyal listenership! I’m grateful for you!

Today’s episode is about a better way to package a coaching program and earn more than by the session or group of sessions.

First, let’s talk about schools of thought. There are schools of thought about everything.

If you’re still in coach training some trainers may insist that coaching should not be programmed. In other words, you shouldn’t create an offer other than coaching sessions because it means that you take away the coach’s agenda.

If you’ve been listening to me for a while you know I believe that you can both serve a client’s agenda AND offer a specific program for a specific audience that solves their biggest problem and gets them where they want to go.

After 22 years of experience in my own coaching business and helping hundreds of coaches reach financial success in their businesses in my private VIP program, I know that selling coaching by the session only may keep you at poverty income levels.

So what is a better way that helps you earn well as a coach? I’ve been leading to this in the previous episodes so I hope you’ll listen to those too.

Create a Customized VIP Program

This is what I help all my clients create.

It helps the coach feel confident they have something of value to offer. They learn to articulate what they do in meaningful terms and without the agony of trying to convince people to buy coaching.

Of course, like all successful aspects of a coaching business, creating this program has critical steps that go before.

  1. It begins by targeting a viable audience – one that’s full of seekers – people who do invest in their professional and personal growth.
  2. Next you uncover their biggest known problems and the ultimate outcome they want to achieve. That becomes your coaching niche.
  3. Then, you put together a signature program tailor made to that audience. Your program has a clear set of milestones that you’ll help your clients achieve on the way to that ultimate desired outcome.
  4. Then, you learn how to articulate that to prospects in a way that’s benefit rich, supplying them with assurance of both tangible or concrete and intangible or emotional things they’d like to achieve with your help. That there is a structure in your program helps them to trust you and feel inspired to invest.
  5. Lastly, you need a strategy to attract clients, build trust and rapport, then gently send them through a conversion process, sometimes called a funnel, so they are motivated to have a Discovery Session with you, where you’ll enroll them.

Getting all of this done isn’t easy by yourself.

It helps to have a guide like me help you with all the steps no matter how big or small.

Examples of VIP Coaching Programs

For example, let’s say you’re a relationship coach helping people to find their soul mate. Your program might include the following milestones – takeaways you’ll help your clients achieve:

  • Identifying personal values and partnership values. What are their must haves and deal breakers in their life partnership?
  • Getting ready for a partner. What are their strengths but also habits and behaviors in need of adjustment? What are their limiting beliefs about relationships? You might even have something like a life makeover in your program.
  • Setting first date goals. Helping them set personal boundaries and show up with confidence.
  • Discovering the best places to meet people and connect.

There’s a clear arc to the program and plenty of opportunity for the client to bring the agenda to sessions. This structure is more about helping prospects feel confident to work with you.

Or, let’s say you’re a leadership coach and target HR leaders to gain greater impact in their role – something you’ve discovered from market research that’s a top goal of HR leaders. Your program’s milestones might include:

  1. Creating a vision for the impact they wish to make.
  2. Identifying what’s been in the way.
  3. Uncovering their professional strengths and learning how to leverage them.
  4. Identifying skills and behaviors that need attention and areas to stretch.
  5. Develop good habits to strengthen their resilience, mindset and competencies.
  6. Building their rapport, identifying sponsors and other relationships that would help their star rise.
  7. Helping them develop a thicker skin and become bolder in meetings.

You can see that the focus in these descriptions is not about you and your skills as the coach. It’s about the target audience and what they want. But at the same time these kinds of milestones are what all coaches can help their clients achieve.

Either of these programs could be a 4 – 6 months or longer.

Bundle Significant Value Into The Program

So far in your coaching business you might be simply trying to convince a client to hook on … to want coaching and be willing to invest in a certain number of sessions up front.

It’s painful. And it’s without context especially if you haven’t narrowed to a viable audience, done market research and discovered what your audience wants so much they’d be willing to invest in your help to get it.

Programming your coaching into a VIP program creates a context for why a person would want to invest at a high level in their future success. And, you can develop this program without even using the word “coaching”. That’s your toolbox not an outcome they know they want.

Identify What They’ll Get In Your Coaching Program

The next step for creating your program is to identify the features. What do they get when they invest in the program? Consider bundling some of these things into your program:

  • A certain number of private sessions, say 10 – 18 sessions depending on length of your program, your preferences, and what it takes to achieve the goals
  • A certain number of group sessions or access to a closed Facebook group for community support
  • Annual retreats
  • Half or full VIP day where they fly out to work with you face to face on some aspect
  • Unlimited emails to you
  • Session recaps
  • Pre-created guides, forms or assessments to ease a process.

