The Problem With Selling 'Coaching' | By Steve Mitten, MCC

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A common marketing mistake

One of the most common marketing mistakes coaches make, is to try and sell "Coaching".

The problem is that very few people—less than 1 in 1,000—really know what coaching is or are even looking for a coach.

So if you go around attempting to sell an expensive service, something that virtually nobody understands—or is looking for, it's no surprise that you'll struggle.

What you should do instead

On the other hand, if you identify an existing need, dream, goal, challenge or change that your target audience is already searching for a solution to, you can easily use your coaching skills as a powerful solution delivery system.

Let me give you an example:

One client I worked with was a gifted and well trained coach. Coming from a background in small business she was drawn towards supporting other small business people to help them grow their businesses. She began to market herself as a Small Business Coach and spent a great deal of time frequenting networking events and giving talks to business groups about the benefits of business coaching. The response she got was lukewarm at best. She was attracting far fewer clients than she wanted and was struggling.

When she really understood that almost no-one is looking to buy "Coaching", and began to market herself as a small business solution provider, things began to happen. She used her experience of small business to identify "the top 5 problems" most common to her target clientele. She began to speak about her unique approach to solving these problems, (as opposed to simply talking about "business coaching"). Since most of her audience wanted, and was ready to pay for, solutions to these problems, her business began to take off.

She began to further position herself as an expert within her niche, looking for ways to better leverage her time through online classes, a book, and key note addresses on her area of expertise. Her coaching business is now booming, and she's never looked back.


The moral of the story?

Yes, you're a coach. Yes, you love coaching. But you'll be far more successful using your coaching skills as the means or a process by which you deliver solutions to problems your target audience already has.

Try it.

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Contributing Author:

Steve Mitten B.ApSc., CPCC, MCC. Steve is a Master Certified Business & Executive Life Coach, and Past President of the ICF (International Coaching Federation). Please Note: Steve has now transitioned into retirement.

Learn more about Steve & see all their articles here >>

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