Episode 3 – Get the best clients buying from you

Get the Best clients buying from you – the second episode in this series of the attracting clients model.

Episode 3

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Show notes

Hello and welcome to episode number 3 of the #1coachbiz podcast.

Something Personal: In our home, I do the laundry most of the time. Washing and hanging it to dry, folding and putting it back in the closets. It often is like a short break between my work.

Today I will talk about choosing your client so they can choose for you, feel their biggest problem and find the right words so they feel addressed.


Let me tell you about the time I first started. Before I quit my job I started blogging back in 2005. I read blogs like problogger.net by Darren Rowse and learned about how he earned a living from blogging, actually from the ads on his blog. Before I went into the office in the morning and in the evening I would build my blog, read posts, find content and then write. My blog was about anything that I was enthusiastic about. I could talk about blogging, home theater, domotics, and marketing for example.

Darren kept saying that a blog needs a focus on a specific topic. The more narrow your topic is you are writing about the better the posts and the ads will address the reader. So I split my blog into two blogs and then even more. A blog on plasma televisions and another one on LCD televisions for example. And it worked, the ads were performing a lot better now and I was making money from my blogs. Not enough to support my family, but I was making money up to € 1000 per month.

Understanding the importance of focus on a topic for a blog I talked to the owner of the company about starting a blog for the business. He was not too happy about this idea. This blogging is just a waste of time was his response. So I suggested I would start blogging on my own time and see where it goes. “Well I can’t stop that, can I?”

So I started blogging about our new production process, about noise protection and more. After a month of blogging, I was asked to guest post on the biggest blog in the Netherlands for deaf people and people with hearing difficulties. Potential clients for one part of our business. A big blog and monthly newsletter on our world. Wow, just after a month after I started this blog. Now I really understood the potential and thought that publishing online is important for a business.

This was the seed for my own business that I needed.

The stupid thing of course that when I started my business full time I did exactly the opposite. No focus on a specific audience or topic. Yes, I wrote about online marketing, blogging and more. But when people asked what I did I said freelance marketing & sales and rambled something about blogging. Not really a clear focus. After a year or so I added freelance marketing and sales for Small & medium businesses, which is about 97% of the businesses in the Netherlands. What was I thinking?

I still don’t know and also why it took me so long to figure this out.

Well, actually I do understand now that I wasn’t thinking. The lizard brain was taking over my thinking when I would think about picking a narrow topic or a specific client.

Now I do understand that this lizard brain is responsible for my loss aversion. I don’t want to lose clients or even potential businesses or markets that I thought about. It is protecting me from losing potential income. Even when I thought about narrowing down my audience, my actions would not show this. I was just too scared.

In the last few years, I have really found my focus and the people that I love to work with. The people that love my help and want to move forward. Coaches. Live coaches that want to make our world a little bit better and need to improve their business so they can do this. I can still focus even more and I will, but now just small steps so I can keep my lizard brain silent. Otherwise, that little voice in my head will keep on talking and convince me that I need to continue working the way I was. The familiar way. The clients and potential clients I know.

Do you recognize that voice in your head that tells you? You can’t choose because you like so many things. You can’t choose because you want to do both things. Or you are not sure that there enough of these clients. Or… you can fill in what you hear that prevents you from choosing for a particular, small group of clients.

The problem here is that the audience you want to address is just too large. This makes it very difficult for you to really get to know your audience. When you for your website or you meet people at networking events you keep it as brought as possible so you will not miss out on a potential client. This is exactly the problem when you really want to attract the person that you want to work with. They do not feel addressed by the words you are using. It is vague. It doesn’t address what they are feeling. There is no urgent reason to work with you. Maybe, someday….

So let’s start with choosing your client so they can say yes to you

And that’s really all that it is. Choosing your client. Not clients. Not the target audience. Not a mix of the best clients. Just one client. Your target client.