These things still involve coaching and coaching skills. But they add excitement to a program and help justify the fees to enroll.

Ep 103 – Should Coaches Have Expertise?

This episode is part of the Smart Mindsets & Habits series.

I wanted to let you know that my last episode had record listens. I was sharing how there’s one thing you must have going for you to be successful in your coaching business.

It’s worth a listen because it’s likely not at all what you think. Check it out at prosperouscoach.com/102.

Many coaches worry that they need expertise to be successful as a coach. Well … do you need expertise?

I say no.

But if you cultivate expertise you will gain credibility and find many ways to serve others with it.

Experience is the Primer for Expertise As a Coach

Sometimes I’ll talk to a coach who has decided to focus on a target audience and niche because they think that’s where the money is.

For example a coach who has never been in corporate decides to become a corporate coach. Or a coach who has never had any business experience deciding to be a business coach.

While it may be true that there can be increased income potential in corporate or business coaching, the competition is fierce. And without a background – some experience in those worlds – targeting them would be fruitless.

You’ll notice, in those particular circumstances it’s not expertise they need so much as experience.

When I help coaches choose their target audience and develop their niche I do look for and encourage them to leverage their unique experience, knowledge and wisdom.

It doesn’t have to be career experience by the way. It can be life experience.

In those cases it can be the foundation for a natural audience and coaching niche solution.

Are You Second Guessing Your Experience?

But sometimes, even with vast experience, a coach won’t fully perceive and believe in the value of their own experience. They second-guess it.

Or they find holes in their knowledge that they think disqualifies them off hand to work with an audience.

I don’t see it that way. I know the power of story. And I know that if you’ve experienced what it’s like to be your target audience – even if you’re not there now – it brings you credibility.

So consider thinking of experience as the primer for expertise.

Gain Expertise in Days

I think a lot of people have an old fashioned concept of expertise. There’s that apprentice idea that you have to follow the master around and learn everything they know before you can go out on your own.

But we live in modern times where knowledge and experience are at our fingertips.

I have a fluid concept of expertise. And I invite you to consider adapting it.

To me, expertise is when you’ve applied focus and awareness on a particular problem and you’ve solved it for yourself or at least begun to solve it for yourself.

Focus + Awareness are powerful ingredients to quickly build expertise.

Do you think I was an expert in coaching niches from the very beginning? Nope.

Do you think I was a skilled copywriter and copy editor before I started helping others write? Nope.

Do you think I knew how to help coaches develop their niches to the extent I know how now when I first decided to target coaches as my audience? Nope.

I floundered around just as most coaches do confused about where I belonged and who would find me credible. I struggled horribly with Imposter Syndrome. And for a very long time I charged prices for my services that were too low to be sustainable.

But one day I decided to become an expert. And that alone got me half way there.

I focused in on a top challenge I had as a coach and I played around with theories about how to fix it until one day I had a clear step-by-step system that I could teach others. And then I focused on other specific problems.

This way is what I call the teacher archetype. If you haven’t listened to that episode yet you can find it at prosperouscoach.com/12. And anyone can take a problem then apply awareness and focus to solve it. And anyone can pass that knowledge forward to others.

But here’s what most people don’t realize … expertise grows very quickly if you apply yourself. It doesn’t have to take years. In some circumstances it only takes days.

So why doesn’t everyone have expertise?

It is only because they haven’t applied themselves to acquire it.

So, I leave you with this. Look closely at your own life and give yourself credit for all that you’ve figured out on your own. Then pick an area that fits a very specific acute problem that one narrow target audience has. Make that your area of study and then leverage that.

To all the wonderful coaches out there who don’t yet believe in their own experience I invite you to OWN it and build upon it. Become credible in your own eyes. Let go of the doubt.

It’s only doubt. You can blow it away with a breath. You can do it!

Ep 100 – How 5 Coaches Leveraged Their Coaching Niche Into a Smart Podcast

Today feels special. I’m airing my 100th podcast and celebrating my 2nd year anniversary of podcasting!

Thanks to you — binge listening and sharing Prosperous Coach Podcast with other coaches — my show has hit 60,000 downloads and listenership is growing fast!

I’m so grateful to you and to the podcasting community, which is filled with some of the kindest, most generous people I’ve met. They genuinely want every podcaster to thrive. And so I have!

