Coaches: It’s Time to Button Up Your Branding

Coaches: Get your brand elevator pitch right

In my brand consulting practice at BrandTwist I’ve been fortunate to work with a variety of coaches as clients: Life Coaches, Business Coaches, Distance Learning Coaches and even Art Therapy and Nutritional Coaches.

[sc:optinbox]Although they represent many different areas of expertise, as a group I find coaches to be incredibly passionate and giving. As much as I’ve taught them about branding – I’ve also learned so much from them about the subjects they so passionately coach.

Here’s another thing they have in common: They need some serious um… coaching… when it comes to branding.

Tell Your Elevator Pitch in Two Flights not Twenty

The most common issue I’ve observed among this group is that as giving people, they tend to want to give too much information about themselves, their backgrounds and their brand benefits.

Their brand elevator pitch – which should take up 2 flights and 2 minutes – tends to take about twenty flights and often up to twenty minutes. No matter how fascinating your business is, this is way too long to explain to prospective customers what you do.

So here are some Brand Coaching tips for telling people about your brand and business in a succinct way that leaves them wanting more… Not rolling their eyes and heading for the door.

These are specifically geared to coaches, since so much of what they are offering comes from their personal expertise (vs. a more tangible product like a soft drink or an airline flight), but I think they are relevant for any good Brand Story teller.

Eight Branding Tips for Coaches

1. Pay attention to your audience, what motivates them? Your pitch can and should vary somewhat by audience, know what the ask is. Do you want an introduction to someone else, a purchase, an investment, coverage on a blog? Know this up front and make sure you ask for what you want by the close.

2. Talk about what your brand enables people to do – not just what you offer – an emotional promise fulfilled will create a loyal user.

3. Add something personal and memorable to your story – perhaps something visual – the best stories give specific details we can connect with.

4. Think about your story in terms of a headline and three supporting points – more than three is hard for your audience to remember.

5. Try out different versions on different people – see which ones get the lean forward effect, and which ones elicit a yawn or maybe a distracted eye roll.

6. Keep honing and editing – a story is never actually finished. New events happen that are significant and should be incorporated. Also updating stories keeps them fresh and interesting.

7. Have a short version, but be ready to follow up with more – think about your elevator ride for your elevator pitch. Make sure you have the two-floor version but also be prepared for the twenty-floor ride to the penthouse

8. Notice stories that move you and why. This could be movies, things you read in the newspaper… Think about what elements of that story caught your attention and is there a parallel element that could help you tell your own brand story? I don’t mean copying the content, but maybe borrowing the technique.

Learn more at Brand School.

A serious commitment to branding is a smart investment for small and midsize businesses that want a deeper understanding of customers’ needs. The ability to exceed expectations and communicate ideas with crystal clarity can exert an almost gravitational pull on customers, which translates to easier customer acquisition and increased customer loyalty.

You can learn everything you need to know about branding and how to apply it to your business, with Brand School, the premier program for business owners and entrepreneurs who want to grow their brand. Brand School combines hands-on exercises, exclusive online videos, and access to a community of fellow brand-building entrepreneurs.

“Brand School allowed me to get to the essence of my  brand. I was able to hone and tighten up my brand. Thank you, Julie, it’s a great program.” – Jonathan Flaks, President, Jonathan Flaks Coaching Associates

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