It’s quite a surprise to hear me say that, isn’t it, but it’s true. Nobody Buys Coaching, well nobody buys the process of coaching*.
I can hear you clearing your throat in discomfort and thinking well if nobody buys coaching, how on earth am I supposed to create a coaching business?
People Buy Outcomes Not Processes
Here’s the thing; the reason that nobody buys the process of coaching is that nobody buys the process of anything.
Clients/customers/consumers buy outcomes, not processes.
Let me give you a couple of examples:
- You don’t buy insurance, you buy the peace of mind of knowing that if anything bad happens, you’re covered.
- You don’t buy a new suit, you buy how you’re going to feel when you’re wearing your beautifully tailored new togs.
- People don’t buy golf lessons, you buy the improvement in your performance.
See? It’s not just coaching that people don’t buy.
What Outcomes Can A Coach Sell?
Whenever I have a conversation with a coach I don’t know, and I ask them who they work with, those who start their answer with the words anyone who are trying to sell a process. They will say things like:
- Anyone who has a goal they want to reach
- People who are being held back by limiting beliefs
- Someone who wants to make a big change in their lives
I could go on, but I suspect you’ve got the idea.
This is where coaches get confused. As the very nature of coaching is that it’s client centred, how on earth are you as a coach supposed to articulate the outcomes that a client can expect?
Outcomes To BIG Problems
The answer to what can a client expect to get from working with you, when asked of the anyone who coach are things like this:
- Being their authentic selves
- A thinking partner
Coaches who are trying to sell the coaching process give answers like these and I’m sure you can think of lots more answers to this question.
There’s a but, and it’s a big one. No one lies awake at 3am wishing that they had more clarity.
I don’t believe that there’s a person who lay awake for hours, wishing for a thinking partner.
So what do they wish for and how can you as a coach promise it without feeling like you’re being disingenuous?
How To Articulate The Outcomes Your Clients Can Expect
The reason I bang on about having an ideal client, is that having one means that you can articulate outcomes. Remember, you can sell coaching to anyone who asks you to coach them, but you cannot market to anyone/everyone.
Having a well defined client means that you can have a well defined outcome that your client can expect providing that they take all the actions that they set for themselves.
That last part is really important.
You cannot guarantee anything if your client simply talks and takes no action. However, with a well-defined ideal client (which includes TONNES of information about them and about what problem they have) you absolutely can say what outcomes they can expect if they do take the actions they agree to.
This Is Simple (But Not Easy, Right?)
If you’re struggling to get your head around how to create an ideal client profile, may I offer some help?
We have a free online community Coaching Republic, in which we offer support and training for coaches who are building their businesses. This is a schedule of our masterclasses for the rest of 2020.
Why don’t you join us?
* Coaches are the only kind of client who will buy the coaching process. This is why there are LOADS of coaches who sell coaching to coaches. You don’t have to resort to the same thing. You coach whoever you want to providing that you’re specific about who you work with, what their problem is and how working with you can provide solutions for them.