And I’m here to tell you that podcasting revolutionized my coaching business. Coaches reach out to me ready to enroll because they already trust me from listening to my podcast.

That’s why I recommend podcasting to my clients. For coaches — who are willing to choose a narrow viable target audience full of seekers and taken the time to research what those people want so much they’ll invest in support to get there — podcasting is a great fit.

Think about it … if you speak directly into the ear of your target audience every week about a top-of-mind issue and how to shift it, can you imagine how that would help you attract serious clients who are ready to hire you?

It’s HUGELY impactful. It builds credibility fast and helps you reach an international audience for your niche.

Of course you have to stand out in the crowd. Podcasting is growing so fast and for every topic and target audience you can think of there’s at least one podcast already out there.

Helping coaches stand out is exactly why I encourage you NOT to sell a certain type of coaching. Instead to target a unique audience with BIG problems they want solved and gear your messaging and offers around that.

So today, as I’m celebrating my own success with your help, I also want to celebrate 5 other coaches who have just leveraged their coaching niches into a podcast. I’m so impressed with every single one of them.

They are all past or current clients in my 5 month VIP Coaching Business Breakthrough program where we started from scratch to develop strategic messaging, offers, web copy and their content strategy – podcasting – all customized for their unique target audience.

As you’re listening to this episode today, notice these 3 things:

  1. How narrow and specific each coach’s target audience is.
  2. How compelling and unique their message is.
  3. And how they are NOT selling coaching (even though they are trained and certified coaches who use coaching to help their audience reach their top goals.)

I recommend you check out their awesome websites and listen to their podcasts, which you can find on their website and also on popular podcast apps.

Then please help them by sharing their podcasts with people you know who fit their audience. Someday someone will do the same for you.

Shawna Warner and Cultivate Resilient Teens

Let’s start with Shawna Warner who just launched her podcast a few weeks ago. In Shawna’s business at Cultivating Resilient Teens.com she helps parents empower their teenage daughters to build confidence, integrity and resilience for all of life’s adventures.

I wish I’d had Shawna’s help when I was a teenager!

Shawna has a Masters in clinical social work and was a social work intern in schools. That and her personal experience raising a teenage daughter who has thrived into an awesome young adult are reasons she chose her audience and niche.

I listened to one of Shawna’s podcast episodes just the other day about 3 Simple Steps to Quiet Your Daughter’s Inner Critic and Boost Her Self Confidence and I thought, “Yes, I’m listening to that because who doesn’t need help quieting their inner critic and boosting confidence?”

The episode was so valuable AND I want to point something out that’s critical for you if you’re still considering your niche …

Sure, you could put out a blog or podcast or video about quieting your inner critic without specifying such a narrow niche.

Wouldn’t that be even better because it doesn’t limit you?

NO. It’s smart to narrow your audience and niche.

There’s so much information out there for general audiences and most of it is ignored. But when you target a specific audience like Shawna did and you contextualize everything you put out there to fit your audience’s specific circumstances, it not only has more impact but it gets more attention.

It’s a big mistake to think you want to have a bigger more general niche and audience. The more narrowly you niche the more likely it is you’ll succeed.

If you’re a parent with a teenage daughter you’ll snap to attention when you see Shawna’s podcasts, blogs and social posts. That’s why targeting works.

Congrats Shawna on your fantastic coaching business and new podcast! I love all the value you give to parents and their teen daughters!

Mona Abow and The Boundless Mindset

Next, let me introduce you to Mona Abow of TheBoundlessMindset.com. Mona helps ambitious women of color become an empowering force and a launch a lucrative business they’ll love. Beautiful message, right?

You might be wondering if it’s smart to choose narrow to a group such as women of color who are launching a business. It is!

If Mona targeted ALL aspiring business owners she’d have no traction because that marketplace is already saturated. By narrowing to women of color she makes those individuals special and they are. They have a unique perspective and challenges. They have specific desires and goals.

Mona has blown me away with how she’s quickly leveraged her audience, niche and podcast using Instagram videos and daily posts. Check her Insta feed out. I can’t resist watching her videos.

And just this week I stumbled on a promotion she’s doing for The Boundless Mindset Business Accelerator Course. She’s taking applicants now.

Mona just launched her business and podcast July 2020 – only 4 months ago – after graduating from my VIP program. Was I doing things like that 4 months into my coaching business? No! Mona is unstoppable.

