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I attended an ICF business development webinar this morning. The topic was “Attracting More of Your Clients Online.”  There were over 400 professional coaches from more than 68 countries online. The principles emphasized were applicable to any small business owner.

The featured presenter, Steve Mitten, is a business coach and Master Certified Coach.  Steve started with the premise that to attract ideal clients, the key is to be our authentic selves and share our gifts. In other words, don’t market yourself as someone you are not.

He outlined “9 deadly online sins” that are common mistakes coaches make:

  1. Not having a website at all.
  2. Having a website that does not focus on ideal clients.
  3. Having a website that does not represent your authentic self.
  4. Not having a professional website.
  5. Not having proper key words on a website.
  6. Not raising your SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
  7. Not having a first easy step to build potential client relationship.
  8. Not articulating at least three reasons why potential clients should choose you.
  9. Not having your website connected to other social media tools.

He then suggested several steps to prevent these mistakes:

  1. First, set up a website. Once you have content, get some help making the website look professional.
  2. Your web content should focus on common issues experienced by your ideal clients. Potential clients are not looking for coaches, they are looking for solutions to their problems. Find and focus on a niche target market, i.e. the people you can serve the best.
  3. Provide immediate value from the first glance of your website.
  4. Provide an easy way for visitors to sign up for distribution lists and newsletters.
  5. Choose key words to connect to your ideal clients via search tools.
  6. Find out how many competitors you have and how to compete with them. Find out how your page ranks. Read this resource to learn more.
  7. Put key words into Title Tags and Meta Tags.
  8. Add great content on a regular basis and use social media tools to promote your site. A Facebook page is a must have, especially since Google has started to index them. Learn more.
  9. Have a good profile for your social media sites and share good information that builds interest and brings people to your website.
  10. Use Google+, read more here.
  11. Blog if you love to write and can provide good content. Use Tumblr to connect with your followers. Use YouTube to learn more tools.

Attracting your clients will take a while. Great marketing is about using a variety of tools to let others know who you are and increasingly your visibility to reach the broadest number of potential clients possible.

In the next few weeks, I will be posting more of my experiences with online marketing to help you dive into this subject.

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