If you are anything like I used to be when I started my coaching business, you might belong to one of the 3 types of Life Coaches who are completely “lost” (a.k.a. wrong) about Marketing, Sales, and Clients-Enrollment:
- All I need is Marketing – just ‘market’ my services and clients will start hiring me…!
This is somewhat in line with the belief that “If you build it, they will come,” except when building your coaching business this is extremely rarely the case.
Sadly, in first year of my coaching business, I belonged to this “group.” I thought if I “market” myself, clients will just start hiring me. I was blogging, writing articles, I was super-active in social media, putting on webinars, and was shocked that nobody was hiring me…
Though, if you implement some of these the right way, – webinars and LinkedIn strategies, for example – YES, you can sell without selling; except, most of us in the first years of our business are not well-equipped to implement these marketing strategies in a way to get us clients.
- Marketing is same as Selling
There is about as big a difference between Marketing and Sales as milk from tar. To be most effective at growing your Life Coaching business – and get Life Coaching Clients – you’ll need both (though, yes, there are ways to sell in a non-salesy way – we’ll talk about it later)
- Marketing is Dishonest – it’s a fancy way to deceive people and tricking them into buying your services.
I get pissed off each time I hear this statement… and 10 times out of 10 comes from broke coaches or from dishonest service providers who try to sell you some system, and that system doesn’t include marketing (or sales, or any type of work ); and occasionally it comes from successful coaches who have no idea that what they are doing to get clients also falls under the “umbrella” of marketing, hence they can feel that can talk crap freely about it (about marketing).
Ok… let’s jump into our topic: What is the Difference between Marketing, Sales., and Clients-Enrollment…
Let’s start with the easiest one:
What is Clients-Enrollment?
This is perhaps the most obvious one, right? You enroll clients into your coaching program – you get hired as a coach by a client who will pay you. Simple.
Client Enrollment can happen as a result of a Complimentary Session – or whatever other fancy names some call it – that can happen as:
✔ a face-to-face communication,
✔ phone conversation
Or can also enroll clients in a webinar, workshop or other type of public speaking, or, if you are lucky – and this is super rare – can get hired out of the blue, through your website.
Usually to enroll clients, we first develop a relationship with them – we connect, communicate… perhaps they consumed one of our free offers (eCourse, video course, etc.); or perhaps were in one of our low-paid membership or online coaching courses and now they want to step it up and want one-on-one coaching.
The bottom line is: rarely anyone gets hired through a first meeting. The name of the “game” is Relationship Marketing – People do business with people they know, like and trust.
What is Marketing?
Marketing, simply put, are the activities you are performing to make your offer visible in front those who need it most. It’s an umbrella term used to express all the activities you do in order to INFORM THE WORLD* ABOUT THE EXISTENCE OF YOUR SERVICE OR PRODUCT.
* OK, maybe “informing the WORLD” is a bit exaggerated; though, some coaches – and many other small biz owners – do try to market their services to the”entire world.” Best, though, if you focus your marketing to Become Seen in Front of Your Ideal Clients only(!). Coca Cola, Pepsi, Colgate, etc. can afford to market to the whole world – but our message will get lost and (literally) will be seen by nobody, if we are not making an effort to target our marketing to our Ideal Clients.
Can marketing be done in a deceptive way?
Of course! Some will tell you that if you hire them, you’ll be making 6 to 7 figures in no time! Or if you buy their “pill” it’ll heal all your ailments in a few weeks or months…
But this doesn’t mean that Marketing equals Deception. It’s just like a knife – it can be used to cut bread and prep your yummy recipe, or it can be used to harm someone.
I found that most Life Coaches under-market themselves – meaning, they don’t list all of their strengths and credibility-boosters that’ll position them in the best light to their potential clients – and rarely (if ever) did I see deceptive practices. Though, YES, I do see at least a dozen business and marketing coaches who’ll promise the sun and the moon if you hire them, for “only $30,000” or their more affordable online program, for $7500.00. Be careful with those offers – half of them are borderline scams (some are actual scams); half are hard-to-implement and/or super-pricey to implement; and the other half – the ones that are easy to implement – are hard to find (if you notices that there are three “halves” – congrats! And, yes, there are 3 halves to this equation – deal with it! )
What is Selling…
and How is it Different from Marketing?
While the role of Marketing is to get you seen by your ideal clients – by those who need your solution most – the role of selling is to… well, as the name also suggests, is to SELL your offer to those who need it.
