While running a coaching practice is extremely rewarding, one of the downsides is needing to constantly create new clients. After all, if you don’t have clients then you can’t pay the bills.
Naturally, the first step is to create an offering based on your client’s needs. You have to know what value you are providing and you need to know how to convey that.
For the sake of simplicity, let’s assume you’ve already got this part covered and your focus is now on creating a steady stream of clients.
The good new is there are a multitude of ways you can attract, nurture and create new clients on a consistent basis. By using the tips we’ll be outlining in this article you’ll ensure that you’ve got a wide pool of clients to choose from each month.
No matter what kind of business you are in there’s something that always rings true: people who’ve already paid you are the most likely to pay you again. In fact, according to research studies, repeat customers are 67% more likely to spend money on your products and services.
It makes sense because these people are already familiar with your work. It’s much easier to sell to someone who already knows you rather than building an entirely new relationship. Here are some of the ways you can create repeat customers:
- Create retainer coaching services. Meaning you are paid a monthly fee versus having clients purchase a certain number of sessions. This is great for clients you’ve already been working with for some time.
- Follow up with former clients and see how they are doing.
- Create new offerings specifically for people who’ve already worked with you in the past.
While repeat clients may not be a brand new client, the term “new client” doesn’t necessarily have to refer to leads you just met. “New client” could simply mean a new contract with a former client.
2. Develop offerings at different price points
Not everyone is ready to purchase the biggest coaching offering you’ve got. In fact, sometimes people genuinely cannot afford what you are offering.
That’s why it’s imperative to create offerings at different price points. Additionally, if done correctly these different offerings work with each other to move new clients through a sales process.
For instance, you can write a book and have it for sale on Amazon for $5. The low price point means people can easily afford it. Throughout the book, you can explain your coaching methodology and your story in a way that helps the readers get results.
By the time the reader has finished the book, they have become familiar with you, your story and your business. At this point, you may want to consider letting book readers know about a group coaching program. Again, this isn’t as expensive as private coaching and is, therefore, more financially feasible for many.
For the sake of example let’s say that book reader signs up for your group coaching program. The group coaching program gives them a sneak peek of what it’s like to coach with you. They’re not just reading about you in a book, they are actually interacting with you and going deeper into the work.
Finally, at the end of the group coaching program you let participants know that you have private, one on one coaching available. At this point, it’s more likely that your initial book reader will take you up on your offer in order to get specialized support and attention.
As you can see, different price points allow people to get help according to what they can afford. Additionally, it familiarizes people with your work so they feel more comfortable spending on more expensive offerings later on.
3. Participate in networking
With the rise of the internet, many have falsely assumed that all they have to do to build a business is a publish a blog and the money will come rolling in.
While blogging is an effective way to market yourself, it would be a mistake to neglect in-person networking and relationship building as a means of finding new clients.
The problem is many people hate networking – and it’s with good reason. Many networking events are terrible and people don’t seem to be getting much return on their investment.
Here are some tips to get the most out of networking so you can build a steady stream of new clients:
- Find events where your potential clients hang out. If you’re a health coach, don’t go to an event with a bunch of other health coaches because they don’t need your services. Instead, focus on events that cater to individuals looking to lose weight, create a healthier lifestyle or deal with stress.
- Narrow down the organizations you belong to. There’s no point in joining and organization and networking if you aren’t getting much out of it. This leads to spreading yourself out too thin. Instead focus on the two or three that either have the most potential or that have already helped your business.
- Get involved. Want to increase your credibility? Get involved with the networking event. Put on a class or help them organize one of their events.
- Be of service. Networking events aren’t about handing out business cards. They are about being of service. If you help just one person in the room then consider networking successful.
- Book meetings right then and there. With everything people having vying for their attention these days you’d be lucky if your email follow up after a networking event even gets read. if you find someone who may be a good fit for your coaching at an event, set up a meeting like a free consultation right then and there.
By using these tips you’ll be better able to use networking to build your business.
4. Start a blog
Did you know that 81% of U.S. online consumers trust the information on blogs? Did you also know that 92% of companies who blog have acquired new customers as a result? This is because blogging is the new marketing.
Blogs allow you to market yourself, give out free previews of your work and establish yourself as an expert in your field. These are three things you need to get new clients anyway, so why not start a blog and begin building that credibility?
Here are some other advantages that come with starting a blog:
- You can measure your metrics using a tool like Google Analytics to see what’s working and what isn’t in terms of converting readers into clients. This makes things a whole lot easier.
- You can build a list of leads by offering a freebie to readers if they subscribe.
- Having a blog makes it easier for press and media outlets to find you for quotes. This also helps you increase your visibility and your client reach.
- Creating content makes it easier for potential clients to find you on Google.
While blogs are a lot of work, they are an essential piece to the puzzle if you want to create a steady stream of new clients. This is especially true if you plan to have an international clientele instead of just focusing in your local area.
There is just one caveat. Blogs do not equate to instant success and loads of traffic overnight. It’s a lot like investing your time and money upfront in order to reap the benefits later on.
However, with time – and probably much sooner than you’d expect – blogs do help you increase your business revenue by means of new clients.
5. Widen your pool
A recent article published by Stanford portrays how as humans we have a tendency of overestimating how much we’ll be rejected. This leads us to behave in ways where we stop asking more people for what we want, when the reality is all we have to do is keep asking new people.
While the study focuses more on the act of asking for a favor, the same concept can apply in your coaching practice. If you want new clients you may need to find them yourself, widen your pool and keep asking for the sale.
This is the part where there may be an internal dialogue going on that’s keeping you from finding new clients.
Do you fear rejection?
Are you afraid of being a pest?
Has past rejection affected your ability to find new clients?
These are all important questions to ask yourself and answer truthfully as you go about trying to find new clients for your coaching practice.
6. Create a follow up system
The Stanford study also brought about another interesting point: when people were asked to do a favor a second time they were far more likely to say yes. This points out the importance of creating a follow up system in your coaching practice.
Additionally, further research shows that most sales are made after at least seven points of contact. It’s highly unlikely that someone will say yes the first time you ask them to come on as a coaching client. It’s also unlikely that they’ll hand over their credit card information just because they see a coaching package listed on your website.
The problem is despite the fact that most coaches know this, they still aren’t doing their due diligence in following up with their coaching leads.
Remember, sometimes people don’t come on as new clients because it’s bad timing. Sometimes they just aren’t ready and, even still, sometimes they’re trying to save up money.
This is why it’s imperative that you create a solid follow up system and continue to contact these people. Here are just a few ways you can do that:
- Get yourself a free CRM like Streak for Gmail or Capsule CRM so that you have an organized list of leads, have the ability to set follow up reminders and can schedule follow up emails to go out.
- Use autoresponders with a free service like MailChimp.
- If you have a virtual assistant have them organize your leads and send out follow ups on a regular basis.
The point is follow ups are an integral part to making sure you get new business. Without them you run the risk of drying up your pool of leads.
Creating new clients doesn’t have to be as difficult as it sounds. While there is a lot of work involved, and while you will definitely need patience sometimes, it will eventually get easier and become second nature.
Have you used any of these methods to create new clients? Do you have any others? Share in the comments below.