It doesn't matter if you are starting a new business or have been in business for years. At some point, everyone gets stuck. No matter how you change up your marketing efforts with... new ads, more content, videos, more flyers, webinars, social media posts, or email blasts, you just can't seem to move the needle in a significant way.
We all hit a wall.
You just can't get enough clients, conversions, or bottom line profits.
Like many, a football coach will tell his team and the media - let's get back to the fundamentals! (I love sports comparisons and quotes)
It's a simple game, there's a need in the market, and you have a solution.
It starts with clients
You've experienced the thrill of having sales, lots of sales by now, and learned a thing or two along the way. One of those things might be that you were so eager for clients that you took everyone with a credit card in their wallet. While that is the right criteria for selecting clients, people with money are always great; they still have a lot to be desired when it comes to finding your perfect clients.
Ok, maybe perfect is a stretch, so why not ideal.
As you have discovered, there is more to defining your ideal client than just having the ability to pay. Whom do you love working with? Naturally, there are people whom you had a blast working with while others were a stomach-churning nightmare. Take a closer look at the characteristics of your ideal client.
It could be they:
- had a direction
- were coachable
- followed through
- were dependable
- showed up - on time, prepared
- didn't make excuses
- wanted straight talk
- open to new ways of thinking
Characteristics are a great way to start thinking about your ideal client. You've got a handle on all the things that you like. Now think about the things that you didn't like that came your way.
It could be they:
- were lazy
- complained all the time
- were always making excuses
- blamed everyone else
- see themselves as the victim
- didn't have a clue what they wanted
- played mind games
- wandered down rabbit holes
- argued with you about solutions
- stinking thinking
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Finding Your Ideal Client
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Knowing what you like and don't like is the basis for creating the coaching business that you love. Yes, you have to kiss many frogs before you find the ideal clients. Truthfully you have to have the boundaries that you tell your clients they need to establish.
If you are a people pleaser, it will show up in your marketing. You have to take a stand! Let people know what it is you want and what it is you don't want. Be confident that you will grow your business with people who appreciate what you have to offer. As you know, there's an ocean out there of people who are just impossible to please. Why waste your time that you will never get back on people who will see you as just mediocre.
Ok, we've looked at the characteristics of your ideal client. Let's look at who they are as they live out in the wild.
Your Marketing Rut
Stuck can look like a rut when it comes to marketing for new clients. So, where do you find these beautiful people? You can make this a fun exercise. It doesn't have to be hanging out at the local chamber of commerce if you're shy or just don't like large crowds.
Some people are a natural in large crowds, while others end up talking to friends and miss out on new opportunities. There is no right or wrong, just what works for you.
Ask yourself, what do you like to do? Are you into wine, art, books, or community building? Find organizations that focus on the same things that you want to take your coaching business in a new direction. The people that need your help are everywhere.
Show up as a person who cares about others. But how will they know you're talking about them if you don't know what is essential to them.
Another common roadblock coaches have FOMO, fear of missing out. Many think that if you become too specific with your ideal client profile that you will miss out on the good stuff. Becoming too narrow is real. However, there's a way to figure it out as you market to your ideal client.
What they look like and how they think is next...
The typical demographic considerations are:
- Marital status
How do they behave - Psychographics are:
- Spending habits
- Buying habits
- How they think and behave
Creating this profile will help you dive into their life. Create better ads, content, and build stronger relationships, because you 'get them.'
When you were a child and wanted to get your way with your parents, you had years of experience to know how they'd react to good vs. bad news. Like most children, we are driven by our basic needs, to win at all costs. We understood what it would take to sell your idea to get your parents' approval. We would try different approaches until we won or where told to stop - this isn't going to happen.
You understood what is important to them and how to frame your story to get a favorable response. Of course, some are better at this than others, but you see where I'm going. You know how they talk, what their favorites foods are along with their hot buttons.
Some would suggest that you shouldn't use insider language. However, it needs to sound like them. If your ideal buyer is a 'Deadhead' (the Grateful Dead band), you better know they have their own language if you want to be one of the cool kids.
Like many cult followings, there is a secret handshake or insider language that they appreciate. It tells them that you 'get what they're about.' Use it to your advantage.
Many entrepreneurs will fall short of creating this level of detail for their marketing. As a result, your audience is too broad and poorly defined.
In the marketing world, you'll waste money on advertising because your message doesn't resonate with your ideal buyer.
Diving deeper into your ideal buyer
Now consider what you do when you're looking for clients. If your client is looking for a quick fix to a problem, but you want long-term coaching clients, you're not going to be a good fit. Be consistent with your services.
- Do they want a done for you solution
- Do they want a done with your solution
- Are they the do it yourselfer
- Are they looking for a long-term solution
- Do they want a quick fix
- Do they need to follow up between sessions
Take a 360-degree look at whom your ideal buyer is and start building their profile. The truth is you will make adjustments and modifications along the way to find the people who need your services. You'll even create multiple profiles based on your offerings. Don't be afraid to create multiple profiles - one size doesn't fit all.
Why it matters
Now that you've developed a profile or two, you will stand out from the crowd of business coaches who are generalists. A big audience is an essential ingredient to any business online or off.
You will understand their problems and find the Big Idea that will be your hook to unlock the treasure chest of ideal clients.
Next, I'm going to cover how to find your Big Idea and why it is essential to building a rockstar business. Your big idea - next