How to Get Business Coaching Clients – Why Coaches Often Struggle

Common errors in securing clients

In our experience at UK Growth Coach and from prior coaching companies too, we’ve met a wide variety of coaches. Some are already well on the way in their coaching journey and making great strides, but most come to us seeking guidance as they just can’t seem to win the right clients for their business. 

We find that there tend to be 5 main reasons that coaches struggle to win clients, and in this blog, we will explain them further so that you can avoid making the same mistakes

  1. They rely too heavily on a ‘build it and they will come’ content strategy.
  2. They pitch too much, rather than using a consultative selling approach.
  3. They have poor/no marketing assets and almost nothing in their toolkit.
  4. They rely upon prior experience as their USP, but the reality is that almost every coach has experience – it isn’t unique, and clients have many options.
  5. They don’t do the necessary legwork and wait for the phone to ring.

Content strategy

It’s no secret that content is valuable, blog posts and social media marketing are great tools for growing your business, but we find that in most cases clients do not proactively seek out the support of a coach on their own, even if they are consuming content at a distance.

The way you present and deliver content needs to be intentional, using proper social media strategies that have an expectation of some response.

Specific attention needs to be given to the target audience and the message, and a solid call to action with commitment intention needs to be developed. Unfortunately, just writing some great articles and posting them on your social media platforms won’t actually go too far to building your coaching business, or engaging your ideal clients. 

Consultative selling approach

We often see coaches who are far too focused on trying to sell their coaching services by mentioning the things their potential clients are doing wrong, or by shouting to the rooftops about how fantastic they themselves are. 

Unfortunately, neither of these approaches works great, as no one enjoys constantly being berated, and similarly, nobody likes to listen to someone brag constantly. 

Instead, it’s best to make your pitch more question-driven. Find out what the client is looking for, and then explain how you can help THEM to deliver on the self-identified needs. This also links back to the first point, as it’s usually very tricky to get someone to a consultation without getting them to commit to a conversation. 

A strong marketing toolkit

When trying to grow your coaching business it is essential to have a good marketing toolkit. 

This includes things like interesting business cards, leave-behind informative brochures, engaging social profiles and a company website that is focused upon their needs first. A strong brand representation needs to be at the heart of your business. 

It’s all well and good being able to convey your business proposition through conversation at events, but it’s always best to have a strong marketing toolkit behind you to back up an initial meeting. 

It’s important to have tools for inbound visitors (indirect), primary marketing tools that outreach to new prospective clients, secondary marketing tools (to encourage client retention, repeat purchases, and ongoing needs matching), and also tertiary marketing tools to establish your reputation and enable prospective clients to reference your company through things like referrals and reviews. 

For more info on this approach, check out the Common 10 Marketing Model from our sister company Growth by Design.

Develop YOUR USP

Whilst a good idea to mention your experience and items form your career when looking to attract clients, it’s not effective standalone marketing. Helping prospects understand the relevance or uniqueness of that experience in the context of them and their needs is more useful.

Without a real USP to back it up and convince a paying client to choose them over someone else to coach their business, the selling part can be quite difficult. The aim is to get the prospect to ask to buy, rather than you having to ask them to buy. Presenting the relevance and value first, gets them to lean in and ask that all important question, “How do I get to work with you?”

Doing the legwork

We often see people moving into coaching after leaving a larger organisation or corporate environment. It’s not necessarily a big problem and it is a natural next step, but there is a mindset shift that needs to happen if they want to become a coach to the small business owner.  

Whilst their previous job may have seen them in corporate leadership, management, leadership, marketing etc, they now have to realise that both they, and their future clients wear more or less all of the ‘hats’ in the business!

Being willing to put in the legwork and make sure that things like marketing are being handled, and going out of their way to make sales happen proactively, rather than waiting around for the phone to ring, is the key to success.

UK Growth Coach

As you can see, there are a few mistakes people make when making the jump to becoming a growth coach themselves. 

By working with UK Growth Coach, you get guided through the process using our unique training and service materials so that you feel fully confident when stepping into the marketplace.

For more information about how UK Growth Coach can help you get your coaching dreams turned into a real business, get in touch today on 01444 440 500 for a no-obligation chat.