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#73: Coaching Hive Blueprint: Help My Message is Confusing!

Coaching Hive
Coaching Hive
#73: Coaching Hive Blueprint: Help My Message is Confusing!
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Podcast Intro

Welcome back to a new episode of the Coaching Hive Podcast. I don’t know about you, but I’m kind of excited for today’s conversation on marketing and messaging.  Marketing and messaging is something that is one of those unknown surprises. When you’re an entrepreneur, I think you’re excited to build your business and know, and you know that you have something really great to offer, but then you realize pretty quickly that people don’t just come knocking on your door. 

That’s when this unknown surprise kind of pops up and you realize just how important it is to get your message out there and say it in a way that resonates with your ideal client. And it’s not always easy to do this. Sometimes what resonates with you. It doesn’t necessarily resonate with everyone else.  Maybe you complicate things. Maybe you don’t offer enough detail finding that magic sweet spot takes time and it takes expertise and it takes energy. It’s not always easy to figure it out. 

One of the things that I have come to realize as an entrepreneur is that you shouldn’t have to do it alone. Marketing and messaging is very much an expertise. And when you build your business, if marketing and messaging is not what you’re building your business around, chances are, it’s not your zone of genius. It’s not your area of expertise and you might find that it is a really good use of money to invest in someone who is an expert, but maybe you’re not at that point. 

Today what I’d like to do is talk you through some things that you can do.  Things that you can work on in terms of your marketing and messaging so that you are continuing to move forward and not just getting stalled here in this stage of your business.

If you are ready to get started, grab that notebook, grab your tablet, whatever you’re using to take notes on today, grab your cup of water or a snack, whatever you need to stay focused.  And if you’re ready with our theme of simplicity, clarity, and vision for 2022 in mind, let’s jump in.

Sharing your Business with Potential Clients

So far in this podcast series on our Coaching Hive Blueprint we have been talking about the things that you need. You need that vision. You need the one liner.  You need a daily rhythm. You need to know what products and services you’re going to offer. We’ve talked about all those things. We’ve talked about building relationships, but if we don’t talk about the elephant in the room, marketing and messaging, none of that stuff will matter, right? 

We have to actually have a way to get our ideas out there, our business out there.  As an entrepreneur, if you’re not getting your business out there, you’re not going to be in business. So how do we get to the point where your marketing, your messaging is doing the hard lifting for you? Well, having a clear message outlined actually helps you to generate the emails, the calls that you’re hosting, your social media posts, even your lead generators. 

It’s when you have this clear message that each piece of content that you put out is simplified. It’s easier. And people start seeing it. They start knowing what it is that you offer. And they say, yes, sign me up. And you might be thinking to yourself, I kind of have all of this figured out and I know who I work with. I know what they need. I know what they want. I kind of have a consistent way of talking about it, but really it’s kind of in my head right now. I don’t actually have a written down, but even though I have all of this, it doesn’t seem like it’s helping.  

The key question is whether or not you actually have it written down.  If the answer is no, then you are trying to build your business inside your brain. And that’s a great place to start. We have to spend time sitting in that silence and really figuring out what we want. But then there comes a time that we have to organize it in a way that it can be written down  if for no other reason, then at some point, your business is going to grow. You are going to hire people to work with you, whether that’s a virtual assistant, whether that is a partner, someone else, you need to have it all written down because they can’t live inside your brain and get all of that marketing and messaging detail out.

So we’ve got to write it down.  By writing it down, it just is simpler. Have you ever  tried to get something done? Imagine you have a really long to-do list in your head and it just feels overwhelming and so you decide to go do something else instead. We’ve all done that.  We have all felt overwhelmed and avoided the big task at hand when we’ve got everything just muddled in our brain.

But the moment that you put all of those things in your brain down on your favorite sticky note, it seems more doable because now you have a list and you can check it off. Or maybe it’s your notes app on your phone. You can check it off and say, okay, I’ve done this. One’s done. Your messaging is the same way.

We’ve got to get it written down to just clarify it. Once you have the pieces of your messaging clarified, written down in a simple way, everything follows. You can create a sales funnel that potential clients move through. For instance, maybe they have downloaded your latest lead generator, or maybe it’s a quiz. Maybe it’s a PDF. Maybe it is a video series that you’re giving them.  

