When you start your coaching business and begin building it, you think about a lot of things – marketing, branding, websites, networking, and of course, getting clients. But, there’s another aspect to running a coaching business most coaches don’t think about in the beginning – how to get clients to stick around. It usually isn’t until a coach has experienced a sudden income drop that they start to notice clients don’t stick around forever.
I want to help you avoid that.
Here are strategies that will turn your 1-on-1 coaching into repeat business – and can be used no matter what niche you’re in.
Uncover The Juicy Details First:
When you first meet a new client, unveil the juicy stuff as soon as possible starting during your free intro session. By that, I mean unearth all the pains, problems, challenges that your clients have and all the dreams and goals and desires that they have. The more you uncover and stir up for them, the better.
Use An Intake Form:
After a client has signed up with you, use an intake form to help you get to know them better. Much of what’s on the intake form should be a variation of what you uncovered during the intro session. This time you’re asking it in a different way.
This works because once a client has signed up with you, they are looking at things a little differently. During the period between your intro session and your first coaching session, they’ve had time to reflect and may have thought of other things that they’d like to work through that weren’t brought up during the intro session. For example, during the intro session you may ask “If you could waive a realistic magic wand, where do you see yourself in six months?” But, during your intake you want to ask, “Where do you want to be in five or ten years?”
All of this helps you assess and reassess your clients’ needs so you can clarify exactly what’s going on, what their wins are, and what challenges they are facing at the moment. The more you are in tune with that, the more you’ll be able to help them and the more they’ll be willing to stick with you.
Do check points from time to time to make sure that some of the things covered during the intro session and intake session are being directly addressed. If they haven't been addressed yet, this is more stuff for you to work on.
The more stuff there is for you to work on with your clients, the more they're going to want to keep working with you, especially if they're getting results.
You might want to have check-ins every quarter, like every three months. Even if they signed up for six months or a year or two years of coaching every quarter you might still reassess, “Okay what are you looking for in the next six years?” or “What are you looking for in the next two years?” “What would that do for you?” “What are the challenges you're facing?”
Use Tools That Give Concrete Results:
Something I see many coaches do that isn’t totally useful is having their client “clarify values” or go over “personal foundations”. In the past, I remember a coach had me use these tools that had me clarify values and it didn’t make me want to hire her and it didn’t help her to understand me better.
These things have their place. But, instead of tools that help you clarify values, use something that’s going to help them work on something concrete that they need and want at that point in time.
Remember, we want to help our clients achieve concrete results. And as a result of achieving these concrete results, personal foundations and values will naturally be clarified.
If you do a really good job at implementing these strategies, you could potentially keep your clients for life. Next time, I’ll share another brilliant strategy for keeping coaching clients much longer.
Meantime, share some of your own client repeat strategies below in the comments!