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A Common Marketing Mistake To Avoid

Author: Carrie Wallis Oct 2018, Updated Jul 2022

marketing mistakes

Something that new business owners often say is that "Marketing is just a way to find people to buy my services or products"


In this article, we will look at the true purpose of marketing and why thinking of it as a way to sell to people is a mistake.

When I first meet new life coaches, counsellors, consultants who are wanting to establish their own private practice I ask what their current marketing strategy consists of. Most will say they place adverts which state their job title and give details of how people can contact them. Maybe they go on to state the type of therapy they work with.

For example, 'Coach and NLP specialist, call xxx xxxx xxxx'

What is wrong with that? The mistake is that potential clients will not understand from such adverts how you can help them. What will they get from working with you?

Let's face it, that is all a potential client cares about, they are not interested in how you will help them. They only want to know that you can help them.

The reason why believing that marketing is 'just a path to sell something to someone, is that people do not like to be sold to.

Let me rephrase that.

People hate being sold to.

Long gone, thank goodness, are the days of traditional selling where you state what your product or service is and how great it is hoping that people will buy. People are pretty savvy these days and can see through a blatant attempt to get them to buy something without showing them what it will do for them, how it will help them.

In this age of remote digital marketing where your potential client may live thousands of miles away it is more important than ever to create a connection with them.

We need to let people know we are human and approachable, and most of all that we genuinely care about how our service can transform their lives. We must show the results people can achieve from working with us.

This is never more important than in the field of life coaching or counselling or consulting where the service is essentially you.

Your ability to create a therapeutic alliance, build rapport and connect with a person is the most significant factor in a successful outcome for your clients.

From the very first contact you make with a potential client you need to demonstrate your compassion, your understanding of what their issue is, and most importantly what they will get from working with you.

You need to have a conversation with your potential clients so that they can get to know you, get to like you, and critically build trust in you.

With online marketing, this 'conversation' is conducted over the internet where your audience may live thousands of kilometres away from you. This means you need to use strategies that let someone see you and get an idea of what it might be like to work with you.

The stronger connection you can build with your audience, the more likely they will be to turn to you when they find themselves in a situation where they need support in their life. They will reach out to you and not some random name listed in a directory about whom they know nothing.

There are specific strategies you can use to do this online. One of the most powerful is to use video. Check out my free guide that shows you the 7 steps to using video to grow your business, click here to download.

About The Author

Carrie Wallis, Author and founder of the "From Strangers 2 Clients to Champions" client attraction system for helping professionals, has been successfully running her own business and finding clients in the online space since 2000. Over the years she has supported countless Life Coaches and Counsellors to build their own practice and find clients and loves nothing more than seeing her clients enjoy the time freedom that comes from having an automated marketing funnel in place. When she is not serving her clients she can be found chilling with her beloved family or out walking in the Australian bush.