Then they book a discovery call. Now you know what to say on that call.  Then they get a proposal and your proposal is in line with everything in your message so it makes sense to them. It mimics the call. They know exactly what to expect. And then finally they start working with you. But maybe your sales funnel is simpler.  Perhaps they book a call and then they start working with me. That’s still a funnel. It’s still a process for onboarding your clients or selling your services or your products. There’s still a process.

Examples:

  • If you have a brick and mortar store, there still is a process for getting someone to walk in the door, then to take in what you have in the store and actually walk it up to the cash register and purchase.  There is still a funnel involved. You have to get people to the door. So there’s advertising. There is a lead generator that they can download. 
  • Maybe you have a home design store. They can download your top tips for home design. Then they come into your store. They see that being played out. All of those tips you have there in your store set the way you have things set up, grouped, color schemes, whatever it is. 
  • If you are a coach, people want to know who you are, how you work before they sign up with you. Having coaching, regardless of what kind of coaching is vulnerable, because that person is saying, I’m not sure about how to go forward. I need your help. So you have to allow them that time to orient themselves to what you do.  

A good strong message is going to tell the same story no matter where they see it. And it’s going to give that potential client, that potential customer insight into who you are.  Having a messaging playbook serves as the foundation for everything that you do. 

If you’re a sponsor at an event, if you’re a guest speaker or keynote speaker, maybe you’re a podcast guest, or perhaps you have the opportunity to put something in a raffle for your favorite charity. You will know exactly what to say, how to say it. And you will be able to make sure that what you’re presenting is in alignment with your company. When someone sees this alignment, they start to trust you. They see you saying the same thing.  You’re consistent.  You’re knowledgeable about who you are and what you do. And they think to themselves, this person can help me. 

All of your marketing is going to begin with your message. What are you saying? How are you saying it? Where and why are you saying it? We want to invite the client into a story. 
Think about the last time you sat down to watch a Netflix show.  Our child has read the book series, the book series, the Mysterious Benedict Society and so my husband and I noticed that we could find that series turned into a TV show on Disney plus. We started watching it and the first episode ended and it pulled us in. We hit go on the next one because we wanted to know what happened next.  We haven’t read the series of books. So our kiddo, we’re telling him where we are in the story. He’s like, oh yeah, I know what’s coming next. But we didn’t. We watched the next episode. And it felt really sad when we had to say, wait, that last episode’s even longer, we don’t have quite enough time right now to watch it.  We had to do something else.  But that’s the power of a story. It hooks you, it pulls you in, it gets you excited to know more. That’s what good messaging does.  it gets your client, your potential client, really excited.

Action Item

This week, your action item will be focused on nailing down your message using the work that you did on identifying your products and services and your one-liner earlier in this podcast series. Here are some questions that I’d like you to think about and I’m going to give you a resource to use as well. Start thinking about the following pieces of your messaging puzzle. 

  1. First up, who does your client want to be? What does your transformation offer? And then what do they want? 
  2. What do they want?  And then what do they need? These are going to be two different things, probably because your client is going to come to you for what they want and you know what they need. So you’re going to start with what they want and it kind of segues into what they need. You can wrap the needs into what it is they actually want, because they’re going to buy what they want, not necessarily what they need. They may not even know what they need, but they know what they want. 
  3. Then start thinking about what problems they face.  What external problems are they going through? What internal problems. So that internal is, how do they feel? Are they thinking as a result of that external problem? For instance, when I work with health coaches, there are so many free resources out there that it can be overwhelming. The external problem is the overabundance of free resources to build your business. The internal problem is that it makes you feel overwhelmed and scattered and even kind of frustrated and a little bit worried about how you’re going to get through it all and find the right information and put it together.  So external what’s actually happening. There’s a ton of free resources out there and it makes you feel frustrated, overwhelmed, worried. You’re thinking that maybe you can’t make this work. It seems awfully complicated. Okay. So we want to understand what they’re facing externally and internally. 
  4. And then what authority do you have to help them? What authority do you have to help them? For instance, when I work with someone on their messaging, I am a StoryBrand Certified Guide. I have been through that training. I have an entire community of guides that work with me to help clarify messaging. I have been a mentor for 15 years. I have the authority to mentor. So think about what authority you have in your space. 
  5. What is your plan for them to work with you?  I would keep this to about three steps. What do they need to do? What steps do they need to follow in order to work with you? What steps do they need to take? 
  6. What happens if they do nothing to solve their problem? And what happens if they work with you and things change? What does their life look like now? And the key is to be very specific throughout all of this.

