How to Become a Business Coach

Referrals: The Fastest and Easiest Client Acquisition Strategy

By on August 1, 2020
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Lately, I’ve been telling you that this recession is creating a once-in-a-decade opportunity for business coaches looking to improve their client acquisition strategies.

Why? 

Because business owners are reaching out for help from business coaches with an eagerness we haven’t seen since the great recession of 2008-2010.

But how do you find them and get them to listen to you?

I could tell you about all the fancy-pants stuff you see online — Facebook ads, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google Ads, sales funnels, marketing automation, webinars, attribution reports, cost-per-click, cost-per-lead, blah, blah, blah. And, we LOVE this digital stuff and we can certainly teach you how to do all that if you want. 

BUT — you can get clients much faster and much easier than all of that.

This time-tested strategy is not as flashy and exciting but it WORKS. And here it is…referrals!

Why Are Referrals So Effective for Client Acquisition?

This time-tested strategy is not as flashy and exciting but it WORKS. And here it is…referrals!

Think about it! Right now, EVERYONE knows a struggling business owner. It might be your dentist, the restaurant owner you’ve become friends with over the years, your hair salon owner, the building contractor. Your friend at church/synagogue, the fellow parent at your kid’s school.

You can get leads SO easily right now. You just have to ask — but in the right way!

A Time-Tested Process that Works

In a nutshell, here’s the process we use to get business coaching referrals:

Call a friend or business colleague that you believe knows, likes, and trusts you enough to answer “YES” to the following question: “I’m expanding my coaching business and I need your help. Could we meet via Zoom to discuss how you can help?”

When you sit down with them, show them your hot bio and your ideal client profile. Ask them to think of people they know who match your ideal client profile. Emphasize that this is a brainstorming session, that’s it. As they list names, write them down on your shared screen. Encourage them to keep going. Don’t stop until there are 15-20 names on the list. Then ask them to identify their “top ten.”

Starting with the last name on the list, ask, “What’s wrong with John? Why is he not in your top 10?” Whatever they say, you reply, “That’s okay. We’ll get rid of him.” And cross him off the list. Then do the same thing with the rest until they say, “STOP! The rest are good!”

Why do you ask this way? Because suddenly they become an advocate of those names! And they’re willing to introduce you to them. Give your friend an email template to introduce you to each other (we have one you can use inside the members portal). Then make the phone call using our Silver Bullet script and follow the sales process from there!

Boom! Now you have 10 leads you can reach out to.

So easy if you’ve got the tools and a bit of training! Now get out there and make it happen!

Want more strategies and tools like this? Check out our FREE ebook, Secrets of a Business Coaching Rock Star.

Eric Dombach

About Eric Dombach

Eric Dombach is the Founder of Coaches’ Coach. In 2001, he founded a business coaching firm that, by 2005, was generating more than $1 million USD in revenue, 23% operating profit, and average annual growth rate of 140% per year. In 2005, he sold the firm to 4 of his employees for $1 million U.S. dollars, generating a return on capital of more than 800%. Since then he has trained more than 1,300 independent and franchise business coaches in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, and Australasian markets.

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