WHEN SHOULD COACHES START A PR CAMPAIGN?
by Simone Sauter
“I’m not ready to start a PR campaign yet.”
‘I don’t have anything to tell journalists about.’
“There’s so much I need to prepare beforehand.”
With so much conflicting guidance, it can be difficult to tell if you’re ready to start on your PR campaign for your coaching business yet.
PR can really grow your business. I have built a coaching business in the relationship niche, solely with PR and free publicity. But it’s important to remember, timing is key to a successful PR campaign.
You might have a fantastic PR campaign planned, but if you’re not ready for clients, or don’t know who it is you’re marketing to, your PR efforts won’t make the impact you need.
In this article, I share three things you need before starting your coaching PR campaign.
So, what exactly are these three things? Read on to find out.
Click on play and listen to this episode:
1. YOUR IDEAL CLIENT
When you want to get started with your coaching PR campaign, the first thing you need to be clear on is: who is your ideal client?
So, what does ‘ideal client’ mean, and why should you know who they are?
Your ideal client is the person who needs your business, either to solve a problem or to help them reach their full potential. You need to focus your PR campaign on this person.
You might initially think it’s best for your coaching services to appeal to the widest audience possible, but this isn’t the case. Many people can be potential clients, but they won’t necessarily be an ideal client.
Some may be interested in your services, but not willing to pay. Others might have the money, but want a different kind of coaching service to yours. It’s one thing to find clients, but it’s another to find clients that work well with you.
If you want to get started with your coaching PR campaign, you need to target the publications and media outlets your ideal client actually consumes. A target client who enjoys reading Vogue is unlikely to find out about your coaching business through Classic Bike magazine. If you target a media outlet that doesn’t appeal to your clients, you will still reach people, but they won’t be potential clients.
So, you need to understand your ideal client well. But what exactly should you know about them?
Answer is: things that are pretty common. Demographics, including age, education, income, and relationship status are important. Are you aiming your business to younger women? Or the older generation? Are they likely to own their home? Or do they rent? Are they married with children? Or happily single?
The next aspect to consider is their psychographics. Demographics refers to the different sectors of society a person falls into, whilst psychographics encompasses their values, interests, and lifestyle.
Is your ideal client family-focused, or are they more interested in a bright career? Perhaps they like both? Do they love golfing or salsa? Are they passionate about the environment? Understanding their cognitive and emotional responses will help you to develop a campaign that works to their interests.
The most crucial aspect for your entire business is this: your ideal client’s fears and desires. What does your client want? What problems in their life need solving? And more importantly, how can your coaching business solve them?
Perhaps you’re a business coach who works primarily with start-ups – your client might fear their business will fall through, they might want support from someone with years of business experience. That’s where you come in.
These are the fundamentals you need to know about your ideal client.
If you’re not sure who your ideal client is yet, I recommend doing some market research. Be clear on what type of coaching you offer and brainstorm who might be interested in your services.
Interview potential clients on the phone to get a very clear picture of what they want and what they think about your business. Would they be interested in your coaching? If not, why not? This kind of research can help you discover exactly what your ideal client is looking for.
2. YOUR EXPERTISE
The second thing you need to understand is: what exactly is your area of expertise?
So, why do I mention that?
There are so many coaches out there who aren’t clear about what their area of expertise is. You need to be crystal clear with what services you offer.
You might think it’s best to make your services appeal to as wide an audience as possible, but this can actually be a detriment to your business at times. If you offer life coaching, business coaching, relationship coaching, and a bit of parenting coaching on the side, it will be hard for clients to understand exactly what it is that you do.
It’s far better to play to your expertise. If you have 20 years of experience in relationship counselling, adding other services could overshadow this wealth of experience. Not to mention there are many coaches out there, and you will need to be competitive. Rather than a ‘jack of all trades’ coach, be clear on what your niche is.
What do you want to be known for?
What is it that people should think and say about you, if they hear your name?
You can figure out your niche by filling in this sentence. This is your elevator pitch.
You say, “I am…”
A PR expert, a PR strategist, a relationship coach…
“And I help…”
Add the people that you help. In my case, I specifically coach the coaches. You might focus on helping single mothers, or newly-weds, or established businesses in the hospitality sector. The more specific, the better.
Next, what is it that you help them with?
Maybe you get them featured in the media to get new clients. Or you help married couples to resolve relationship issues. Or you help working mothers balance work and home life. Again, the more specific it gets, the better.
Finally, you mention the benefits. With your help, they can rise above the noise online, skyrocket their income, live happier lives, and make a bigger impact.
3. YOUR GOALS
The third thing you need to know is your goals. Firstly, what are your overall business goals?
What do you want to achieve with your business? What is your mission? What kind of impact do you want to make on this planet?
Perhaps you’re a business coach who wants several steady clients? Maybe you want to take your coaching business worldwide? Or perhaps you’re a parenting coach who wants to change how the world sees the parenting/work balance?
Whatever your business goals are, you need to be clear about the direction you want your coaching business to head in.
Secondly, and this might seem a bit obvious, what are your coaching PR goals? What do you want to achieve through getting free publicity, doing PR, getting yourself out there?
Be specific with what you want. Do you want to build your email list? Do you want to build trust with your potential clientele? Do you want to skyrocket your reputation and reach a wider audience?
If you’re just starting out, you might think you don’t have anything to share with a journalist.
You couldn’t be further away from the truth. If you are a coach (and believe me, I have many, many years of experience with clients), you have plenty of stories that journalists are interested in.
So, what are the next steps for starting a coaching PR campaign?
If you have these three aspects in place, then you are ready to get started with your coaching PR campaign.
Here comes the challenging part – the launching of your campaign. With so much competition, it can be hard to get your coaching business seen in the crowd. PR campaigns can be complex, and it’s difficult to know the right way to target media outlets.
That’s where I come in.
My name is Simone Sauter. I’m a coach, and a PR and Publicity Strategist.
My Publicity Rockstar Method I use with my clients has helped them reach a wider audience by getting featured in major media outlets, including Forbes, Cosmopolitan, and Mindbodygreen.
If you’re a coach, and you’re interested in learning my methods, sign up for my free, in-depth masterclass.
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