This is part of, not all of, the StoryBrand framework by Donald Miller. And it is truly a game changer for clarifying your message. Even if you feel like, yeah, I have those ideas in my mind, I’ve worked with clients who have said the same thing, but once you get it down on paper, it is so much clearer.

I know I went through that myself.  Being able to write it down and use specific words really helped me move forward in my own businesses. And I’ve seen it happen with others as well. Like I said, I am a certified guide, so I can help you work through this to simplify and speed up the process. But there are also resources out there to help you figure out the StoryBrand framework.  One of them you can probably even get from your local library, go check out Donald Miller’s book called Building a StoryBrand. This is fantastic for getting started on working toward figuring out what your message is.  From here, when you have these questions answered, what you do is you use all of this information to develop your marketing strategy and a sales funnel that leads clients into your company and services.

And having them say, I want this, or having them select out, maybe they realize because your messaging is so clear, this is not actually for me. And that’s a good thing. We want to attract the clients who are going to benefit from our services and products and repel, the clients who are not a good fit. So marketing and messaging actually serves those two purposes.  It attracts the right clients and repels the clients who are not going to benefit from your services, but creating this message that is cohesive. It has fidelity so that no matter where they see you talking about your business, it’s all the same. 

It’s not an overnight process. In fact, I spent I’m, I’m embarrassed to admit this, but it’s pretty common, I spent a year trying to figure out my messaging on my own. I thought, oh, just one more PDF, download one more thing, one more thing, and I’ll get it. I’ll have it. I’ve got it in my head. I’ll figure it out. But it was tough. And to be quite honest, it wasn’t until I asked for help, that that burden was lightened.  Depending on how much time you have, where your expertise lies, and how deep down that rabbit hole you want to disappear in search of messaging and marketing that works for you, you have options. 

If you have all the time in the world, go dig in, figure it out, experiment, try things. If you are on a tighter timeline, you really need to get your business going. This is a worthy investment. Having someone help you with marketing and messaging feels scary sometimes to invest in that because we know that marketing and messaging is an iterative process, but what would happen if you had that foundation built faster? Would the rest of your business go faster? Of course. 

So think about what you need, what you want, how they kind of mesh together, what your timeline looks like. And this is one of those spots in the business where having outside help often is a game changer for business owners. Because most of us don’t go into entrepreneurship as marketing and messaging experts. Because remember at the beginning of the podcast, I said, you shouldn’t have to do it alone.

You shouldn’t have to be a marketing expert to run your business. It’s wrong to expect you to spend so much time outside your zone of genius, trying to muddle through when there are experts out there who can get you back to working with your clients faster, there is not a wrong or right answer here as to what path you choose has to be the right path for you right now.

But I will say that if you’re interested in simplifying and getting your message nailed down, now, I’d like to invite you to DM me the word “message” or head over to www.coachinghive.com and click the “apply now” button.  We can set up a time to talk and figure out what the right answer is for you. So even if you’re not sure if you’re ready to invest in marketing and messaging, I’m happy to sit down and help you think through what might be right for you. That answer may shift over time. In fact, it probably will just like everything else in your business, right? It’s an iterative process. 

I hope today was helpful in starting to think about the fact that you need to get out of your head and really dig into your marketing and messaging.  You want to make sure that everything you’re saying is clear and it’s simple for your potential clients as we wrap up today. I want to thank you so much for being here. If you got something out of today’s episode or any other episode you’ve listened to, I would really appreciate it if you would rate the podcast and leave me a review, this helps us to reach more people. It also helps me to know how to clarify our podcasts moving forward. What do you want to hear about what’s most helpful? And I can do more of that. I also like really reading the reviews. So one other simple thing to do is if you’d like to see more of the Coaching Hive podcast, do you want to get the word out, go ahead and screenshot this podcast where you’re listening to it on your favorite podcast provider and post it to your Instagram stories or your Facebook stories. Tag me www.instagram.com/coachinghive on Instagram or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/coachinghivelife. I’ll be sure to comment and get back to you. If you have any questions, please, always let me know. I am here for you.

That’s all for now. I look forward to seeing you back here next week. For another episode of the Coaching Hive podcast, where a focus on mentoring and community removes the overwhelm of building your successful and profitable business and adds in a dose of momentum.

Until next time, have a healthy, safe, and happy week!

~ Dr. Moira Hanna

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Using StoryBrand

At the Coaching Hive, we believe your marketing efforts are only as good as the story you’re telling. That’s why Dr. Moira Hanna is a StoryBrand Certified Guide.