I know it sounds scary. I am not asking you to choose a target audience or even smaller, a niche, I am asking you to choose one client. Just one!

I borrowed this process from Sean D’Souza you will find Sean at psychotactics.com. He has great tips on his website.

Choosing this one client doesn’t mean you need to dump all other clients. You don’t have to change your complete business today. Just pick the client that you want to work with.

Choosing a target audience or niche has a big problem. You do this at your desk and write some broad information about this audience on a paper. Female, between 30-45, not happy in their career, two-income household, nice home, etc. All things that specify your ideal client. The client that can afford you. An imaginary client. This target audience lives on your paper and in your head. It is very difficult to really get to know your target audience and I mean really get to know them.

So I just ask you to choose one client from the list of clients that you have now.

Choose. Just one.

Bring out the list of clients you have the last two years and just go through it. Which one is your best client? And I know you like all your clients, you love working with them. But for now just focus on your best client. That one client that really likes you.

You like her.

She pays on time.

She asks critical questions.

She works hard to get results from your coaching.

She talks with others about you.

This is your target client.

This client doesn’t live just on paper. This is a real client.

You can call her and talk to her, ask her questions.

And that is exactly what I want to do. Ask questions. Really learn everything about your favorite client.

With the answers you will get, you will attract lots of people that look like your favorite client. People that you love to work with. And the funny thing is that when you look back you may see that many of these people don’t fit your first description of your target audience, that imaginary audience.

So let’s dive into the problem of your client.

Feel the biggest problem

What is the biggest problem of your target client?

How would you know? Just ask.

Talk to her. Schedule a phone call, Skype or even better a meeting in person.

Ask questions. The right questions. In my Handboek Hyperspecialisatie, you can find these questions. This book is at this moment only available in Dutch. When you are interested in the English version send me a short email.

Of course, you want to know about the biggest problem related to your offering, to your coaching. When you start asking questions and get deeper into their problems you will learn all kind of problems related to your what you do. But you have got to find the biggest problem.

Dig deep.

How do you know it is her biggest problem? She will get emotional or angry about this. You can hear it in her voice.

All other problems are important too for her, but this one problem if you don’t address this and solve it with your solution she will not work with you at least not today. The urgency for the biggest problem is a trigger for working with your right away.

What would it mean for her if his problem was solved?

One more thing, you need to record this interview.

And I mean record the audio not writing it down. Because you want to capture the exact words and sentences that she is using to talk about her biggest problem.

When you write down what she is saying you will already do a translation for her words in your head and will not write down exactly what she said.

So let’s continue with point three the right words.

Find the right words so they feel addressed

This is the easy part when you’ve got the first two steps right.

When you choose the target client, and you really can’t go wrong here, and then find the biggest problem in that interview you have got the words that will make your target client feel addressed.

So when you use these words, her words, and sentences on your site you will attract people that look like your target client. Well not really look alike but he or she has the same problem and uses the same words to talk about it.

So now instead of some vague text on your words that tries to address everyone all of a sudden you have words that touch the right reader. She is touched by your words and feels addressed.

She is also triggered by reading about the problem. Because the problem is the thing that will shake you up a bit and that will alert your lizard brain. Instead of just browsing over yet another text you are touched and awake because you talk about her problem. This problem needs to be fixed.

Writing about the problem on your website is essential. This will make it easy for you to stand out in the search results. Why? Because people search for their problem in the search engines. They don’t know the solution so they search for the problem. When you write about their problem they will find your website.

In episode 4 I will tell you more about the most important site on the web that your client visits.

By Erno Hannink

Sparring and accountability partner for entrepreneurs who create sustainable positive impact. Explores decision-making. Shares his insights on this in, articles, books (Dutch), podcast, newsletters, and tools. Has a life mission to reduce social and ecological inequality. Father of two children, husband of M., runs, referee for the national soccer league, and uses stoicism for calm. Lives in the Netherlands. Speaks Dutch, English, and German.