You’ll love her beautiful accent and tips when you listen to her podcast called The Boundless Mindset.

Here’s another brilliant coach who just launched her business and podcast in September 2020 …

Barbara K. Andersen and Happy UN Career

Barbara K. Andersen helps United Nations professionals take ownership of their career and get recognized for their contributions.

Talk about narrow niches!

As I was helping Barbara develop her niche and business model, she educated me in the unique universe of the UN. It was clear that here was an underserved group when it comes to career coaching and support to balance their work and home life.

So many coaches decide to help people with topics like balance and career. But they miss the strategic step of narrowing the audience and contextualizing their message and offers to that audience’s world. Without that specificity it will be much harder to earn well as a coach.

Barbara and I have no doubts about the trajectory of her success with this audience. She brings so much to the table with decades of experience in the UN. She has a ready network and allies who already know her value and professionalism.

Find her podcast, Happy UN Career on her website and in podcast apps. If you know a professional working for the UN, turn them on to her podcast. The podcast will do the job of attracting Barbara’s ideal clients. And you know – what comes around goes around.

Deanna Bryant and Revive Your Midlife Marriage

Deanna’s coaching business and podcast is called Revive Your Midlife Marriage and she already has 12 highly engaging episodes out after just launching in September of 2020.

If you’re a married woman in midlife you have to listen in! You’ll love her southern buttery voice, excellent marriage tips and jazzy theme music. I listen every week.

Deanna has a compelling personal story that helped us solidify her coaching niche.

Married women need help! Deanna was smart to narrow her audience though. Midlife marriage has it’s own set of unique challenges for women.

Danielle Jernigan and Thrive After Postpartum

This soulful coach is just about to finish my VIP program and launch both her business and podcast of the same name Thrive After Postpartum.

You have to see her beautiful website and gorgeous headshots. And I think her podcast is destined to become an important cultural movement. Watch for it in November 2020.

Danielle helps black women reclaim their bodies, reinvent their identities and live a more empowered life after postpartum.

Postpartum is a misunderstood and potentially life derailing time in a woman’s life and particularly for black women who have long been socialized to believe that strong black women don’t need support.

As coaches, we know that everyone deserves support.

Danielle made several intelligent and strategic decisions for her coaching business:

  1. She chose a specific time of life that’s rife with challenge for her niche – postpartum – one where she could also integrate her personal story
  2. Then she further narrowed that niche by targeting black women, a unique audience with unique desires and challenges.
  3. She went further to identify specific areas where she supports these women based on her passions, studies and training.

Those 3 choices make Danielle’s niche potent. And when you hear Danielle in her podcast, you’ll think so too.

Shawna, Mona, Barbara, Deanna and Danielle each gave me permission to talk about their businesses with such lovely words that made my day!

I love all my clients and I’m very proud of them. I wanted to share these 5 brilliant coaches and their brands, niches, websites and messaging because they launched a podcast, which takes courage, perseverance and a desire to serve.

I’ve been helping some of my VIP clients get their podcasts developed and launched because I believe in the power of the medium. It’s not for every coach or for every audience but for some it will be worth the effort.

My podcast has not only been worth the effort for me but I truly LOVE my podcast. I enjoy creating it and giving back to coaches. And I’m grateful for how it attracts my ideal clients – new coaches who want to build a strategic business that’s meaningful and prosperous.

Ep 99 – What Coaching Clients Want Versus What You Think They Need

This episode is short and part of the series called Smart & Profitable Coaching Niches. If you’re new to this podcast and struggling to determine a strategic coaching niche, this series is for you. Check out all the episodes in this series at prosperouscoach.com/niche.

There’s something I hear nearly all new coaches say … they say “there’s a real need for that niche” or “that audience really needs help with this”. If I’m their business coach I encourage them to think differently.

Shift from Tracking Needs to Tracking Wants

In the world of attraction, wants are more compelling than needs with few exceptions. So instead of thinking about a person’s or a group’s needs, think instead about their wants – the desire that compel them to action.

All people have needs. And as newly trained coaches we have a heightened sense of this.

But not all people are seekers — people who do invest in their own personal or professional growth. Seekers are people with urgent WANTS. They want something and they are willing to pay well for help to achieve it.

Coaches are seekers. But that’s just an example to help you realize what a seeker is about. I don’t recommend new coaches target other coaches as clients. It’s a much over marketed to audience.

You want an audience that helps you stand out in the crowd of coaches and other people trying to attract attention.

