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April 11, 2023

198 | What I Would Do If I Was Starting A Coaching Business In 2023

198 | What I Would Do If I Was Starting A Coaching Business In 2023 with Annie Miller

All of these are centered around and chosen through the lens of what I consider to be the two most important pieces to starting a business in the online health and fitness space.

  1. Building an engaged audience that trusts you – you will not have an online business without this.
  2. Developing a clear AF offer that works

So, as we dive into each of these, remember those two things – in the simplest sense, we need a lead pool or audience, and we need to make money. Which happens via our offer. If we lack clarity on said offer or it does not deliver on what we said it would, then it doesn’t work, you’ll lose confidence, and people will not trust you.

Let us begin. You might be disappointed to find that these are not much different than they were seven years ago. And that’s because the same principles still apply. It’s just how they fit into what is currently available in the online space. Seven years ago, it was blogging and the start of Instagram. Now, a blog may be far less important, but Instagram is like a full-time job. And, I would argue more important than ever.

Strap in for the long haul

Even more than seven years ago, new entrepreneurs need to grasp the fact that overnight successes don’t exist and to build a sustainable and profitable business simply takes TIME. There is no getting around that fact.

And the sooner you can embrace the daily grind, the more you will enjoy the process. Just like you’d tell a health and fitness client.

I know that scarcity can be a real thing when starting a business. I am not talking about scarcity mindset rooted in lies and false narratives. But ACTUAL scarcity and the very real need to generate revenue. Just know that this is not going to happen if you don’t have people who trust you, and if you don’t have an offer to sell that works.

So, take a few mantras from my first years of business – “make it happen” and “Be tenaciously patient” – which is not what it sounds like. When I say that, I mean that you need to be tenacious and patient. Lots of work. Lots of intent. Gratification down the road. Patience is needed in addition to all the work you’re going to put in.

Commit to failing fast and adapting

When starting out with your business you have the least to lose and least amount of eyes on you. Try all the things. Throw spaghetti at the wall, find your footing, your philosophy and your creative process.

In the beginning, you are the least confident. Which brings about this paradox, where you have not yet gained the confidence and clarity to show up how you know you should, but also, like I said, you have the least to lose. It’s the time where you need to bust out reps like never before. Frequency is your friend in the beginning.

Create as much content as you possibly can. If that makes you feel overwhelmed, I want to be specific with the fact that I am referring to small bite-size pieces of content. Apply that to an email list, a podcast, or Instagram. Wherever it is that you are creating content. Figure out a way to do it daily and at a high frequency. Will get into that a bit later. But the sooner that you can move forward with the fears that you have, when starting out, the quicker you are going to find success. That does not mean that the fear or level of being uncomfortable goes away, it just means that you are able to adapt to existing with those feelings and continuing to move forward. That is the goal, and that would be a main focus of mine, if I was starting out again.

Before I share the next one, I want to preface it with ignoring all of the gurus. You are going to be bombarded with coaches who coach coaches. Facebook and Instagram ads galore. Ignore all of it. What all of these are going to miss is the basics and the fact that you need to just get reps in. Most of the funnels that these coaches are trying to teach put the cart way before the horse for someone who is just starting out in their business. You do not need to be creating a funnel if you have not yet even built an audience that trust you. I cannot stress this enough. I did it myself, and I see it all the time. In the state of desperation, you watch all of the free workshops, and perhaps even invest in people, promising you a proven strategy for a funnel that makes X amount of thousands of dollars, but they failed to acknowledge the fact that you have not yet built an email list or audience that is prepared to purchase from you.

With that, I do encourage you to invest in business mentorship.

Buy a course or hire a coach

I encourage this because it can help put the blinders on and save time in making common mistakes.

I also recognize that a lot of coaches don’t have money to invest when starting out. So take it as much free content as you can. The most important thing no matter what route you take is that you are taking action and learning quickly. You can take all the courses in the world. But if you are not applying concepts, you will not have success. And you have not earned the right to blame whatever process you invested in.

I also think that the act of hiring a coach or purchasing a course is also practice in betting on yourself, and your brand or business. It takes a level of commitment and belief to do that. And this matters. That holds wait.

