14 min read
You want to help more people, spread your message, make an impact, and show people what you know.
You’re ready to build your coaching business, but now what?
With a sea of coaches and marketing experts, how do you stand out and build a unique platform to stand on?
How do you create a business with clients who are just waiting to work with you (and is this even possible?)
There’s so much excitement in building a coaching business and working with clients you love. You CAN believe the hype because it IS possible to build a business you love without working 80 hours a week, but it involves some upfront work.
If you take these steps, you’ll be on the right track to building a thriving community, clients that love and respect you, AND steady, increasing income.
Let’s get real first. Standing out in a crowded marketplace can be tough…sometimes…even excruciatingly painful.
If you’re building a coaching business and trying to scale it, how can you possibly do it all when there are so many other people out there doing the same thing?
You have to be willing to be AND do what most others aren’t. We have to remove ourselves from the comparison trap and just focus on the people we are helping and serving.
It may sound hard, but it’s actually supremely easy. In this post I’m going to break it down for you and show you what you need to do to grow your coaching business AND build a community of people who are dying to work with you.
Seven years ago I made the leap from my 4th grade NYC teaching job to full time entrepreneur.
I had no clue what I was doing, but I knew I didn’t want to be teaching anymore. And that discomfort of the Sunday Scaries and waking up to a job I massively fell out of love with was a good enough reason to jump into the discomfort of building my own business from the ground up.
My Paleo granola company, Blissful Eats started from the Joseph Campbell quote, “follow your bliss.” (Actually it was called Pure Bliss Eats, but funny enough, you can’t trademark a business that someone else has in the same category..so do your research first. That was the first of many lessons learned!)
My food company was a grassroots company from day one. I started with just about a million different products. You’ll quickly see I did just about everything wrong to start, which in turn…taught me a lot of lessons in growing my business.
One thing I DID do right was start an email list.
Through seven years of running Blissful Eats and growing it over six figures in revenue I learned so many lessons that I’ve leveraged into my second business, The Social Shift, where I help women in the wellness + health industry simplify first and then scale their businesses.
There are many parallels from Blissful Eats to coaching and that is how I developed the Influencer Income Engine Blueprint, which is my framework for growing a raving fan base that naturally gravitates to your products and services.
Taking these steps will make it much easier for you to grow and connect with the people you are helping.
First I want to take you through some basic steps so you can grow your business.
The most overlooked step out there is the one that can have the biggest impact on your business and be the difference between building major momentum and falling flat in your first months and years in business.
There are many people who stay in the hobby stage for far too long simply because they’re not willing to take this step.
Look down right now. See where your feet are? That’s exactly where you start…from where you are.
To grow your business you have to build and establish credibility in your niche. This takes time to happen and you have to be patient, but we can be strategic about it. We can also speed up the process by going local while you build your online business.
Let’s talk stages of business!
This can be the hardest step if you’re just getting started. Here’s the good news. What you do can be fluid– it can change and be flexible.
I know we want to be running our own 6-7 figure businesses with passive revenue, but the fact is you need time for your business to grow.
The people who are consistent, show up with valuable content, and make offers to help are the ones that have success.
How do you figure out what to do?
This is such a loaded question because many of us (like my past self!) may read that and say…I have no idea.
Or you read that and you eye roll. You’re not sure how that helps you figure out anything, but really, it’s your first step in clarity.
So ask yourself these types of questions:
This is where starting where you are comes in.
Talk to people you know. Get out in your local community. Offer to help people. If you have an audience already, then talk to your most engaged people on the phone.
(Note: This is just a genuine conversation about why they come to you, how you help them, what they could use more help with. This is NOT any type of sales call or pitch.)
Basically, you want to talk to people who are your ideal clients. This is just to LISTEN. Listen more than talk. Ask them what they are struggling with, what they’ve tried before, what has worked and then not worked, and what kind of help do they think they need. Take notes!
After you talk to five to 10 people, see how you can help them in any way possible. This is your time to just be helpful.