Here’s a BIG difference: During the Marketing process, there is NO money exchange. You simply are informing and educating your prospective clients, letting them know your services exist and are available to them.
On the other hand, when you sell your coaching services, this is when a payment will be taken from the client in exchange for your services.
BTW, most of us charge in advance, and we charge for a whole month (NOT hourly), or for 90-days period. We charge before we deliver our services, this way we avoid the stress of needing to collect unpaid bills... Also, most coaches tend to set it up as a recurring payment, and the payment comes out automatically from the client’s credit card every month.
WITHOUT A SALE, YOU HAVE NO BUSINESS!
Yep, I had to write that tin ALL-CAPS, as many live under the impression that you can have a (life coaching) business without selling…
It is true, IF you set your business up the right way, you don’t have to actually have face-to-face selling conversations in th etradional sense; but a sale still has to happen.
Let’s take a peek at the client-enrollment flow:
- Your marketing efforts get your offer in front of your ideal client
- Your ideal client acts on what they see (your blog post, article, advertisement, social media post, etc.) and will end up visiting your website, read you article, etc. – whatever the call to action was in your marketing (oh, oh! yep, you need a great call to action in all your marketing materials- one that tells your prospective client what do you want them to do next)
- [If your offer where your ideal client landed was well put together] Your ideal client takes action and signs up for a Complimentary Session; signs up for a Free eCourse; Free Video Course, etc.
- As they consume whatever they got in Step 3, above, this is the place where the Sale happens: Your complimentary session, eCourse, Video Course, etc. will either result in a sale or not.
If your Complimentary Session is set up right, you might not have to Sell in the traditional sense of the word. I my case, about 8 times out of 10, the prospective client would ask the question half way in the session, “How much would it cost me if I hired you?” Or something similar – and after I told them, they’d decide if they wanted to hire me or not…
Ok, yes, when I told them my fee, that still felt like selling, but tried to say my fee with as much confidence and calm as I could muster. Many newer coaches tend to mess up their “sales conversation” – or complimentary session – at this point in the session: either never mentioning that they want to get hired, or if the topic of “how much would this cost comes up,” the coach will start mumbling and/or drop their energy level and their discomfort is often clearly felt by the client.
The more you’ll practice saying your fee, the easier it’ll become. The key is to practice saying your fee as many times every month as possible.
CONVERSION – The Magic Component
We talked about the difference between Marketing, Sales, And Clients-Enrollment, and as you can see, they are all inter-related.
Most of us, though, don’t give a hoot about the WHAT – what all these terms mean – right? We just want to know how do we get paying life coaching clients. Period.
And this is where this magical term comes into play: CONVERSION
Whatever marketing activities you do – or, in even simpler terms, Whatever you do online – will either generate a response from your Ideal Clients or not. Conversion is the “glue” that connects your online content to eliciting action from those who see your content.
And that is the simple definition of “conversion”: how many people who see your stuff (blog, video, articles, etc.). take action after they read or watch your content.
Our goal is to be seen by as many people online as possible and convert as many of them as possible into coaching clients.
Conversion, though, does not always relate to getting hired as a coach, yet they are equally important conversion puzzle pieces.
When someone visits your website, how many of them will convert into leads/potential future clients? How many will sign up for your freebie (BTW, these two questions are ONE – you convert website visitors into potential clients with your freebie)
When someone watches your YouTube videos, how many will convert into xyz (whatever the call to action was – invited them to sign up for your freebie; join your FB or LI group; etc.)
Out of 100 people who go through your eCourse, how many convert into complimentary sessions; and out of each 10 comp sessions, how many convert into paying clients.
Going forward, I challenge you to focus to increase your conversion rates in every area of your online presence. If you need help with this, Send me a Message; though, it’s best if you go over some of the tutorials in the members’ area, and implement the lessons that are most relevant to help you with this.
Here are a few examples:
How to Get Life Coaching Clients with Short eCourses (*** This one is on a fancy Online Coaching Platform – $299.00 VALUE; but it’s free for a limited time – sign up with your eMail or FaceBook – go through it now, while it’s still free! ***)
Let me know if there specific areas where you’d love to increase your conversion rates; or if you are looking for training to help you implement a specific marketing activity. I’ll be glad to point you in the right direction (or create the course in the future, if we don’t have it yet).