[podcast] #1 Way to Brand & Grow Your Coaching Practice – S1 Ep2

Hey, you guys! Brian Hilliard here, author of the best-selling book Networking Like a Pro. And you’re listening to Brand and Grow Your Coaching Practice.

Now if you’ve been with us so far, you know we’ve been going over the top three ways to brand and grow your coaching practice. And as a matter of fact, we had so much good stuff from information and obviously taking into account my experience and things like that that we actually broke it down into two sessions.


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So, number three and number two are on the previous recording. You can just take a look at the menu right there and go back to that. No problem there. But number one is right here.

So we’re just going to jump right in to the number one way, in my opinion, to brand and grow your coaching practice—and that is delivering presentations and workshops.

Now, just to back up for a second, I’ve been doing this since 2001. I have written several blogs, one of them became a bestseller. It’s called Networking Like a Pro. If you ever have a chance to, you can take a look at it. I’ve written blogs. I literally coached hundreds of people in terms of growing their business and obviously building their brand and being successful in the business world.

And as a coach or a consultant, I’m telling you that if you’re looking to both brand and grow your practice, workshops and presentations are absolutely the way to go. They get you out in front of a wide group of people. It allows you to be able to do one thing, and again, touch 20, 50, a hundred folks all at once, and it gives you a chance to be able to turn those audiences and monetize that engagement into bottom line business.

So, what we’re going to talk about are some ways that you can do that.

Now, you might be thinking—I know we’ve got some people listening right now and they’re like, “Boy! You know what, Brian? I kind of speak a lot. I’m a business coach and I go out and I speak at the chamber. I’m a health coach. I go out and speak at the Kiwanis Club. I am this and I speak there. And I haven’t really gotten as much business—I’ve got to be honest with you—as I would like.”

I would tell you, “You know what? That’s great.” Hang with me for a few minutes because there are some specific things that I think you’re not doing—not to be disrespectful—there some specific things that maybe you’re not doing and there are some specific things that I would recommend you consider doing. And I think when you do that, you will find that you’d be more successful and you have a lot more fun doing it.”

So, stick with me even if you’ve done this before in terms of presentations and you haven’t been that successful or whatever, you haven’t gotten as much as you’d like. Stick with me.

First, we broke this down into three sections: before, during and after the presentation (so before the presentation, during the presentation and afterwards).

I’ve got like two or three things under each section here that we’re going to go over.

Let’s first look at before.

Now, before you’d even get into the before, like before you accept the presentation, you need to make sure that the organizer, whoever you set this up with, that they know that you’ve got some resources that are available. We’ll get into details on how you have that and what it is and all that other stuff later. But they need to know before you even move.

I actually am talking to a conference organizer right now. Well, actually this one, they’re not having me out for their conference because they’re booked, which is fine. But they said, “We are doing the webinar series. Maybe we can get you involved with that.” I said that’s fine. And they’re asking me how much I charge and all that other good stuff.

And what I said was, “Listen, what we can do”—this is exactly the terminology I used. “Listen, what we can do in lieu of my regular speaking fee is you’re charging this folks, this participants x number of dollars.” I don’t know what it was—$50, $30, it doesn’t matter, x number of dollars.

I said, “What I’ll do is, in lieu of my speaking fee, we can work out some type of arrangement, a split with the ticket prices. What we’ll also do is I will have some resources that are available that they can pick up.”

“This is not going to be a hard sell or anything like that. We’ve got some different resource if they want. They’re more than welcome to pick it up.”

I said it exactly like that. I just boom. Every time I say that, people are like okay.

No one has a problem with you having resources available for sale. They have a problem with an infomercial and a hard sell. So if you tell them right up front, “Listen, this is what we’ve got. This is what we’re going to do. This is how we operate,” you will be fine.

So before the before, make sure that the organizer knows that you have some resources.

Now, let’s jump into some other things. You want to be able to obviously have something to sell—and specifically, you want to have something that is tangible.

A lot of coaches and consultants, we have an intangible service. So what happens is a lot of coaches and consultants, they go in and they just kind of sell coaching. “Well here’s a presentation. I did a great job.” They do their thing. “If you want to buy some coaching, I guess this is my business card.”