We can get into the comparison trap here and want to make it big right away. It’s easy to see others and want to charge $2k right away even if you have little to no experience.
Your job in this stage is to help people, see what you love doing, bring in a little money, and make tweaks to what you’re doing. This is your learning stage. This is where you are helping people, getting results, gather testimonials.
When you’re getting started it can be scary to put yourself out there. We can feel weird about offering to help or wonder what we have to offer. But remember, if you have any more expertise than the person you’re trying to help, you have something to offer.
You don’t have to be the BEST at what you’re doing, you just have to be the best person to help them at that time.
You may have to start helping people out for free or for less money than you would like, but that is OKAY!
That is how you figure out your process and develop a framework for how you work. Every step of the way you should be documenting what you’re doing and gathering testimonials and quotes from the people you help.
Figure out a clear way to bring in some money by helping people. I recommend people start with 1:1 work because that will give you great results and testimonials.
If you have an audience of people already, you totally can start out with a “one to many” group program or course! I recommend you do a beta group and see if people are interested in paying for your course or program before you create. Sell first, then create!
Now it’s time to grow what you are doing!
Focus on engagement over numbers. Having a large audience is great, but if you don’t have a connection with them and you’re not sure if they’re reading or consuming your content, then really, what’s the point?
It can be easy to just pump out new content all of the time, but you need to focus on creating great content that people read and take action on.
We have to move beyond vanity metrics and back into focusing on how we can help the people who are in our community.
Create a strong content engagement plan so you create value for your audience.
I like to create three types of content and one of them involves conversation starters. A lot of people dismiss this because they can seem trivial or silly, but this is where trust starts. You want to get the conversation going so they can talk to you and build trust.
If you connect with them emotionally, then they’re more willing to consume your content and want to come back to you for help.
There are two points that are more important than audience size:
Improving either (or both) of these metrics will have an immediate effect on your profit. This will also help you build you audience!
The last two stages can be considered higher level. They are extremely important, but you have a great starting point here with the first four stages!
There are many ways you can build your list. Don’t over complicate it too much.
You can offer a freebie or some type of value to get on your email list. Or you can simply create a VIP list and send out updates on what you’re doing. Click the button below to get my free content workbook to help you plan out your content and grow your list.
This is where we can get fancier, add in a more tweaked and optimized funnel, and scale what you’re doing. Go all in on one product or service before you bring a new offer into the world. It can be a big mistake to put too many offers out there. Simplify to grow!
Create a flow that allows people to consume your content, join your email list and work with you further. This is called the Give to Get framework.
If you want to calculate your potential profit based on three key factors, then click below.
This may sound silly, but if people message you or comment on something respond back! Use their name and make sure they know that you saw their comment.
Too many people skip this step. When people join my FB group, I personally message them to say hello and thanks for joining the group. It’s literally just a message to say that. No strings, no nothing, just a conversation builder.
That may seem contrary to popular advice, but showing you’re a real person builds trust with your audience and gets them more invested in what you’re doing.
Of course you can set boundaries, but it’s refreshing to go beyond just the highlight reel!
I have clients that come back three to six months later to work with me. If someone says it’s not the right time to work together, that’s cool. Many times they’ll come back because I have built a good relationship with them and make sure to connect with them not just about business, but about life as well.
Being a kind, considerate human gets you VERY far and is very overlooked!
Don’t get caught up in all the fancy sales tactics. Be helpful. Serve your audience. Get on the phone to help more and see if they want more help.
Once you have this all down and you have a steady stream of clients coming to you, take the time to develop an exclusive framework that you can build out to take your clients through.
You can take this framework to go from 1:1 clients to group programs and courses if you’re interested.
If I had to simplify all of this right now in a quick 30 second read I would say to you: figure out what you want to do, talk to as many people as you can to see what they need help with, build an audience, and tweak your offerings along the way.
So let’s jump right in!
Take the time right now to figure out:
Download this issue of Tradecraft as a PDF to read and reference at your own pace.