School of Coaching Mastery

Coaching Blog

Marketing for Coaches: How to Lose Friends, Respect, and Clients

Posted by Julia Stewart

finding life coach clientsIf you're a relatively new business or life coach, then the question of where to find coaching clients is probably nearly an obsession for you.

 

And that's as it should be. You're in a huge learning curve and your future business depends on your ability to learn quickly and keep moving forward.

 

This blog post will help flatten your marketing and sales learning curve and save you from bumbling ineptitude. 

 

As you can imagine, my coaching clients and students frequently ask me how to find clients.

 

Most don't ask where. You need to know 'where' before the 'how' question can even begin to help you.

 

So here's a list of places 'where' you may find clients, preceded by a few places where you almost certainly won't.

 

Where you WON'T find clients, but you may lose respect, friends, or worse:
  • Friends and family: don't invite your best friend to coach with you for a fee. You're violating your relationship with her and will likely offend her and possibly lose her friendship. Do offer to coach her for free, if you like - and if she's interested. Mattison Grey calls this the Friends Channel. Don't talk business unless you're both on the Business Channel.
  • Other people's tribes: you may belong to communities of interest that are led by other thought leaders. Maybe all the members are on the Business Channel, but your fellow members may view you as just a peer. Don't presume they're open to becoming your clients, unless they've already expressed curiosity about how you can help them and even then, have the conversation in private. Otherwise, you'll be seen as inappropriate and tribal leaders may view you as an interloper. Better to start your own tribe.
  • Your coaching school: don't try to build a coaching business by coaching other coaches, especially your classmates. You may see yourself as more developed than they are, but it's unlikely they'll agree. If you SPAM them with invitations to coach, or worse, invite them to coach with you in class, you'll just look self-serving - not attractive. Do invite your classmates to trade peer coaching with you, gratis.
  • Social aquaintences: the folks you meet in church, at a homeowners meeting, or in line at a store may or may not be open to coaching with you. Let them ask about it. If they're just being social, just be social with them. If they seem curious, go ahead and share more - probably in private.

 

Places where you CAN find coaching clients:
  • Friends of friends of family: go ahead and offer some free coaching to your family and their friends. If they like it, ask them to refer friends to you for coaching. Sometimes it's as easy as that.
  • Friends of friends of friends: the closer someone is to your social circle, the more likely they are to be concerned about confidentiality, so ask friends to refer people for free coaching sessions. Ask those people for referrals. The third tier is a better bet.
  • People who join your tribes: start a Facebook Page, LinkedIn Group, or live networking organization. Serve your members. A lot. Invite them to complimentary sessions. The more they perceive you as a contributor to their lives and success, the more they will want your coaching.
  • People you meet at networking events: live networking is powerful when you know how to use it. Everyone there is 'selling' something, so the trick is to notice those who want what you have. Invite them to a free session.
  • People who read your blog: one of the easiest ways to build a tribe is to start a great blog. Easy, but time consuming. If you love to serve and love to write, your blog can become a powerful attractor. Use it to invite potential clients.
  • People who hear you speak: lead live workshops, online webinars, or teleclasses. Educate, entertain, and serve. Your listeners may fall in love with you. You can invite them to work with you, but don't be surprised if they ask YOU to coach them, first. When you're in the right place, doing the right things, sales practically take care of themselves.

 

So there you have some powerful DOs and DON'Ts for attracting coaching clients without offending people. As always, it boils down to Servant Entrepreneurship. If you want much more...

 

Get Paid to Coach. Join Coach 100.

Topics: business coach, blogging, coaching clients, make a living as a life coach, make a living as a coach, Facebook, Life Coaches, marketing and sales, LinkedIn, Social Media Marketing, Marketing for life coaches

Best Coaching Blogs 2013: Early Bird Entries are Open

Posted by Julia Stewart

Best Coaching Blogs 2013Each year, at about this time, people start visiting our site, looking for the Best Coaching Blogs Contest and this year is our Fifth Anniversary, so it's going to be extra special. Best Coaching Blogs is the only coaching blog contest, that we know of, which is decided by popular vote and that's hugely important.