I don’t know about that. Actually, I do know. It doesn’t work. Of course I know about that. I don’t think that’s the way to go.

Instead you want to have something tangible. For me, I have a book. For you, you might have a CD. I started off, I had a CD. I didn’t just start off in the business with a book. I had a CD. Maybe you put it as an mp3. Maybe you have a special report.

It doesn’t have to be a book. But you need something that’s tangible for people to be able to be like, “Oh okay, this is something…”

And that tangible, it doesn’t have to be hundreds of dollars. It can be a $29 package of a CD and a special report, PDF, $29—just something to be able to get people in the door.

Now, in a perfect world, you have two packages. You have a book and a CD, just let’s say as package one, and maybe you have a book, CD and something else as package two. You have a CD as package one and you have a CD, a special report and something else as package two.

I’ll tell you how I’ve seen it done. And I’ve recommended it. You get yourself a CD and you get yourself a PDF. And you’ve create that. That’s $29 or $39. And then, you tack on a 30-minute coaching session, and then it’s $59. You do it like a coaching certificate. You have that.

But it has to be tangible where people can see it.

Now, we have some pictures actually. I have taken a picture of what my table looks like because that gets me to the second point. You need to have your table—wherever you have these resources, you need to have it placed in the back of the room that needs to be clear what it is that you have for sale.

And in a perfect world, in the back of the room near an entrance and exit point—a lot of times, coaches and presenters in general, they put their table off to the side or they sometimes put it up on the front of the room. No, no, no. No one is going to come to the front of the room unless they have to go to the front to get to the back to go out. Put your table in the back of the room.

Like I said, I’ve got picture. If you want, you can certainly take a look at that at our blog PracticeBuilderBlog.com of what the table looks like because it needs to be clear.

We personally have three options. Sometimes I have two. Sometimes I have three. But I always have at least two options of what looks like to buy.

You can kind of take a look at that. You can take a look at that again on our resources page PracticeBuilderBlog.com/resources. Make sure your table is in the back of the room. Clear, concise and ideally near the entrance or exit point of the room.

And then, the other thing—last but not least, this is all before—make sure you meet and greet with folks beforehand. I see a lot of times where presenters, they just kind of do their thing and they just kind of present and they kind of go away. I also think you need to stick around afterwards which we’ll talk about a little bit. Make sure you meet and greet people beforehand.

I always tell people, every time I present, obviously, I’m there early. I’m not setting up. I’m talking to people, “How do you do?” They want to meet the speaker. People want to meet the speaker. “Hey I’m Brian Hilliard. How are you doing? What do you do? Tell me little about yourself.” They ask me, “Oh, what do you do?” “I’m going to be speaking today.” “Oh, what are you speaking about?” “I’m going to be talking about this.” It creates a sense of rapport.

And it allows you—if you heard this in our previous program talking about the idea of visibility, credibility and profitability, this whole idea of a relationship economy. When you’re meeting and greeting with people beforehand, you’re building a rapport with these folks. And what happens is now, it’s not the first time that they’re seeing you. They have met you. They’ve talked with you. They’ve connected a little bit. Now, you’re speaking. You make an offer, then maybe you call them again, maybe you send them email. It starts off.

So make sure that you meet and greet with folks beforehand.

Let’s talk about a couple things to do during the presentation itself. Two things:

Number one, absolutely hold the Q&A in the middle of your presentation. Do not do it at the end. What you want to be able to do is you want to be able to—if you do it in the middle, what happens is you then are able to have some questions, cover some other stuff because—and this gets back to my second point—at the end, that’s when you’re making your offer.

A lot of times, the reason why people aren’t successful with presentations and can’t monetize it is because they do two things wrong.

They either don’t make an offer or they’re so hard sell about it that no one wants the offer or they over teach. So I guess that’s three things.

They say, “Well I don’t want to make a hard sell. I don’t want to really have any type of offer. So, I’m just going to keep teaching, teaching. I guess these guys will buy.” That almost never works.

So what you want to do is you want to hold your Q&A in the middle of the presentation. I personally like to do Q&A and have some type of raffle personally. What I do is I’ll have a raffle of a gift certificate that gives me a chance to go over the material, the resources that I have for sale without them feeling sales-y—

Which also, by the way, during the presentation you want to make sure you get people’s names at the beginning, business cards. That way, you can hold the raffle. But more importantly, you can put them on your newsletter list afterwards.

