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4 Uncomfortable Truths for Struggling Coaches

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4 Uncomfortable Truths for Struggling Coaches

Being a coach is amazing. You really do have the power to change people’s lives.

But, if you’re struggling to get your coaching business off the ground, here are 4 things I often see coaches doing and simple tips on how to start to fix them:

1. Not defining your ‘ideal client avatar’.

“I coach everyone.” Seriously, coaches without a niche and who say they can coach anybody usually end up coaching nobody. I’ve seen it time and time again. You must define your ideal client.

It’s not like choosing a favourite child, and it will be okay. Many people have resistance to defining who they want to work with. They feel constrained and restricted by narrowing down their audience to their ideal client avatar. It brings up fear and scarcity.

The reality is that defining your ideal client will not limit you. On the contrary, it empowers you to own your zone. The more specific and clear you are about who you want to work with, the more they will feel like you are the right fit. That you are the one that can help solve their problems and provide the solutions they need. Because when you know who your client is, their problems and fears, wants and aspirations, you can speak directly to them. They feel understood and connected that you know who they are and exactly how to help them.

When you know your audience intimately, you can deliver the content, because you know your stuff. You’re an expert. Nailing your ideal client gets you clearer on which parts of your expertise and brilliance are going to be the most relevant and add the most value.

Define your ideal client avatar and be specific:

  • Identify their problems.
  • Identify their greatest fear.
  • Identify what they want.
  • Identify their greatest aspiration.

2. Selling coaching, not solutions.

Most people are not googling ‘coaching’. They have problems, and they want solutions. If you want to help them, you need to provide them with what they’re looking for. It seems obvious when you say it like that, right? People aren’t looking for a coach. Hell, coaches are still relatively unknown to a large portion of the population.

So, look at your website, your leadpages, your business card and ask yourself, “Am I selling myself as a coach or am I selling a solution?” Once you know who your ideal client is, finding the solution you provide becomes a lot easier:

  • What problems do you solve?
  • What solutions do you provide?

3. Lack of credibility and visibility.

This has nothing to do with how fantastic your skills or expertise are. This is all about how you are perceived in the marketplace. Every man and his dog want to call themselves a coach these days and quite frankly if you want to shine, you need to ‘wow’ your ideal clients with your unique brilliance. When you develop your own intellectual property and have a system that you become renowned for, you gain serious credibility and visibility.

I highly recommend working through the first 4 Stages of Course Creation to get to the stage where you can distill your intellectual property into visual models/infographics.

4. Not leveraging and stuck with limited income.

Stuck trading time for money? Most people calling themselves a coach don’t make more than $10,000 a year from coaching. I know lots of people get into coaching because they want to contribute and make a difference, but the truth is, if they can’t pay the bills, it isn’t sustainable.

You need to get leverage so you can escape the time for money trap:

  1. Stop charging by the hour! Package results.
  2. Systems, systems, systems.
  3. If you don’t love it, outsource it.

See my previous Smallville article for free ways to create leverage in your business.

So, there you have it, my four uncomfortable truths for struggling coaches and how to solve them. What’s been a thorn in your side? What are you working on next? Let’s chat in the comments below.

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