Guest article by: Louise Crooks, who appeared on the JumpStartYourBusinessNow Radio Show with host Katrina Sawa today, October 29th, 2013 at 11:00 am PST. Listen to the interview by clicking here.

There has been a lot of confusing marketing going on about niching recently in the coaching community, which might have gotten you a bit befuddled.

I want to put the record straight, and give you a few tips too!

Ultimately what any coach or healer wants, and I hope I’m speaking for you, is to help as many clients as possible and have a thriving practice.  Am I right?

Here is the truth:  whether you call it target market, niche or ideal client – the reality is that you need a focus coaching a group of people with specific challenges in common, all wanting the same thing.   And if you’re aligned with their values, spirituality or political persuasion well that is just peachy.

Ok I’m being a bit irreverent but I’m a bit ticked off with all this double speak confusing the life out of coaches when it comes to creating a niche.  When in fact it’s pivotal to your success.

One of the cornerstones to building a successful practice is to choose that special group of people you want to work with.

Why?   Because when you focus on them and their specific challenges and you start speaking directly to them in language that they can understand, they will without hesitation raise their hand and say ‘Jane/John knows exactly what I’m going through, and she /he is the person to help me’. 

Here are some examples:

  • ‘I’m a coach working with women going through divorce , wanting to get through the rollercoaster ride in one piece with the possibility of happiness again.
  • I’m a corporate coach working with middle managers who are new to management and making a hash of it –  helping them to communicate effectively with their team, earn their respect, and produce great results.
  • I’m a birthing hypnotherapist and  I help pregnant women prepare for giving birth confidently without meds, pain or fear.
  • I’m a relationship  coach helping men in mid-life build their confidence and find their  2nd time round soulmate.
  • I’m a nutritionist helping Moms deal with children who have severe allergies, and finding solutions through food and ditching prescription meds.

It’s a little different to ‘I’m a coach, and I help women move from where they are now to where they want to be’.   Or ‘I’m a hypnotherapist and I help people deal with stress, smoking cessation, weight-loss, phobias  and on and on.’   

The more general and unspecific you are about the group of people you’re focusing on, their challenges and the solution they want, the less likely people will work with you. You’ll be seen as a ‘Jack of all Trades, Master of None’.   It’s really as simple as that. Because you’re not connecting or creating trust.

Here are a couple tips to help you decide who your ideal client is (your niche) and start seeing some results.

1)      Think of a time that was pivotal to your growth, and how you might be able to support people going through the same thing.  This could be a huge challenge, change, illness or shift.

2)      Think about something you’re extremely passionate about or get on your soap-box about…where you want to make difference.

The truth is that often our ideal clients reflect who we once were.  Eg: struggled conceive or couldn’t find a job, or went broke, or got divorced.  Remember a turning point in your life.

They could be people we have a deep connection to because of something we’ve experienced with someone close to us eg: parent with cancer, or sister being bullied.

Or they could be people we’re able support because of expertise we acquired along the way whether formally through school, or through the ‘school of hard-knocks’.

Ironically, the narrower your focus, the more success is likely.  For a lot of coaches and healers, letting go of a more general focus or multiple groups, is difficult. Many have been where you may be.  But it’s not forever, put one on the backburner, and focus on that one focus that has more of a calling to you now. Give it your all and see what happens.

And remember, whatever those marketing ‘gurus’ are calling it, just know that having that focus will help you do more of what you’re meant to do in the world and help more people.

Woohoo!  Post your comments.  This is a juicy topic and we’d love to hear your thoughts.

If you’re ready, and want to tap into the wisdom of Louise Crooks,  and nail down this one piece of the puzzle of building your business, or want to explore her KeystoClarity! System for Success, check out her website www.keystoclarity.com and leave a message for her on the sliding VM tab on the right side of the page.  I know she’d love to hear from you.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Louise Crooks, aka The KeystoClarity! Coach, is an intuitive Holistic Business Coach, speaker and author, and supports soul-driven coaches and healing professionals, in creating exponential and aligned VISIBILITY to get their message out into the world, getting the attention of their IDEAL clients, creating a comfy lifestyle, and making a difference at the same time.

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