For instance, this blog, the Coaching Blog, was named Number 3 in the Top 100 Life Coach Blogs of 2013, which is awesome. But it would be even more awesome if our readers, subscribers or fans voted it #3, because they're the folks we write it for. And that's the coolest thing about Best Coaching Blogs.

Best Coaching Blogs contestants attract more readers, subscribers, fans and even clients just by actively participating in this contest - especially the bloggers who make it into the coveted Top Ten. Either way, it's cool to be able to refer to you 'award-winning blog' ever after.

Hundreds of coaching blogs have been entered in Best Coaching Blogs over the years, so it's super cool to win it and each year, there seems to be an upset or two, with surprise winners coming from out of 'nowhere'. That makes it fun for everyone, whether you're a new coach or a big coaching organization.

So how do you enter Best Coaching Blogs 2013? This year, the contest will run a little later. Instead of running for one month in late spring or early summer, the actual contest will run in July and August this year. But you can enter as an early bird and get a head start on winning.

Click the button below and fill out the quick form to join Best Coaching Blogs 2013 for free. Then make sure you write some award-winning-worthy content between now and then. The contest tends to be won based on your most recent blog posts. Also add the contestant badges to your site and plan your social media campaigns. The bloggers who actively promote their blog entries via social media have the best chance of winning Best Coaching Blogs. Good luck!

Enter to Win Best Coaching Blogs 2013

Topics: Coaching, Best Coaching Blogs, blogs, blogging, coaching blog, coaching blogs, contest, Coaches, social networking, Top Life Coach Blogs

Google Business Blog Nightmare: Reality 2.0

Posted by Jeremy Tick

Google Business Blog

Guest post by Jeremy Tick.

 

Ten years ago I made a mistake.  I stopped doing business with my business partner.

My colleague had made a larger financial investment and felt he owned more of the firm. Because it was my sales and marketing that helped the business quickly grow I thought the partnership equal.  We could never agree on who owned what and tensions frequently arose. When this happened, he reminded me of my youth and less formal education.  The relationship became deleterious to both my confidence and my ability to produce and it hurt the business.  After learning that he withdrew a larger portion of our income for himself without my consent, I left.

As children we’re taught to ignore bullies.  As adults we’re taught that relationships are sometimes transactional and we need to move on.  I thought I understood both sentiments and responded accordingly.  But these are not the old days anymore – we live in “Reality 2.0.”

Unsuccessful in running the business without me, my partner closed it down.  Ten years later, however, he still maintains the company website with the caption on Google stating the business is out of business and “cannot be held accountable for any of Jeremy Tick’s actions.”  Embedded in it are links to my old resume, tax documents from 2004, and a slew of defaming blog posts, written by him, about me.   These posts attack my personal character, work ethic, educational and socio-economic background and psyche.  Despite my effort to end an unhealthy relationship the web won’t let me.   My former partner doesn’t have to do anything to maintain our connection: Google does it for him.  And I pay the price.

When I first learned of the blog’s existence I paid no attention.  It was 2004 and I had never heard of a blog.   But while earning my Master’s Degree these posts became of concern. Despite being in a top-notch school with significant real world experience, my resume didn’t get nearly as much attention as those of my peers.

I soon learned why.  It was now 2007 and ever more frequently people were being “Googled” by hiring parties.  Curious, I looked up my name and found the return search populated entirely by these slanderous posts.   Unbeknownst to me, the relationship was still alive in the eyes of the world – and that was the only thing that mattered.

Learning that most websites claim no responsibility for the content they house, I attempted to create alternative content to push the blog down in search results but it was so chock full of my full name that anything I created was secondary.  Some ‘THING,’ had more control over my own name than me.

But I’m not the only one.

Businesses suffer tremendously when unwarranted or exaggerated negative feedback is posted without recourse.  People are hurt when bullying occurs over social media.  These mediums, by their design, empower the abuse and further disempower the abused.  The repercussions of such acts are of far greater consequence than the costs: it’s easy to do, often anonymous and, as evidence has shown, it can hurt.

