The benefit of hindsight is a wonderful thing.

Jo Lott shares five things she would do differently if she were starting her business from scratch.

She emphasises the importance of niching down from the beginning and having a clear focus and target audience.

Jo also discusses the value of investing in personal development and business education, as well as the benefits of building an email list for your coaching business.

She highlights the power of email marketing and the importance of creating a compelling lead magnet. Additionally, she addresses the challenge of coaches being resistant to certain activities like social media.

The importance of niching down [00:01:14]

Jo discusses the importance of niching down in the coaching industry and shares examples of successful coaches who started with a tight niche.

Investing in personal development and business education [00:04:42]

Jo talks about the value of investing in personal development and business education, highlighting the limitations of trying to piece together information from free webinars and challenges.

Building a system for content creation [00:07:53]

Jo shares her experience of creating a system for content creation, focusing on one core piece of content (her podcast) and repurposing it into blog posts and social media content.

The importance of an email list [00:11:07]

Explains the benefits of having an email list and how it can lead to better response rates for offers.

Creating an effective sales funnel [00:12:10]

Discusses the return on investment of email marketing compared to social media and offers guidance on creating a successful sales funnel.

Overcoming obstacles and setting goals [00:13:19]

Addresses the mindset of setting big goals but having a list of things one doesn’t want to do, and suggests reframing those limitations into positive actions.

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Useful Links

Download the 12 ways to get clients now

Learn about The Business of Coaching programme

Connect with Jo on LinkedIn

Joanna Lott’s website

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Hello and welcome to Women in the Coaching Arena podcast. I'm so glad you are here. I'm Jo Lott, a business mentor and ICF accredited coach

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and I help coaches to build brilliant businesses. I know that when you prepare to enter the arena, there is fear, self doubt, comparison, anxiety, uncertainty, shame. You can tend to armor up and protect yourself from vulnerability. In this podcast, I'll be sharing honest, not hype, practical and emotional tools to support you to make the difference that you are here for.

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Dare greatly. You belong in this arena.

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Welcome to the 25th episode of women in the coaching arena. I'm so glad you're here. Today, I'm going to be talking about five things I'd do differently if I was starting my business from scratch. And this has kind of come about because I've had quite a long time off work. I basically work UK term time only. So I have six weeks off in the summer, which is heavenly and it just gives so much more space for reflection when you're not doing your day-to-day tasks. So I wanted to utilize that and share my learnings with you because I can think so much more clearly once I've had this space. It's important for me, especially to share with women that there is another option other than getting a low paid admin job or a job in a school, for terms time only school hours work. And I certainly didn't know that when I had to leave my HR job, because I couldn't get to and from London anymore to pick up my children. So I took a very low paid job in a coach training organization. Blessing right there. So this episode means a lot to me because I want to show you that there is another way and that you can earn money doing work that you love. So I hope this episode helps you make it a far easier ride. The first thing I would do differently, and I'm really sorry for saying this. You're probably sick to death of hearing me say it, but I would niche down right from the very beginning. I did what nearly all coaches do and was eager to help everyone and thought I am not going to niche. And I just Googled continuously finding examples of people who had succeeded without niching. And to be honest, there are very few out there. If you are looking at say the Tony Robbins of the world, he will have started with a really tight niche and then grow now as he expanded. So, yeah, I think it's easy to look at people and think, oh, they're not really niched. And realize that they probably were, and as they grew, they ended up being able to have the resources to serve more people because he will have a massive team that can do marketing and he can pay for adverts. So don't compare yourself and look for those examples of the very few people that have succeeded without niching, because they will have niched in the beginning. If you think of the 80- 20 rule you'll know that the top 20% of coaches bring in nearly all of the income from coaching. So who are these amazing 20%? I know from my program, but it's the ones that I am able to say, oh yeah, Chloe, she helps entrepreneurs stop drinking. Or Sonali, she works with organizations to improve their employee culture. If I can say it in a really quick, easy way within no more than eight words or so. I know that they've nailed their niche and everyone will be clear on what they do. If I'm at all unclear and can't articulate it really quickly, it usually means it's just not clear enough. And if I can't articulate it and I really do know what they do because I'm looking at their work and I'm giving them feedback. But if I can't articulate that off the top of my tongue, then no one else will be able to articulate what you do either. And that will make it really, really difficult to grow your business. So, how can you fully step into being an expert in your space and becoming one of those 20% who are bringing in the majority of work from coaching. Next up, I would invest in my own personal development and business education, right from the start. Like many coaches. I did thousands. No. That's an exaggeration. I did hundreds. That's not an exaggeration of free webinars, free challenges. All of the things. I looked at sales pages, I tried to figure out. Okay. If I can know my niche and the next thing they do is create a program. If I can do that, next thing they do is market it. Maybe I can just piece this all together by myself. But you really can't. And that is because you can't see your own blind spots. My idea of a niche was helping people to fulfill their potential. And when I nailed it down to. Helping mums fulfill their potential. Once I've been to webinars thinking, okay, I'm going to. nail this niche thing, then I thought I was there, but the guy that was helping me at the time do my website kept trying to tell me that this wasn't clear enough, but I was just thinking you don't know what you're talking about. I want to help people realize their potential. That's perfectly clear. Now I know, sadly, it's just not clear. People don't pay to realize their potential. They pay for a very specific thing that they want and that they can articulate to others around them. You're not going to say to your husband, I'm thinking of spending all this money to realize my potential and your partners say, oh yeah, that sounds like a really good idea. You're going to have to be more specific, which is why specific really does sell because you can explain it to other people. I was also not accounting for the support and accountability to actually do something with the knowledge I was learning. I have just started working with a new person that's helping me to refine my automated funnel. So if you don't know what a funnel is, it's like the automated emails, lead magnet. How are you mapping out your customer journey? So people build know, like, and trust with you and then are able to make a decision whether they want to work with you. And I have achieved so much in this last week, even though I'm not officially working with regards to my new sales page and loads of tasks. I've put off for a really long time, just because I had a meeting with her not long ago. She put it on a Trello board that this was a task I needed to complete. So miraculously, I have now done that task, that I've been faffing around with, for nine months or so now. So accountability, support, knowing that someone is going to have a quick look over this, check it's all right. Really does help you to excel and fast track your potential. Whereas if you are on your own, you will just avoid that task because it's a bit confusing. You don't really know what you're doing with it. There's no one that really knows if you've done it or not. So it's amazing the progress you can make when you get that accountability in place. And as a coach, you will know that. The third point is I would start publishing not just social media content, but longer form content. And what I've done recently, which has just been an absolute game changer. And I can't believe it's taken me three and a half years at least to get to this point. If I was starting out now, I would get a system in place that focuses on one core piece of content a week. So for me now, that's my podcast. And currently I have a virtual assistant who creates a blog post from that podcast. And then I have a social media person who now creates social media posts from my blog posts. So I finally feel like I have a really solid system in place that is freeing up my time and my head space. And you might not be in a position to have people help you with that yet. So you can still do this on your own. Focus on your one core piece of content and create other things from that bank of content. So rather than starting each day, thinking, what should I talk about today? Which takes up so much more energy than I ever realized, because I did that for a really long time. Try and think about creating core pieces of content that answer the questions of your ideal client. There's a great book that helps with this called content fortress. And it really helped me to see that the majority of people out there are not answering the questions that the people really have in their heads prior to purchasing. So for example, nearly all of us just want to know how much the thing is, and then we can make a decision. Yet it's something like 80% or more coaches don't share their prices on their website. So then someone will just go to someone else. Like I know for sure, I would never get on a discovery call with someone unless I knew how much it was going to cost me. So do read that book. It's really great to help you have that mindset shift, to be able to really demonstrate your trust and authority by answering the questions they want answering. So forth point and I wasn't sure whether to include this one as I know it's tricky if you're just starting out, but hiring a team has really transformed things for me. I feel like I finally have a system in place. And yes, it's scary thinking about the outlay when I receive their invoices and thinking, gosh, you know, I'm not really working this month and I'm still got to pay them to do their thing. But it is really worth it. I am now three and a half years into business. So it has taken a long time so don't feel like you need to go out and spend all this money. But if you are at that place where you are getting busy. You're just not getting on with sales generating tasks because you're at your backend of your website. Or you're just doing things really ineffectively as you have no idea how to do them. Think about going on somewhere like Fiverr or finding someone you can trust to do some tasks for you. And the fifth point that I've chosen is building my email list, which is actually something I did right from the start. I found it so hard because it's just so complex this whole lead magnet, funnel, tech piece. And I teach that in my program. Including the tack, because I know that really holds people up. But it really does make a big difference when you feel like you have a proper business with a list of people that have opted in to hearing about your services versus social media, when people are scrolling by, you have got no idea if they're kind of friends, family, if anyone's at all interested. Whereas the best thing about an email list is these people have said, yes, I have the problem you solve. They have signed up for your lead magnet or they have signed up in some way to hear from you. Then when you have an offer it's really powerful to know that you can just put out an email and you're likely to gain some sort of response. And yes, it's not like really speedy when you first start to get people to sign up for your thing. And it's worth kind of playing around with that lead magnet title to ensure it is speaking exactly to what the client wants. I sent my husband and kids away for whole weekend when I started my business to get this funnel thing up and running. So it does take headspace. It does take time. But again, it's really worth it and it's something that I teach in my programme to help people to actually get the thing over the line and up and running, which people, years and years into business often still haven't done. Email marketing has a return on investment of 4030% versus social media, which is 26%. So it really is worth getting this thing going, and if you don't know how to do that, do sign up to the business of coaching where I will take you step by step in exactly how you create an amazing lead magnet, how you create all of the emails, how you do all of the tech and get this thing up and running. I was in a funnel project for nine months or so. I've learned a lot and I managed to condense it into two modules that make it really easy for you to get this thing up and running and get feedback every step of the way. Because tiny tweaks make a massive difference. And that's why I'm working with someone at the moment to make tiny tweaks to my sales funnel that can help people to really get to know who you are. Make sure you're speaking to their exact challenges. Make sure you're showing empathy, all of those things. And she uses the word joyful journey which is a lot nicer because people often don't like the word sales funnel, but it's generally bringing people in at the top. Some of them might be interested in your thing. Some of them might not. And really helping them to get to know you. And eventually percentage of those people will buy from you. Others will just stick around for the free content and that's absolutely fine. And you can do this for corporates as well. I help my clients to come up with a way of doing this for corporates that's kind of suitable for that market. So there's our five steps and I wanted to cover one last thing. That I've noticed a lot recently and I often avoid talking about it, but it's really worth saying that so many people that have a huge goal of earning this much per month coaching, but they have a long list of things that they won't do. I want to have a coaching business, but I don't want to spend a day on social media and I don't want to be visible. And I don't want to do networking and I don't want to tell my friends and family what I do. If you were signing up to a big goal, like running a marathon, which is literally the exact same sort of energy that a coaching business is going to take you. You can't say to say your personal trainer. I want to run this marathon, but I won't get up early and do runs. I don't want to eat healthy. I want to still drink booze every single night. Like it's impossible. If your energy that you're putting in isn't equal to the goal you're creating, then you aren't going to succeed. So, how can you flip those? I won't, or I don't want to do these things into what you do want to do. You don't have to do social media. But instead of focusing all of your energy saying I would never do that. How about saying I'm going to go all in and do public speaking to promote my business. And we're not talking about public speaking once every six months, if this is your core marketing, we're talking about trying to get gigs every single week. So, what can you focus on instead of focusing on the negative of I won't do this. I won't do that. Think about what you will do.

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if you want, what most people haven't got, you're going to have to do what most people won't do.

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And I want to caveat this episode by sharing that

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while I'd love to speed up your progress. Sometimes we need to go on the journey to make mistakes and learn from them. It's those moments where you make these mistakes that you look back on just as I am doing now in this episode. And realize that all along you were just where you were meant to be learning mistakes that you can use to help others along the way.

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So let's summarize today's episode. So the first point was niche down.

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Second was prioritized business development.

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Third was publish long form content to establish authority.

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Fourth was hire a team when you can, and, the fifth point was build an email list. And then I added one cheeky extra one, which was to ensure that the energy you're putting in is equal or more to the energy you're expecting back.

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Thank you so much for listening to this episode of women in the coaching arena. The podcast listeners were up by 67% last week so it's just so wonderful that the podcast is reaching more people who need honest, not hype support to build their coaching business. So, thank you so much for taking your time to review the podcast and for sharing it with your coaching cohorts. I appreciate it. Do come say hi, drop me a message and let me know what you thought of the episode on LinkedIn. I'm Joanna Lott and Instagram it's @joannalottcoaching. Can't wait to hear from you. And as we finalize today's episode, just a reminder to trust yourself, believe in yourself and be the wise Gardner who keeps on watering the seed.

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Thank you so much for listening to this episode of Women in the Coaching Arena.

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I have a mess of free resources on my website

Microphone (Samson Q2U Microphone)-1: That's Joanna with an A and Lott with two T's.

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And I'll also put links in the show notes. Let me know if you found this episode useful. Share it with a friend and leave me a review, and I will personally thank you for that.

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Remember to trust yourself, believe in yourself and be the wise Gardner who keeps on watering the seed. Get into the arena dare, greatly and try.

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