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Should Coaches Offer An Introductory Meeting To Clients Free Of Charge?

Posted 1493 Days Ago in: Ask Bev, Bev James, Tips

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I know first-hand what it's like to train as a coach and set up your own business from scratch. I can still remember how excited I was when I got my first paying client too. You may be an amazing coach with huge potential to make a real difference to every client you see but if people don't know about you this obviously won't happen.

Some coaching businesses fail not because the coaches aren’t good enough but because sometimes coaches aren't effective at generating prospects.

You may be an amazing coach with huge potential to make a real difference to every client you see but if people don’t know about you this obviously won’t happen.

I know first-hand what it’s like to train as a coach and set up your own business from scratch. I can still remember how excited I was when I got my first paying client too.

I often get asked questions from fellow coaches on how to grow a successful coaching business and one of the most asked questions is - 

Should I offer a free introductory meeting to prospective clients or charge from the beginning?


So here is what I used to do when I was setting up my own coaching business. I found it to be the best way to conduct a coaching consultation :

  1. Offer a 15 minute telephone consultation free of charge. Fifteen minutes is easy for people to fit into their day or lunch hours. Free because at this stage you don’t know if they are the right client for you and they don’t know if you are the right coach for them.

  2. If someone phones to book a consultation NEVER offer it on the spot, if you do that it gives the impression that you are not busy. Take their details and arrange to call them back (don’t ask them to call you back). Aim to call them the same day or within 24 hours of the enquiry if possible. Don’t be too cool calling people back – remember “another day older another day colder”.

  3. Don’t make the mistake of offering a “mini coaching” session as part of the consultation, the purpose of the initial consultation is to find out what they would like help with and for you to demonstrate that you are the right coach to get them from where they are not to where they want to be. A few questions to kick off with could be: Have you worked with a coach before? If we were to work together what result would you like to achieve, what have you tried already? If you were to achieve your goal what difference would it make to your life? How has this problem held you back in the past and how might it hold you back in the future if you don’t deal with it?

  4. The purpose of the questions is for you to get a clear understanding of their situation and desired outcome. Listen for limiting beliefs, attitudes and behaviours that could he holding them back.

  5. Having had the initial consultation you will be able to give the caller an expected number of sessions / costs and can confirm if they would prefer telephone or face to face coaching.

  6. Ask how soon they want to get started and see if they have their diary to hand to explore dates.


Using this process 90% of my telephone consultations turned into immediate clients.


I hope this helps you with your future success!

I wish you well

Bev James

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