So choosing a niche starts with choosing a viable audience — one that’s full of seekers, is narrow enough to help you stand out and has a BIG problem they WANT to solve.

It may seem like semantics or that I’m splitting hairs but bear with me …

A seeker tends to be social in the sense that they care about people and want to effect positive change in the lives of others. A seeker likes to grow and develop from the inside out. They place a high value on personal evolution – becoming better is some way such as more intelligent, more successful, more aware, more intuitive, more authentic … happier.

Seekers tend to look outside themselves for teachers, helpers, support systems and guides to what they WANT. That’s you. You could be their support system on the way to what they most want.

So if you think – “Aha, there’s a need. I could fill that need!” You may be leading yourself astray. Because needs often run in the background and don’t drive a person to seek.

It’s the big desires that drive a person to seek and invest.

I’m not sure who said this but you may have heard it and it applies:

Sell them what they want and give them what they need.


Your marketing – which includes all of your messaging, your content, your website, your  emails, your social posts – will go further to attract attention if they hit squarely on what a group WANTS rather than what they need.

That doesn’t mean that needs don’t play into the decision to hire you. But first and consistently focus on the big wants – the ultimate desires.

Ep 95 – Is Coaching a Seasonal Business?

Recently I overheard a coach saying that her business had been doing well and then over the last two months everything came to an abrupt halt.

Prospects weren’t showing up. People stopped opening emails and engaging on social media. And her income slowed way down.

She was ready to give up on her business. And I thought to myselt, “Don’t do that! Instead accelerate and expand your efforts to attract ideal clients.”

Hearing her anxiety made me remember when I was a new coach. But here’s what I realized down the road. That daily pain I felt about fluctuations in my business came down to one mistake …

Taking things personally instead of responding strategically.

Do you know what I mean? If you are feeling blown around in the wind and like you have no control over your coaching business, it’s time for a mindset shift.

You Control Your Results in Your Coaching Business

Here’s the truth … you do have control over your business. Yes, you may need to may small incremental adjustment to help your coaching business thrive, but YOU hold the controls for the most part.

Think about it …

You control how often and how effectively you’re getting in front of your target audience. This is the first place to look if you’re not earning enough as a coach.

You control your fees, what value you deliver and can even have a significant influence over how attracted your audience is to what you offer.

If you haven’t heard it already, I have a whole series called Coaching Business Checkup with 9 episodes that go step by step into the most strategic things you can do before you launch your coaching business.

There’s also a downloadable self-assessment to test what’s working and what’s not working in your coaching business.

The Seasons of Your Coaching Business

All that said, there is one thing you can’t control. You cannot control a seasonal slow down.

But you can shift your mindset about how you respond it and even plan for it.

Depending on your target audience and the flow of their lives there may be a few times each year when paying clients will be less likely to hire you.

Typical slow down times relate to the school year:

  • Spring break
  • Late summer
  • Christmas and New Years

And then there’s events like major elections, such as the Presidential election coming up in the US.

Short-term stress leading up to and just beyond an election may mean people are less grounded to make big decisions. The stock market often dips then as well.

But don’t think that long-term stress has the same effect. It does not.

That’s why I don’t recommend that you hold off on launching your business or keeping it going during the pandemic.

Recently, I published an episode called Should You Launch Your Coaching Business at a Better Time. Find that at prosperouscoach.com/91. Give it a listen because there’s more insight in there about how we fool ourselves into thinking certain times aren’t good for running a coaching business.

How Can a Smart Coach Respond to Seasonal Slow Downs?

Plan both practically and emotionally for these slower times.

First, manage your money to prepare for a temporary doldrum. And work on your mindset so you don’t feel blown around and out of control.

For example, a typical response to school year related slow downs is to sit around and wait for things to improve.

A more decisive approach would be to plan vacation for those times.

But a different and more savvy approach is to use those slower times to plan and create more ambitious campaigns that you can launch when the slow down passes.

Just after the first week of September and the first week of January are the classic times in Western cultures when adults swing into action to improve their lives.

If you are extra active during those times you stand a good chance to win significant market share. By market share I mean attracting attention and inspiring people to hire you.

Look I know that phrase might make you wince. But truly, we all are vying for attention, including coaches and any other type of marketer, which is simply a person who has something valuable to offer and wants to let people know they exist.

That’s all marketing is. It’s communication. And it can be done in an authentic and non-salesy way.

To grab attention target a narrow audience and create a stand out niche so you’re not just another voice in an ocean of voices but rather a unique voice for a unique group with a highly valuable message that they want to hear.

