It’s the first of the year and our first post of 2019!
If you’ve been thinking about ways to create deeper and more meaningful relationships with your community, and how you can reach out and talk to them, then read on…
Over time you’ve been building a level of trust with your coaching community and if you’ve read our last few blog posts, hopefully you’ve been garnering more engagement with them. Now, it’s time to take your engagement up a notch.
The next step is all about establishing personal connections with your followers. Don’t over- think this! A simple phone call or personalized email can get the ball rolling to elevate your community engagement to the next level in the new year!
Ask These Questions
Ask your community: “What are you working on today?” or “What is blocking you right now from achieving your top goal in life/business?” Questions like these will elicit responses that will probably surprise you in a good way. People who are passionate about their mission absolutely love to talk about what they are doing. In fact, the ones who respond to questions like these are excellent prospects!
I am passionate when I speak with coaches to understand their purpose and their business. Before I began developing CoachVantage, an application to help coaches manage their practice, my objective was to ask probing questions and dig deep to understand the challenges that coaches face in their business.
I spoke with coaches mostly via video calls, phone calls or over Skype. I got detailed inputs and feedback from my one-on-one conversations and developed personal relationships with the coaches I spoke with. Through engagement with my community, I created awareness about how the solution I envisioned would help them solve their challenges.
The fatal mistake that most aspiring entrepreneurs make is to wait until they have something to sell before talking to potential customers. Do not make the same mistake!
Start talking to your target niche right away, even if you don’t have your coaching program established, or your website ready, or your business incorporated, etc.
Approach your prospects with genuine intentions to learn more about them and their struggles. Everyone has a story to tell. Even if they feel everything is hunky dory in their lives, listen to their success stories and what worked well for them. There is a lesson to learn in every tale.
Show Genuine Interest
When you have conversations with your community, be genuinely interested in what your tribe are telling you. Is it smooth sailing on the projects and targets that they are working on? Or are there roadblocks or bumps in the road that are slowing them down?
When they tell you about the difficulties, roadblocks and challenges that they face, this is where you show up and work your magic!
Set yourself up to have a genuine conversation with those who need your help. Be curious about what they want to achieve. Probe and ask questions to uncover their challenges, pain points and issues. Ask questions that challenge them and even makes them feel uncomfortable yet creates within them a self-awareness that they can achieve wonderful things through self-discovery and clarity.
Set Up A Time To Talk
This is essential. You must set up a time to talk over the phone, over Zoom, Skype, Facetime, whatever works for both of you.
Even better than a voice call is to have a video call.
Begin by setting up at least an hour of your time so that you can have a meaningful conversation that gets to the heart of the issue. But take note: do not make the mistake of turning this session into a free coaching session. No, this is not your objective.
When you clearly articulate how they can benefit from your coaching and the personal achievements and fulfilment they will attain, you have taken a big stride in converting a prospect to a paying client. Your objective is to help them see how they can get to where they want to be by working with you.
Do not ask for anything in return during these discovery sessions. Your role is that of a friend who listens and seeks to understand. Never make the conversation about you. It’s all about them! People desire to be understood. They want a listening ear.
Take notes of the challenges, problems, blocks and whatever issues this person is facing. Repeat these back after he/she has finished speaking to summarise the issues that were just related to you.
After you have listened to everything that is said during the call, only then do you start talking about what you can do to help. Talk about how you have helped others in similar situations. Before your call, be prepared with two or three examples of clients whom you coached and how they benefited (use names only if you have their permission). Sharing your clients’ wins is inspirational and is a great motivational booster that will spur them into taking action.
Always keep this in mind: people aren’t looking for a coach, they are looking to get something for themselves.
It’s always about them – they want to make more sales, to be more spiritual, to fast track their promotion, to form strong parent-children bonds, or whatever else that they desire. Chances are that they need help to get what they want faster, with less stress, or to be better at what they do.
That’s where you work your magic as a coach!
Make It Easy To Schedule Time With You
One final tip… you have to make it super easy for your community to reach out and schedule time to speak with you. Too often, I see coaches’ websites where all they have in the ‘Contact Me’ page is a form to leave their prospects’ name and email address.
This means your prospect will have to wait till you get the message, send another email back, then respond back to that email again, just to set up a time to talk. It can be a real turn off and can hurt your chances of converting a prospect to a client.
It would be much more efficient and even help your conversion chances if you have a ‘Contact Me’ or ‘Schedule A Call With Me’ button that links directly to a booking page where your prospect can schedule time to talk with you based on your availability.
The CoachVantage app allows you to do just that with its schedule, book and pay feature. Check it out for free here.
In my next post, I’ll talk about how to have an effective discovery call that converts prospects to paying clients.