It’s sad that this vehicle with which we can do so much good can render us so imprisoned by our new ‘sensationalist’ behaviors.  ‘Business at the Speed of Thought,’ might not be so thoughtful.  But we can change that.  Through the speed with which we exchange information and the impact we quickly have on others, we can actively redefine what constitutes social norms, decorum, and common sense.  We must learn to exalt compassion, kindness and responsibility ‘online’ and not tolerate petty meanness and hate – just as we do not when ‘offline’.  We need to remember that some relationships live their course and come to an end, that just as in real life, some things are better left unsaid, even online.   Our impact on others, not because of a lack of proximity to them, but because of our new proximity to everyone, has become far more substantial.  With any new tool comes precaution for its potential harm.   We need to learn to use this one more responsibly.

So go ahead, Google me.  Besides learning what a crud I once may have been, you’ll learn just how accomplished and resilient I am - how despite the one negative check in my background, I’ve done some pretty cool things – probably because Google encouraged me to do so.  I dare you, Google me.  Just remember, don’t believe everything you read online.  

Coach for EntrepreneursGuest blog post by Jeremy Tick, Coach for Entrepreneurs. A business owner since the age of 24, Jeremy is uniquely familiar with the challenges faced by individuals at all stages of business development.  His work is dedicated to aid Creative Professionals in building meaningful brands and developing systems and structures for success with which to create sustainable profit. You can reach Jeremy at www.jeremytick.com and www.tickmanagement.com

 

 

Visit Jeremy Tick on School of Coaching Mastery

 

Topics: business coach, blog, blogs, blogging, blogosphere, coach, Google, business, Entrepreneur, black hat

Infographic: Top 100 Life Coach Blogs 2013 - We're Number 3!

Posted by Julia Stewart

Top 100 Life coach blogs to follow

An infographic by the team at CouponAudit

School of Coaching Mastery hosts the Best Coaching Blogs Contest each year (The above Top Life Coach Blogs To Follow in 2013 is not part of our contest - obviously we can't win our own competition!). Subscribe to our blog (above right) to get an announcement to enter your blog in Best Coaching Blogs or to vote for other blogs. Click the button below to view 2012 winners:

Winners of Best Coaching Blogs 2012

Topics: life coach, Life Coach Blog, Best Coaching Blogs, blogs, blogging, blogosphere, coaching blog, coaching blogs, Top Life Coach Blogs

Best Coaching Blogs Triumph Despite Historic India Power Outage

Posted by Julia Stewart

Best Coaching Blogs 2012The votes are in and the 1st Place winner of Best Coaching Blogs 2012 is Life Coach Vatsala Shukla of India, who did a brilliant job of mobilizing her voters, despite India's massive 2-day power outage, which plunged one tenth of the world's population into darkness, making it the biggest loss of electrical power in world history.

Since its first year in 2008, Best Coaching Blogs finalists have been  decided by a combination of popular votes and comments left by fans. But in the end, the contest finalists themselves, choose 1st, 2nd and 3rd Place winners via a closed ballot.

There were key changes in this year's contest, which for the first time, was formatted like a blog. Each blog entry appeared as a separate blog 'post', with a link to the blog itself, plus a comments section and social sharing buttons, like those at the top of this post. Social shares counted as votes and comments were used as tie-breakers. The  'down vote' option that coaches disliked in previous years, was removed and voters were allowed to vote as many times as they liked. This produced a competition that was both more cordial and more social.

Vatsala's Tips for a Stress Free Life Blog quickly took the lead in both popular votes (social shares) and comments and it prevailed in the finalist's closed vote. 2nd Place went to Evelyn Kalinowsky's Inner Affluence blog and 3rd to Gerard Corbett's PR Job Coach blog. Rachel Grant Coaching blog and Andrea Feinberg's More Free Time blog rounded out the Top Five Winners. Angela Goodeve's* new blog, Life Advice the Coaching Way, received an Honorable Mention.

Congratulations again to all the new winners! Below are statements from three:

1st Place: Vatsala Shukla: "My blog Vatsala’s Tips for a Stress Free Life had just completed its first year of existence. Entering the competition was my challenge to improve myself.  Friends and associates told me my posts were good. That was expected as they know Vatsala the person in all her multi-roles of finance professional, life coach, daughter, pet parent and friend. They understood the context in my writing. What about the world? Was my blog up to the mark? So I entered the competition and was accepted. I was elated. It was only after I started reading the blogs of my fellow competitors that I realised that I was competing with the best of the best. My challenge to step out of my comfort zone went a step further to hold my ground against great veteran bloggers whom I have over the last 4 weeks added to my must read list! Receiving the largest public votes and comments was confirmation that readers liked what they read. Winning from the finalist voting round validated it. I am overwhelmed, humbled and grateful for my win which means a lot more to me than I can articulate. My next challenge is to honour the voters and finalists by being my best."

