Career Coaching: Should you hire a marketing coach?

 Career Freedom Coaching

"Should you hire a marketing coach?"



How to hire a marketing coach...or not

When I started my business, I wanted to save time and make more money. A marketing coach, I thought, was the answer.

Here's what I wish someone had told me before I reached for my credit card.

Note: A couple of marketing coaches have told me I'm a little too cynical. However, I've also gotten grateful notes from readers who shared my views, and this article has been reprinted by some business ezines.

1. Hire a coach who knows your product and your market.

Coaching, pet-sitting, organizing, marketing and weight loss services are not marketed the same way. You can't reach high-powered business owners and stay-at-home moms the same way.

Don't accept a canned list of tips, tricks and techniques. What you need is an understanding of your customers and how they buy.

2. Good coaching goes beyond "here's what I did."

A marketing coach uses different strategies from other kinds of coaches, let alone other businesses.

And some marketing coaches don't understand their own success. Some were just lucky! One "book coach" admitted she never looked at her own web statistics. She had no idea where her own business came from.

3. "If it ain't broke, don't fix."

Feeling discouraged by your numbers?
You may be doing better than others who have been in your business a comparable length of time. Get a comparison level before you spend big bucks for help.

4. Just because a lot of people are doing something doesn't mean it's working.

You want to know, "Are they making money from what they're doing?"

5. Calculate expected results in dollars.

"Double your ebook sales" sounds good -- but what if you've only sold one for $20? Sell two and the coach kept his promise!

At t his rate, you'll need a hundred years to recover the coach's fees.

6. Your coach should read and analyze your materials before each meeting -- not during the call.

You need thoughtful insight, not impromptu, top-of-mind ideas.

7. Evaluate coaching by results.

Several people have gotten so excited by an idea we offered a testimonial after two weeks of coaching. Three months later, they wanted to take back our testimonial.

Be especially careful when you do a reference check and you hear, "Great coach! My website looks terrific! Well, I didn't really increase sales -- but I loved my coach."

8. Get an idea of what process the coach suggests.

There's no magic in marketing. Generally you need to network, give talks, identify benefits, and make calls. If you're not willing to do any of these things, you may not benefit from hiring a marketing coach.

"Just write a book."
"Just get on the speaking circuit."
Great advice -- give yourself two to five years to implement.

9. Anyone can get great testimonials from clients. If you can't get a referral from someone you know, pay for a single session.

Try out a few ideas. Allow enough time to see results. Then, and only then, schedule follow-up sessions.

10. You can lose more than the fees you paid.

One marketing consultant said, "I charge $100 to evaluate your website and I guarantee my work. There is no risk!"

Wrong. If you follow bad advice you can lose clients and business for months. One "expert" tells clients not to schedule free sample sessions -- generally a mistake in the career and life coaching business. Follow this advice and you'll turn away business.

And there's the rub. You hire a consultant because you feel clueless -- but blindly following advice can do serious harm. Some of the most successful business owners I know haven't paid a dime for marketing help. They follow their intuition, which is not for sale. They may hire someone to implement their ideas, such as a web designer, but they know their market well and won't let anyone else create their strategy.

Cathy Goodwin, Ph.D.
Author, Career Consultant, Speaker
*Fast Track to Career Freedom* 505-534-4294


Many people because they want to talk about starting a business with someone who's been there. They want to benefit from someone else's knowledge and experience, while they set their own goals as individuals.

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Cathy Goodwin, Ph.D. is an author, career coach, and speaker. She works with mid-career professionals who want to make a fast move to career freedom. Visit her site or call 505-534-4294.
For her free ezine, visit

Cathy Goodwin, Ph.D.
Author, Career Consultant, Speaker
*Fast Track to Career Freedom* 505-534-4294

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