Obviously, I will plug my FitsPRO Foundations course here. But you need to take whatever course makes the most sense for whatever business you are trying to build. For some people they need a one on one coach, for other people, a course will suffice. I lean more towards a course when first starting out because the foundation that you need to build in your business is repetitive. The program that you are going to build out, and the brand that you are building is individual to you, but the concepts that you’ll be applying, and the principles that you are going to be applying, are not unique to you. They are the basis of nearly every business. typically one-on-one coaches are more expensive than a course. So that is why I also lean towards a course if you are just starting out.

Remember that, even if you do have the funds to invest, it’s going to take time, and you just have a lot to learn. These are facts. And they can’t be denied.

That kind of covers her mind that piece of starting out, now, let’s get into actual content, social media, and what it’s like to be in the online space.

Get on Youtube or Instagram or both 

– depending on time availability

The prime difference between YouTube and Instagram is that YouTube is a searchable platform, and Instagram is a social platform. It’s easier to make sales on social platforms. You can build a following quicker, and, like I said, typically turnover a profit faster because of that. Many search platforms are the long game. Which are extremely valuable, but not everybody has the time to optimize search-based platforms.

The negative side of your social based platforms like Instagram are that content has a very short life cycle, typically 24 to 48 hours. So frequency matters when attempting to build credibility and recognizable business. You will create less content for YouTube, but it lives forever, and can generate leads for you years down the road. This is why, if you have the time I suggest being on both, while recognizing that that is not the case for most people.

I personally regret not prioritizing YouTube five years ago. And think that it’s never too late to start there knowing what I know now, I would absolutely prioritize, YouTube. Especially if video based content is going to be any part of your brand. The only thing we want to be careful of here is doing a bit of market research to see if your ideal client, or any market that is in need of your services is actively searching for what it is that you offer on Google or YouTube. Because at the time of this episode, Google and YouTube use the same search engine and analytics.

I am biased to the health and fitness industry, so in my eyes, Instagram and YouTube are the top places I would be if I was starting out this year. And that’s what this podcast is all about, so there’s my answer on contact creation, platform options.

IG – Post every single day, twice a day with bite size content

YouTube – weekly or every other week content

It’s funny because Instagram is not 2015 anymore but I actually do suggest posting multiple times per day like you did when it was a chronological feed because this is your best chance at the most exposure. Different parts of your audience are on Instagram at different times of day. And as I said, when you are starting out, frequency is your friend. This allows you to hone in on your message faster and learn your own voice, it helps establish credibility, and can expedite trust. It also just gives you reps in creating content for your own creative process.

Because YouTube content takes more time to create and produce, I would start with a minimum of producing a video every other week. You can then use that contact to make bite-size clips for Instagram.

That is what I would do if I was just starting out again.

Build and nurture an email list – weekly, monthly, whatever. Just get people the fuck off of social media.

From YouTube and Instagram, I would be driving people to my mailing list with the utmost intention. I would make my email list relatable, and provide VIP information that I don’t provide anywhere else. If I was to just start out in the fitness realm, I would 110% be answering the most asked questions from my ideal client. Whether they asked it directly, or if I just know it’s something that a lot of people wonder about or struggle with.

In starting an email list, I would create different tags for what people are interested in based on my offers. So if you have nutrition-based offers as well as fitness, I would absolutely be categorizing people from the get-go based on their areas of interest so that I could target them with specific emails.

That brings us to our offerings. Which is the second piece of the most important things when starting a business in the online space. You have to have an offer that works. You have to be able to get people tangible results.

Only offer 1:1 coaching

I’ve mentioned in different capacities why I would start with one on one. In short, it gets to the highest revenue, the best testimonies, and the best knowledge of your ideal client in the quickest way possible, and it requires the smallest audience size. That’s why.

Looking back and looking at the current state of the online space, these are the things that I would do, set up, and focus on in 2023 if I was starting an online business in health and fitness world.

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I'm an adventurous introvert from Vancouver, Washington who lives on sleep + "me time." I'm a lover of lifting weights, dinosaurs, real talk and traveling with my husband. I am here to help you move better, lift more, bust the myths of the fitness industry, and inspire you to love the process.

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