Google Ads is one of the most popular advertising platforms for businesses for good reason, but when it comes to coaches, many decide to stick with organic forms of traffic. This makes sense, as when you’re starting out and winning your first few clients the cost of Google Ads can seem too high. But in this article I’m going to take you through how coaches can successfully use Google Ads to grow online and generate more leads… and of course, win more clients! Google Ads for coaches can be effective, affordable and help take your business to the next level!
I even created a funky info-graphic to accompany this post, because coaching has truly exploded over the past year with more people wanting to change their careers and create more flexible work life balances for themselves and their families.
So how can you use Google Ads to grow your coaching business? These principles apply whether you are selling one-to-one services or courses too.
1. Get crystal clear on who your ideal client is before you start Google Ads.
This one is a given for all marketing, in all forms. But especially with coaching you need to know your ideal audience inside out, and be really clear on what their key pain points are. Often coaching services and courses are expensive, and highly considered purchases. Unlike a £30 pair of shoes, someone is not going to buy your course or service packages on a whim. They will consider their options carefully and engage with your brand multiple times before deciding to commit.
For this reason, you need to map out this journey to fully understand the key questions and concerns your ideal client has at each stage and make sure you address them. You can do this at the very first touchpoint in your ad design and ad copy. But you need to know what motivates your ideal client, and what they truly care about before you can create that content effectively.
Writing down at least 100 facts about your ideal client can be a good place to start. I also have a tool I have built specifically for helping you create an ideal customer profile, you can check that out here. It’s totally free to use and should help you get started on building out a detailed profile for your ideal audience and clients.
Everything you research, and build out about your ideal client can then be used to create the most effective strategy for reaching and engaging them with your ads and offers. Then you can use Google Ads to grow your coaching business with the correct targeting, and enjoy much better results.
2. Use Google Search Ads to target local coaching related searches.
Google search ads are the oldest Google Ads type, they have been around for over 10 years. You can use then to show ads at the top of the Google search page for specific searches. For coaches this might be keywords like:
“confidence coach near me”
“confidence coach in London”
Keyword research and building a negative keyword list (excluding keywords you don’t want) is essential here. You will need to make sure you exclude any keywords related to education and other people wanting to become coaches themselves. Here are some examples you will very likely want to add to your negative keyword list.
“how to become”
When first starting out, you will likely just want to focus on specific keywords with high intent like “confidence coach London” but depending on your budget you can also target broader keywords like “benefits of a confidence coach” if you want to grow your email list and get warm leads into your funnel with free content. This can be an effective mid-long term “warm up” strategy but keep in mind what you will be paying for each of these warm leads. This kind of approach is best when your course or service is higher in value.
3. Use YouTube Ads to reach a large audience, while remaining personal and engaging.
Google Ads isn’t just about search ads. You also have Display Ads at your disposal which includes video ads on YouTube. YouTube ads are still very underutilised by many businesses, because they aren’t generally used to sell things directly. But they can be amazingly effective for growing an email list, or getting people into your webinar or launch event.
YouTube Ads allow you to reach a very large (yet targeted) audience very cheaply, and can raise your profile substantially over a very short period of time. So they can really help to strengthen the impact of a launch or new campaign you may be running.
The visibility you can achieve with YouTube Ads is second to none (more people watch YouTube then TV in 2021) so if your goal is to become the authority in your niche then you need to include this awesome ad type as part of your strategy. These ads can also work well when combined with re-marketing too.
4. Google Ads for Coaches should always include re-marketing.
Most coaches have a range of products and services to sell, but it’s usually all about a main course or program ranging from hundreds or even thousands in price. You’ll need to spend some time warming up your audience before they are ready to make such an investment. Content creation and email marketing are part of that, but re-marketing can play a huge role too.
Re-marketing shows specific ads to people who have already engaged with your business, and allows you to stay in their minds while they are considering whether or not to buy, or to choose a competitor instead. Simply being visible via re-marketing will improve your chances of converting a user… but it also works the better the longer you do it. So invest in re-marketing to not only convert more visitors into clients, but also to get more value from each client too.