Top Five: Andrea Feinberg: "Thanks for the opportunity to participate in this contest and end up a winner among the Top 5, my first time! We each have such different targets and I see that as a testament to the swift and broad expansion of professional coaching throughout personal and business sectors. Congratulations to my fellow finalists; we enjoyed the validation of our work through the strength of our supporters who both voted and commented on our behalf."

Honorable Mention: Angela Goodeve: "Yay!!!  Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you!  It was a great experience participating in the contest, and I am so flattered and proud to be given the Honorable Mention!  I love writing the blog posts in the hope that they will provide inspiration, "food for thought", tips, and guidance to improve people's life for the better...and give them an idea of what the wonderful world of Life Coaching can do for them!  I am grateful to you Julia for being a great Mentor and Teacher, and for challenging me to join the contest, and open up more possibilities for me and my business!"

As always, the Best Coaching Blogs Contest is a fun way to expand the conversation about the benefits of  business and life coaching. Plus it highlights the many varied approaches that coaches take to empower their clients and it builds awareness of the incredible growth of professional coaching, which continues to be the second fastest growing profession is the world.

Thanks to the coaching bloggers who participated. I hope you all attracted new readers and clients by taking the courageous step to enter your blog. I look forward to next year's contest and the connections that are built between coaching bloggers themsleves, as well as  with their new fans.

Congratulate the coaching winners below and visit the Best Coaching Blogs 2012 .

Become a coaching blogger yourself! Download the free "How to Blog Effectively for Your Coaching Business" eBook: Free Blogging eBook

 

Download Now.

 

 

*Full disclosure: Angela Goodeve is a life coach student at School of Coaching Mastery.

Topics: business coach, professional coach, life coach, Coaching Student, Best Coaching Blogs, blog, blogs, blogging, blogosphere, Career

Coaching Insight: A Mystery

Posted by Melissa Heisler

Best Coaching BloggersGuest post by Melissa Heisler, 3rd Place Winner of Best Coaching Blogs 2010.

There are only two ways to live your life.  One is as though nothing is a miracle.  The other is as though everything is. – Albert Einstein


I always loved the quote above.  When I experienced people who wanted to prove this or that “truth” about evolution, science, health, the stock market, or any topic, I held on to this quote.  To me it released the pain of having to determine the singular right answer.  However, the other day it was infused with an even more important meaning.

Lately I had been obsessed with the answer to life, the universe, and everything.  My little pea-brain wanted to uncover why we are here.  What is our purpose on this earth?  Previously a friend recommended Anthony De Mello’s book Awareness: The Perils and Opportunities of Reality.  I had read 90% of this very interesting and deep read conveyed in a soft voice in March and for some reason picked it up again the other day.  In the last few pages, I came across this wisdom.


“Every time you make sense out of reality, you bump into something that destroys the sense you made.  Meaning is only found when you go beyond meaning.  Life only makes sense when you perceive it as mystery and it makes no sense to the conceptualizing mind.”


This was the final puzzle piece for me.  I had spent my life trying to undercover the meaning of life.  Was it this career or the other?  Was it family or romantic relationships?  Was it hedonistic joy or solemn prayer?  Was it self-care or servitude?  Was it margaritas and the Simpsons cartoon?  As I grew and became more wise, each option was seen through.  It was seen as a thing of itself, not true meaning.  I tried to play the game that I just had to find a more noble and less self-serving thing, action, career to find meaning.  But those felt hollow too.  

Thinking that life, all of life, is a mystery opens up not only a new world of understanding but a new way of being.  There is now an immense joy I had never experienced before.  Being stuck in traffic, wanting a new pair of shoes, or checking off my to-do list no longer have significance and precedence in my life.  Now I try to focus every moment on soaking up the mystery.  How does my brain communicate to my fingers to type these words?  How does a cold front wash across the plains to create raindrops to feed my plants?  How is it that I can feel the joy or sadness of others deep in my heart even before they speak a word?

