Now that you’ve overcome any initial trepidation and embraced the concept of self-promotion, it’s time to take things to the next level.
As you may recall, our previous blog covered three “mandatory” strategies for health coaches and exercise professionals: networking, direct outreach and referral. To move beyond those strategies for expanding the awareness of you and your business, consider employing some or all of the following “extra credit” strategies, being sure to take advantage of your existing skill set and to work hard to turn any current weaknesses into assets that you can use to expand your business.
Here, we cover speaking engagements, writing opportunities and developing a web strategy.
A speaking engagement can accomplish two primary goals: (1) helping others by educating and empowering them to make changes in their lives, and (2) increasing awareness of your services and products. There are all types of opportunities to connect with potential customers, from virtual conference calls and Q&A sessions to more formal educational events.
To get started, identify and reach out to groups or organizations that may serve as gateways to your target market, from high school athletic departments and retirement communities to local churches and industry tradeshows. Try to connect with the true decisionmakers who can book you for a speaking engagement.
Once you’ve scheduled a speaking opportunity, be sure to do your research. It is essential that you know your audience, the venue and what is expected of you. And, perhaps most importantly, be prepared with a well-constructed, practiced and targeted presentation that includes not only educational content but also calls to action and an explanation of how you can help the audience members reach their goals.
In many ways, opportunities to connect with potential clients via the written word mirror the process for booking speaking engagements. You start by identifying ways to reach your target audience and finding the decision makers who can actually provide the opportunity, and then you write engaging content that both educates and empowers your readers to take action.
Be sure to identify the best way to reach your target audience. What websites do they visit? What magazines do they read? Where do they typically find out about new businesses or services in their community?
The key to success when it comes to writing, whether it’s a book, a magazine article or an online blog, is choosing a topic that interests your audience and then presenting the material in a new and exciting way.
Finally, be sure that your name and bio appear on everything you write, along with a way for readers to contact you.
Developing a Web Strategy
Your website should focus on your target market, including their goals and the actions they want to take, and then illustrate how you will help them make those changes. It’s important to view the internet as an opportunity for maintaining an ongoing conversation with potential and current clients.
A well-rounded web strategy includes everything from building your own website to developing content for all types of social media. If terms like “search engine optimization” and “pay-per-click advertising” make your head spin, you may want to hire some outside help. That said, building a website is much easier than it used to be. There are templates you can use and plenty of low-cost options to get you started as you think about the content and structure of your website.
Social media is an ever-changing landscape but, again, there is no need to be scared off. There are countless tools for simplifying and optimizing your social media presence, from Facebook and LinkedIn to Instagram and Snapchat. The key is to figure out where your target audience exists on the web and then connect with them in a meaningful way.
Shannon is a certified Book Yourself Solid® Business Coach providing information based on the BYS System.