Simple strategies to help you set yourself apart from your competition, and get a steady stream of new clients.
Have you ever had a prospective client tell you that they can’t afford your coaching program?
Ouch! If you’re like most health coaches, the answer is “Yes, I sure have.”
It’s not a good feeling to hear “No thanks, I can’t afford that right now.” Getting this kind of negative response, especially more than once, can stop us in our tracks and knock the wind right out of our sails.
I’m going to share some major ‘A-ha’ tips in this post, so get ready – take notes, and then be sure to grab the freebie I’m including later in this post that will make all of this a total breeze!
Sometimes the reason for the ‘no’ does come down to cost and budget, but oftentimes it’s more about the client not getting a clear enough picture of the transformation you can help them achieve. When people aren’t emotionally attached to the outcome ‘picture’ you are painting for them, they won’t be motivated enough to take action.
It’s important to understand that people are not buying your ‘3 or 6 month ‘program’ – they are buying the results of your program. They are coming to you because there is something they want to change about how they look and/or feel. They are unhappy about where they are right now, and they are looking for a solution. If someone signed up for a consult with you, they want help with something.
If people know you hold the key to what they want, they will be lining up to work with you (and the price of your program won’t be nearly as big of an issue as you may think it is right now).
One critical thing to realize is that people tend to make purchase decisions based on emotions, not logic. Emotions include things like how something will make them feel (stronger, happier, more attractive, sexy, more confident, more energetic, etc.) and it also includes feelings they want to avoid (feeling uncomfortable in their clothes, embarrassed, frustrated, exhausted, run down, frumpy, etc.). Emotions almost always win over logic (our brains are funny this way).
In fact, some studies show that up to 90% of the decisions we make are based on emotions. Holy smokes! That’s crazy, right? This doesn’t mean that logic isn’t important, but clearly, emotions are a huge part of the equation, and it can’t be ignored.
This piece of the communication puzzle is important to understand because the truth is people tend to buy what they want (emotion) not always what they need (logic).
There are two important steps to getting more potential clients saying “Yes!” to working with you. Let’s dive in to how you can relate to your potential clients on a more emotional level so you can both get what you want.
Step 1: Give them what they want.
As you put your coaching program together, do so with the understanding that you want to deliver your program around what your clients need, but package and position it based on what they want.
Here’s one example: You know it’s important to coach your clients about eating healthy whole foods. Most of your new clients could care less about eating more vegetables, BUT they want to look better, feel better, and maybe even lose some weight. They are probably also tired of feeling tired.
They want the end result; the transformation, but they need to do certain things to get there.
If you are talking to your prospective client about what your program includes, but you neglect to explain how it will help them get what they want, there is a huge disconnect.
Instead of bogging people down with explaining what your program comes with (the features…the details, the ‘stuff’ they get), spend more time on the transformation they will experience (the benefits).
The best way to do this is to find out what your prospective client really wants, and then let them know how you can help them. Listen closely to the exact words your prospective clients are using, write them down so you can use them when you recap what it is they need help with.
Need some help with this process? You can grab your FREE Discovery Session Guide HERE that includes a complete outline and scripting for your initial consultation to uncover what your clients really want.
When prospective clients know that you understand where they are coming from, what they want, and how you can help them get there (the benefits), it is much more compelling than them hearing about the details of your 6-month coaching program (the features). Instead of saying things like “You’ll get recipes, handouts, 2 hours of coaching with me each month, plus email support.” think more along the lines of “It sounds like losing about 20 pounds is your main goal right now, and once you do that, you’ll feel more confident and more like the old you. You won’t feel self conscious about wearing a bathing suit, and you’ll look great in your jeans again. You’re tired of feeling tired, and you want to begin a fresh start. Does that sound about right?” These are all things they just told you, so you are relaying it back to them in their exact words, so they know you understand, and they also get to hear their goals/struggles out loud. This creates a true connection.
Sure, you want to let them know what your program includes (and what the cost will be), but you want to spend most of your time understanding what they want, and (if they are a good fit for your coaching program) confirming the benefits they will get from working with you.
Benefits include how your client wants to look and feel, how they want to overcome certain struggles (and what that would mean to them), and it also includes what they want to avoid (things like being in pain, or being overweight). Listen with intent as your prospective clients tell you what they want, and why. This will give you clues about the transformation they are looking to achieve.
Besides communicating the specific benefits that your client will receive, you also want to have more than one way that they can work with you. This way, if budget truly is the issue, you are still able to help them, and you aren’t leaving money on the table.
Do you have more than one coaching program option? (Keep reading for ideas for this).
This brings us to step two.
Step 2: Have options.
Having more than one way for people to work with you can be extremely beneficial to both you and your clients. You will have clients that, for any number of reasons, are still not able to commit to a one-on-one coaching format.
It’s great to offer a short-term, low-commitment coaching program for people that aren’t ready for your premium 1-on-1 coaching.
When people get to sample what you do via a shorter program, they get to know you and trust you, see the benefits, and then they are more likely to commit to a longer-term program.
One example of this would be to have an online coaching program that is 30-90 days in length. You may decide to price your online program at half to two-thirds of your regular coaching fees, but you will be able to help a large group of people at one time. This format becomes more affordable for most people. Try offering this type of program three to four times a year – this way you always have another option to offer potential clients. Some clients may decide to continue with you for 1-on-1 coaching, or they may enroll in another program you have. You can also consider offering a live in-person group coaching program.
When you have more than one program to offer, people can choose what works best for them. With group coaching programs, you get to leverage your time and help more people – a total win for everyone!
It’s important to find out what your ideal clients want so you can give it to them. Some people enjoy the community feel and support of an online or live group format, and some prefer the individualized attention with one-on-one coaching, so it can be beneficial to provide both. You also want to consider what you will enjoy the most, and what fits into your life right now.
What people want can be uncovered by actively listening to what they tell you. Then you can offer a solution that meets or exceeds their expectations. Just remember to focus more on the benefits (the transformation) than the features (the details of how the program is delivered/formatted, etc.). When you have more than one option, you give people a choice of how they can get your perfect solution.
By tuning in to exactly what it is that your prospective client wants, and tapping into the emotions behind it, you’ll be able to convey how you can provide the solution they’re after. Remember, people want the transformation, not the ‘program’.
You can do this! Let me know how it goes.
Need support and accountability? You’re invited to join our AMAZING, FREE Facebook mastermind group for certified health coaches and certified fitness professionals. If that’s you, head on over >> HERE<< and join the fun and inspiration!
Oh, and be sure to grab your Free Discovery Session Guide so you’ll be ready to rock your next consultation!