Take a day to look at the world as one of mystery.  See how it changes your life.  Namaste.

Melissa Heisler, personal and business coach for It’s My life, Inc., loves to help small business owners, direct sales professionals, and home based businesses thrive during difficult times.


Visit Melissa's entry in the Best Coaching Blogs 2012 Contest Here.

Click me

Topics: business coach, professional coach, life coach, Best Coaching Blogs, blog, blogs, blogging

Best Coaching Blogs 2012 Entry Period is Open

Posted by Julia Stewart

Best Coaching Blogs 2012The annual Best Coaching Blogs Contest is starting up again this month and the entry period is now open.

Every year, since 2009, School of Coaching Mastery has sponsored this online contest between many of the top blogs in business and life coaching. Thousands of readers check out the blogs entered and the coaching bloggers, themselves, report that it's fun, attracts new readers to their blogs, as well as new coaching clients.

Best Coaching Blogs Contests in past years, have always thrived on social sharing and cooperation, as much as on competition.

This year, we've revamped the contest to make it even more social than ever and we're putting it in the format of a blog, which kind of makes sense! We've also gotten rid of the dreaded 'Down Vote' option, which caused a fair amount of consternation in years past and we're experimenting with allowing people to vote as often as they wish.

This year, when you enter your coaching blog, your entry will show up as a blog post on the contest page. Each entry/blog post will have social sharing buttons at the top of it, like the ones you see above this post. The social sharing buttons will function as votes, which will display the total number of shares/votes for that entry. The 20 bloggers with the most votes will themselves vote via closed ballot for the Top Ten Best Coaching Blogs of 2012.

Winners will receive permanent listings on this site, with links to their blogs, plus winner badges and bragging rights. In past years, major coaching organizations have entered, as well as coaching students with brand-new blogs. The winners every year are a mix of established blogs and newbies, meaning anybody can win this prestigious blogging contest.

 

Here's how the new Best Coaching Blogs contest works:

 

  1. Enter your blog in the contest - it's free (be sure to read the rules)
  2. You'll get a badge for your blog that announces you as a contestant
  3. Invite your mailing list to vote for you and add their reasons why they love your blog in the Comments Section of your blog entry
  4. Blog about it on your blog
  5. Share your entry with your social networks on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ and invite folks to vote for you
  6. Use social sharing best practices: if you share with sensitivity, your contacts will share with their contacts and you votes could go viral, but if you over-share with your network, you may annoy and/or lose your friends and followers. (If you set up dummy accounts and over-share to non-existent contacts, you may be banned from the contest)
  7. Get to know your fellow bloggers and support the blogs you think should win - this is a friendly contest
  8. If you make it to the semi-finals, vote for the Best Coaching Blogs of 2012, based on the quality of their content and good sportsmanship.

 

Do you have a Coaching Blog that you'd like to enter in Best Coaching Blogs 2012?


Click me

Topics: Coaching, Best Coaching Blogs, blog, blogs, blogging, blogosphere, coaching blog, coaching blogs, coaching clients, Life Coaching

3 Things I’ve Learnt From My Coaching Journey

Posted by Jen Waller

Coach Jen WallerGuest post by Jen Waller, Top Ten Winner of Best Coaching Blogs 2011.

I didn’t intend to become a coach, run my own coaching business or be my own boss when I first started out learning about coaching. I just found it increasingly fascinating and enjoyed playing and discovering.

It does mean that it’s difficult to pinpoint the precise moment in time when I first started coaching - it just naturally evolved. I do know that it happened over a decade ago.

There’s mistakes I’ve made, things I could have done differently and action I could have taken faster. However, I’m really comfortable with the choices I’ve made and the path I’ve taken as it’s got me to where and who I am now.

Here’s just 3 of those lessons from when I first started coaching:

1. Coach people from exactly where you are.


Having all the coaching knowledge in the world is not going to make a difference to clients unless you are using them by actually coaching people! Some of the best learning experiences I’ve had have come from working with clients.