5. Don’t expect high ticket sales right away, offer smaller purchases first.
As mentioned above, if you’re selling a high ticket course or program you’ll struggle to sell this to a cold audience. When it comes to your ads, unless they are being used to target an audience that is already warmed up, you’ll want to bring them into your world with a free download, webinar or smaller purchase first. This way you can engage them for less commitment, and let them get to know and trust you before you market your larger offering to them.
6. Be authentic in your ads. Don’t be tempted to copy other coaches.
The coaching industry has EXPLODED over the past year, and many coaches have been running ads during this time. I know as I have seen them myself! As I know you will have too.
Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you have to market like everyone else, or that the style of ads you see are working simply because your competitors are using them. Consider what really matters to YOUR audience and use this to create engaging ad copy or even better video ads that will speak directly to their needs and concerns. You want your ads to stand out for the right reasons, as this will improve your results and also strengthen your brand.
7. As always, track your performance properly and report regularly.
Tracking your performance data is one of the most important things you can do as a business owner or entrepneurs in today’s world. If you don’t track, you can’t grow… because you’ll never know what is really working and what isn’t! So this applies to Google Ads for coaches just as much as it does for every other niche.
Google Ads has it’s own tracking tags that you can use to track conversions you get from your ad campaigns (valuable actions like leads or sales). But Google Analytics is another tool you should always be using to collect data on your audience, and how they behave on your website. Adding Google Analytics to your website is quick and easy, so make sure you are using this or you’ll be losing out on priceless data on your ideal audience.
8. Use a landing page that features testimonials and video.
Using social proof on your website or landing page is essential for improving your conversion rate (the rate of how many visitors become paying customers).
Paid advertising delivers high quality traffic when it is used the right way, but you need to show someone new to your brand, why they can trust you… and why they should choose you over your competitors. Using social proof helps you demonstrate that you deliver on your promises, and shows potential clients that they can trust you.
Social proof examples includes testimonials, reviews, sponsors, showcasing your media features and so on. It can take time to collect reviews and testimonials, so make sure you have an easy system in place to ask your clients for feedback. Every review you get can help you boost your sales!
Adding video to your landing page or website will also help you improve your conversion rate. This can be a video of you explaining your offer, or simply talking about yourself, your experience and why you are the right choice for that potential client. Simply having video on a landing page can increase conversion rates by up to 80%. It doesn’t need to be fancy, you can simply use your phone camera to record yourself speaking in a tidy, well lit room. The fact your potential clients can also see who you are, will improve your chances of winning their custom as well.
9. Be consistent, and keep your ideal client’s buying cycle in mind.
Google Ads for coaches take a little time (just like Google Ads for any other industry). As mentioned earlier in this article, if you have an expensive offer, you’ll need to spend more time warming up your audience and building trust. Even with low price offers, it’s normal to require a few weeks of testing and optimisation at least for your ad campaigns to start generate a good level of results. The time it takes to both generate a sale with Google Ads depends on your strategy, having the right set up, then your offer and sales process/landing page/funnel.
When you’re generating results, bringing the cost of those results down to your goal amount takes time too. It’s completely normal to be paying more than you’d like for your leads or sales for the first few months. You should allow 3 – 6 months for your Google Ads campaigns to mature and be optimised. In this time you should be tweaking, optimising and scaling what works, while reducing spend on what doesn’t.
This is how you reduce the cost, and improve the return on your ad spend overtime. No ad campaign starts with the perfect ROI, all forms of marketing are a process of learning and optimisation. So make sure you don’t give up to early!
10. Be clear on your ROI goals and what you’re happy to pay per lead or sign up.
As with any marketing investment, make sure you set goals that are realistic from day one. Research the average conversion rates in your industry, as well as the costs. Then set a cost per conversion (sale or lead you) you can afford. For example £5 per email list sign up, or £100 challenge attendee. This should be based on the conversion rate of your sales process or funnel (another reason why point 7 is so important, if you don’t know your conversion rates you can’t work out realistic goals to set), and the value of a sale or customer for your business.
And don’t forget to think about your client life time value (LTV) too. For example you might sell your first course for £500, but then if a quarter of those students go on to spend a further £1000 per year with you. Retention is an important part of your overall strategy too. It costs 5 times more to generate a new customer, than sell something else to an existing one. This is also another reason why re-marketing is such a powerful technique as we mentioned earlier too.