Are You In a Practice Or a Business?

Published by Suzanne Evans   |   November 3, 2011   |   1 Comment

Practice or Business - Multiple Streams of IncomeAs a coach, when you talk about “your practice”, it has a definition and an insinuation of one-on-one coaching. It is important to build coaching businesses that aren’t solely based on one-on-one coaching. Certainly one-on-one coaching is a component – and for some people a very large component – of their coaching business, but you cannot build a successful business when only offering one-on-one coaching.

Here’s the challenge with businesses that are only one-on-one coaching: when you only build a coaching practice, it means that the only money you can earn is when you are present. It means that for every dollar you make, you must spend a certain amount of your own time.

That’s a recipe for serious trouble for a few reasons.

  1. Building a business like this can easily lead to burnout.
  2. You are your business. If you are your business and something unexpected happens – a family emergency or an illness – you lose income if you aren’t present to deliver your service.
  3. The one-on-one model heavily limits your ability to reach and help more people. I really come from a marketing mindset, which is to build a coaching business as apposed to just a practice. A real coaching business has multiple streams of income. It means one-on-one coaching, groups, or you may have an associate coach that’s leading some programs for you. Also, this includes products like books and ezines, audio programs and DVDs. This means programs you lead once live and then you record those to be sold at a later time.

Building a coaching business can also include workshops, seminars, and having all different types of clients from VIP platinum level clients at higher rates to lower level packages. I always use the term “coaching business” as apposed to “practice.” It’s important to make this distinction as you build you business.

When you hear the word marketing, what‘s the first words that pop in your mind? Pushy? Selling? Advertising? Networking?

It’s not at all uncommon that a lot of negative words pop up. That’s because people have associated marketing with sales, pushing or manipulation. I want to share with you my approach to marketing. Hopefully it will be a relief to some of you who are worried that marketing is salesy and pushy or ugly in some way.

I wake up every day and love marketing. I really do. I wake up and think, “What can I sell today?” I love the sales process. I love the sales process because the way I look at it is it‘s a sharing process. I always trade the word sales with the word share.

If I can get up today and share what I know is really helpful, wonderful information – for me that’s marketing information and marketing coaching; for you it might be something completely different, but whatever it is – if you can share your gift today and someone purchases, you can help more people transform their lives. That’s what I was put on this earth to do, so I love the sales process.

I love marketing, because marketing means I reach more people and I make a bigger difference.

My definition of marketing is that marketing is a way to authentically share my experiences and my gifts with those who can use it to shape their lives, empower their work, and shorten their paths to success.

When you come from an authentic place in marketing, it’s so much less work. You don’t have to make anything up. You simply insert yourself into a business. That doesn’t mean you don’t use some very good marketing tools and skills. It doesn’t mean there aren’t strategies and tactics out there to market that work better than others, but the foundation is the authentic approach to marketing.

Developing a healthy marketing mindset is the first step. It is not the tool that makes the most difference – it is how you use the tool that is important. That’s what authentic marketing is – if you approach the business building, marketing and selling processes authentically, you can make all kinds of mistakes and still help more people and achieve great success.

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About the Author: Suzanne Evans owner and founder of Suzanne Evans Coaching, LLC, is the tell-it-like-it-is, no fluff boss of business building. She supports, coaches, and teaches over 30,000 women enrolled in her wealth and business building programs. Having surpassed the seven figure mark herself in just over three years, she’s coached her private clients to total revenues exceeding 8 million dollars. In 2011, she launched her Global Impact Project, a not for profit serving women worldwide in education, entrepreneurship, and equality. More About Suzanne

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  1. Ruby Kamaka

    Nov 15, 2011 at 04:33

    You’re right on, Suzanne, re: substituting the word “share” for sales. The entire feeling one has changes a lot. I enjoy sales but I LOVE sharing even better. Thanks for that insight. It’s changed my perspective.