That does not mean I’m suggesting don’t ever seek and take formal training courses. I personally believe that it’s a duty I have to my current/future clients to continually develop, explore and refine my work.

I am suggesting that you don’t put off putting it into practice!

2. You don’t have to listen and get involved with any distracting thoughts about self doubt or insults

I remember when I first started coaching that I had all these distracting thoughts running through my head.

It was not at all unusual to realise I was paying attention to questions in a coaching session such as

  • “Am I good enough?”
  • “ I can’t ask that question, what will they think?” or
  • “Who am I to ask that question?”


On other occasions it could be a running negative commentary on how terrible a question was, how something was clumsily worded or a general observation that my coaching was terrible and awful! - All a bit distracting to really focus and listen to my client in that moment.

It was the realisation that coaching was not about me, it was about the client in front of me (or at the other end of the phone) that made the difference for me.

It was the catalyst so that when I recognised those thoughts I could let them go, not get caught up in them and return my focus to my client in that moment – that thinking could be indulged in “my time”, as I thought of it, outside of that session.

Funny thing was that the more I didn’t get caught up in those thoughts during a session, the less they seemed relevant when it came to “my time” outside the session!

3. Not knowing a “script” of questions in advance is OK, it doesn’t mean that you are not prepared.

As you watch others coaching, attend trainings and generally read around the subject you will no doubt come across some fantastic questions. Ones that leap out at you so that you want to store them away to pull out in one of your own coaching sessions.

At some stage in my early development I mixed up preparing for a coaching session with having to have a list of pre-planned questions complete with the order they would be asked in the session ahead.

For a while I thought that the fact that I found that really difficult to create (and when I did, never stuck to the list in reality) meant that I was a terrible coach. I let it get in the way of how confident I felt with my coaching.

What I had missed was the fact that this is a coaching conversation. I don’t generally pre-plan conversations in other contexts, I allow those to flow naturally in response to what the other person says. So why do it with a coaching conversation?

Those questions stored away for future use still come in useful but they are used when it’s the “best fit” with where my client is at that moment.

This new way of thinking also allows for the possibility that some of the most powerful questions utilise that individuals own language. If you like, questions that you create in the moment prompted by the answer just given – even if it is one similar to the ones you’ve stored away for future reference.

I’ve selected just three out of many possible things I’ve learnt. These are just my experience, what about yours?

If you are new to coaching, what can you take from this post that will make a difference to your next step?

If you have more coaching experience, what would you share for your personal journey?

Best Coaching Bloggers

Jen Waller is on a mission to support, nurture and encourage coaching skills and talents from non-coach to coach and beyond.

Her coaching blog, Coaching Confidence, is a blog for coaches of all niches. Containing daily quotes, alongside posts covering topics such as personal development, coaching skills and resources. Each Friday the blog hosts a guest post covering a broad range of different coaching experiences, styles and approaches.

Want to enter Best Coaching Blogs 2012?

Click me

Topics: coaching business, Coaching, Best Coaching Blogs, blog, blogs, blogging, become a coach, coaching clients

To Blog or to Do - Is That the Question?

Posted by Julia Stewart

Lately, I've been breaking a cardinal rule of blogging:

Blog frequently and regularly to create loyal subscribers. Studies show that the blogs that blog most frequently have the most subscribers.

Well, it's been about 2 weeks! We're fortunate not to have lost any subscribers, yet.

I find the more I have going on at School of Coaching Mastery, the less time I have to blog. But this is when we have the most to talk about!

There a lots of workarounds for this problem: Guest bloggers, extra articles written in advance, a blog editor. I know, I know.

All I can say is don't do as I do! But I promise new articles will be forthcoming this week. 

Thanks for reading!

Topics: blog, blogs, blogging, School of Coaching Mastery

How to Win the Best Coaching Blogs Contest

Posted by Julia Stewart

Best coaching blogs contestHave you ever wished you could get insider tips on how to succeed at something?

Like how to win a contest or how to attract more clients? Well, I'm about to give you insider tips for both.

Marketing experts say that blogging is one of the most important tools for client attraction in any type of business, particularly if you don't have a big advertising budget. That advice couldn't be more true for coaches.