The way I respond to shifts in the market place? Never stop publishing valuable content weekly and have smart systems in place to continually attract paying clients no matter what’s going on in the world.

This is a big part of what I help coaches to create in my 5 month VIP Coaching Business Breakthrough program.

So, as I say all of this about seasonality, consider not taking my word for any of it.

Do your own assessment of peaks and troughs in enrollment for your business. Give yourself a few years to track the flow and make micro adjustments in the way you do things.

But know this … most experienced business owners and marketers will tell you the key to success is consistency.

Stopping and starting your marketing in cycles could actually cause the slow down.

One last thing to contemplate … the pandemic has shifted normal peaks and troughs.

For me, April and May, normal robust times, were slow. Then surprisingly July and August of 2020 were my biggest enrollment periods ever in 20 years and it’s continuing with no slow down!

My theory is two things created this shift:

  1. Family vacations were cancelled, and
  2. The strong desire to break out of status quo during a global crisis

Isn’t it fascinating how the human mind works and what drives us to real change?

As a business owner your goal is to learn to be agile and move with the flow instead of against it or just let it push you around. You can do it!

In the Next Episode: Can You Want Too Much for Your Coaching Clients?

Ep 94 – Maybe You Don’t Need a Coaching Niche

When I help a new coach develop their audience, niche, brand, messaging, web copy and more … part of what I’m doing is helping them to become an entrepreneur – the CEO of their own business.

My goal with helping them niche first is not to limit them but rather to help them leverage and have a powerful springboard to launch. I know that if they stand out in the crowd they have a greater chance of being a financially successful coach more quickly.

There are coach mentors out there that say you don’t need a niche. I have a theory about that. I imagine that those people are what I call PURE COACHES. Hopefully, they have found their own success without a niche before they tell other coaches that they don’t need one.

Which Coach Archetype Fits You?

I’ve published a previous episode called Which Coach Archetype Fits You?  Youcan find that at prosperouscoach.com/12. It’s worth a listen.

By observing successful coaches over 2 decades I cam up with 5 main archetypes for coaches … the Teacher (that’s my archetype), the Healer, the Icon, the CEO and the Pure Coach.

The first 4 archetypes are born entrepreneurs:

The 5th archetype, The Pure Coach, wants to coach anyone about anything. Their goal is to coach and not necessarily to earn well of have a say of how they earn well.

A side point here … I think a lot of coaches that are still in coaching training school or just out have this in mind at first. I know I did. I was enamored about the idea of coaching and I had little understanding of how I’d get clients or earn well as coach.

Like a lot of coaches I tried to sell coaching by the session or by the month to everyone. I didn’t know that coaching is a hard sell in most circles. I had a few clients and my first year I made a total of $5000.

That did not satisfy me and I wasn’t going to give up. So I sought another way.

I realized that I had a lot to learn so I studied my way to success.

Lo and behold I love running my own business. And I don’t even mind marketing because I get to do it in a non-salesy way such as with this podcast where I can teach and provide value while I let you know that I’m here to help you launch your coaching business.

The Pure Coach

The Pure Coach is someone who is not driven by a desire to put their own ideas or messages out there. They don’t care about having creative control of their own business.

In fact, for a Pure Coach being an entrepreneur might be torture.

A Pure Coach tends to become a devotee of a certain coaching model or a certain set of principles taught by someone else.

Think … John Marshall or Tony Robbins.

  • The Pure Coach wants someone to funnel clients to them rather than attract their ideal type.
  • They don’t want to market or publish content EVER!
  • They would be happiest applying someone else’s approach to work with each client for however long.
  • They would be fine with someone else setting their fees and setting the rules.

I don’t know a lot about getting a position as a coach within an organization as I’ve never done it and never had the desire to do it.

However, I’ve had a few Tony Robbins coaches come to me thinking they should “graduate” from that to having their own business so they can earn more. They are being paid a cut of the whole fee and it doesn’t feel like much.

They wanted my help to niche and build their solo business.

For some, we quickly found out with a little coaching that they really did NOT want to be an entrepreneur. It’s not for everyone. It’s a certain kind of risk and reward.

I want you to know that I LOVE entrepreneurship and entrepreneurs. I also love coaches. And I want coaches to find their way to financial success and feel proud of their work. It doesn’t have to be my way. And I do have a way that works.

In the Next Episode: Is Coaching a Seasonal Business?