Article Marketing

December 19, 2009

Are You The Coaching Authority In Your Niche?

figures_leader_3Regardless of the coaching niche that you have chosen, you have competition. If you don't have any competitors, I would seriously reconsider your niche! Remember that competition means that your niche is viable. People are paying for coaching in that niche.

So as this is the case — and the number of coaching programs, certifications, and schools increases, and you will now have even more coaches starting their practices and vying for your coaching clients. It's more important than ever that you become the coaching authority a.k.a. the "go to" coach in your niche.

Are you that go to coach?

If your answer is a definitive no or a not yet, then a tried and true, tested method of narrowing the gap between you and the leaders in your marketplace is by positioning yourself as an authority through educational and entertaining content: writing articles a.k.a. article marketing.

It seems like a pretty simple idea, yet I watch year after year how coaches fail to build a self-sustaining practice because they tend to many other parts of their business except for "positioning" themselves as leaders in their niches.

This is a big mistake that many coaches make due to a variety of reasons. One being that many coaches, especially new coaches, are not confident enough to allow themselves to even be thought of as an expert on anything. I work with coaches like this all the time. Even with job experience, coaching certification, and clients — many coaches do not view themselves as an expert on their topic and therefore cannot take the steps to position themselves as such. This is a BIG mistake. If you have specialized knowledge on any topic that people are willing to pay money to learn - then you are an expert. Learn how to communicate that specialized knowledge effectively, and you are an authority.

Another reason why some coaches do not know how to position themselves effectively in their marketplaces, is due to the fact that they did not learn very good marketing techniques in coaching certification programs. I know that my schools didn't do a very good job of this. So you are kind of out there all on your own, wishing on a wing and a prayer, that you can find enough clients to sustain a self-supporting practice. When in fact, clients should come to you.

That's where writing articles and becoming THE "go to" coaching authority in your niche steps in. Here's how to do it in three simple steps…

1. Examine your competition. Don't be afraid to look and determine who the leaders, who the power players are in your niche, and examine what they are doing. What are they talking about in their articles, on their sites, in forums or on social networking sites. For example, if your competitor is on Twitter, what do folks talk to him about? What questions do they ask? What problems do they need solved?

2. Build your content. Now that you know what the "buzz" is in your niche, it's time to start writing articles and writing more articles on those topics. Really get out there and cover the basic points, plus the "buzz" topics in your niche. This will work powerfully because as people search for answers in this niche on the web, your content will start to surface in the search engine results. The more you write, and the more visible you become, the more potential clients will start to realize that "Wow, this coach must know what he/she is talking about. I see his/her stuff everywhere. Maybe I should try his/her program."

3. Promote your content. Yes, sometimes if you build it - they will come. But they will come a LOT faster if you promote your articles. Get on Twitter, Facebook, and some of the other social marketing and bookmarking sites and tell people what you've written and why they need to read it. Send a blast to your opt-in list about your new articles. Make it REAL easy for potential clients to access your information. I like to join all the popular social marketing sites out there and then sent a "blast" about my articles to all of them at the same time. I hit all my communities this way with one simple message. I use a free service over at Ping.fm to do this.

Lisa Angelettie - Article Marketing Expert

Lisa Angelettie is a professional coach, published author, and article marketing expert. She's been using articles exclusively since 2003 to drive traffic to the websites of her clients as well as her own. Lisa is the Article Marketing Expert for Group Mastery. Stop by and read some of Lisa's free article marketing tips over at her site: http://LisaAngelettie.com

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November 16, 2009

How To Create Group Coaching Bonuses Easily!

I was working with one of my retail clients who offers group coaching courses to new business owners, and she had spent so much of her time and mental energy creating the wonderful course for her group of entrepreneurs, that she really had no time to design and create her own bonus products as reward for opting in, then paying for the group early, and so on and so on. She really needed to know how to create group coaching bonuses for her course fast and painlessly, and she asked me if I would do it!

Needless to say my answer was a big fat "nope", and that's because I have a million other things on my plate in my own business to do — but what I did do was show her how to do it fast and easy using these little things that she already had laying around on her hard drive - articles!

When you need to create a high-quality bonus for your coaching clients, and you rather not use someone else's material for whatever reason (perhaps you want your bonuses to stay on topic with your course), a great way to create one is to bundle articles. Here's your quick recipe…

1. Look for articles that you have on a topic that would complement the rest of your course, not replace or repeat the content already in your course. Think of it as a section of your coaching program that you left out because there wasn't enough time to teach it, so you use it as a supplementary or "bonus" lesson.

2. If you do not have articles on these types of complementary topics, then carve out a little time on the weekend to write a few. You will need about 7 articles to make a high-quality and informative bonus.

3. You are going to create this bonus as you would any PDF information product, so make sure to create a title page, table of contents, bio page, and any other type of offer you want to include as back matter in this bonus PDF.

