Welcome, coaches! We’re pleased to have you here on the Sage Coach Marketing blog, where we assist professional coaches with increasing their reach and maximizing their branding potential! Utilizing the premier tools and digital marketing knowledge at our disposal, we formulate strategies to help spread the word about your professional coaching business. From navigating social media platforms to email marketing to metrics–we aim to equip you with everything you could possibly need to understand how your message is being received by your audience. We help life, health, wellness, and business coaches expand their online presence and flourish in the digital sphere. We encourage you to take advantage of our one-hour marketing evaluations, which we offer at no cost to you! You can schedule your initial consultation with our in-house marketing and design team through our website, as well as read up on our content strategies, our SEO services, our social media management and our website design services. 

In our last article, we discussed Pinterest and how it can be a great asset to your brand. Pinterest is a great way to introduce your brand to a new audience and drive more traffic to your website.  With more than 400 million monthly active users, 80% of weekly users have discovered a new brand or product through Pinterest. Many people come to the platform in search of inspiration— This is great news for coaches. If you’re interested in learning more about how Pinterest can help grow your brand, check out our last post!

Today, we’ll be talking about networking and how to do it successfully. Networking refers to creating and maintaining social contacts that can help businesses and entrepreneurs meet their needs. It is a vital part of any business or brand as it helps spread the word about your business and can also help legitimize it. Networking provides benefits such as opportunities to grow, advice from peers, new clientele, growing your personal profile, and more. Building and maintaining relationships can also improve your quality of work. With that being said, networking is only really valuable when done efficiently. If you want to learn some tips and tricks on how to network successfully, you’re in the right place. Let’s jump right in.

Utilize Social Media

Networking via social media might be the most popular form of networking today. Social media allows us to connect with people from all over the world. Use social media to find groups with common professional interests and goals. From there, you may find inspiration in how others are marketing and growing their businesses. You can do this from a personal lens as well– Find groups specific to your hobbies and interests. You never know who you may meet and what they might have to offer, whether it is a business opportunity or great advice. One of the most popular social media platforms for networking is LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a great place to find people with educational and professional backgrounds that are similar to yours. Be sure to add all of the people you have worked with to your LinkedIn network, even if you only worked with them for a short period of time. This not only grows your network but can help LinkedIn suggest users who may be relevant to you. We discussed LinkedIn more in depth in our previous articles– You can find part one and part two here if you are interested in learning more about how the platform can benefit you as a professional coach.

Network Off the Clock

You should always have networking in mind, even when you’re not working. Reserving networking for professional settings can lead to missed opportunities. Think about everyday activities like going to the grocery store or the gym. You are surrounded by strangers of all different backgrounds, so you never really know who you are standing next to. You should keep this in mind for several reasons: First, you are representing your brand all the time, even when you’re not actively working. Secondly, you never know what kind of opportunity may be presented to you. Now, we’re not saying to strike up a conversation with everyone at the grocery store and hand out your business cards at the self checkout. Rather, you should initiate or engage in a conversation if the opportunity arises. This is a great way to make people aware of your brand through word of mouth, help people put a face to a business, and grow your network at the same time. 

Attend Events (And Bring a Business Card!)

Always be on the lookout for upcoming events pertaining to your field of business, your niche, and even your personal interests and hobbies. This is a great way to meet new people and establish connections, especially if you are trying to build your business locally. Try to attend a variety of events and seminars. This will not only allow you to grow your network, but it can also be educational. You may learn something new that you wouldn’t otherwise have had the time for. When attending in-person events, be sure to bring your business cards! This is an extremely important part of networking, and after all, that’s what the cards are for, aren’t they? When you meet someone at an event, giving them your business card will help them remember you later on, and may increase the chances of them contacting you. Even if the person you meet is in a different type of business, they may still have similar goals, or may know someone who could benefit from what your business has to offer. Attending virtual events is great, too– They present a unique opportunity to attend events being held all over the world, that you may not have been able to attend otherwise.

Be Involved Locally

Making connections in different parts of the world is a great way to expand your business outside of your town, city, or state. However, local connections are some of the best to create and maintain. When you connect with other local business owners, they are more likely to spread the word about your business to their own customers. If your business correlates to another, there is the possibility of collaboration– Perhaps a print shop wants to collaborate with other businesses to make t-shirts to support a local charity, or a group hosting a panel on a particular topic wants you to be a guest. There are many possibilities and opportunities, and these opportunities can create lasting friendships within your community.

Ask Questions

It’s important to realize that it is okay to ask questions, ask for advice or help. When you meet someone and establish a connection with them, take the time to learn about their business or brand. Examine their social media platforms and any engagement you can see through comments or likes. What questions come to mind? If they seem to have a good marketing strategy, ask them how they came up with it, and if they have any advice for you. You may consider asking your peers questions about tactics they’ve used and what has worked best for them over the years. You can also ask about their current goals for their business. Asking questions shows that you are interested in their business and you value the relationship you have with them. In most cases, business owners and entrepreneurs welcome conversation and questions, so don’t be afraid to reach out. This is also a great way to find a mentor. If you have connected with someone in the same field as you, see them as successful and find inspiration in them, you may want to consider asking them to be your mentor, especially if you are just starting out. Mentors can provide guidance and emotional support. They may also have unique networking tips to share.

As you can see, networking is important for the overall growth of your brand. Establishing connections with other individuals in your industry and beyond generates awareness for your brand and contributes to your brand’s reputation. Networking provides opportunities for personal growth as well. We hope that you found this article helpful and that you feel ready to get out there and network! At Sage Coach Marketing, we offer professional website design and marketing evaluation services. We can help you understand how your current marketing is performing and develop strategies for renewed growth. If you need assistance managing your social media, understanding your metrics, or anything else related to your professional coaching business–do not hesitate to set up a consultation. We’re eager to assist you! Until next time, thank you for reading!