When I graduated from Institute for Integrative Nutrition in 2005, I was satisifed with my training and the business model, but I lacked the guidance and structure needed to be successful. At the time, health coaching was virtually unknown and with few peers in my circle other than the health coaches I graduated with, or even other business owners (this was long before social media, influencers, webinars, etc), I felt lost and confused.
Fifteen years later, with lots of hard lessons learned, I’m on a mission to support health coaches in building successful businesses on their own terms. However, I’m not a health coach turned business or marketing coach. While I’m happy for the health coaches who found better success making the switch, I am still actively health coaching (with some additional modalities). I just want to help new health coaches avoid the mistakes, frustration, and pain I suffered through as I was trying to figure it all out.
I started health coaching in the time before social media, so a lot of my business growth methods are based on good old-fashioned in-person outreach, networking, and marketing. This is what I encourage new health coaches to do, because it actually helps them build their social media presence.
Building a business is a long game, one that requires clarity, commitment, and consistency.
I’m not just talking about having a niche, something I don’t agree that you need just starting out anyway, but being clear about your desires, strengths, weaknesses, and gifts and how you want to show up in the world. This involves filtering out any noise that will distract you from realizing your purpose, including well-meaning family, friends, and detractors.
The biggest problem I see with new health coaches is that they don’t give building the business enough time, whether it’s testing out a marketing strategy or doing whatever it takes to grow their business. If you’re not committed to growing your business, how can you expect prospective clients to commit to health coaching with you?
A lot of new coaches are inconsistent in their efforts. I’ve been guilty of this, too. There’s an unrealistic expectation that you can just share your offer one time, or maybe 10, and the leads and clients will start pouring in. In a week or two. Or maybe even a month. It doesn’t work like that.
Building a thriving health coaching practice requires ongoing personal and professional development.
Health is more than just the absence of disease. You may not be dealing with a health concern at the moment, but it doesn’t mean that there isn’t something in your life that could use a little work (or a break, even. Balance is key.). This comes up a lot with health coaches who struggle to sign on new clients or attract clients who end up not being the right fit.
Personal and professional development includes applying the same principles of wellness to your own life as you would encourage your clients. This includes investing in books, coaching, and resources.
Building a thriving health coaching practice doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive.
Too many health coaches think they have to look bright and shiny right out the gate for people to work with them, and that’s just not true! You don’t need an expensive-looking website to start, you don’t need to spend a lot of money on programs or biz tools, and you don’t need to be on every social media platform. You can be successful using just 3-5 strategies that you rotate with consistency.
Building a thriving health coaching practice requires collaboration over competition.
Community is integral to growing a successful business of any kind. In the beginning, it may feel like you have to keep what you’re doing to yourself, and yes, there are some unsavory characters who steal business ideas, and branding from others who’ve worked hard to get to where they are, but that shouldn’t stop you from connecting with others. Relationships are key to your growth as a health coach and business owner.
There’s more where this came from.
Interested in mentoring with me?
I offer a feminine-centered approach to building a health coaching practice (community/relationship building, collaboration, feminine embodiment), which means my community consists primarily of women. Mentoring includes monthly calls and business building using a well known online health and fitness model.