That's why we sponsor the Best Coaching Blogs Contest each year. Coaching Blogs offer some of the most cutting-edge information about coaching and they are free. That's awesome for the consumer and it's a great marketing strategy for coaches. The contest highlights the very best and it's an effective inbound marketing strategy for School of Coaching Mastery. Everybody wins. But not everybody wins the contest.

Winning at Best Coaching Blogs is a lot like winning at blogging. Both will attract more clients to you, so listen up!

9 ways to win Best Coaching Blogs:

1. Know your audience. The easiest audience to write for is yourself, your friends, or your clients, in that order. But if you're writing to attract more clients, you need to work harder to offer value, to be understood, to create fans and attract clients. If you're writing to win Best Coaching Blogs, remember that your blog will be read by folks who don't know you and you'll need to win over both coaches and non-coaches. They are very different audiences.

2. Know the difference between a business blog and a personal blog. A personal blog, or weblog, can be quirky, weird and profane. A business blog can be all of that, too, depending upon your audience. Generally speaking, a business blog needs to offer more service and value and build more trust than a personal blog, because you ultimately want your readers to spend not just their time, but their money with you. That usually requires more discipline and perhaps less soul-baring. Service, value, trust and discipline will go a long way to help you win the Best Coaching Blogs Contest.

3. Actively create trust. Notice that the word, 'trust' is coming up a lot? You may have already created a fantastic level of trust with the folks who know you, but if you want to attract more people (and contest votes) via your blog, you'll have to create trust through your actual writing. How do you do that? Tell the truth. Give away your best secrets. And show up consistently, meaning develop a consistent voice and blog regularly and frequently enough that people start to count on your articles. As a rule of thumb, you need a minimum of about 20 articles to create blog credibility and you should be blogging once per week or more.

4. Titles are critical. Learn to write titles that engage quickly and pique curiosity. You only have a second or two to convince someone that it'll be worthwhile to spend their valuable time reading your article. Check the right-hand column of this blog for a list of our ten most popular blog posts and you'll see examples of many of the types of posts that engage and create curiosity. If people don't read your articles, you won't attract either clients or votes.

5. Make sure the article delivers what the title promises. Piquing someone's curiosity and then immediately pulling a switcheroo to get them to buy or download something is just plain rude. It's also marketing suicide and readers will mentally blacklist you in a heartbeat. Don't use your blog to sell. Also, don't use it just to write about a product or program, unless your audience tells you they love that. Do offer something of value at the bottom of your posts for people who may want more. Treat your readers with respect and they'll come back. They may even vote for your blog.

6. Be remarkable. Thousands of life coaches write about the Law of Attraction. Don't be one of them unless you have something different to say. Write what no one else writes. Empower your readers. Help them achieve their goals. Make them feel smart for discovering you and they will tell all their friends. And their friends will tell friends. Soon, you have raving fans for your blog and for your work. Fans vote with a vengence.

7. Be Social. Success in the blogosphere is achieved through cooperation, not competition. Read other blogs and comment on them. Link to the best ones. Guest post on some. And announce what you and other bloggers are up to throughout the social media web. This advice is especially important during the contest. Treat your fellow contestants like friends instead of enemies, because in the end, the semi-finalists choose the Top Ten Winners.

8. Play nice. Every year, at least one blogger succumbs to the temptation to cheat and it's the other contestants who notice it first. That's a dumb strategy, because the contestants are the ones who choose the winners. Either play nice or loose. 

9. Break the rules. Although I'm giving you awesome advice for writing a successful blog that wins like crazy, your audience may want something completely different. Pay attention to them first and foremost and watch your blog grow in popularity. Best Coaching Blogs is in many ways a popularity contest. Write for your readers (and voters) and win!

Go here for a related article called, Best Coaching Blogs: Why a Winning Strategy Might Not Win.

Are you a blogger or even winner in one of the Best Coaching Blogs contests? What strategies do you use that I've left out here? Please share your best blogging strategies in the comments below.

How to Blog Effectively

 

Want more ideas? Download the free How to Blog Effectively for Your Coaching Business ebook here.

Topics: coaching business, Best Coaching Blogs, blogs, blogging, blogosphere, School of Coaching Mastery, coaching clients, Life Coaches, How to, Law of Attraction

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