How to Brand Your Coaching Business

What you call yourself or your business is your “brand.”

Deciding what to call yourself is easy if you specialize and/or have a niche, which you should.

Being a “Life Coach” or a “Relationship Coach” is too broad for effective marketing, no matter what other fancy words you use for it, such as “Life Strategist” and “Relationship Hero.”

If you’re a coach who specializes in helping people successfully transition out of the workforce you could be a “Retirement Coach” or similar language if you’re seeking a label, but your brand should be even more specific and resonate strongly with your target audience (your niche).

The most common question I get from new and aspiring coaches who realize they need a niche is “How do I choose a niche?” Here’s 11 strategies for choosing your niche.

Here’s my favorite (true) story about the power of choosing a niche and branding it effectively:

Once upon a time (in 2011) I stumbled upon a newspaper article about a Life Coach who specialized in stress management and chose her niche to be stressed out professional women in Silicon Valley. She called her business “Managing Stress in San Jose.” She was doing OK connecting with her niche as women are very open to getting support, but her business was struggling as they weren’t hiring her for Stress Management Coaching.

My own speculation about why she struggled is that these busy women probably didn’t believe it was even possible to do any better managing their stressful lives juggling their roles as wives, mothers, employees, community and business leaders, etc. They enjoy supporting each other, but believed stress is part of the package and didn’t feel the need to make their lives even busier by hiring someone to help them manage it better.

One day our intrepid Life Coach, after listening to the needs of her niche, decided to put together and deliver a presentation/seminar called “How to Be Unstoppable” and it was standing room only. She was floored, amazed at the turnout, and she was aware that she clearly hit upon something big for her niche. Afterwards she decided to re-brand her Life Coaching business “Unstoppable Women of Silicon Valley” and her business has been booming successfully ever since.

Here’s the newspaper article that got my attention.

Here’s her Facebook page

And THAT, my friends, is a true story that clearly illustrates the power and potential as a Life Coach when you specialize and effectively choose your niche and a brand that strongly resonates with them.

So how do you create such an effective brand? In my experience, simply by listening closely to the people in your niche. The Life Coach above probably heard one of her peeps say “I want to be unstoppable.” inspiring her to put together that fateful seminar. Allowing your clients needs to guide you is the best way to build your business, write your book, develop your coaching program, etc.

I call this strategy “Market Research,” which is simply asking your target audience about their wants, needs and challenges, then using their feedback to design and deliver what they need and said they want. You’ll find my 5 Steps for Conducting Effective Market Research here.