VANESSA BARON
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Business tips + advice to inspire the dream chaser within you

Top 6 Mistakes Of New Coaches & How To Turn It Around

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It’s been just over 2 years since I first embarked on this amazing entrepreneurial journey. There have of course been MAJOR bumps and lessons learned along the way, of which I’m grateful for.

In 2 years as an entrepreneur, I’ve established 2 successful coaching businesses (health coaching and business coaching), financial freedom, time freedom, the ability to connect with and coach inspiring women from around the globe, the privilege to be coached by some of the world’s best coaches, sold out programs, a deeper knowing of myself, the pleasure of being able to give back to the community, and so much more! It’s been such a rewarding and transformational journey.

There are a lot of entrepreneurs who don’t make it this far though because after encountering bump after bump, time and time again, they give up with a heavy heart. Believe me, I’ve made LOADS of mistakes and even considered giving it all up after 6 months in, but I pushed through my fears and overcame my embarrassments to become a strong, powerful, confident woman who is persistent in her pursuit of happiness.

If you’re a beginner coach (or have yet to make your first $5K) I’m happy to be transparent and open about the top 6 mistakes I made my first year in business and continue to see other newbie coaches follow suit in making the same:

  1. Focus on helping everyone.  I’ve said this numerous times, when you try to appeal to everyone, you end up appealing to no one because your message becomes watered down and is no longer speaking to a specific pain point.

    When you’re not speaking to a specific pain point, you become just like everyone else – there’s not much there to make you different and stand out. When people can’t see the benefit in working with you versus someone else, they simply don’t. Be specific with who you desire to work with and what you want to be known for.

    As a side note, be aware that not everyone who shows interest is an ideal client. For instance, a loyal fan is not an ideal client if she’s not willing to invest in herself and solve her struggles.
     
  2. Listing services, rather than having a real sales page.  Think back to the last time you invested a good sum of money into a service. What was it about the process that made you know this was the right service for you?

    What I see too often is coaches, especially health coaches, forgo the traditional sales page and confuse their audience with too many options that don’t explain the benefit of the service. For example “Initial Consultation plus 2 follow-up sessions - $250”, “Initial Consultation plus 6 follow-ups - $900”.

    Visit your sales page and put yourself in the mind of your ideal client, would you really purchase from this page? Remember, it’s not the features of a program that make the sale, it’s the benefits.

    An effective sales page should remind your ideal client where she’s at, where she desires to be, speak to your credentials and why you’re the right coach for her, promote the benefits of the program, be transparent with the investment, remind your ideal client what will happen if she continues to wait and not take action, and provide a specific call-to-action (i.e. discovery call, purchase).
     
  3. Not focusing on money-making activities.  Posting on Instagram and writing blog entries are great ways to keep yourself visible, but they’re not money-making activities. Promoting your opt-in, building relationships, following up with leads, booking discovery calls, hosting events, sending out solomailers to your list – these are activities that provide excellent opportunities to create profit in your business.

    If your business is hurting financially, stop trying to perfect your website. Take a break from writing blog posts. Step back from using up valuable time in Canva creating pretty social media quotes. Instead, focus on connecting with your target market, consistently building your list and of course, asking for the sale.
     
  4. Not investing in themselves, or investing in the wrong things (ex. Business cards). When I first started my business, I was told by pretty much everyone that I needed a website, fancy logo, business cards, and paid advertisements – so I did. Know what all that got me? $5K in debt and $208 in sales in 6 months. If you haven’t yet made your first $5K, don’t invest in these items.

    A website is nothing without a specific reader in mind and plan of action to get that specific reader to visit it. A fancy logo doesn’t close the sale. Business cards end up in the trash or unused. Paid advertising is a spiral into debt if you don’t know what you’re doing. If you have yet to make your first $5K, invest in learning what you don’t already know.

    For example, if you’re struggling with who your ideal client is and how to effectively connect with and attract them, invest in a program or service what will solve this struggle. If you know your ideal client and have an amazing program for them, but struggle with effectively promoting it and making sales, invest in a program or service that will solve this struggle. All the fancy gadgets and upgrades can come later. Your priority should be getting clients.
     
  5. No opt-in – just saying ‘join my newsletter list for tips’.  Nowadays, it's not enough to simply say "hey, sign up for my newsletter list for tips and tricks" - people now understand how valuable their email address is and are strict in who gets it. Because of this, they'll usually need something way more valuable than the promise of weekly tips - they need something they can have instant access to that will provide immediate gratification.

    The purpose behind creating an opt-in or freebie is to give your audience a 'teaser' or sneak peak of your product or service, free of charge. Doing this accomplishes several things:

    •    By giving away something of incredible value for free, that your ideal client is specifically looking for, you quickly build that know-like-trust factor with your target audience. Your ideal client is presented with an awesome first impression, she immediately likes you because you just gave her exactly what she was looking for (for free!), and she starts to trust you because she gets to see your work firsthand, proving that you *know your shiz*.

    •    You gain an email list jam-packed with your ideal clients - people who obviously have the struggle/concern your opt-in and program are there to solve.

    •    You grow a following. If done right, an opt-in can lead to so much more than just an email address to add to your newsletter list. Your ideal clients start to follow YOU and flock to YOU because they’re excited to see what else you have to say, or what other tips you have for them. You’ll find more of your ideal clients will start booking discovery or clarity calls with you and, of course, your sales will increase in the process.

    ... all because you gave her exactly what she wanted – free of charge. That’s karma at its best!
     
  6. Doing it all alone – it can get pretty lonely being an entrepreneur, especially if your family and friends don’t fully understand the life and struggles of one.

    I fell in love with this quote from Amy Poehler, “Find a group of people who challenge and inspire you, spend a lot of time with them, and IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE. No one is here today because they did it on their own.”

    Having been a part of a mastermind program of over 200 women coaches, I can honestly say this quote speaks the TRUTH. Open yourself up and collaborate, network, find inspiration in others.

    Even just having one biz bestie can provide an abundance of opportunity, inspiration, and higher learning. Stop looking at everyone else as your competition – learn to admire their successes as you take massive action in pursuit of your own.

What are your thoughts? Have you found yourself caught up in any of the above? I'd love to hear your take on this in the comments below!