4. Each article will serve as a chapter in your bonus. That's why you need at least 7 articles to make it substantial. If the information is based on a really small niche where the information is really specific, then you can get away with 4-5 articles.

5. In order to make the articles not seem like individual articles, but as an entire seamless infoproduct, you will need to create an intro paragraph or page. This is an easy introduction to the topic, why you thought it was an important topic, what you will be teaching or explaining in the following chapters, how they can use this info in conjunction with what they learn in their coaching with you.

6. You do not have to re-write your articles. They serve as their own individual chapters. Just put them in an order that makes sense in your bonus.

7. To add even further value to the bonus, you can record yourself reading the bonus or discussing its contents with another person. You could also create a Powerpoint or Camtasia video of you again reading the article, but adding a few visual elements or by adding a totally separate video that complements the contents of your bonus. Either way, adding audio or video to this bonus will further increase it's perceived value to your clients.

8. You can create this bonus in Microsoft Word or a text editor first then convert it into a PDF. There are various programs other than Adobe Acrobat (which costs about $100) with which you can do this for a lower price or for free. Just do a Google search.

If you own a Mac, you can create PDFs in the software called "Pages". Just create the document in Pages and choose the share then export selections to convert into a PDF file.

9. Finally - hype it up! Make sure you promote your bonus for the high quality and information packed product that it is, and if you really want to get some folks off the fence and on to making a decision about your group coaching - then offer it as a time-sensitive bonus. Only 100 copies. Or only offer it for 7 days.

Whew, I just got myself excited, and I am off to making another little bonus goodie for some of my inner circle clients!

Lisa Angelettie

Lisa Angelettie - Article Marketing Expert

Lisa Angelettie is a professional coach, published author, and article marketing expert. She's been using articles exclusively since 2003 to drive traffic to the websites of her clients as well as her own.  Lisa is the Article Marketing Expert for Group Mastery.  Stop by and read some of Lisa's free article marketing tips over at her site: http://LisaAngelettie.com

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August 27, 2009

Advanced Article Marketing: How To Use Articles To Retain Coaching Clients

There was always one thing I truly looked forward to when starting a new coaching relationship or coaching program, and that was when I received my new coaching "welcome package" either digitally or through the mail. I just love welcome packages! Well, some of them…

In the past I have worked with really great coaches, who have truly been a major factor in why I am online and working in my dream business. And truth be told, the "welcome package" I received when first signing on with each of them weighed heavily on my "first impression" of coaching with them. This is why…

1. Good welcome packages leave a lasting impression of professionalism.

2. Informative welcome packages reinforce the fact that you are knowledgeable and indeed a leading authority on your topic.

3. Useful welcome packages wet the client's appetite for the coaching experience that will follow

4. Interesting welcome packages help reinforce the client's decision to work with you, and will help in client retention. Especially when you include information that can be referred back to during the entire coaching process.

So if you currently offer or are in the middle of constructing a welcome package for your group members, I strongly encourage you to write and repurpose a group of your favorite articles related to the group coaching topic to add more value to your package.

These tips have been created specifically for a group coaching client welcome package, but you could absolutely tweak them in order to apply to individual clients as well…

1. Write a new "welcome" article which will be your general "welcome letter". I call this welcome letter an article because it should not just say "hello", but it should give your new coaching members general information and bullet points on the issues that your group coaching program will cover. It's basically a reminder of the "benefits" that each client will receive for signing up for your coaching group.

2. Create a "checklist" article. This screams that you are organized and that your program is well thought out. This checklist can cover general points that the group coaching program will cover, or it can be a list of reading materials, resources, websites, etc. that will work in tandem with your program.

3. Repurpose your favorite 3-5 articles and create a "special report" for your new coaching clients on your topic. This special report or guide will add more perceived value to your course. In fact, if the report addresses a "hot button" of your clients then you could use it in your promotion materials as a "bonus" for joining your coaching program.

4. If you teach your coaching program in modules or sections, you could write an information and resource article to go along with each module. (This is partly how my article marketing training program Articology was born:) Clients will love this, and again this is another measure to add value and to retain clients.

Remember you can never add too much value to your coaching program. Keep writing articles, bunch them into reports or guides, add them to your welcome package or course materials and watch your group coaching numbers soar!

*Have any other ideas? Please share them with the group…

Lisa Angelettie

Lisa Angelettie - Article Marketing Expert

Lisa Angelettie is an article marketing evangelist and entrepreneurial writing coach! She's been using articles since 2003 to position herself as the #1 expert and triple her traffic in the competitive field of advice and counseling. Ready to get more article marketing tips like this? Then I would like to invite you to get her complimentary copy of the article marketing success kit. You'll learn how to write, publish, promote and profit from your articles while easily positioning yourself as an authority in your niche!

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