And you let people know. You say, “Hey guys thanks for coming out. If everybody hasn’t seen so far, we have a newsletter. We have a bag or whatever that’s going around. If you want to be involved in a raffle, you certainly can. We also have a newsletter that goes out on a regular basis. It’s got some tips and tricks on how you can be more successful in growing your business.”

“If you want to be in the raffle, but you don’t want to be in the newsletter, just write no newsletter on the back. That’s fine. But I know we don’t have a lot of time here today. It’s kind of my way of staying connected and moving forward with you guys.” No one has a problem with that.

So, Q&A in the middle. That way, you can make sure you have that raffle as well for a gift certificate. Everyone’s fine listing to a product when they think they can win it. Have a gift certificate in there. And then, the second thing you need to do is you need to make sure during the presentation that you present a clear, firm offer.

That’s where people make their mistake. They either over teach or they over sell. What I want is to you to do none of the above. I want you to do something were you’re giving them good stuff, you hold the Q&A, you do the raffle. And at the end, you’re saying, “We’ve got some good resources here. And if you’d like to take a look at it, you’re more than welcome to. We’ve got our book Networking Like a Pro. It’s all about turning the contacts you get with the connections you need.”

“It also comes with our CD on creating a client-generating elevator pitch and that’s $29.”

“Now, if you want to kick it up a notch, you can get package number one here, plus we even have a 30-minute coaching voucher with yours truly and that’s $59.”

“Just so you know, we even have a free gift for the first five folks that want to pick something up and we do take credit cards if you’d like. So, if that’s something you’re interested in, by all means, swing on by. I’ll be in the back there.”

“Once again, my name is Brian Hilliard saying, ‘So long! Take care. And thank you for your time.’”

You see, I just rolled right into that. I literally made that up on the spot. You see how smooth that is though? “We’ve got this. We’ve got that. If you want to kick it up a notch, you go there. Here’s where you get it. Here’s how much it cost. Yes, we take credit cards.” Notice that little free gift I threw in there?

These are things that you want to do. That’s a clear, firm offer. That’s a clear, firm offer. You want to be able to have that.

Q&A in the middle along with the raffle, clear firm offer at the end.

And then afterwards, real quick—a couple things here.

Number one is you want to be able to do what you said you’re going to do.

Now for me, my resources are audio based a lot of them are mp3s. I’m shooting at stuff out. I do that on the night of the presentation. So if I’m whatever, I go back to the hotel, eat dinner, do some other stuff and then I’ll shoot it out usually—usually, before dinner if you want to know the truth because it’s not a big deal.

The other thing I do is I make sure that I send out a personalized card to the program person and anyone who bought for me that day. I’m talking about a hand written personalized greeting card, regular snail mail.

For me, I don’t have a bunch of time to be traveling around with 50 cards and stamps and things like that. So, if you want to check out the resource I’ve got and what I used for that, by all means, swing by our blog PracticeBuilderBlog.com. Again, go to the resources page for what you want to do.

And then last, but not the least, I’m making phone calls. I’m following up with people. One of the things I didn’t mention during the presentation that I do and that I’m a big fan of is after I do the raffle with people—I raffle something off, I usually raffle off a gift certificate and a coaching session—after the coaching session, I’ll say to people, “Hey listen if you didn’t get a chance to win your coaching session, that’s fine. One of the things I do, I’ve got a little 15-minute laser coaching session. It’s a free session where, for 15 minutes, we’ll talk on the phone and just talk about your business and some of the things that you’re trying to do.”

And I hand out a clipboard. “Here are some times. Here are some dates. You can take a look at your calendar. Pull it out.” And people are writing their names down.

It’s a clipboard that I have. It’s a sheet that has their name, their email, their phone number. I’ve got times set up. I take it back.

I usually do those laser sessions the same day and two days afterwards. So if I have a Wednesday presentation, I’m doing it Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. And I usually get about 10, 12, 15 folks or whatever that register. And I’m making calls my point after the fact.

Hopefully I make sense and hopefully I had something that you can see yourself using. Thanks so much for listening guys. I really appreciate it. My name is Brian Hilliard. Bye bye.