On the first session of my mentoring program exclusive for coaches, I normally ask them to introduce themselves and tell me what they do. More often than not, I would get the same answer: I am (name here) and I am a (whatever kind of coach). I would follow up with what differentiates you from the other coaches in your category? Why would people want to hire you as their coach?
Cue in nervous giggles and awkward silence there after. But you know what, it’s ok not to know your brand yet as a coach when you’re just starting. Because branding takes time. Building it takes a whole lot of love, work and commitment. Living it, even more.
So be patient with yourself and allow yourself to grow in harmony with your journey towards becoming the coach you’re meant to be. In the process, allow me to share with you some things to consider when building your brand as a coach.
Branding is an inside job. Of course we all grew up admiring industry greats: their journey, their success, their brand. But then again, consider this: that’s them. And you’re totally different. And that’s ok. So allow yourself to be inspired by them but make that conscious effort to inquire within. Ask yourself these questions: Who am I? What would I want to be known for? What am I really good at as a coach? Allow yourself to come from a space of honesty and humility as you answer.
Have a clear, powerful key message. Your brand should clearly represent something of value to your target market. Come up with something positive and true. Allow your advocacy to resonate with your intended audience. It’s also best if you are able to craft a communication campaign that will showcase your brand’s benefit altogether. Yup, being cohesive and consistent is key.
Identify your niche market. I always say this to my mentees: you cannot be everyone’s coach. Your experience, story and expertise will resonate well with a specific target market. Go in depth with profiling your intended market. Who are they? What do they do? Where are they from? What are their pain points? What makes you the most effective coach for them? What influences their decisions? Needs? Wants? Create a clear picture of who you want (and can) coach effectively. Then align your messaging to them.
Own your style. Over all presentation and messaging matters e.g. what you say, what you do, how you project your image, etc. How would you sound? What would be the differentiation? How will the market know it’s you? What powerful associations can you create with your brand? Make sure that it’s something that you are comfortable with, authentic and memorable.
Maximize your platforms. After knowing your target market, choose the best platform for you to be able to reach them. Mix and match. Allow your presence to grow across multimedia. Remember to choose the ones you will be comfortable with as it is very important to create an impression of being an authority figure in what you do.
I hope these help. Looking forward to seeing you grow your brand as a coach.