19 January 2010

Step 2 in Becoming a Client Magnet

Following on from the last post, the marketing question to ask today is this:
What makes you unique among your peers who do the very same work?

And let me encourage you to try to answer this from your prospective clients' point of view. Think about their decision making process. What's the intangible something that you have and others don't that will cause clients to select you for their counselor, coach or ND?

Hint: this isn't necessarily about your training, and usually it won't be about your clinical affect or coaching presence. We're all warm and supportive, each of us creates safety and an atmosphere of enthusiastic hope. Those aren't unique selling points in our business.

What is it in your own history and set of personal interests that give you your passion for wanting to do your work in the world?

Maybe you specialize in working with women with postpartum depression because you know what that's like, because your own life has been touched by it in some way -- be it in yourself, your sister, a friend, etc. This gives you empathy and insight that no one who has never had PPD can fully comprehend.

Perhaps the dream of your youth was to be a professional dancer -- until you blew out your knee or injured your back, and your entire self-concept was suddenly, traumatically altered. As a healer now you bring a depth of personal understanding into every encounter with clients whose life dreams have been shattered in a similar way.

Knowing that you have had your own challenges and have overcome them -- of that you have a personal connection to someone with such challenges -- is a compelling factor in the selection process when prospective clients are searching for a provider.

Clients expect us to have been trained and tested. They assume we follow the standards of practice for our particular field. Most aren't knowledgeable enough to know the difference between techniques or schools or approaches to our work. We don't need to over emphasize these factors in our marketing. What starts building rapport and trust is a glimpse into who we are as individuals.

Coaching questions:
What type of experience in your own life sets you apart? How much of that are you comfortable with disclosing in your marketing?

What qualities of personality contribute to your uniqueness, compared to your peers? Are you more direct than the norm, do you listen more, ask more powerful questions, go out of your way for clients more, etc? What unique personality features will stand out to prospective clients comparing you with your peers?

No comments: