Avoid These Two Mistakes With Coaching Inquiries

If you rely on coaching for your income, I’m assuming you are doing some type of marketing and social media to generate leads.

To get people to show some interest and raise their hand for some more information.

And often, these opportunities are wasted.

Here are a couple of problems I see with coaches and the leads/inquiries they get:

  • They assume that just because someone contacted them, the inquirer is ready to sign up immediately.
  • Not assuming that someone might be ready to work with you right now.

Huh? Did I just contradict myself?

Kind of, but not really. Here are two important points to address both of those issues.

1. Handle Inquiries With Critical Urgency.

You should approach every inquiry with a sense of urgency. Because, there are “hyperactive buyers” who are ready to move instantly. As in they wanted to get healthy and lose weight yesterday.

Perhaps there was just a major trigger event in their life that necessitates they do something. Now. Health scares will do this to people.

In general, I’m often in hyper-buying mode. If I want something badly enough I will usually make a snap decision based on who can give me the satisfaction now, not tomorrow, or even another call from now. If you snooze you could lose out with these prospects.

Tweet this one out:

Treat an inquiry like a burning match. When the flame goes out, the fire is gone. Take action on them now! @ArtSobczak

With every minute that goes by after someone raises their hand to show interest, that interest wanes exponentially.

2.Always Be in Discovery Mode.

You want to treat every lead and inquiry with an attitude that you will help them at some point, and the sooner the better.

But–a huge but– (stop snickering) it will be on their schedule, not yours.

I’ve seen coaches who have fast-forwarded to a pitch for their programs and attempted close on an initial conversation, but the prospect was not ready, and the coach then discarded the prospect.

Some prospective clients are just in the early stages of interest and information-gathering and will sign up eventually. They are not putting you off. The timing is just not right, and that won’t change regardless of any sales technique you might use.

Others are more analytical and methodical in their decision making. They aren’t stalling. They are just going through their own personal decision making process.

With these types you need to question more.

As a personal example, some of you know that one of my passions is cooking, and I’ve won competitive barbecue championships. I’ve beaten some of the guys you see on TV. I previously had a nice outdoor setup that was way above average by most standards, but my desire was to blow that up and build an over-the-top outdoor kitchen and bar with all the bells and whistles. Some guys obsess over boats or motorcycles … I lust for smokers and side burners.

Despite what I said about being a hyper buyer, when I was in the early stages of planning this kitchen I did go into full-blown info-gathering with all of the various components I would be getting. (I was like a kid in a candy store).

I stopped at one of my favorite outdoor kitchen/barbecue stores and was studying their highest-end grills and toys.

The associate, whom I had come to know, did a nice job of asking me what I wanted to do, and when. He also found out the “why,” my motivation for buying. (It wasn’t because I needed something new–far from it– it’s because I wanted it, which is a key piece of information when selling high-end products and coaching services.)

He loaded me up with literature to study and drool over, and got my agreement that when I was further along I would come back to discuss my more specific plans.

He knew I was a serious buyer, but also that I wasn’t going to purchase that day. Trying some goofy close or “objection rebuttal” would have alienated me. (And probably been the basis for a different article.)

He did plant seeds for what I likely would—and did–buy, and got commitment. Perfect.

So, how can you manage the process to get your prospective clients to go from “considering” to “signing now” and have them do it with you?

Ask simple questions similar to these:

“Why are you looking at doing something about your eating?”

“What prompted you to call/fill out the web form?”

“What caught your eye in the blog post?”

“When you say you ideally are looking for a way to be accountable, what do you mean?”

“Is this something you have decided you are going to do for sure?”

“When are you going to move forward?”

After identifying more needs and desires, and discussing how you can meet those, the next question is a form of getting commitment today.

“Normally when I hear that, the person has already decided they are going to do it. Is that right?”

Follow these two tips with inquiries and you’ll close more of them, now and later.




Will you please share with other coaches? Thanks!
Art Sobczak

For over 30 years Art has helped sales pros say the right things to get more appointments, clients, and sales in virtually all industries. He's speaker, trainer, coach, and best-selling author, and now working to help health, wellness, and fitness coaches and trainers help more people. Contact him at Art@HealthCoach.Training or (480)699-0958.

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