Do you ever have trouble connecting with people who are a good fit for your coaching?
Do you ever wonder how to help them understand what you do in a way that gets them interested?
And finally - would you like to book a consistent stream of sessions with your ideal clients?
If you answered yes to any of that, then you're going to want to learn how to tell your story the right way.
Why? Because good storytelling is one of the most powerful ways to engage your potential clients and position yourself as the go-to person for the transformation you provide.
In this article I'm going to give you a 4-step blueprint for telling your story in a way that makes the right people interrupt and say "how do I hire you?"
When To Use Storytelling In Your Marketing
A lot of times when you're telling someone what you do they'll ask, "How did you get into that?" This is a perfect opportunity to share your story.
You can also tell your story on your about page, in blog posts, and during your live workshops.
Finally, you can use the framework I'm about to share with you to tell your clients stories as well. This helps you establish even more credibility as you start helping other people get results and turning them into case studies. When you're starting off though, it's often enough just to share your own story.
The reason why storytelling works so well is because it demonstrates both that you understand where your potential clients are now (because you've been there) and that you know how to get them where they want to go (because you've done it yourself)
The best part? It does all this without being pushy. In fact, it pulls the right people closer to you.
The 4-Step Story blueprint
When it comes to crafting your story, it helps to start off knowing your niche - who you want to serve and what you are best equipped to help them with. But if you're not sure yet, you can actually use this blueprint to help you get clear on those things. Just think back to a moment in your life when you decided to make a big transformation.
The four steps of my blueprint are based very loosely on The Hero's Journey, as developed by Joseph Campbell. I've simplified it down to its essence and applied it directly to coaching.
Let's dive in...
Step 1: The Catalyst - This is the point in your story where you finally decide to make a change. It's also the place where most of your ideal clients are at when you meet you. For example, if you watch the video on my about page you'll hear me talk about a moment at my old job when I was moving a number from one excel spreadsheet and I decided that I didn't want to wait years in order to make an impact. That's when I started my coaching business.
Step 2: The Search - At this point in the story you want to talk about all the things you tried on your journey that didn't work so well. The more you specific and vulnerable you can be about your failures, the more your story will resonate with your potential clients. For example, after I decided to start my coaching business I ran personal development workshops and wrote blog posts but I didn't know how to turn all of that stuff into a coaching business.
Step 3: The Breakthrough - Now we want to share what we did that actually made a difference. This can be a counterintuitive discovery, a specific action, or a mentor that came into your life. For me this was enrolling in a program that helped me change my mindset and get my first batch of high-end clients. I left my job, replaced my income, and moved out to the country with my partner. This part of the story connects with my ideal clients because it paints a picture of what life could be like when they finally get what they want.
Step 4: The Return - At this point we've illustrated the path from where our ideal clients are now to where they want to go. Now we want to tell them why we are so passionate about going back and helping them make the same breakthrough that we did. In my story I talk about how if you have a gift, you also have an obligation to use it fully. Then I explain how I help people build a business around their wisdom and their knowledge.
Now It's Your Turn
I've created a little worksheet with the four steps on it that you can fill in. If that would be helpful, click the button below and I'll send it over to you:
As you work through the 4-Step Story Blueprint, I want you to be as specific as possible. Each of the first three steps should have a moment associated with it that people can visualize.
For example: I have the excel spreadsheet (Step 1), holding personal development workshops or blogging (Step 2), and moving to the country (Step 3). It's a bit counterintuitive, but the more detailed you are in your story, the more potential clients will connect with it. They'll insert their own specifics as they listen to yours.
Now get out there and start sharing your story!