Take your Coaching Business Up a Notch
by Bill McKinney, PGA Swing Fit Golf Performance Coach
Times are tough in the golf business, as we know. But as long as that huge difference exists between good and bad shots, coaches will stay in demand (note that I am trying to change the paradigm of teaching to ‘coaching’). When we are not busy coaching, we need to be busy growing our coaching business, whether it’s promoting or advancing our education as professionals. Our off-season is no time to just lay back in the hammock with our margaritas in hand (maybe for a day or two would be okay), but we should be doing whatever we can to build our business to make sure we have enough to do in high-season.
First off, educate yourself as much as possible about what the best coaches in the world are doing. Learn about how the brain works. Get the basics of anatomy. Attend seminars, read, and keep your mind open and agile about learning. In the information age, it has never been so easy to find knowledge.
Some of the things that have worked for me over the years include:
- Write a golf blog. You can do it for $2.95 a month on a website called ning.com. In fact, write everywhere they’ll let you write.
- Then also have a dedicated FaceBook page where you connect your entries along with other things you want to share with your growing golf tribe. Like it or not, FB is so pervasive that we really can’t afford to ignore it. There are also some FaceBook groups like ‘the Business of Golf Instruction’ that have new spontaneous discussions by fellow professionals from all over the world. Consider joining some of these groups and participating. You might get an idea that could be a tipping point for your business or simply make you an even better coach than you already are now.
- Build a website. With godaddy.com, you could get a simple information page live within one hour. The basic package is about $120 per year and includes up to 10 pages for you to expand your message and promotions.
- Take stock of your coaching station. Does it show that a true professional works there? At least have a few things like the alignment sticks, a hula hoop, and a little board for the plane of the impact zone. If your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.
- Invest in a decent camera and learn to use it to prioritize.
- If you have a budget for it, consider getting a launch monitor. At the moment, there’s nothing else as powerful for showing exactly what the club did to the ball.
- Make a simple but powerful brochure that explains your unique program.
- Upload short videos to YouTube and include your website and email address.
- Start your own breakfast networking club.
- Offer clinics.
- My favorite, ask experienced professionals for help.
Recognize your audience and give them ‘what they want’. Then, like all great coaches, you’ll be able to sneak in ‘what they need’ after you’ve got them committed to your program. That margarita will taste all the sweeter when you actually need the rest away from your clients.